From the mother’s perspective
Q.61 Is it possible for a mother to exclusively breastfeed if she is working or back at school?
Yes. Working women who have to leave their babies can continue exclusive breastfeeding through a variety of approaches. They can return home, or have their babies brought to work to be breastfed during breaks if they live nearby or are being taken care of in a nearby creche, or express their breast milk and leave it to be fed to the baby while they are away. In many situations, working women can take advantage of maternity protection provisions which are aimed at protecting breastfeeding, such as maternity leave after the birth and breastfeeding breaks once they return to work. Health workers should be able to help all mothers learn how to hand express breast milk and store it safely. See Infant and young child feeding counselling: an integrated course.
The same approaches apply for women and girls who are attending school. Depending on the age of the mother and the type of school, special arrangements may have to be made with the school administration to ensure that exclusive breastfeeding can continue for 6 months.
The support of the family is essential if a mother, especially a young mother, is to successfully continue exclusive breastfeeding.