The Flu and You-What to Do-Part 2
Amie Brunner - March 04, 2018
Did you know that you can still breastfeed your baby if you have the flu? Tamiflu, a L2 medication, is safe to take while breastfeeding. Your breast milk will provide protection for your baby against the flu virus.

Precautions should be taken to help prevent the spread of the flu virus to members of your family, especially the baby.  Such precautions consist of good hand hygiene, washing the breast area before nursing, and trying not to cough or breathe on the nursing infant; this may require possibly wearing a mask around the baby.

The flu virus is typically spread by person-to-person contact. This can be via a cough, sneeze, talking, or even touching a contaminated surface and then touching your own nose or mouth. However, the flu virus cannot be spread through breast milk.

Nursing your baby, even if you are sick, can help protect your baby. This is because your breast milk will have antibodies in it that will help to protect your baby. If you are too sick to actually nurse your baby, hand expression or pumping is appropriate to express milk that can be fed to your baby. If you are pumping, follow the recommended cleaning guidelines for your pump.

What if my baby has the flu?
If your baby has the flu virus, it is safe to let them breastfeed. It is very important to continue and encourage your baby to nurse; this allows them to stay hydrated and gives them nutrition. If your baby does not want to breastfeed at the breast, expressed breast milk can be offered via cup, syringe, or a bottle.

Questions? We are just a phone call away.
Lactation information and breastfeeding advice is always available by calling the Schneck Family Life Center at 812-522-0435.
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