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Breastfeeding and Alcohol

Alcohol passes into breast milk and the amount of the alcohol in breast milk is similar to the amount of alcohol in mom’s own bloodstream.

The safest choice is not to drink alcohol if you are breastfeeding. Too much alcohol can affect how much milk your baby drinks and also your baby’s development. Breastfeeding before having a drink is recommended. This allows time for the alcohol to leave your bloodstream and breastmilk before the next feeding.

Having an occasional alcoholic drink while breastfeeding has not been shown to be harmful to your baby. Heavy drinking should be avoided.

Planning on drinking or attending a special event where alcohol will be served? 

  • Find out more about mixing alcohol and breastfeeding (PDF) (English/Francais)
  • Find out how to express and store your breast milk if you are not able to safely breastfeed your baby at the event or you plan to be away from your baby

If you are breastfeeding and have questions about using alcohol, visit Motherisk, Canada’s leading experts on drug, alcohol and chemical exposures in pregnancy and during breastfeeding or call the Motherisk Helpline 1-877-439-2744.

You can also make a confidential call to the Motherisk Alcohol and Substance Use Helpline 1-877-327-4636 for information about the effects of alcohol, nicotine and drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, and ecstasy.

For more information on feeding your baby/child in Simcoe Muskoka, please contact your health care provider or contact Health Connection by calling 1-705-721-7520 or 1-877-721-7520 Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., by email or connect with us wherever you are on Facebook or Twitter.

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If you have any questions or concerns that require a response, please contact Health Connection directly.

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