As a single mother, raising two girls, I had to learn how to juggle both caring for my kids and work. Luckily, there are more people today understanding of breastfeeding in the work place, as it is much more common than twenty years ago.
Regardless, it’s still difficult to manage which is why I would like to share a few helpful tips from my own experience to hopefully make the process less stressful and more comfortable for you.
First, have a talk with your human resources department. Be open about your experience. I find that the more you can have an open discussion the more your employer will be receptive to your needs. Make an arrangement with your employer on how, where and when you can express your breast milk and try and be flexible.
Under the ACA, the federal law requires employers to give break time and a place for most hourly wage employees and salaried employees to express breast milk at work. The federal law however, does not require these breaks to be paid so make sure you ask your employer (also, check with your state law, they may provide more protection and coverage for breastfeeding than federal law).
Also, I found that having the right breast pump can make all the difference. Health insurance plans must provide breast feeding equipment and counseling (potentially at no cost). Talk to your doctor to find out which breast feeding pump is best for you (manual, electric, or rental).
Put together a mini pump bag filled with the following essentials, this will make it easier for you during the work week:
- Clean bottles.
- Breast pump.
- Power supply (for electric breast pumps).
- Paper towels.
- Extra clothing for you (just incase).
- Breast pads.
- Healthy snacks.
Finally, make sure you are comfortable with the overall process and remember, it is a normal and natural part of the child bearing process.
Looking for more healthcare tips? Tune in to our FREE live webinar on Wednesday, March 30 at 2 p.m. EST where I will discuss Helpful Healthcare Tips for Busy Moms. Register HERE today.
Check out my Periscope video HERE on breastfeeding in the workplace.