A recent study has proved that mothers tested positive before delivering their baby can still breastfeed it, without the risk of passing along the infection to the newborn. According to the researchers, a set of rules must be taken as a precaution, which are critical factors in avoiding any danger.
One of the most important steps is that mothers wear a surgical mask while breastfeeding their babies, as well as thoroughly cleaning their hands before touching the offspring. In addition to this, a great deal of prior studies has proved that infants are less exposed to the deadly virus since it is harder for the bacteria to enter their immune system. Furthermore, babies do not develop any severe symptoms.
The study was performed on 120 babies, born by 116 women, all of the patients infected with COVID-19 in three separate hospitals from New York, the place where it all started in the U.S. This was a crucial moment since skin-to-skin contact and breastfeeding are critical factors in creating a strong bond between the mother and the child, as well as additional health benefits.
Therefore, the doctors decided that the best solution is to offer the mothers surgical masks and encourage them to wash their hands in order to breastfeed their babies carefully. One week has passed by, and the doctors examined the situation of 64 babies, which were continuously tested and which received negative responses. The patients were then discharged, and the study carried on, while 53 babies still received their regular visits for COVID-19 tests for a month, which again were negative.
After analyzing these findings, the American Academy of Pediatrics announced on the 23rd of July a change of plans in their strategy of taking care of the newborns during the epidemic.