Flu and breastfeeding
The flu virus is not transmitted through the mother's bloodstream or her breast milk.
A breastfeeding mother can transmit the flu virus to her baby because of the close contact with the baby.

Therefore, do not sneeze or cough on your baby. Wash your hands immediately after blowing or wiping your nose.

Mothers with flu should carry on breastfeeding whenever possible. The reason to carry on breastfeeding is simply because, in general, "breast is best". A mother's antibodies against diseases are transmitted to her baby through breast milk.

Babies aged six months to two years have almost no resistance against any serious diseases. Breast milk is in general a good way to boost a baby's immune system before the age of three years.

If a nursing mom takes medication containing antihistamines (often used in flu medication), it may affect the baby through the breast milk. Antihistamines should be avoided.

Reviewed (2006) by Dr Jane Yeats MBChB, BSc(Med)(Hons)Biochem, 

Read Parent24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.


Want to know what your baby looks like and what you can expect at this stage?



Everything from parties to pre-schools in your area.