6 helpful travel tips for breastfeeding mums
Are you a breastfeeding mum going on your travels soon? Here are some useful tips for you.
Travelling with a little one is not easy at the best of times. But when you are breastfeeding or pumping milk, there are additional things to think about, like how to store your expressed breastmilk for the journey, or where the best places to breastfeed are. With this in mind, here are some great travel tips for breastfeeding mums.
1. Leave early
Whether you are driving to your destination or taking a flight, leaving early will give you adequate time to nurse your baby when needed, without rushing and stressing about getting late.
2. Be prepared
When you are travelling with a baby, most – if not all – airlines allow both a diaper bag and a carry-on bag on the flight. You could easily fit your breast pump in one of these bags.
When travelling, consider taking a single manual pump which is generally more compact than electronic pumps, and therefore easier to store and carry with you. Remember to pack sanitiser and/or disinfectant wipes to clean the armrest, and a nursing cover if this will help you feel more comfortable breastfeeding on the flight.
Experts advice against cleaning your breast pump parts in the plane washrooms due to the risk of bacterial contamination. Instead, store them in clean, resealable bag for cleaning when you reach your destination. Or if you really must clean them, ask the flight attendant for bottled water.
3. Do your homework
If you are planning to take expressed milk with you, do check with the airline in advance if carrying it with you is allowed in the first place, and how much you are allowed to take on-board with you.
It’s also best to store the milk in small quantities. This way, waste (and heartache!) is minimised in the event that you are asked to dispose of any excess.
Also, check with airport officials in advance if there are nursing rooms and where they are located. This will spare you the stress of locating one if your baby demands a sudden feed while at the airport, and you are not comfortable with nursing in public.
4. Time your feedings
Encourage your little one to nurse during take-off and landing. The sucking-swallowing action will help ease the pressure in his ears and if you are lucky, will soothe him to sleep.
5. Pack all breastfeeding supplies
Take the items that will help make your trip less stressful, such as extra nursing bras, breast pads, nipple cream, milk storage bags and a nursing pillow.
Do check with your hotel in advance if your room will have a mini fridge so you can store your expressed breastmilk there if needed.
6. Stay healthy
Busy airports are a hub of germs, and changes to your regular schedule can make you vulnerable to infections such as mastitis. Interruptions to your routine can also affect your milk supply – so do make an effort to either pump or direct latch at your regular timings.
In order to protect yourself from infections such as mastitis, stay well-hydrated, wash your hands frequently and rest whenever you can.
What other travel tips for breastfeeding mums can you think of? Do share in a comment below.