We were already paranoid about ensuring everything is clean and sanitized around our kids. But the COVID-19 pandemic brought our worries to another level that moms on social media wondered whether breastfeeding, for example, was okay to do.
For the record, you can definitely breastfeed your baby during the pandemic, and it doesn’t matter whether you have COVID-19 or not. The crucial thing to do is wash your hands with soap and wear a face mask before breastfeeding.
You can read here the rest of the breastfeeding guidelines amid the threat of COVID-19 by the Department of Health.
In fact, breast milk is so essential now for babies because it has antibodies that help a baby’s immune system. We’ve said it before: Breast milk acts as your baby’s first line of defense against illness -- think of it as your baby’s first vaccine.
And if you need proof, a mom shared on a Facebook group how breast milk changes to meet a baby’s needs, especially when the mom or the baby is sick.
The mom shared a photo that showed two breast milk storage bags: the left bag was taken when she was healthy and the other was when she tested positive for COVID-19.
Her baby had gotten sick and they assumed she had COVID-19 but did not test her.
She writes, “I EBF and only pump occasionally to build a stash but when I got sick, the baby wasn’t getting enough [breast milk] so I had to pump more to build up my supply.
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"About four days after testing positive, I noticed the greenish/yellow milk. It got much darker after it was frozen. Since then my milk has still had a green tint (about a week and a half in) but not as dark as the one pictured."
What does the color change mean? Studies say "maternal and infant infections stimulate a rapid immune cell response in breast milk."
The breast milk's reaction to the mom's exposure to the virus was to produce antibodies to pass on to the baby to fight infection.
How? Studies have strongly suggested that a baby's saliva tells a mom's body to produce more milk with antibodies to address an illness, and it works both ways. Read here how the breast milk color changed when a baby is sick.
As a local pediatrician and International Certified Breastfeeding and Lactation Counselor (ICBLC) Dr. Jamie Isip-Cumpas previously told us, “Your body will produce the milk that your baby needs.”