Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) Breastfeeding Tips
Browse the information below for tips on breastfeeding your baby in the Arkansas Children's Hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).
How to Help Your Baby's Health by Breastfeeding
- Breastmilk is the very best food for babies.
- Please consider pumping breastmilk, even if you had not planned to breastfeed, so that your baby may receive the following benefits of breastmilk:
- Reduced risk of intestinal problems for premature infants.
- Helps your baby fight infection.
- Improved tolerance of feedings.
- Facts about pumping breastmilk:
- Pumping does not mean you have to breastfeed.
- Starting breast pumping does not commit you to continue after the baby goes home. Even a few days or weeks of breastmilk are very helpful to a sick baby.
- A baby can be changed to formula later if you prefer.
- Most mothers with medical problems or who smoke tobacco can safely provide breastmilk for their babies.
- Most common medications given to post-partum mothers are safe to use while pumping or breastfeeding.
- Ask a nurse to help you start pumping breastmilk as soon as possible.
- In the beginning you will only see drops, this will increase gradually.
- Save all pumped milk in sterile bottles/bags and refrigerate.
- The ACH Lactation Consultants will contact you and help orient you to our pumping room and answer any questions or concerns you may have.
Frequently Asked Questions about Breastfeeding