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Breastfeeding on the Go: Tips to Make Life Easier

Let’s talk facts: You’re a mom with a baby, and that baby needs to eat—often. Although breastfeeding in public is finally becoming more accepted, it’s not without its challenges. Fortunately, things like easy-access nursing bras, clothes with built-in nursing bras, nursing covers and the like can help make on-the-go feedings easier and less stressful. Here are some breastfeeding tips to help make nursing better when you’re out and about.

  • Practice Breastfeeding at Home

    If you’re a first-time mom, you might find breastfeeding awkward, painful or frustrating at first. Before you try feeding your baby in public, get used to feeding your baby at home. Eventually, you’ll find it second nature; like anything else, work up to it. Practice makes progress. (Side note: When you do venture out, a nursing tank covers the stomach.)

  • Wear an Easy-Access Nursing Bra

    It’s always a good idea to go for the most comfortable nursing bra possible. When you’re on the go, also make sure you’re wearing a nursing bra that gives you quick and easy access to your breasts. This special type of bra has padded cups that unclip and fold down in seconds, keeping babies from losing their cool longer.

  • Try Pumping

    For many new moms, pumping is the way to go when they have a lot to get done, at work or at home. You can give baby a bottle or leave them with someone else to be fed while you run errands or take some much-needed “me time.” When you pump, your baby stays on breastmilk…even when you’re not immediately on-hand to provide it.

  • Go with the Flow

    Ask any new mom and she’ll tell you that scheduled plans go out the window when you’re breastfeeding a baby. While it’s great to try and get your baby on a feeding schedule, don’t be surprised if things don’t go as you had planned. Get used to working your activities around your baby’s eating habits, even it means you have to wait to go out until after they’ve fed.

  • Use a Nursing Cover

    If you’re not exactly at ease breastfeeding in public, you can use a nursing cover to maximize your privacy. They’re really easy to use: Sling over your neck or shoulder, and drape the fabric over your baby.

  • Carry a Well-Equipped Bag

    While you’re breastfeeding, forgo the trendy purse and replace it with a diaper bag or backpack filled with everything you might need while you’re out. This includes things like nursing pads, wipes, blankets and spare clothes for you and baby. Make sure to throw in a bottle of water to keep yourself hydrated.

  • Choose a Kid-Friendly Place to Feed

    Some places lend themselves more easily than others to feeding a baby. When you’re out and your baby is starting to show signs of hunger, look for quiet places where you can relax and heads won’t turn. Think furniture stores, bra and lingerie shops, dressing rooms, libraries and bookstores, cafes, playgrounds and anywhere kids are welcome.

  • Don't Stress Over It

    No matter how hard you try, you may still incur a snide comment or sideways glare. Focus on the baby and don’t let it stress you out—it’s their problem, not yours. Nearly every state in the U.S. and all of Canada has laws that protect a women’s right to breastfeed her baby in public.

The most important thing to know about breastfeeding is that things will never be perfect! All that matters is that your baby is well fed and that you’re both happy.

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