It is World Breast Feeding Week!
Running from August 1-7, this annual celebration aims to raise awareness of breastfeeding and its benefits to both mother and baby.
Why breast feed?
Your milk is uniquely made for your growing baby’s needs. It helps protect your baby from infection and other illnesses. It is important for your baby’s healthy growth and development.
As a mother, it also reduces your chances of getting some illnesses later in life. The longer you breastfeed, the greater the health protection for you and your baby.
Breast Feeding Breaks
Staff who are breastfeeding, after returning from maternity leave, are entitled to breastfeeding breaks at work for up to one hour per normal working day.
The breaks may be taken until the child’s second birthday, if needed.
Staff who are working reduced hours, or work longer days, can take the breaks on a pro-rata basis.
Breastfeeding breaks may be taken in the form of:
- one break of 60 minutes;
- two breaks of 30 minutes each;
- three breaks of 20 minutes each
- Or in a manner as agreed by you and your manager.
How to Apply
You should apply using the breastfeeding breaks application form at least four weeks before you plan to return to work or take breastfeeding breaks.
Before you come back to work, you and your manager will agree how the breastfeeding breaks will be taken.
Got a breast feeding question?
If you have questions about breast feeding you can access expert advice from HSE MyChild. You can talk to the MyChild Breast Feeding expert using this LINK.:
Breast feeding positions
Here are a few tips to help you get your technique just right:
- The movement needed to get into this position is from your pelvis. Shift your hips forward in a chair or bed to create a semi-reclined position. Laying your baby down on your semi-reclined body ensures they connect with your body without any gaps.
- Lay your baby on top of you with their tummy down and their cheek resting near your breast.
- Allow your baby to self-attach. They will find the breast and attach themselves. You can also guide or help your baby to attach.
- You can use your arms as guard rails to support your baby on top of your body.
- You can also use pillows and cushions to provide support wherever you need it.
- Hold your baby close and facing you. You may find a pillow on your lap helpful to support your baby.
- Gently support your baby’s neck, back and shoulders. This will allow them to tilt their head back easily.
- Do not hold or cover the back of your baby’s head. This can result in them pushing back or arching leading to a failed attachment to the breast. It is important to create space for baby to tilt head back without obstruction for a successful attachment.
- Sometimes it helps to shape your breast, making sure your fingers and thumb are well back from the areola. This creates an oblong shape and allows your baby to attach easier to your breast.
- The palm of your other hand can support your baby’s back.
- Support your baby’s neck, back and shoulders with your hand and wrist.
- Let your baby’s back lie along your arm. Your baby should be facing you with their nose near the nipple.
- Support your breast with your other hand.
- Guide your nipple towards the baby’s mouth.
- Your baby will then snuggle up close and begin to breastfeed.
- You and your baby lie down facing each other.
- Make sure your neck and back are supported and comfortable. Your baby’s chest should face your chest.
- Take the arm that you’re lying on and either place it under your head or use it to support your baby by placing it under their head or around their body.
- You can use a pillow or rolled-up blanket behind your baby’s back for support.
- Your baby’s nose will be near the nipple.
- From there, your baby will smell the breast milk, open their mouth wide and find the nipple.
Supports and Resources
See images below for a listing of breastfeeding support groups in Galway, Mayo and Roscommon.
Click on the below link to learn more about Breastfeeding:
Breast Feeding- A good start to life