Breastfeeding and alcohol

Breastfeeding gives a baby the best possible start in life. When discussing breastfeeding with a mother to be, partner or new mum the message is that not drinking alcohol is the safest option for a baby’s development.  We know that alcohol passes from the bloodstream into breast milk and this can affect a baby’s sleeping patterns.  We also know that alcohol can reduce the supply of breast milk and it is particularly important in the first few weeks to fully establish the supply of breast milk. For special occasions, drinking alcohol should be avoided just before breastfeeding.

If a mum  chooses to consume alcohol, it should be limited it to no more than 1-2 units once or twice a week. See the Drink Aware website for more information about units of alcohol.

Alcohol and Lactation: An updated systematic review (external link)


 

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