Hesperian Health Guides
When the Mother Works Outside the Home
Every day 20,000 people visit the HealthWiki for lifesaving health information. A gift of just $5 helps make this possible!
Make a gift to support this essential health information people depend on.
Many women now work away from their homes. This can make it hard for a mother to give her baby nothing but breast milk during the first 6 months.
A working mother should not have to choose between her work and her child’s health.
Working mothers need help. Some jobs allow a mother to bring her baby for a few months. This makes breastfeeding the easiest. If a mother has child care nearby, she might be able to breastfeed during the day, on her breaks. Some employers organize child-care centers so that parents can have their children close by.
Here are some ways to make sure your baby
gets only breast milk while you are at work:
nearby for 6 months.
When you are with your baby, feed it only from your breasts. If you sleep with the baby at night, it may feed more, and this will help you to make enough milk.
Some women ask a friend or a relative, like the baby's grandmother, to breastfeed their baby. If you want another woman to breastfeed your baby, she should be tested for HIV and have no risk of becoming infected while breastfeeding.