Returning to work after having a baby can be an emotional and challenging time. For some moms, it may mean the end of breastfeeding, while for others, it may involve adapting their breastfeeding. But don't panic! Even if this transition can be tricky, we're convinced that, with a few tips and good organization, you'll be able to continue your milky adventure with your baby. 

How do you balance breastfeeding and going back to work? Discover our top tips to help you to continue breastfeeding while going back to work.

1. Breast-pumping or breast-feeding?

Before you go back to work, take some time to think about your current breastfeeding routine and how it might fit in with your schedule. What's your working life like? Do you have a rather sedentary job or, on the opposite, do you have a lot of business trips? All these objective elements about your professional routine can help you decide which type of breastfeeding you're most comfortable with.

The most popular solution is to consider pumping your milk at work (in place of breastfeeding) to maintain your milk production and store your milk until you get home, so you can then feed your baby. 

The other option is to breastfeed on request, just as you would at home. This will require a great deal of organization, flexibility and communication with your employer. However, if your company and work schedule allow it (you need to be able to take long enough breaks to find and feed your baby), you may be able to consider breastfeeding your baby several times a day, without having to express your milk at work.

No matter which solution you choose, the key is to find what works best for you and your family, keeping in mind the flexibility you have at work.

2. Talk to your boss

Don't hesitate to discuss your breastfeeding needs with your boss and human resources team. Inform them of your intention to continue breast-feeding and discuss possible accommodations, such as dedicated breaks for expressing your milk or an appropriate place to do so. Don't hesitate to ask any questions that come to mind, such as the location and time of breastfeeding breaks.

It's important to know that legislation is intended to make life easier for breastfeeding moms, although there's still plenty of time to improve (we agree with you!). In fact, you are allowed two 30-minute breaks a day to express your milk or feed your baby. Companies with over a hundred employees are also required to provide a dedicated space for expressing milk. But we'd like to warn you: the space is often not well designed for expressing milk (most often, it's an office or even... the toilet!).

Nevertheless, some companies have taken the initiative to set up spaces specially dedicated to breastfeeding, such as Pachamama's breastfeeding cabins, offering breastfeeding moms a quiet place to express milk in complete serenity at work.

3. Put together a good team

A good breast pump can make all the difference! Choose a comfortable, efficient model that will let you express milk easily during your working hours. We strongly recommend that you choose an electric breast pump, although manual breast pumps are also available, offering advantages such as compactness, discretion and ease of transport.  Indeed, carrying an electric breast pump can be bulky and difficult, so we advise you to look at compact electric breast pumps like those from Elvie or Perifit. They allow you to pump your milk discreetly, without having to carry a suitcase!

Make your life easier with breastfeeding bras, such as our Day n'Night 2.0 or Mamagnetic bras, which are not only absorbing (so you don't leak milk at work), but also extremely comfortable to wear, even under your everyday clothes! 

4. How do you store your milk?

Plan carefully how and where you will store your expressed milk at work. Ask about the possibility of having an on-site refrigerator in which you can store your containers before taking them home. Also check if there's a dedicated space to store the ice packs needed for transport, to keep your milk cool during the day. 

Carefully mark containers with the collection date and keep them in a cool place until you can safely transport them home!

At home, you can choose to store your milk in the refrigerator for a week or so, or you can freeze it for longer storage. Make sure you follow the storage instructions to guarantee the quality and safety of breast milk for your baby.

5. Adapt to the situation!

Going back to work may involve adjustments to your breastfeeding routine, and it's important to give yourself permission to adjust slowly. Be patient with yourself and remember that every mother and baby are unique. If you want to continue breastfeeding and it's not an option for you: affirm your choice: you'll make it!

6. Get support!

Surround yourself with people who support you in your decision to breastfeed even when you go back to work. Join breastfeeding support groups or talk to other moms who have been through the same thing. Sharing experiences can be extremely useful, especially in moments of doubt!

7. Take care of yourself!

Don't forget to take time for yourself! Going back to work can be exhausting, especially when you're trying to balance the needs of your job and your baby. It's so important to give yourself time to relax and restore your batteries! 

Finally, remember that you're doing your best and that every drop of milk you give your baby is precious. Whatever you choose when it comes to breastfeeding, it's your choice, and it's the best one for your baby.