Tips for Breastfeeding on Holiday
Travelling with a new baby can be challenging for parents. But with a breastfed baby the amount of preparation required is considerably lessened.
You may have to bring along a travel cot and pram - but you almost certainly won't have to worry about making up bottles.
Unless you intend to express breastmilk whilst vacationing, you will not have to bring a steriliser or pre-sterilised bottles. And you certainly don't need to worry about the water quality in foreign countries if you are breastfeeding or expressing.
If you are flying with your baby, give him a breastfeed as the plane takes off and as it lands. This will help to prevent his ears getting uncomfortable as the cabin pressure changes. It will also relax him as he smells your familiar scent.
You will also feel relaxed as a result of the hormones released during breastfeeds and you can begin to wind down as your holiday begins or ends!
Most European countries are very open to women breastfeeding in public. But take note of local attitudes as some countries find it offensive if a woman exposes her flesh, whether or not she is breastfeeding. Bring a light wrap or shawl with you, if this is the case.
If you are visiting a hot country, remember to drink plenty of water to help maintain your breastmilk supply. Otherwise, you may get dehydrated and you may not produce as much milk as normal.
When booking accommodation, you will not have to worry so much about having a supply of boiling water for making up formula and for sterilising. You also won't have to carry a supply of bottles around with you when you go out for the day!
Many hotels are family-friendly and positively welcome families with noisy toddlers and screaming babies. But always ask - just to be on the safe side.
With families, it is sometimes preferable to book an apartment or holiday cottage. This will allow you to come and go as you please and it also means your children are not confined to one room in the evening.
Bring along some favourite toys for passing the time. . Colouring books, crayons, story books and CD's can be invaluable. And don't forget to pack any special bedtime teddies, otherwise you may have sleepless nights as your children fret for their little friends!
It can be a good idea to bring along a stroller for babies or toddlers. Often prams and strollers are damaged during travel so invest in a lightweight and inexpensive stroller and leave your good one at home!
Pack plenty of changes of clothes for the children and ask if there is a washing machine for your use. You may not want to use it, but the choice is always there! Don't forget to bring a few nappies and baby-wipes to keep you going until you can buy some!
Buy sun protection that is tailored for babies and children if you are going somewhere hot.
But make sure you keep your baby and other children well covered from the sun, particularly between 12.00pm and 3.00pm when the sun's rays are strongest.
It is also a good idea to bring along some children's medication, such as Calpol or other paracetamol based medicine, just in case your child takes sick! Try .
Also bring along any regular medications for yourself or your family as it can be difficult to obtain specific medication when you are away.
You may need a doctor's note to allow you to carry some medications in certain countries so check before you go.
So, where are good places to visit with children and babies?
Regardless of where in the world you choose to holiday, it is always wise to check out that there are facilities nearby for the children. For your own sanity, if nothing else!
Most children love water, so a water park of some description is always a sure winner. Although always check that there is adequate supervision around water and that the staff are qualified life-savers in the event of an accident.
Family-friendly restaurants are a must.
Sandy beaches can be a great way to spend some time. Bring along sun protection, beach mats, plenty of fluids and buckets and spades!
Children's play parks are a great way for the children to tire themselves out leaving mum and dad a bit of quiet time in the evening!
With all the preparations required when booking and planning a holiday, don't neglect your own requirements! Go somewhere that you will enjoy too.
And, if the whole family is happy, then you can enjoy breastfeeding your baby on holiday content in the knowledge that he is well catered for!
Treat Yourself to Me Time!
Or, if you're currently struggling with a busy lifestyle and the added demands of parenting, try our Perfect Relaxation for Parents mp3 - take time out for yourself and awaken refreshed and ready to face whatever life throws at you!
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