Breast milk provides excellent overall protection from a large variety of illnesses. Despite this, a lot of newborns come down with some sort of cold, viruses, or infections. When a child is sick breastfeeding might become fussier and hectic. Although it might become challenging and downright difficult to feed the baby at times, it is important that you still keep doing it.
Trying different positions for breastfeeding might be helpful in various situations but if you are still having trouble breastfeeding your newborn baby, here are some tips and guides on how you can nurse a sick baby according to various medical experts.
Nursing a Congested Baby
Common colds can cause symptoms like runny nose, sneezing, coughing, and fever. These colds can last for 5 to 10 days so during this time traditional breastfeeding might become hard if the child is suffering from these symptoms.
Here are some steps that you can follow which will be helpful in nursing a congested baby:
- At the end of a warm bath, use a washcloth to properly wipe the baby’s nose so that he can breathe better.
- Before you nurse the baby, gently remove all the mucus with the aid of a bulb syringe.
- Try lifting your baby’s head a few inches from the crib by placing some books or magazines under your leg.
- Use a humidifier if needed.
- Try nursing a baby in a steamy bathroom with some hot water running as the steam can help in unclogging the nose.
- Trying to offer the breasts more times than usual as the nursing sessions will last for a shorter amount of time.
Nursing a Baby who has an Earache
Ear infections are really painful and can cause a lot of problems during nursing. Because of these earaches, the babies are able to take in less milk than usual. Here are some things that can help you in nursing a baby with an earache;
- Try nursing more often in order to make up for shorter feeding sessions
- Pump between feedings in order to keep your supply up
- Try delivering expressed milk to the baby using a syringe
- Try different feeding positions like the football hold, the opposite side-lying position, or the upright hold in order to keep the pressure off the affected ear.
Nursing a Baby who has a Sore Throat
If your baby is suffering from a sore throat, keeping his throat well-lubricated might help in making the feeding process easier. If this does not help a lot of veteran mothers and medical experts recommend the following remedies.
- Try giving your baby a frozen washcloth to suck on
- Give your baby a mesh body feeder filled with frozen fruit.
- Try giving your baby a breast milk popsicle
- Cool the pumped breast milk in a bottle before feeding the baby
- Try running a humidifier if needed.
Nursing a Baby who has Diarrhea or is Vomiting
If your baby has diarrhea or is vomiting, it is important that you keep an eye on the number of wet diapers to make sure that they are consuming enough milk. If you feel like something is wrong, calling your pediatrician might be the best course of action. Other tips that you can try are;
- Nursing your baby in an upright position
- Always keep a towel with you in order to clean up the vomit.
- If your baby is eating solid food, try the bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast (BRAT) diet.
- Offer small but frequent nursing sessions
- Avoid putting pressure on your baby’s tummy.