When Should a Mother Not Breastfeed

March 31, 2011 at 3:06 am 4 comments

While many agree that breastmilk is the best possible form of nutrition for the baby, there are a few rare exceptions when breastfeeding would not be the recommended course to follow for the mother and baby.  The CDC recommends that a physician assess the situation in order to determine if a woman’s environmental exposure or a specific medical condition warrants her to interrupt her breastfeeding, or never initiate.

Breastfeeding is NOT advisable if any of these conditions are true:

  1. An infant has been diagnosed with galactosemia, a rare and genetic metabolic disorder
  2. The mother:
  • Has been infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
  • Is taking antiretroviral medications
  • Has untreated, active tuberculosis
  • Is infected with human T-cell lymphotropic virus Type I or Type II
  • Is using or is dependent on an illicit drug
  • Is taking prescribed cancer chemotherapy agents, such as antimetabolites that interfere with DNA replication and cell division
  • Is undergoing radiation therapies; however, such nuclear medicine therapies require only a temporary interruption in breastfeeding.

Remember, we are trying to make the best possible decisions for our children.  While most of the time, that choice is tobreastfeed sometimes we have to make other decisions to keep our children safe and as healthy as possible.  To find out more about if you should or should not breastfeed, or just more about breastfeeding in general, visit the CDC Website or American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Website.


Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

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4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. charissabtaylor  |  April 1, 2011 at 2:51 am

    Great information! It would not be good to pass on those diseases or chemicals to a baby.

  • 2. shellyclements  |  April 7, 2011 at 10:32 pm

    That would be devastating to find out a mother couldn’t breast feed, at least for me. Learning about its important and how beneficial it is for the baby and then not being able to…that would be horrible.

  • 3. basnow  |  April 9, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    It is good to know when a mother shouldn’t breastfeed!

  • 4. davwatkins  |  April 9, 2011 at 6:31 pm

    I didn’t know there were times not to breast feed. thanks for the info.


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