Whether you're a first-time Mum, or this ain't your first breastfeeding rodeo, as we head into more extreme temperatures by the year, breastfeeding in Summer can be daunting and dangerous. TMM mindful breastfeeding coach and Doula, Laura from The Lemontree Birth shares her invaluable advice for breast-feeding in the Summer.
And remember Mamas, you don't need to do this alone. For 121 support and guidance or some handy tools - discover our Mindful Breastfeeding Support Section.
TOP FIPS FOR FEEDING YOUR BABY THIS SUMMER
Feed in the shade so you & your baby are more comfortable. This helps avoid them getting fussy or too sleepy to feed. Avoid being in direct sun during peak hours 11am - 4pm
Plenty of skin to skin. You might want to strip baby down to a nappy or vest. If it’s sticky you could always use a muslin
Keep yourself hydrated & drink extra fluids. Your baby will be feeding much more frequently in the heat. Remember we drink more, they need to as well. If you are breastfeeding you don’t need to give your baby water or other fluids. Your breastmilk is everything they need to stay hydrated, just feed on demand.
Enjoy a refreshing drink whilst you feed. Why not make some home made ice lollies full of fruit or ice cubes with raspberries or strawberries to add to your water?
Go with the flow & allow your baby uninterrupted time at the breast. Ensure you rest if baby is feeding a lot more & ask for help with other tasks so you get a break
Keep yourself cool. Loose, cotton clothing, cold drinks, air con, a fan, handheld fan in your changing bag and keep your feet cool in the paddling pool or a bowl of cool water
Don't forget to express. If you need to be away from your baby at any point then it’s preferable to offer expressed breast milk to ensure they get all the nutrition & fluids that they need. If your baby is over 6 months & eating solid foods you can offer sips of water between feeds & at meal times
Be prepared to feed more. Older babies & children will want to be at the breast more than usual in the heat even if feeds have previously reduced. They do this for comfort and hydration.
Ensure your baby is cool. Avoid blankets/muslins over the pram which actually creates a furnace. Allow good air flow & ventilation or use a specialist item like this Snooze Shade over buggy cover.
Nap times & frequencies might vary on hot days.Your baby may be more sleepy in the heat (especially if they are young). Ensure if they are that you aren’t leaving them for stretches of 2-3 hours or more without a feed.
If you are formula feeding you can give your baby sips of cool water (sterile previously boiled) for hydration. Just be mindful not to let them fill up on water, they must still take their normal amount of milk.
If you've got a breastfeeding, birthing or parenting question - discover our Mindful Breastfeeding Expert Hub.