Your Complete Guide to Breast Milk Donation
Blog Submitted by Urvashi Newar
Photo by Rainier Ridao on Unsplash
Motherhood is indeed the most beautiful journey any woman embarks on. Breastfeeding is an integral part of motherhood, it not only provides the baby with the necessary nutrients but even helps the new mom bond with her little one. However, not all new moms are able to nurse because of several reasons like insufficient milk supply, infectious disease, double mastectomy and more and this is where a breast milk bank comes in picture. Read on to know how a new mom can benefit from breastmilk donation.
What is a breast milk bank?
It is a service which is attached to nursing homes or hospitals where human milk is collected, screened plus stored. Healthy lactating new moms wilfully donate breast milk for meeting the nutritional needs of babies whose moms are unable to breastfeed. Few people call breast milk as liquid gold because it has all the essential nutrients which a baby requires for healthy growth plus development.
When a new mom should consider giving donated breastmilk to her little one?
A new mom can contact a human milk bank if she is facing any of the below noted issues:
- If she has low milk production and wants to supplement with donated milk.
- If she is undergoing a treatment which has few medications which might interfere with breastfeeding.
- If she is adopting or fostering babies.
- If the new mom is suffering from an infectious disease which can affect the baby through breastfeeding.
- If the new mom has insufficient glandular tissue and needs to supplement her milk.
- If the new mom had double mastectomy and is unable to produce sufficient breast milk.
- If a baby is born premature, they might need supplemental milk because the mother might not be lactating enough at that time.
Who is eligible for milk donation?
Any healthy lactating woman with a clearance from her gynaecologist can donate milk. She should test negative for VDRL and HIV and should not have hepatitis. There is nothing more noble than donating breast milk to a baby who needs it. There are many cases where a baby’s life has been saved due to milk donation.
There are many breast milk banks across India. We have noted them below for your reference.
- Amara Milk Bank, New Delhi
- KEM hospital, Mumbai
- Lokmanaya Tilak hospital, Mumbai
- Deena Nath Mangeshkar hospital and research centre, Pune.
- Divya Mother milk bank, Rajasthan.
- Cama hospital, Mumbai
- SSKM hospital, Kolkata
- Institute of child health, Chennai.
- Sir JJ Group of hospitals, Mumbai
- Vijaya Hospital, Chennai
Why is breast milk donation important?
Below noted points will help you understand the importance of breastmilk donation.
- It can save life of critically ill infants who are at risk of getting life threatening infections if given formula milk instead of breast milk.
2.1 out of 8 infants are born preterm and require donated milk.
- Breast milk has vital hormones which help in growth and development.
- It also has different antibodies which helps in fighting infection and also protects against allergies.
If you want to give your little one donated milk then you must buy from an accredited breast milk bank only and if you are considering to donate milk then check with a doctor first.
You can also join Breastfeeding Support for Indian Mothers Group on Facebook which has a lot of active mothers who donate breastmilk and even run a private Whatsapp group across cities to assist in the same.
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Urvashi Newar has a great passion for writing. She has been into this line for almost 7 years. Mom to a 3 year old girl, she loves penning down her thoughts on motherhood. She believes in sharing her motherhood journey to help new mothers
I am mother of seven months old baby,I wish to donate breast milk
Hi…I am mom of seven months baby…I wish to donate my breast milk…may I know the process
Very informative. Thanks for writing on such a topic which we rarely even think of.