This is a reader contributed article.
Lately I’ve been hearing plenty advice for breastfeeding (or pumping) while flying, but for me and many other moms car travel is a far more frequent occurrence.
When traveling with baby in the car, Iâve heard many people say that you can lean over the baby and nurse him or her while in their car seat. However, this can be virtually impossible for a smaller busted mom to do while wearing a seatbelt so I always allow extra travel time for stops. Bringing a sling along also makes it easier (i.e. more comfortable for me) to feed my daughter in unfamiliar public places like restaurants or shops in different towns along the way.
Keep in mind that although you may have taken this trip many times before it will be a very different experience with your breastfeeding baby in tow. Be prepared for a longer trip that will be more tiring. If your little one sleeps well in a moving car, try to time your departure after a feeding or at a usual naptime to help cut down the number of stops youâll have to take during the trip.
For me breastfeeding has always been easier, than pumping while on the go, but you donât always have a choice especially if youâre traveling sans baby. If youâre going to be traveling without your little darling then itâs best to prepare for any pumping obstacles that could come your way.
An electric pump is a great timesaver, but itâs not always convenient when traveling. I suggest that if your pump takes batteries, a vehicle adapter or has a manual adapter, that you bring them with you because you donât want to worry yourself with trying to find an electric outlet every time you need to pump.
Finding a private place to pump can be a challenge, but it is possible. If your car has tinted windows, you basically have your own portable pumping station. I often pump in the backseat of my car while my husband drives to cut down on the amount of stops we have to make. When traveling alone, Iâve found that the designated breastfeeding rooms that may businesses now have work much better for pumping than breastfeeding (of course that is just my personal opinion). I also try to wear a nursing top to make it easier for me to pump discreetly in semi private areas.
The last aspect that you need to consider when pumping on the road keeping your expressed milk fresh. Unfortunately, there have been times when I had to pump and dump because Iâm not too keen on transferring my milk from cooler to fridge to cooler and then to my home fridge. If you think you might have to dump, be sure to have a surplus of milk stored in your freezer before hand. This will ensure that you have plenty of milk for feedings until you are able to pump and store again.
Whether you are traveling with your baby or without be sure to continue taking good care of your self. Youâre more likely to become exhausted or dehydrated when your normal routine is interrupted. Remember to stay well hydrated and to get enough rest so that you can keep up your supply and continue to provide your baby with the very best start in life.
My wife is often on the road for work.. I stay at home with our two kids.. she is a logistical genius and my true hero.. our second child is starting to give it up.. at 14 months.. still wants it at night … I have one more freezer bag and then (sniffle) we’re done.. we’ve even sold the pump.
My tip? I suppose it’s well-known.. but.. bring along a picture of the tot.. that helps my wife relax and pump in all kinds of places.
She’s asleep with our youngest right now.. or I’d have her typing here.
For all you moms with iPhones or iPod Touch there is a great new App called Baby Tracker: Nursing. It allows you to keep track of your nursing sessions with just a few clicks, allowing you to relax and focus on feeding your baby without worrying about lists and sheets of paper, stop-watches and safety pins in your bra, or extraneous ribbons and bracelets!
With just a few clicks your nursing session is recorded: length of time and the side you nursed on (or both), always noting which side you nursed on last! A detailed nursing history is always right in front of you and permanently stored in daily logs for future reference. And since itâs on your iPhone or iPod touch you always have it with you! Another thing you donât have to rememberâ¦isnât being a mom the best!
Baby Tracker: Nursing is a real time tool and available on the iPhone App Store.
Thanks Elizabeth. I’ve been breastfeeding my baby boy for the last 3 months and it’s been a challenge at times.
For all you expecting mothers, I purchased my nursing supplies at http://www.breastpumpdeals.com and they’re offer a 10% discount with the code NEWMOM 🙂
I love reading the articles and comments about breast feeding and breast pumps. When I had my first child, people didn’t speak openly about breast feeding so we mothers were a little in the dark. Now it is such an open topic and glad of it. Great article.