Breastfeeding and COVID-19

ORANJESTAD - The Department of Public Health together with “Pro Breast Milk Foundation” are urging mothers of newborns and infants that are breastfeeding to social distance and avoid leaving their residency or receiving visitors to help reduce the risks of contracting the Coronavirus.

Should a breastfeeding mother be infected with the Coronavirus, it is not necessary to stop breastfeeding or separate her from her baby. It is rather important to keep breastfeeding your newborn. Why?

It has been proven that once a breastfeeding mother has an infection of any kind, her body makes the needed antibodies to fight these infections. These newly created antibodies are also transferred to the baby through breast milk. That is why it very important to keep breastfeeding your baby, even if you have the coronavirus. Breastmilk is particularly of great importance in this ongoing coronavirus pandemic and can protect your baby from the virus. In the event the baby is infected, the symptoms will be light and the baby will recover quickly as well.  

An infected breastfeeding mother should follow these guidelines:

Before breastfeeding:

  • Wash hands properly;
  • cover mouth and nose during breastfeeding;
  • breastfeed on demand, so frequently. 
  • Follow hygiene guidelines: wash hands frequently with soap and water (20 seconds);disinfect hands frequently with alcohol (min 60%); keep all surfaces disinfected, sneeze and cough in elbow or tissue and immediately discard tissue and wash hands again;drink plenty of water, rest sufficiently;
  • continue breastfeeding as indicated by the World Health Organization and UNICEF;
  • should you really feel sick, please pump your milk and have someone else give this to your baby.
  • hospitalized mothers should try to keep their baby as close as they can and continue to feed them with breast milk.
  • breast milk is the best option for your baby, especially in these circumstances. Assistance from close relatives is important so the breastfeeding mother can focus on taking care of her baby and breastfeeding.

The fight against the Coronavirus starts with you. If you have any symptoms related to the Corona Virus, please call 2800101 for instructions.

Breastfeeding and coronavirus

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