A Mother-Friendly Worksite to Support Breastfeeding is as easy as 5 simple steps
10 STEP CHECKLIST
Breastfeeding Moms Going Back to Work
1. Attend a Prenatal Class:
Register for prenatal & breastfeeding classes available at your birth facility, WIC clinic or healthcare provider office.
2. Know Your Rights:
The Federal Break Time for Nursing Mothers Law & Montana Public Employer Policy on Breastfeeding support your right to pump at the workplace.
- Find an affordable breast pump: contact your health insurance, healthcare provider,
- Reach out to workplace peers for hints on breastfeeding & returning to work hospital or WIC clinic.
4. Talk with your Employer:
- Talk with your supervisor about your plans to breastfeed.
- Determine if there is worksite lactation policy, if not ask about private places to comfortably express breast milk.
5. Skin to Skin:
- Put baby skin to skin after birth and to breast within the first hour.
- Room in with baby room at birth facility.
- Ask the hospital to teach you hand expression.
- Breastfeed 8-12 times per day.
- Avoid using bottles or pacifiers in the first 3-4 weeks as this may decrease milk supply.
- Ask for lactation support referrals at discharge.
Before Returning to Work
7. Establish Breastfeeding:
- Take time off of work to recover from childbirth and establish breastfeeding.
- Practice expressing your milk by hand or with a quality breast pump during the day when you have the most milk.
8. Gold Nuggets:
- Once breastfeeding is established offer a bottle of breast milk at least 1 x a week before back to work so your baby can practice using a bottle.
- Freeze 1-2 ounces of breast milk at a time to save after your return to work.
- Choose a childcare that is supportive of breastfeeding.
- Return to work midweek so you will have a shortened work week the first week.
Back at Work
9. First Days Back:
- Be prepared for an emotional week.
- Meet with manager to determine a place & time to express breast milk during your shift.
- Ask if your workplace would consider other nursing support options including working from home, transitioning gradually from part-time to full-time or job sharing.
10. Workplace Pumping:
- Express milk during the workday when you would normally feed your baby.
- Double pump & use breast massage to increase breast milk output.
- Breastfeed before you leave for work and when you return home.
- When expressing milk, try looking at a picture of your child or thinking about feeding your child. This may help with your milk letting down