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When can I loosen up about what goes into MY body?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
DS is 15 months and still nurses on demand, usually quite often day and night.

He started solids at 12 months and is a fairly good eater, some days eats more some days nurses more.

I was REALLY strict with myself when he was exclusively breastfeeding about no alcohol, caffeine, over the counter drugs, etc. I hve loosened up about the caffeine (though I barely consume any anyhow) and have a bit of wine here and there.

Even though a good diet is a goal anyhow -- is it AS important now to eat well as when he was EBF?
At what point can I take an allergy pill, other medications if needed etc without worrying?
Those of you nursing 3+ year olds... do you still tell your doctor you're nursing if you require a prescription of some kind? Or do you just do what you need to?

post #2 of 17
That's a good question. I am wondering the same thing because my dd is 15months and I still try to watch what I ingest. (caffeine,alcohol,meds.,etc.) Right now my allergies are getting to me but I'm just dealing with it because I'm not sure if I need to be taking anything while bfing.I have had an occasional cup of coffee, and have taken a few tylenol for headaches that wouldn't go away.But most of the times I just try to tough it out.......hmmmm I wonder?! I would love to here some feedback on your question. I will peep in every once in a while. : (Sorry I couldn't be of any help)
post #3 of 17
At 15 months DD & DS were both at least 90% bfed and nursed around the clock, so it wasn't much different than them being exclusively bfed.

That said, I have asthma so I had to get over the idea of no drugs really early. While I was pg it was worse for the baby to not be getting adequate O2 than for me to take the meds.

DS is 4. I drink caffeine, alcohol rarely, I do tell doctors I am nursing but read up about drugs on Dr. Hales and would accept a lot of Class C drugs (no class 4) if I felt I needed them. Of course, I would prefer not to, but

I don't hesitate from taking a tylenol (well, for DS--- I just don't like to use drugs too much, so I hesitate for that reason). Etc..
post #4 of 17
I don't drink alcohol, but I do feel some alcohol in breastmilk is better then no brestmilk past about 3 or 4 months (before that thier livers have a hard time breaking it down, but so little goes into your breastmilk, it's not that big of a deal).

I don't drink caffine, but I do have a weakness for chocolate, witch I try to keep under control for both of us, but there are lots of times i also think a little dark chocolate is good for me, so that makes it good for the baby :LOL

Even nursing a 4 and 5 year old I have mentioned it to my doctor, but I am not nearly so picky as with an infant. I also rarely take OTC drugs, but at this point (well 4 months ago, before I got pregnant again ) I would take a pain reliever or cold medicine if I really needed it.

This rarely comes up (I think I have been on prescription medicines 3 times in the past 5 years, and probably taken an OTC drug only 5 or 6 times). In those cases I feel like I do about the chocolate, what they need as much as safe breastmilk is a mom that can function.
post #5 of 17
Hmm. I have never been as careful as you are about what's gone into my breastfeeding body. Baby arrived late May, I had a big glass of beer July 4th (oh you should have seen the milk flow a few hours later!!!), I started with coffee fairly soon (did start with decaf then half decaf, but now at 16 months I have two big cups or a big latte routinely)...only once has the coffee affected him, and that's when I forgot I'd already had coffee, and had two "doses" (two big lattes during the day, ooops). I've only ever had to calm down my consumption of tomato and citrus when he was little, due to nearly immediately-after-the-fact awful diaper rash.

I don't take Tylenol, though (new links to asthma, which I got while pregnant, after switching from ibuprofen to tylenol, sigh)...I only take ibuprofen, but not very frequently.

And since the asthma stuck around, every so often I HAVE to use my albuterol inhaler, since a living breathing Molly is better than a dead Molly for my about 85% still exclusively breastfed 16 month old.
post #6 of 17
so whats the deal with caffiene? anyone? i drink it in the morning and chocolate daily too. i drank coffee while pregnant and never really stopped afterwards. could i be damaging her little system??
post #7 of 17
I am nursing a 23 mos old.

With meds I do still tell the doc I am nursing, because I feel it's important to know if those things can affect her. Some meds enter breastmilk, some don't... according to the molecular structure. And differing levels of study have been done on different meds regarding their short and longterm effects on babes.

Caffeine I don't worry about and haven't for ages. I drink 2-3 cups of coffee/day, sometimes less, sometimes more. I know others are more careful, but for me if I am going to maintain a longterm breastfeeding relationship I can't be limiting myself like crazy, and my baby doesn't seem affected by the caffeine in my milk.

I drink occasionally and don't worry about it, usually 1 or 2 drinks. Again, no noticeable impact on babe.

Regarding nutrition, my understanding (from Our Babies, Ourselves, author is ____ Little - can't remember her first name) is that breastmilk keeps right on being produced and high quality regardless of the mother's diet, except in conditions of *extreme* famine or dehydration. It's not like if you eat crappy food one day the quality of your breastmilk will be compromised... like the chocolate bar doesn't "get into" the breastmilk and render it liquid junk food (although the caffeine would get into the milk).
post #8 of 17
Originally Posted by willow83
so whats the deal with caffiene? anyone? i drink it in the morning and chocolate daily too. i drank coffee while pregnant and never really stopped afterwards. could i be damaging her little system??
I drink caffeine as well. Obviously none is best, but small amounts are fine. Ithink the guidelines are similar to pregnancy?
post #9 of 17
I think the guidelines are similar to pregnancy. When pg, I drank decaf for the 1st few months (well, after I found OUT I was pg - before that, I was drinking a LOT of coffee in the afternoon to try to stay awake at work, :LOL ). But I switched over to regular about 5 or 6 mos pg. Been drinking it ever since, even when DS was newborn. He's 3 now. ITA w/what thismama said re:long-term BF & her caffeine intake. My DS's never seemed to be affected by the caffeine, either. Not surprisingly, he *loves* coffee-flavored cow's milk! Prefers it over chocolate! :LOL DH says I should cut down on the coffee, though...

