SafeMotherhood
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RETURNING TO WORK

Working and breastfeeding

Unless your baby is being cared for in a crèche at work and you can go and feed him or her during breaks, you will have to express milk in order to let your childminder give your baby bottles of your own milk.

There are various ways of expressing:

• Hand expressing - ask an NCT breastfeeding counsellor, or a friend who has successfully used this method, to show you how to do it.

• Hand-operated pumps - portable and quiet to use, but don't get a `breast reliever', which consists of a rubber ball attached to a plastic funnel. It's very difficult to get enough suction by squeezing the bulb and is almost impossible to sterilise properly.

• Battery pumps - more expensive than hand-operated pumps and can be noisy, which might be a disadvantage at work. However, they are efficient.

"I used the pump twice a day, for about 15 to 20 minutes at a time. I took two sterilised bottles, which I had put in the fridge, and they were still cold when I got home." (Sarah, hospital receptionist).

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