Breastfeeding Matters Saskatoon

Breastfeeding Your Baby: Mothers' Milk, Babies' Choice

     >> The First 24 Hours

     >> Learning to Breastfeed

     >> Hand Expression

     >> Storing Breastmilk

     >> Breastfeeding Positions

     >> Taking Care of Yourself

     >> 7 Days to 6 Weeks

     >> 6 Weeks to 6 Months

     >> 6 Months to 24 Months

     >> Wellness and Lifestyle Habits

     >> Troubleshooting

     >> Frequently asked Questions

     >> Support Team

     >> Resources



Wellness and Lifestye Habits

Can I safely take medicine while breastfeeding?

Questions to ask if you need to take medicine:

  • Is this medicine really necessary?
  • Is it the safest medicine?
  • Is this medicine ever given to babies?
  • When is the safest time to breastfeed when I take this drug?
  • Is there more of the drug in the blood or the milk?

Most antibiotics can be taken while nursing. Babies may develop loose poops. Moms and babies may develop a thrush infection (see Troubleshooting).

Pain medication Over-the-counter pain medications are safe.

Birth control pills: Birth control pills that contain estrogen can affect your milk supply. Mothers who have difficulty making milk find that they make less breastmilk when they use the combination pills that include estrogen. See Taking Care of Yourself for more information.

Anti-depressants: Certain types of anti-depressants are safe to use while breastfeeding. Discuss with your doctor.


Always remind your doctor that you are breastfeeding.
Taking medication is rarely a reason to stop breastfeeding.

Call the Saskatchewan Drug Information line at 1-800-665-3784
or visit the website for more information.


What if I have to be hospitalized?

Check to see if you can keep your baby at the hospital with you by having someone there to help care for your baby.

Does the hospital have a breast pump to express your milk when your baby is not with you?

You can request a visit from a lactation consultant.

Lifestyle habits in your household can affect your baby’s health.

Cigarette Smoke:
Do not quit breastfeeding if you smoke.
You can reduce the effects of nicotine and cigarette smoke if you:

  • keep your home smoke-free,
  • do not smoke just before or during a feeding,
  • avoid sleeping with your baby in the same bed,
  • reduce the number of cigarettes to 10 or less per day.

Caffeine in breastmilk may make your baby fussy and wakeful. Be aware that some common drugs contain caffeine such as - Tylenol #3, Anacin and Dristan. Keep your daily intake of coffee, tea, chocolate milk to less than 2 –4 cups.

Alcohol: You can breastfeed and still have an occasional drink. Avoid more than 1 - 2 drinks at a time. One drink is the same as one glass of wine, a bottle of beer, or one ounce of hard liquor. Wait up to 2 hours after a drink before feeding. As the alcohol level in your blood drops, so does the alcohol level in your breastmilk. There is no need to pump and dump your milk.

Marijuana and other street drugs are harmful for your baby. There will be more of this drug in your milk than in your blood.

Hand express milk for a feeding, before you use alcohol or drugs. This milk can be given to your baby by cup or bottle. If this is not available, give your baby formula.


Saskatoon Breastfeeding Matters -