The horrific story of a woman who reportedly smothered her infant when she fell asleep while nursing on a plane should not scare women away from feeding mother’s milk to their babies.
Several British newspapers reported that an Egyptian woman traveling from Washington to Kuwait to show off her 4-week-old daughter to relatives came awake screaming when she found her 4-week-old daughter dead. A doctor on board United Airlines flight 982 is said to have tried, and failed, to revive the child.
United Airlines refused to the confirm Nov. 24 incident to ABCNews.com. Still, the news agency addressed the question of whether breastfeeding is safe.
“This has nothing to do with breastfeeding,” Heather Kay, a lactation consultant in Princeton, N.J., told ABCNews.com. “If she had been holding the child and she fell asleep, she could have smothered it as well. [And] making it sound like [breastfeeding] is the reason the baby died is really uncomfortable.”
In other words, falling asleep with an infant in arms, not nursing, puts a baby at risk.
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