WhatsApp Discussion Series: Transferring Gastric Illness Through Breastfeeding

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In our WhatsApp discussion group, we share our experiences and knowledge about real time issues that come up in our everyday lives. Posts in the WhatsApp Discussion Series are snapshots of these conversations. Certain words or phrases may occasionally be modified to make them more readable and names are removed for confidentiality purposes. However, the conversations we post are mostly verbatim for authenticity.

Guys I need help. So Nana has been screaming his head off.Yesterday I ate from outside and had a really bad tummy ache. I kept feeding him my milk as usual, but I think he is reacting to my milk.Is that possible?

COMMENT 1: Do you have Infacol?

COMMENT 2: Yeah I gave him Infacol and it’s better, but should I keep feeding him my breast milk?

COMMENT 3: Was gonna say. Yeah it probably has transferred so maybe you need to get rid of a few pumps?

COMMENT 4: I’d say dump for the rest of the day. Try breast-feeding him again tomorrow. By then, hopefully it would be better.

COMMENT 5: Pump the first two before he feeds. And please while breastfeeding avoid eating from outside cos their tummy is very sensitive.

COMMENT 6: If you have any stored from prior to yesterday you could give him those and pump and dump till those run out.

COMMENT 7: Put him on your knees face down and keep rubbing his back. That also helps.

COMMENT 8: Also, I learnt that pumping and dumping is a myth. Since the milk is generated as u need it, I don’t think the bacteria from your tummy ache gets into the milk. If anything you’re helping him fight future infections.

COMMENT 9: The idea behind the pumping is so that your supply doesn’t decrease but it really is ok to give the baby a break (a short one) when you have gastro issues. At least this was our recommendation to moms where I worked.

COMMENT 10: Personal opinion is…no, even if you are not sure if it’s a milk reaction (because that is rare) … but baby’s comfort first right? If the baby is crying so much he won’t feed anyway.

COMMENT 11: I totally agree! I had severe food poisoning whilst exclusively breastfeeding (she hated formula and bottles) and I didn’t pump and dump. Baby was uncomfortable for a bit but we got through it.

COMMENT 12: My baby was super colicky after 1 month and would cry non-stop for an hour from 5pm to 6 daily.  We finally figured a combo of colic calm and gas drops at 4pm helped. We also did a belly massage.

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