I always try to find the blessing in any circumstance to sustain faith in better days and this is no different. Many of us are experiencing an array of emotions coupled with lifestyle changes with the spread of COVID19 and the social distancing it has placed on our lives. And for some it isn't much different than every day life.
Everyday routine acts have vanished in the midst of a cough. Stay home.
With this wave of emotions that can mirror the stages of grief, the effects of this pandemic can be stressful for some moms if unemployment, housing or food stability become an issue. Stress is not conducive to a strong milk supply. It causes your body to produce cortisol which inhibits milk supply. It is important to remember to remain hopeful and calm to continue to nurse your baby.
I am also expressing that it is extremely important to keep breastfeeding through it all, honey. There 800+ confirmed cases of coronavirus here in Georgia and it has not even begun to reach it's peak, yet.
The benefits of breastfeeding through this pandemic detrimentally outweigh the risks of not. If you are reading this and have contracted the coronavirus, keep breastfeeding your baby. The CDC states there is a higher chance of infection if breastfeeding is interrupted. Practice safe respiratory and personal hygiene when coming in contact before and after handling your baby. An abrupt disruption to breastfeeding can lead to supplementation, low milk supply, engorgement or mastitis for a mother and also lessens the protection from the virus for the baby.
I have had moms reach out to me in search of formula because of hoarding and stockpiing or they may be combination feeding some have never even breastfed before.
Breastfeeding is food security and it is one less, stay home, worry off your plate as a mother. If you have been using formula to supplement or just want to boost your supply, this quarantine is the game changer. There is also the process of relactation for moms who have recently stopped or those who have never breastfed before. Seek the help of an IBCLC to help begin relactation.
This quarantine will give breastfeeding moms an opportunity to boost their milk supply by way of baby mooning.
What is a baby moon?
A baby moon is a long stretch of days where you and your baby, stay home, nuzzled in a cozy bed and nurse frequently on demand for a couple of days. Many moms have chosen to have a baby moon over the, stay home, course of a weekend as the easiest.
When you engage in baby mooning there should be lots of skin to skin with baby. Skin to skin care stimulates the mother's brain to release the hormones oxytocin and prolactin. Oxytocin, the love drug, gives mom a calm and euphoric feeling while breastfeeding and it also stimulates milk ejection. Prolactin is critical in maintaining a strong milk supply.
When mom and baby engage in skin to skin there is frequent nursing which means frequent nipple stimulation, the foundation of a strong milk supply. This cycle begins the onset of sending your body the message to make more milk. Not to mention you will get more rest and feel more relaxed which can’t ever be a bad thing. Use this opportunity to get some rest, honey!
Baby mooning is good for babies to who haven’t quite figured out latching just yet. The most optimal positions to be in when breastfeeding is the laid back or side lying. Baby mooning encourages instinctual breastfeeding positions and behaviors in your baby.
Some of you may have already noticed an increase in your pump output. It's most likely due to being confined to your home with absolutely no, stay home ,distractions from breastfeeding. What an optimal time to practice, practice, practice.
Even when nursing is going well and you finally think you've found your rhythm, things can happen, like a fucking viral outbreak, that can cause your supply to take a dip.
I'm still baffled by that one. Couldn't make this up if I tried.
Most of my counseling sessions end with the same low maintenance-low cost fix, stay home, put baby to breast and to feed on demand, and a baby moon provides the space for that.
With the uncertainty of the duration of this pandemic, all services have moved to a virtual platform. We will still provide the safest and optimal virtual comprehensive care to our mothers.
Stay home, honey,,,,the person's life next to you could depend on it.
**** This blog post does not intend to replace medical advice given from a healthcare provider.