If you are a nursing mother and (finally) making some time for self care, you may be wondering what is safe to use on your skin or have done spa treatment-wise while Breastfeeding.
I will cover 10 of the most commonly used Facial Products & Spa Procedures and how their safety correlates to you as a breastfeeding mother:
1.Sunscreen: If your product contains Zinc Oxide as the active ingredient, which is Safer in terms of Breast Milk, go ahead and slather it on!
2. Benzoyl Peroxide: There is no data on its transfer into breast milk, and is considered a safer topical acne medication.
3. Retin-A: Treating fine lines and acne with this medication has been reported to have minimal to no absorption through breast milk, so this one gets the green light to be used. If your infant is older or you are nursing a toddler, apply this after they go down for the night, as they may touch or lick your face and ingest small amounts.
4. Salicylic Acid: Applying this medication on the skin to treat Acne and Warts is considered to be probably safe — but systemic absorption of this medication varies based on concentration, amount used, surface area of face/body treated, and duration of use. Consult with your physician to see if the benefits of using this medication outweigh the risks.
5. Adapalene (Differin): Now available OTC, there are no data from studies regarding it being transferred into Breast Milk. But, because it is virtually unabsorbed into the mother’s body when applied on the skin, it is considered probably safe to use.
6. Microdermabrasion: Likely safe — just keep in mind that your skin may be more sensitive to treatment effects in the days that follow.
7. Chemical Peels: There are various chemicals used in this type of facial treatment, i.e. glycolic acid and alpha hydroxy acids. There are no adequate studies regarding these chemicals and a mother’s milk. Discuss with your Physician if you should hold off until you have stopped breastfeeding.
8. Botox: There are no controlled studies in breastfeeding women — so injections of this substance are considered probably safe. If the drug is injected properly, it is unlikely that it will enter the blood stream and the breast milk; waiting a few hours after the injection would eliminate any possibility of it entering your milk.
9. Dermal Fillers: There are no studies on the transfer of Hyaluronic Acid (the substance in fillers) into breast milk — so it is considered probably safe, as it is likely minimal to none.
10. Laser facial and body treatments (i.e. Hair Removal, Skin resurfacing): There are no available studies done on Laser skin treatments during breastfeeding to determine if it is harmful to the breast milk or will hamper your supply. It would be best to wait till you have stopped nursing to pursue these treatments, as your hormones are fluctuating during this time and may effect your response to the treatments.
Have more questions about skin care and breastfeeding, or maybe have a product ingredient that wasn’t covered here? Consult with your Physician and/or Lactation Professional. Stay tuned for next month’s post, where I discuss Over-The-Counter Medications and Breastfeeding!
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