Newborns and Power Outages

Newborns and Power Outages

Among other things, Hurricane Ida ravaged the region’s power grid leaving over a million people in the state of Louisiana without power. While energy companies are working tirelessly, many in Southeast Louisiana may not have power restored for several days or maybe even weeks. 

Lack of air conditioning, refrigeration and other basic needs is stressful for all families, but it (like many other things) becomes even more difficult for those with a newborn. To help any new families facing this difficult reality, we’ve put together these helpful tips:

Maintain A Comfortable Temperature

  • Monitor Outside Temperature: If the weather permits or when it’s cooler, open windows and doors to ventilate the house and all the rooms. However, if hot, dry winds are blowing, keep the doors shut and stay in the coolest room in the house.
  • Fans: You can also stay cool with small battery-operated or solar-powered fans.
  • Pick the right clothing: Light, cotton clothes are ideal.


  • Directly Nurse: Human milk is always clean, requires no fuel, water, or electricity, and is readily available as long as baby and mom are together.
  • Pump in the Car Most breast pumps can run off your car battery. If your car does not have a typical outlet, you can usually buy a car adaptor.
  • Hand Pump: While you may have to work a little more to get enough milk, hand pumps don’t require power making them the perfect tool when electricity is out!
  • Store Used Bottles in Fridge: While your refrigerator may get warmer without power, storing bottles and pumping parts in the fridge/freezer below room temperature helps keep them sanitized.
  • Keeping Breastmilk Frozen: Keeping the cold air in the freezer will help make the milk stay cool as long as possible. If your freezer is no longer keeping your frozen milk frozen, try a cooler with dry ice or even adding dry ice directly to the freezer may be a great alternative to keep that stash frozen as long as possible.


  • Wash your hands before preparing formula and before feeding your baby or infant. If soap and water is not available for handwashing, you can use alcohol-based hand sanitizer for sanitizing your hands.
  • Clean infant feeding items with bottled, boiled, or treated water and soap before each use. If you cannot clean infant feeding supplies safely, children can lap up milk from a disposable cup, if available. Throw out bottle nipples or pacifiers that have been in contact with floodwater
  • Use Wipes and Hand Sanitizer: They will be useful for cleaning up when you’re trying to conserve water.

For more tips or questions on caring for your newborn, text our Pregnancy Nurse Navigator at 225-314-8485.