Breastfeeding and travelling

Breastfeeding and travelling

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Breastfeeding and travel by plane

Sometimes babies feel pain in their ears when planes are taking off and landing. Breastfeeding during take-off and landing can help to ease your baby's discomfort. Your baby must wear an infant seatbelt while you breastfeed.

If you're planning to carry expressed breastmilk onto the plane, check with the airline beforehand about any restrictions on carrying liquids. It's also important to check and follow guidelines for storing and transporting expressed breastmilk.

Breastfeeding in other countries

If you're travelling overseas, it's a good idea to check attitudes to breastfeeding in the countries you're travelling to. You can look online or ask your travel agent or travel doctor.

Breastfeeding in public is acceptable in most countries around the world. But in some countries, it's considered offensive, and mothers are expected to cover up while breastfeeding.

Bring a shawl or blanket for breastfeeding if you're going to places where breastfeeding in public isn't acceptable.

Travel medications, travel vaccinations and breastfeeding

Travel medication
If you take medication to treat jetlag or illness, a small amount will transfer to your baby through breastmilk.

If you're taking anti-malarial drugs, your breastmilk will also be affected. Depending on which anti-malarial you take, this might not be safe.

Your anti-malarial medication won't cover your breastfed baby. He'll need to take medication as well.

Talk to your doctor about how any medications will affect your breastfeeding baby.

Travel vaccinations
If you're vaccinated for travel, it won't affect your baby - except if you're newly vaccinated for yellow fever. The yellow fever vaccine is transmitted in breastmilk and isn't safe for babies.

Travellers diarrhoea and breastfeeding

If you suffer from travellers diarrhoea, keep breastfeeding. Travellers diarrhoea won't affect your baby.

Here are some tips to maintain your supply and look after yourself in this situation:

  • Try to increase your fluid intake.
  • Take oral rehydration salts.
  • Breastfeed more frequently.

Low milk supply while travelling

Some mothers find their milk supply is affected by stress, jet lag, dehydration and illness.

Here's what to do if you think your supply is down:

  • Try to get plenty of rest, including during the day.
  • Drink lots of fluids, especially water.
  • Avoid tea, coffee and other drinks with caffeine.
  • Keep feeding, even more often if possible.