Look, a lot of things change when you become a parent. And generally, things change for the better. Except for your sleep. Oh, and hangovers. Hangovers when you have a baby, especially a baby you breastfeed, can be pure hell. It's no wonder a lot of moms want to fix up bottles of breast milk so others can take over the feedings as they head back to bed with Tylenol, but they're also wondering, "Can I pump if I'm hungover?" It didn't take many mojitos to make you feel like hell today, but does it affect pumping?
The truth is, there are a lot of misconceptions about alcohol and breastfeeding, and they can cause moms a lot of stress. Whether they're afraid to have a beer or think they have to pump and dump precious ounces of milk, many moms are lost at how much alcohol is OK for breastfeeding and pumping. Luckily, there's one thing to remember: if you're sober enough to drive, you're sober enough to pump. (And breastfeed.) Your milk will be totally fine for your baby to drink.
"You can absolutely nurse or pump if hungover; your blood alcohol content is a non-issue during this time," International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) Tori Sproat of Tiny Tummies Lactation Services tells Romper. "You may want to take care of the bigger issue, though, which is dehydration. A hangover plus an infant does not equal a fun day. Get some fluids, bananas, and rest."
But don't feel like you have to chug water to the point of feeling sick so you can meet your baby's needs either. According to Kelly Mom, unless you are severely dehydrated, extra fluids aren't going to affect your milk supply one way or the other. Drink to satisfy your thirst, make sure you're taking care of yourself as you try to rest, and ask for help while you recover. Hangovers pre-baby were bad enough, but hangovers with a crying, hungry newborn are a special kind of horror.
And yes, you can totally take Tylenol while you're pumping. Mayo Clinic noted that pain relievers like acetaminophen and ibuprofen are safe to take while breastfeeding. So don't worry about last night's mojitos polluting your breast milk (unless you're still drunk), and don't worry about trying to power through your hangover without a pain killer and Gatorade. Kick back with a Netflix binge and your breast pump so you can get some rest. Oh, and be prepared to tag in your partner. Hangovers and parenting aren't all that fun.