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BREASTFEEDING

LIFESTYLE & RESOURCES

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NUTRITION

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An active lifestyle offers you many health benefits such as improved health and energy. Exercise does not impact the quality or the amount of your breastmilk. 

The following tips can help you be more comfortable when exercising as a breastfeeding mom:

  • Wear a comfortable support or sports bra. You can use nursing pads in case your breasts leak during exercise.

  • Pump or breastfeed before working out.

  • Stay hydrated.

  • Ask your doctor about how and when to gradually begin exercising after giving birth to your baby. 

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ACTIVE LIFESTYLE

 
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SEX LIFE

Your sex life does not need to be restricted while breastfeeding but you may need to make some adjustments to make sex more comfortable if you have the following: 

 

Vaginal dryness. Some new mothers experience vaginal dryness after childbirth and during breastfeeding. This is because estrogen (a hormone that increases during pregnancy) levels are lower during these times.

 

If you have vaginal dryness, you and your partner can try more foreplay and use water-based lubricants.

Leaking breasts. It is common for your breasts to leak or spray milk during sex, especially if you experience an orgasm. You can feed your baby or express your breastmilk before sex so your breasts are more comfortable and less likely to leak.

 

If your breasts do leak during sex, put pressure on your nipples or have a towel nearby to catch the milk.

 

Marijuana Use

It is not clear how marijuana affects breastfed babies. It is possible that through your breastmilk you may pass THC and other chemicals to your baby. Therefore, health experts strongly recommend that women who are pregnant and breastfeed do not use marijuana. 

If you're struggling with substance use of any kind and want to quit reach out for help. SAMHSA’s National Helpline, 1-800-662-HELP (4357) (also known as the Treatment Referral Routing Service), or TTY: 1-800-487-4889 is a confidential, free, 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year, information service.

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RECREATIONAL DRUGS

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TOBACCO/CIGARETTE

If you plan on breastfeeding, it is strongly recommended that you stop smoking or using e-cigarettes and other tobacco based products. You can still breastfeed if you smoke because breast milk provides numerous health benefits and remains the most recommended food source for your baby.

If you smoke, the best thing you can do for yourself and your baby is to quit as soon as possible. Learn more about smoking, pregnancy, and resources to quit here. 

 

Avoiding alcohol is the safest option for breastfeeding mothers. Moderate alcohol consumption (up to 1 standard drink per day) is not known to be harmful to your baby. If you do consume alcoholic beverages, it is recommended that you wait at least 2 hours after consumption before nursing your baby.

If you do drink alcohol, you do not have to stop breastfeeding your baby, however consuming more than the 1 alcoholic drink is not recommended. 

DRINKING/ALCOHOL