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North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust - 70 years of the NHS

Alcohol use

Alcohol passes through to breastfed babies in small amounts. It’s unlikely that having an occasional drink will harm you or your baby, but it might affect how easily your baby feeds. When breastfeeding, it’s probably sensible to drink very little – no more than 1 or 2 units once or twice a week.

If you intend to drink more than that on a special occasion, you might want to think about expressing milk in advance for your babysitter.

It’s not safe to get drunk when you’re caring for a baby, whether they’re breastfed or bottle fed. When you’ve been drinking alcohol, never share a bed or sofa with your baby. If you sleep heavily, you could put your baby at risk.

One until of alcohol is approximately a single (25ml) measure of spirits, half a pint of beer or half a standard (175ml) glass of wine, although it depends on the strength of the drink.