Many women often have doubts about breastfeeding in case of illness and fever. First of all, it is worth clarifying that everything will depend on the health problem and the cause (bacteria or virus), it will depend on the type of problem. In most cases of cold, diarrhea and urinary tract infection, for example, a woman can breastfeed her baby naturally.
In the case of dengue, generally, medical advice is that there is no problem and that the woman can breastfeed even with a fever. With regard to Zika virus and chikungunya infections, according to WHO (World Health Organization) guidelines, the mother must continue breastfeeding even in a scenario of scientific research around the world that does not rule out the possibility of transmission of virus through breast milk .
If the woman has mastitis , for example, which is characterized by inflammation in the breasts , which is usually common among women, the advice is to continue breastfeeding, which even helps the woman to recover from the problem. .
Bacterial Infection and Cold
If the woman contracts some type of virus or has a bacterial infection and needs an antibiotic, it is essential to confirm with the doctor if she can continue to breastfeed the baby.
In the case of a cold , the use of a mask may be recommended to prevent transmission of the virus to the child. But it is common that women, even with medical authorization, prefer to stop breastfeeding until health has been restored.
Fever during breastfeeding involves more the issue of feeling unwell and many women, because they do not feel well, prefer not to breastfeed the baby until they feel totally in good condition and with renewed health.
Not to mention that breastfeeding is a unique moment, of eye-to-eye contact and a great connection between mother and baby, many women, when they are not feeling well for some health or emotional reason, prefer not to breastfeed to preserve the child in a self-protective instinct, in addition to the guidance of medicine.
IMPORTANT: Under no circumstances can a woman take medication on her own. It is necessary to inform the doctor about the symptom of fever, temperature and problem related to the symptom so that he can receive precise guidance on whether to continue breastfeeding.
Maternal Diseases – Know in Which Cases Women Can Breastfeed
We have listed some health problems to clarify whether breastfeeding in these cases can be continued or not:
If the woman is treating anemia, she will not have to stop breastfeeding, especially because, despite the problem, the milk will continue with important iron doses to maintain the baby’s health.
Studies around the world have pointed out that breastfeeding among diabetics is able to benefit women’s health. In cases where the woman needs to take insulin, generally the advice is to continue breastfeeding, there are cases where the insulin doses will need to be readjusted and decreased.
After breast cancer
If the woman has undergone treatment for breast cancer that involved chemotherapy and radiation and conservation surgery, she will be able to breastfeed normally on a healthy breast. During treatment , it is recommended to stop breastfeeding, as the baby may be harmed by the burden of medication.
Most of the drugs used to treat epilepsy are compatible with breastfeeding.
The treatment of depression does not prevent the woman from breastfeeding, but because of the problem, the woman may not feel safe to feed the child, in these cases, psychological and emotional support become extremely important.
This problem is characterized by the presence of benign tumors in the pituitary gland, which is responsible for the increase in prolactin production. Women who have been diagnosed with this problem can breastfeed naturally and the act of breastfeeding does not increase the size of the tumor.
When breastfeeding is not allowed
In cases where the woman needs to stop breastfeeding, she can withdraw the milk and discard it, so as not to hinder production and return to breastfeeding as soon as her health is up to date. Currently, most antibiotics used to treat bacterial infections do not prevent breastfeeding.
The lactating woman with a fever can breastfeed in most cases, but it is essential to know the health problem and to observe the behavior of this fever. If the woman has the flu, for example, and even after a medical consultation, she has a fever for more than three days, the ideal is to check with the specialist if there is really no problem for the baby.
In the case of colds and flu, it is important for a woman to wash her hands thoroughly when sneezing and to turn her face away so as not to be in direct contact with the baby.
Breastfeeding Fever – Treatment Measures
If the woman is feverish, for the treatment she can surrender to some measures like wearing clothes with light fabrics, drinking a lot of water throughout the day and surrendering to baths of warm to cold water .
Most specialists usually prescribe acetaminophen and ibuprofen as safe means to treat fever, but of course it will depend on the individual condition of the woman and whether there are any problems with the substances in the drugs.
Natural teas are indicated , ingredients such as honey, lemon, garlic, mint, among others, are recommended as a natural treatment in addition to the conventional one to restore health as soon as possible in cases of infection by viruses or bacteria. Cold compresses on the torso and limbs with a damp towel are also indicated for the recovery of normal body temperature.
See also: Breast Milk Milking – How to do it?
My name is Dr. Alexis Hart I am 38 years old, I am the mother of 3 beautiful children! Different ages, different phases 16 years, 12 years and 7 years. In love with motherhood since always, I found it difficult to make my dreams come true, and also some more after I was already a mother.
Since I imagined myself as a mother, in my thoughts everything seemed to be much easier and simpler than it really was, I expected to get pregnant as soon as I wished, but it wasn’t that simple. The first pregnancy was smooth, but my daughter’s birth was very troubled. Joana was born in 2002 with a weight of 2930kg and 45cm, from a very peaceful cesarean delivery but she had already been born with congenital pneumonia due to a broken bag not treated with antibiotics even before delivery.