How to reconcile breastfeeding and work

The Breastfeeding It is a beautiful stage that can present some difficulties. There are many weaknesses of the mother during breastfeeding and concerns that may have increase the risk of known postpartum depression. The most difficult of all is perhaps to face the difficulties of breastfeeding when you have to resume the work routine. What should be taken into account to reconcile work and breastfeeding?

Weaknesses of the nursing mother before returning to work

There are many weaknesses that nursing mothers present, both psychological and physical (cracks, mastitis, pain ...), so Natalia Valverde Mendiz√°bal, perinatal psychologist and director of the psychology center and experts in Maternity Calm, says that "breastfeeding It's not easy. " Ensures that many times, to think that all mammals are lactating, we believe that it is simple and natural but in practice this is far from reality. Valverde stresses the importance of having a lactation consultant or midwife during this stage to guarantee the tranquility of the one who has just given birth.


One of the main weaknesses is the inability of the mother to breastfeed her baby due to different circumstances. If she wants to do it and can not, she tends to feel bad mother or even guilty. This frustration, according to Natalia Valverde, is accentuated by the pressure usually exerted by the media and society as a whole because breastfeeding is defended as something essential and the issues are neglected for which it may be necessary to renounce it.

The typical concerns of the nursing mother who works

Whether the woman works or not during breastfeeding, there are a number of typical concerns to which the particularities of each case must be added because it is well known that, just as each pregnancy develops in a certain way, so is the pregnancy. Lactation phase occurs in a different way in each woman. Natalia Valverde comments that in the patients who have attended the most repeated concerns are:


- If the child eats enough or not because the breast does not know the amount that sucks (which with the bottle if you can measure)

- If you have to put your chest every time you cry

- If you have to feed him on demand

- The opinions of the environment when they believe that the mother does not do the right thing

Breastfeeding is a complicated period at the beginning, which is why midwives and lactation consultants are the ones who can validate the mother's behaviors by making them succeed instead of questioning each of the things they do. This will make the mother feel much better.

It is true that breastfeeding is one hundred percent recommended but that does not mean that sometimes there are circumstances that make it impossible for the mother to breastfeed the baby. It is proven that breastfeeding prevents postpartum depression because antidepressant hormones are generated when it is practiced. It also favors the bond that is forged between the mother and the baby. Breastfeeding is in the words of Valverde a "protective" element. But he insists that "not all women are the same".


Breastfeeding and work: two profiles of women

Natalia Valverde clearly distinguishes two profiles of women:

- On the one hand there is the independent woman who goes to the gym, works and loves to meet with her friends. For this perhaps the return to work is a relief to the claustrophobia that suffers at home taking care exclusively of your child. These things are also typical of situations in which the child does not stop crying, he suffers colic and nothing can change his crying. Often these women want to go back to work. "Painting your eyes, putting on some heels and going back to work relieves them," says Valverde.

- On the other hand, there is that other profile of a woman for whom detachment from her child being so small is a very big pain.

It is true that in one case or another, one of the biggest concerns is to decide who the baby stays with and for how long. The truth is that as revealed by Natalia Valverde, there is no perfect option. "Every woman and every baby is a world," she says.

During breastfeeding, is it better to ask to leave at work?

There is no correct option and another incorrect but one frequent and one less usual. To the extent that they can, mothers often paralyze their professional career after having given birth. It is also normal to ask for a reduction in working hours later. But, from the psychological point of view, and so it should be designed for good or bad in the workplace, every woman should do what she wants, whatever goes with her. We must facilitate this option, so that they do not encounter social obstacles that push them to opt for something they do not want to do: whether it is working or staying at home.

What is certain is that, in terms of maternity leave, in Spain, as Valverde not only thinks but also many other experienced and expert women, the woman is not sufficiently protected. Tends to believe that it does not do anything right because everything is done half-heartedly and this is something to be avoided.In many cases, as Valverde points out, unfortunately this is the reason why women delay their motherhood in search of a stable working life, which translates in the long term into problems of fertility that push many women to consultations like those of Calm. Imagine having to take milk at work is also a point that slows the biological clock of a woman, who, both from the physical point of view and from the psychological point of view, should become pregnant at around 25-30 years . As for the shots, it must be made clear that they are not a problem. The baby adapts to what the mother gives him. The shots can be reduced to two if you have to go to work and only give your child the breast in the morning and at night. Natalia Valverde recalls that there is no problem in this regard.

'Maternity blues' or postpartum depression: they are different things

Perhaps one of the keys to determining whether or not the woman is in a position to resume her work life is to define whether her sadness is the product of a "maternity blues" also known as postpartum sadness or a Postpartum depression. The first refers to a transient alteration of the mood of the woman after delivery. The difference lies in the prolongation of such alteration in time. If it extends too much it is a depression. In this case it is recommended that the woman take a rest time. "We want to be super women and do not give up anything but sometimes you have to know how to stop," says Valverde bluntly.

Video: Science and Religion || Mayim Bialik


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