Providing for your baby’s nutrition is very important, but breastfeeding in the neonatal intensive-care unit (NICU) can be challenging. Whether you are pumping, using hand expression or breastfeeding directly, the NICU staff wants to support you in any way possible. Any amount of milk you can provide is a huge benefit to your baby.
Certified lactation consultants work in the NICU and are available to provide individual breastfeeding education and help. NICU staff will encourage you to begin breastfeeding your baby directly when they are ready. You may practice this at your baby’s bedside. Ask your baby’s nurse or lactation consultant for assistance.
Pumping and Hand Expression in the NICU
The NICU will have hospital-grade breast pumps and special supplies, such as collection bottles available for your convenience. You may also pump at your baby’s bedside if you request, which may help increase the amount of milk you make.
Learn more about hand expression of breast milk.
Additional Breastfeeding Information
The March of Dimes provides a lot of information to support feeding your baby, including information about formula feeding, keeping breast milk safely stored, food allergies and using a breast pump.
Learn more about feeding your baby from the March of Dimes.