Breastfeeding is one of those things about motherhood that seems deceptively simple. Your baby gets hungry, you pull out of a boob, and they go to town— done. But the reality is often far different. Your baby might not latch, you may struggle with supply, or you may just not want to continue with the demands on your body and time. When that happens, some moms turn to other milk-making mothers willing to share their bounty. If you're thinking of going that route, there are some donated breast milk risks you should be aware of.
From illnesses that can potentially be spread through milk to contamination due to improper storage, there's a lot to consider before feeding your baby donated milk. The American Pregnancy Association noted that going through a milk bank will mitigate the majority of those risks, but many families are using more informal arrangements. Sites like Human Milk 4 Human Babies and Eats on Feet are helping that along, connecting moms in need with donors on Facebook.
You place a huge amount of trust in a donor in the interest of nourishing your baby, so it's a big decision. Here's what you need to know to make an informed choice about milk donations.