When it comes to breastfeeding, sometimes your milk supply doesn’t quite match up with your little one’s appetite. Don’t worry mama, you’re not alone! It is common for many moms to experience a low milk supply at some point in their breastfeeding journey.
If your baby is around 2 months old and you are struggling with a low milk supply, don’t fret just yet! Keep reading below for tips on how to increase your milk supply and keep those precious ounces coming.
Meet the Experts: Lactation Consultants
First things first, if you’re having trouble producing enough breastmilk, don’t hesitate to seek help from an expert. Lactation consultants (LCs) specialize in helping nursing mothers optimize their milk production and work through any problems that may arise during breastfeeding.
Schedule an appointment with an LC so they can assess what might be causing the difficulties with lactation. They may also suggest trying some of these methods below:
Nipple Stimulation Technique
Have you heard of this technique? It’s definitely something worth exploring!
Massaging or rolling a breast pump over the nipple area mimics your baby’s sucking action which prompts the release of prolactin -the hormone responsible for initiating lactation(this makes total sense right?).
Prolactin levels typically decrease as babies grow older thus affecting mothers’ let-down reflexes needed for adequate amounts of milk production; but by consistently stimulating nipple activity through massage(with hands) or use of electric pumps (it could turn into hours-long stimulation sessions). Some studies have shown that regular stimulation increases prolactin secretion even after the newborn period has ended leading to more consistent high-volume outputs.
Note: Nipple stimulation techniques should be done under consultation from experts as there are instances where excess pumping causes severe health risks such as uterine contractions
Herbs & Spices for Breastfeeding Moms
If you’re a fan of adding some extra flavor to your meals, you might be in luck when it comes to increasing milk production as well. Several herbs and spices have been found to benefit lactation:
Fennel is an all-time favorite herb that can come in handy for nursing mothers looking to increase milk supply especially if consumed regularly.
It’s the essential oils found within fennel seeds that seem to encourage breast tissue growth, leading to increased milk-production. As much as the experts tout its benefits there are cases where women tend not react positively after using it hence detrimental effects so be cautious!
Milk thistle has been used throughout history to promote liver health but a lesser-known fact is its potential ability at helping breastfeeding mothers struggling with low milk-supply achieve better outputs.
Research has shown that extracts from this plant could impact prolactin hormone secretion thereby relaxing uterine contraction while aiding stimulation of mammary glands. So why not give it a shot next up?
Diet and Hydration
What we consume throughout the day certainly impacts our overall health outcomes- same concept applies here: nutrition might affect one’s lactation levels.. A healthy diet doesn’t necessarily mean depriving yourself or strict adherence (no food police here!), rather It involves consuming foods rich in certain nutrients known for being effective for adequate amounts of breast-milk production such as
- Iron( As Red meat/ Leafy Greens)
- Vitamin D
- Calcium-containing products(most dairy produce)
Don’t forget about hydration either; drink plenty of fluids (water preferably), everyday even more than necessary during such periods since quality water content plays key roles in boosting derived-output , providing vital electrolytes which aid general body functions too.
Breastmilk production naturally occurs through mutual communication between the baby’s sucking reflex, that ‘lets-down’ mechanism and mothers’ lactation processes. As such making/maintaining good feeding habits (babies eating every 2-3 hours) would aid to build a stronger relationship with your newborn whilst improving milk production.
If interest in pumping, it is important to get the timing aspect right by pulling breastmilk out after feedings so as not inhibit subsequent feeds or induce danger of an irregular schedule .
Head on over onto The Bump charts for a more detailed guide to come up with suitable nursing/pumping routines.
Power Pumping Technique
Power Pumping involves incorporating shorter sleep duration in order to stimulate mammary glands through eliminating sometimes indefinite amounts of accumulated liquid between sessions thus inducing more regularized schedules while producing consistent results
Power-pumping technique(practice makes perfect though!!!):
- Set yourself a routine
- Allocate about one hour
- First -Nurse/Pump both breasts at once for about 20 minutes using maximum intensity level available then rest for another10.
- Second-Pump/Breastfeed every other each-(10min on either side)=40 min total
Repeat process three or four times within waking periods until you feel pleasant outputs.
Baby Massage & Skin-To-Skin Contact
This promotes healthy infant physical developments since frequent skin-to-skin contacts induces oxytocin release which helps strengthen bonding and encourage mass-produced letdown reflexes from breastfeeding . Infants are able to notice their mothers` scents early-on potentially leading them back into place when hunger presents itself(Baby led / Intuitive Eating Method).
Besides boosting milk supply, various studies have shown significant associations between this method and overall development outcomes as well(pretty neat huh?)!
In summary; there might be mixed reasons behind lactation struggles beyond just diet/lifestyle but dependent of professional counseling women can try adopting some tactics such as nipple stimulation techniques, herbs and spices known to aid in lactation, diet/hydration and nursing/pumping habits.
Remember-breastfeeding isn’t a one-size-fits-all activity hence it’s normal for mothers to find their journey unique. Don’t stress too much about the numbers-moms don’t stop trying! winks
Hey there, I’m Dane Raynor, and I’m all about sharing fascinating knowledge, news, and hot topics. I’m passionate about learning and have a knack for simplifying complex ideas. Let’s explore together!
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