Baltimore-Area Parents Turn To Facebook For Help Finding Baby Formula – CBS Baltimore

BALTIMORE (WJZ) – An increase in the supply of baby formula has parents looking for products in less conventional ways: Facebook groups.

The social media platform is being used to determine which local stores have important food sources on their shelves daily.

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“Take advantage of your community because you never have to do anything alone, especially parenting,” says Tori Sproat, a mother of two and a lactation consultant. with WJZ.

In parent groups in the Baltimore area, Sproat spearheaded the idea of ​​creating daily posts asking members to share pictures of baby formula store shelves. One in particular is known as the “Mothers of Baltimore County.”

“We need to breastfeed,” says Sproat. “That’s our number one rule as a lactation consultant, so the first thing that comes to mind, the simplest thing is, ‘hey, post a daily post on the groups. local moms and parent groups and if you happen to be at the store today, take a picture of the recipe aisle. ‘”

Some posts have generated hundreds of comments.

Other parents, like Kelly Webb, have created independent Facebook groups with the same goal in mind: to find the most sought-after baby formula.

Webb said she started “Mamas Help Mamas – PA/MD Line in Formula Shortage” with her grandson. Because your baby has a milk allergy, a special formula is needed.

“Overnight, it took off and had almost 1,500 people on board,” Webb said.

From scouring store shelves to parents turning to their own pantry, some are giving away or selling containers that would otherwise be unused.

“There are complete strangers who give formula, buy it for someone else and see each other whenever, drop it,” says Webb. “Anything they can do to help.”

While parents strive to be resourceful, LifeBridge Health Pediatric Medical Director Dr Guarav Kumar says there are a few things to keep in mind to do it safely.

“The most important thing I think is that we make sure the formula is an intact container. Dr. Kumar said. “All formula containers have a ‘Expiry Date’ date usually embossed inside the metal on the bottom of the box. If those are intact, then I think it makes sense to transact between people in your network.

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Dr Kumar added that parents should not try to make their own formula or use milk alternatives, such as goat’s milk, oat milk or regular milk.

“There are many differences between regular milk and formula,” he said. “And regular milk, for example, can cause anemia and a number of other nutritional problems.”

“Dilution of formula can also cause health problems,” says Kumar.

“Some parents may think it’s a reasonable measure, but it can actually affect the electrolyte balance in a child’s body and can lead to serious complications including seizures,” he said. .

Kumar recommends talking to your healthcare provider for formula samples, and says toddler formula can be used in some cases. nine months old and up.

Sproat, a lactation consultant, also recommends peer-to-peer breast milk sharing.

“It has proven to be very safe,” she said. “The way you’re going to do it is you’re going to screen your sponsor. You will ask certain questions about the medicine or maybe their health condition or how old their child is or how long they have been donating. “

Some local organizations with peer-to-peer milk sharing networks are Eats on Fees Maryland and Human Milk 4 Babies – Maryland, DC Metro Areas.

Sproat says local hospitals have in-person breastfeeding support groups.

In some cases, breastfeeding may again be an option for parents, she said.

“You can see a lactation consultant and work with them to see if this is possible in your case,” she says.

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With the Abbott baby formula plant in Michigan, the largest producer of baby formula, expected to reopen in two weeks, stores could be restocked in better condition within days. six to eight weeks.

https://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2022/05/17/baltimore-baby-formula-shortage-parents-facebook-groups/ Baltimore-Area Parents Turn To Facebook For Help Finding Baby Formula – CBS Baltimore

Alley Einstein

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