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How to Handle Breastfeeding When Sick

How to Handle Breastfeeding When Sick

Getting sick is just a part of life and sometimes, it’s unavoidable. However, as a breastfeeding mom, you probably have so many questions… not just about breastfeeding if you are sick, but how to handle it when your baby is sick as well! Here are some of our favorite tips for breastfeeding when sick.

How to Handle Breastfeeding When Sick

Breastfeeding always has its challenges, and when you aren’t feeling good, it can be even harder! However, there are so many benefits for your baby should you continue breastfeeding through your sickness.

How to Handle Breastfeeding When Sick

Breastfeeding When Sick as a Mom

 For one thing, your body produces antibodies as you fight basic sicknesses like the cold or flu. One of the amazing things about breastfeeding when sick is that those antibodies will actually pass through your breast milk to your baby!

However, there are still a few things you should keep in mind:

Your own health

First of all, being sick is completely draining! You may find that nursing or pumping adds additional stress and can tire you out quickly. That’s why focusing on getting yourself healthy while you continue to breastfeed is so important! Stay hydrated, continue fueling your body, and get as much rest as possible.

 Additionally, recognize that you may not be able to pump as much or feel like your baby is getting as much milk when you are sick. It’s common for moms to see a slight dip in their supply when they are sick because their body is working overtime to fight off other issues. Having some extra breast milk stored away in freezer-safe Junobie storage bags or boxes is a great way to ensure that you have enough to feed your baby while you are sick!


Although most basic cold/flu medications are safe to continue using while breastfeeding when sick, it’s always a good idea to reach out to your healthcare provider if you have any concerns. Especially if you are prescribed any heavier medications than what you can find over the counter. Always let your doctor and pharmacist know that you are breastfeeding and go over the possible side effects before taking any medications while sick.

breastfeeding when baby is sick

Plan ahead

As mentioned before, having a small stash of frozen breast milk is a great way to prep for a rainy day (or, in this case, a sick one!). You don’t need to have a freezer full of breast milk… but even a few Junobie milk bags or trays with frozen breast milk can make your life so much easier! Not only will this allow you to supplement your supply, but you can also hand off feedings to a caregiver who still feels well!

Keeping your baby safe

If you are sick, it’s even more important than ever to take precautions while breastfeeding! If you are nursing, make sure to wash your hands frequently and cover your mouth to prevent your baby from getting sick. If you are pumping, it’s extra important to keep all of your pump parts clean and sanitary! Wash them thoroughly after each use to ensure that the breast milk stays safe for consumption.

Breastfeeding When Sick: Handling a Sick Baby

On the other hand, what if your baby is the one who isn’t feeling well? Once again, continuing to breastfeed is extremely important for a sick child. The antibodies in breast milk will help your baby recover quicker and provide them with the needed nutrients to get back to normal.

 In fact, your breast milk is pretty amazing! Its composition will change depending on what your baby needs at certain times. That means when your baby is sick, it will produce additional antibodies! If you pump, it may be a good idea to add in an extra session while your baby is sick to store the antibody-full breast milk for future use as well.

If your baby is sick, there are a few things to keep in mind:

Breastfeeding frequency

You may find that your baby wants to eat more or less frequently when they are sick. If you are nursing, it could be that your baby simply wants additional comfort and so they nurse more often! However, it’s important to keep in mind that their needs will change depending on how they are feeling. It’s okay to feed your baby more if they seem to want more when they are sick.

 On the other hand, if they are eating less, make sure to take note of how often they are eating. If you ever feel like your baby isn’t eating nearly enough, contact their pediatrician for other solutions. You can also keep your supply up during this time by continuing to pump and storing the breast milk in a reusable storage bag for a later date!

breastfeeding when mom is sick

Dealing with complications

Another common issue that you may run into with a baby breastfeeding when sick is something as simple as a stuffy nose! This can make feeding your baby more difficult because they may need to stop and start eating more frequently in order to breathe. Simply changing up your nursing position is a potential solution, but overall it may not get to the root cause of the problem.

That’s where a NozeBot Baby Nasal Aspirator comes in! We love this product because it provides a simple solution to one of the most frustrating problems a sick baby comes in contact with. Manual suction methods are usually very difficult to use with a squirmy, fussy child. It’s hard enough to get them to stay still as it is, let alone when they don’t feel good!

However, this nasal aspirator is electric and allows you to clear out your baby’s congestion one-handed! That means you are able to securely hold your baby while using the other hand to hold the suction device.

Get Well Soon!

Overall, having a sick baby (or being sick yourself) is no fun! Make sure that you and your baby get plenty of rest and allow yourself time to heal. You’ll be able to get back to your typical breastfeeding routine in no time!

 Make sure you check out Junobie to learn more about our line of breastmilk storage options as well as our portable breast milk heating and cooling cup!

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Make Breastfeeding Easier With The NozeBot

The Nozebot is a battery-powered suction device designed to clear nasal congestion in babies and children.

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