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How do you keep a newborn away from the flu...if breastfeeding mommy is the one WITH the flu??

I was told when leaving the NICU (where my son stayed for 7days after birth for a bacterial infection & low blood sugar) that NICU babies can be even more susceptible to the flu, especially those under 6.5lbs (my son is just over 5.5lbs & only 9 days old). We were advised to be extra cautious about flu exposure, making sure nobody sick visited baby. Well today I slowly but surely started feeling like head hurts, I'm achey, finally I got the runs, & now I am running a slight fever (99.8). I have worked so hard to get my son to be fed strictly breastmilk from the breast since he was originally given formula in a bottle. It has been two days of strict boobie now, no bottles or formula (finally!)...but if I'm sick do I have to stay away from him too?? What do I do about feeding him?? Is it already too late, is there a chance I already infected him?!? I'm really freaking out...


Asked by WannabeMommy87 at 11:37 PM on Oct. 24, 2009 in Babies (0-12 months)

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This question is closed.
Answers (8)
  • Don't stop breastfeeding! If he gets sick, that'll be what saves him, in my opinion.
    My little girl had the flu at 7 months. Flu type B. I exclusivly breastfed. She wasn't eating solids or anything. Didn't start that till 11 months. She only had a mild fever through it all, and it lasted for 3 days. I just let her nurse when she wanted to and she was aok!

    Answer by Autumn22 at 11:46 PM on Oct. 24, 2009


    Your breastmilk will have antibodies in it and it will actually PROTECT your baby. If you already have it than your baby has already been exposed to it so breastfeeding is the absolute BEST thing you can do to protect your baby.

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:47 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

  • Your breastmilk will not have the virus in it, it has in it what will protect your child from catching it from you. Eat and drink as normally as you feel up to (definitely stay hydrated, if nothing else), and keep breastfeeding him - it'll be better for you to bf even though you're sick than to go back to formula - and big kudos for making it this far with the bf since they didn't do it in the hospital!

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:51 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

  • he has already been exposed btw, if you have it. It is never too late .he will get the immunities from the milk and the milk will help him fight anything even the flu off. It is better that you keep breastfeeding it is the best thing you can do for him . he has already been exposed btw, if you have it. Do not stop breastfeeding there is no reason to and would be worse for him if you stopped. he needs your milk for the immunities and infection fighting and for the comfort of you. :D

    Answer by hypersquirrel at 11:51 PM on Oct. 24, 2009

  • I agree with the above posters - keep breastfeeding! About two weeks after my daughter was born I got some type of 24 hour bug - fever, diarrhea, puking, etc. and I kept right on feeding her. She never got sick. I would recommend that you call your OB's office, though, if you aren't keeping anything down. I called and they gave me a prescription for the puking (that was the worst) because they didn't want me to become dehydrated since I breastfeed.

    Answer by Christina807 at 12:03 AM on Oct. 25, 2009

  • Just wanted to add congrats on making it this far with BF. You are doing an awesome job!

    Answer by Natsnumberthree at 12:07 AM on Oct. 25, 2009

  • I think the above post of congrats for breastfeeding this far you are doing an awesome job is appropriate. If you are sick DO NOT STOP FEEDING! You get it, your body makes antibodiies that transfer to the breastmilk. and your baby gets the antibodies. this does not mean your baby won't get the bug, but it will be a lighter case. Good Luck momma!

    Answer by SEEKEROFSHELLS at 12:25 AM on Oct. 25, 2009

  • i would also like to add, wear a mask if you can, otherwise, try not to cough around your baby, and wash your hands before feeding him, and picking him up. keep breastfeeding, your body is making anitbodies being passed onto your baby. i was sick with the flu when my son was 6 weeks old. Luckily he didn't get it. But then when my son was 16 months, he got the flu, and breastfeeding was the only thing that kept him out of the hospital and hydrated b/c he wouldn't eat anything. Good luck, hope you feel better soon.

    Answer by citymama707 at 1:15 AM on Oct. 25, 2009