Nurturing life Your reference in perinatal nutrition, from pregnancy to childhood

Can I breastfeed during my pregnancy?

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By : Nurturing Life's Nutrition Team | Montreal Diet Dispensary
— Updated on :

Yes, it is possible to breastfeed a child during pregnancy if the mother is healthy and not at risk of preterm delivery. 
 


The risks of breastfeeding during pregnancy for the fetus appear to be minimal if the mother is healthy. For more information on breastfeeding risks during pregnancy, click here. In most cases, breastfeeding does not appear to adversely affect the weight of the newborn at birth. The impact of breastfeeding seems rather to affect the breastfed child, because production and the taste of milk can vary due to the hormonal changes of pregnancy. From the 4th month of pregnancy, breast milk production may decrease significantly. Breast milk becomes insufficient for the breastfed child, and it must receive in addition another type of milk, according to age. It is therefore important to monitor the growth of the child. For more information, see the following article (coming soon). 


Some mothers report fear of breastfeeding during pregnancy, particularly in relation with the risk of contractions. It is advisable to consult a doctor to ensure that breastfeeding is not contraindicated. Some medical conditions in the mother may require the withdrawal of breastfed children: 

  • Risk of premature birth 
  • Past history of false labor 
  • Vaginal bleeding 
  • Multiple pregnancy 
  • Contraindication of sexual relations due to the risk of contractions 

Overall, for most women, it is possible to continue breastfeeding, especially because breastfeeding offers nutritional and immunological benefits when commercial products for infants do not. The decision to continue or not to breastfeed during pregnancy is the mother’s. Note that pregnancy and lactation both require additional energy for the mother. Fatigue is also often felt in the latter. It is therefore important that the mother eats properly and sufficiently. For more information, click here. 

References

  • Allard, M. et Desrochers, A. (2010). Bien vivre l'allaitement. Montréal : Éditions Hurtubise HMH. Ishii, H. (2009). Does breastfeeding induce spontaneous abortion? Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Research. 45(5), 864-868.
  • Ishii, H. (2009). Does breastfeeding induce spontaneous abortion? Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Research. 45(5), 864-868.
  • Mohrbacher, N. et Stock, J. (2003). The breastfeeding answer book (3e éd). Schaumburg, Illinois: La Leche League International.
  • Moscone, S. et Moore, J. (1993). Breastfeeding during pregnancy. Journal of Human Lactation, 9(2), 83-88.
  • Riordan, J. (2005). Breastfeeding and Human Lactation (3e éd.). Sudbury: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.

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The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent the official views of the Public Health Agency of Canada.