Tip 183: breast-feeding and neonatal abstinence syndrome

Babies born to mothers who take Methadone and who are breast-fed for >72 hours are significantly less likely require to need treatment for NAS.

Drug-misusing mothers should be encouraged to breast-feed alongside a prolonged postnatal stay to observe for signs of NAS and conduct social work assessments.

Reference: Dryden, C., Young, D., Hepburn, M., et. al. (2009). Maternal methadone use in pregnancy: factors associated with the development of neonatal abstinence syndrome and implications for healthcare resources. BJOG; 116; 665-671.

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