Z's second cultural experience was being taken to the local brewery at 4 months old. Mama had a couple of beers. I've had the occasional wine or beer when pg & in his 1st yr. A couple of times (*after* he turned 1) I had a little more than I should have (THEN DS got hyped-up; not a good thing when mama wants to chill out). But I learn quickly.

I try not to take OTCs as a general rule. I'm very, very lucky in that I don't have to see my dr. frequently & in that I usually don't get sick enough to need OTCs. I'm convinced that nursing has something to do with it - when we got colds last year, DS & I were under the weather for a few days, but DH (who's asthmatic & has allergies as well) got it the WORST. He would have to take a day or 2 off from work. That being said, if I'm miserable, I *will* take a something so I can function again.
post #10 of 17
My ds is only 10months old, but I had to find balance in order to continue to nurse. I get migraines and while I try to stave them off with "natural" measures sometimes I need to take something to function. The only over the counter I've found to provide even the remotest relief is Advil Liquigels. My midwife said okay to this before 6weeks postpartum. If I have a cold I take Advil cold and sinus sparingly if it's interfering with my already sparse sleep, and I okayed that with Motherrisk. I just found a very supportive doctor who listens to me and encourages extended bfing, so I'm happy about that.

I have 2cups of coffee in the morning and have had 1 or 2 drinks on occasion, but usually after he's in bed for a longer stretch.

I don't think I would change this as he gets older, as it's not that far off my non-nursing/pregnant lifestyle.
post #11 of 17
I'm pretty "bad"......... I drink beer/wine after the baby is a few months old, and drink coffee/pop as needed!

Same for OTC stuff like painkillers.but prescriptions I really look into, even if the nursling is older.
post #12 of 17
I am so sensitive to caffeine, I can't drink more than half a cup of coffee without regretting it. When I was pg I could actually drink more than normal, so I did! (up to one small cup, cut heavily with soy milk, a day)

But I've had to quit again, it seems to keep Rowan awake at night.
post #13 of 17
Well, obviously some breastmilk is always better that none. As far as what you eat or drink, I wouldn't really worry too much (barring a lot of trans fats or white sugar), UNLESS you're showing signs of a deficiency yourself. For example, if you have restless legs and still drink coffee (caffeine depletes calcium), then make sure you either counter it with high calcium foods or supplements, kwim? Some pharmaceutical drugs can also cause deficiencies, so you may want to do a little research before (or after) long-term use to find out exactly what you should be watching for. If you're healthy and have good energy levels in general, though, it really shouldn't be a problem.
For me, personally, I have problems with digestion and so does dd. We're both vitamin and mineral deficient because of it, so I have to exercise more caution than most people. But I still allow myself treats (even when I was exclusively nursing) because you just need to every once in a while
post #14 of 17
Thread Starter 
Thanks to everyone for the thoughtful responses!
I guess my biggest concern is OTC meds for allergies (very bad this year) and basic cold. Before DS I would tough it out and very rarely take something. But keeping up with a toddler and working from home and trying to function when you are sniffling and sneezing if difficult!
Also last year cold and flu season hit me worse than ever. I am usually so healthy and my first winter as a mama I was non-stop sick! I am worried about this winter...
post #15 of 17
I've been using homeopathic remedies for both colds and allergies, and have found them to be very effective. They should have no effect at all on your breastmilk. I also take elderberry preparations for colds, which are benign for breastmilk. Enzymatic Therapy makes one for adults called Viraplex which, taken in conjunction with homeopathics, I've found very, very effective for colds.
post #16 of 17
Always mention nursing to a medical provider. Also, you can ask a decent pharmacist about OTC drugs and nursing. I really only worry about meds, smoking/second-hand smoking, and polluted fish. In general, the U.S. public health machine is way too uptight about the food/alcohol/caffeine stuff -- there are good reasons for that (having been part of that machine myself), but you know your own situation best. I remember reviewing a study about caffeine and pregnancy in public health school. The investigators found this big negative impact of caffeine, and it made the news, etc. Well, turns out that they forgot to control for smoking. In their sample, the high caffeine drinkers (and, did I mention, we're talking pretty high doses, not a cup or two of joe) were also smokers (while pregnant!). When they re-did the numbers to include the smoking, the caffeine effect was nil. But did the retraction make the news? No. Docs and such are just desperately afraid of being sued and swing very conservative (unless corporate interests or heavy lobbying is involved, but I won't go there). I always say, moderation, moderation, moderation. Also, sanity, sanity, sanity. Keep yourself healthy and happy, and the kids will be fine.
post #17 of 17
I'd totally mentioned it to your doctors that you are nursing. They'll let you know what's okay and what isn't. Mine certainly did, and there was no disrespecting my decision for extending bfing. Actually, they were kind of positive. Anyway, I've never limited myself about caffeine, chocolate, food, alcohol while nursing unless it had an obvious negative effect on my babies: no caffeine (not even a single piece of chocolate!) for 5 months for dd2 or else she'd be colicky two hours later, and no broccoli/cabbage for dd1--too much gas. Again, for us, it went away after 5 months of age. I'm not a big drinker, but I do have a glass a wine or two once a week or so. Still nursing my 23 month old.
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