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Human Milk 4 Human Babies » Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Q:What can I do to reduce the risk of contamination?

A:

Whether you are using hand expression, a pump, or wet nursing, your

hands and supplies should be clean and dry, and your breasts should

also be clean and free of sores or blisters. Your pump manual will

have information about how to properly use and clean your pump. For

more information on hand expression technique, see this video. Also, this page may also be useful.

Q: My baby is healthy, can I still ask for donor milk?

A: Absolutely. There does not need to be a medical reason for

your baby to have breastmilk. Human milk is for human babies and

children. The Global network does not prioritize recipients, but simply

offers an online space where families can connect and make informed

milk sharing choices. You can ask for milk for your child at any time

and for any reason, regardless of age.

Q: My baby is 4 months old, can I receive milk from a donor whose baby is 12 months old?

A:

As babies grow and mature, their nutritional needs also change. It is

therefore ideal for donor breastmilk to either come from a mother whose

baby is around the same age or from a mother who pumped when her baby

was around that same age. However, as per the World Health

Organization’s guidelines, in most circumstances human milk is

preferable to milk substitutes, even when there is a difference in age.

Q: Do I have to use a bottle to feed my baby donor milk?

A:

No, many mothers use an at-the-breast supplementer to feed their

babies. This device includes a container attached to a small feeding

tube that is either taped to the breast or placed inside the baby’s

mouth while the baby is latched onto the breast. This allows the baby

to receive the donor milk while still stimulating mother’s breast and

taking in any milk she is making. While this device can be purchased,

you can also make your own. Some families use a small cup, a dental

syringe, a spoon or other methods.

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