Can I continue breastfeeding if I get a cold?
Breastfeeding should not be interrupted if the mom has a cold. If you need to visit the doctor’s office, tell your doctor that you’re breastfeeding so he can prescribe a medicine that is compatible. Keep in mind that you contract the virus a few days before you begin feeling sick or showing symptoms. Therefore, your baby has already been exposed by that time. Your body makes antibodies to fight the virus, which are transmitted to the baby via your breastmilk. If you stop breastfeeding when you begin showing symptoms, your baby would have already caught the virus a few days ago. However, your baby will not get the antibodies that will protect or prevent him from getting sick. Even if he does get sick but you are still breastfeeding, it will lessen the severity of the illness.
Can the LC come to the hospital?
Most hospitals have Lactation consultants on their staff, but there are still some that do not. It will be helpful to find out the hours they work before you have your baby. Ask your doctor or the hospital when you go and do the hospital tour. Some hospitals only have Lactation Consultants on Monday through Friday, during the day. There typically is no coverage for the early evening through the early morning and weekends. Some hospitals have them on seven days a week, but only during the day.
If there is not a lactation consultant at the hospital, the nurses should be able to assist you with breastfeeding. Don’t be shy and, if for any reason you don’t feel comfortable with that nurse, politely ask if you can have someone else help you. Ask as many questions as you can while you’re at the hospital. This is a great time for dad to get involved, learn and help you remember after you have been discharged.
That being said, you can always hire a Lactation Consultant in private practice and ask her to come and visit you at the hospital. I suggest you write a birth plan and include the lactation consultant’s name on it, along with a release of information in case there is the need to disclose medical information to her. You want to make sure everything is set in place before you have your baby.