Posts Tagged ‘back to work’

Easing back into work

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

Lots of women go back to work or school after they have a baby. You may be ready to get back to your regular routine and be with your coworkers and friends again, or you may want to stay home. Or, in these tough economic times, you may want to stay home but the family budget requires you to get back to your job.

In either case, it may be hard for you to leave your baby with a caregiver all day, even if it’s a family member or a close friend. Also, it may be hard to find a caregiver you trust. You and your partner may disagree about what type of child care is best for your baby. You may be upset and angry that you can’t stay home with your baby all the time. It’s important to recognize and share your feelings.

Talk to your partner about child care for your baby. Figure out how much you can spend and what kind of care you both want. For example, you can have a caregiver come to your home to take care of your baby. Or you can take your baby to a child care center. Ask friends and family members about who took care of their baby when they went back to work. Maybe you can use the same person or service.

If you’re using a day care center, ask for the names and phone numbers of people who have used the center. Call to ask how they felt about the center’s care. Ask if the center has a place for you to feed your baby if you’re able to stop in at lunch time. Do they have streaming video of the center so parents can take a peek at their kids throughout the day?

Ask your boss if you can ease back into work. Maybe you can work a few hours a day at the beginning instead of all day. Or you might be able to work a few days a week instead of 5 days a week. Or you might be able to take longer lunch hours if your baby is close enough to visit and feed. Being creative in your transition back to work may make it easier on all of you.

Choosing a child care provider

Monday, February 2nd, 2009

My neighbor, Maddie, is adorable and I love her to pieces.  She is 28 and eight months pregnant.  She has a fulltime job and really enjoys her work as a graphic artist and she is great at what she does.  She is planning on going back to work when her baby is about three months old.  Her husband is going to take family leave for three months after Maddie’s three months of maternity leave.  It’s after that that concerns them both.

Maddie and her husband have been talking about finding good child care for the baby and, as they are finding out, it’s not an easy thing to do.  They have been considering in-home care with an au pair or a nanny, family child care in someone else’s home, and day care in a local center.  Are you in a similar situation? We have written some things to consider when choosing a child care provider.  Do you have other suggestions I can pass on to them?

Juggling work and breastfeeding

Monday, January 12th, 2009

breastfeedingA recent study published in the journal Pediatrics, examined the relationship between successful establishment and continuation of breastfeeding between mothers who stay at home and mothers who return to work.  The study reviewed 770 full-time working mothers in the state of California over the period of a year and a half.  It was determined that women whose maternity leaves were equal to or less than six weeks were four times more likely to fail at establishing breastfeeding and were more likely to stop already established breastfeeding before six months than women who did not return to work.  Those whose maternity leave was 6-12 weeks were twice as likely to discontinue breastfeeding.  These results were most noticeable among women whose positions were not in management, lacked job flexibility or experienced psychosocial distress.

The conclusion of the authors is that postpartum maternity leave may have a positive effect on breastfeeding.  They believe that pediatricians should encourage patients to take maternity leave and advocate especially for extended paid postpartum leave and flexibility in working conditions for breastfeeding women.

Read about Breastfeeding: strategies for success, review our picture guide, and previous post on working and breastfeeding.  Since breastmilk is the best food for most babies during the first year of life, lets encourage employers to support it.

(Pediatrics 2009;123:e38-e46)