15 Answers

I had a rough start to breastfeeding and I have never quite been able to replace the original supply! I take Motilium and I’m still struggling. Know any magic tricks for me? Willing to try almost anything!

Posted by starrz11, 2nd April 2014

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  • Also look at the cause why milk supply can be low, like :

    Supplementing. Nursing is a supply & demand process. Milk is produced as your baby nurses, and the amount that she nurses lets your body know how much milk is required. Every bottle (of formula, juice or water) that your baby gets means that your body gets the signal to produce that much less milk.
    Bottle preference. A bottle requires a different type of sucking than nursing, and it is easier for your baby to extract milk from a bottle. As a result, giving a bottle can either cause your baby to have problems sucking properly at the breast, or can result in baby preferring the constant faster flow of the bottle.
    Pacifiers. Pacifiers can affect baby’s latch. They can also significantly reduce the amount of time your baby spends at the breast, which may cause your milk supply to drop.
    Nipple shields can be a useful tool in some cases, but they can also reduce the stimulation to your nipple or interfere with milk transfer, which can interfere with the supply-demand cycle.
    Scheduled feedings interfere with the supply & demand cycle of milk production and can lead to a reduced supply, sometimes several months later rather than immediately. Nurse your baby whenever she is hungry.
    Sleepy baby. For the first few weeks, some babies are very sleepy and only ask to nurse infrequently and for short periods. Until baby wakes up and begins to breastfeed well, nurse baby at least every two hours during the day and at least every 4 hours at night to establish your milk supply.
    Cutting short the length of nursings. Stopping a feeding before your baby ends the feeding herself can interfere with the supply-demand cycle. Also, your milk increases in fat content later into a feeding, which helps baby gain weight and last longer between feedings.
    Offering only one breast per feeding. This is fine if your milk supply is well-established and your baby is gaining weight well. If you’re trying to increase your milk supply, let baby finish the first side, then offer the second side.
    Health or anatomical problems with baby (including, jaundice, tongue-tie, etc.) can prevent baby from removing milk adequately from the breast, thus decreasing milk supply.
    Mom’s health (uncontrolled anemia or hypothyroidism, retained placenta, postpartum hemorrhage…), previous breast surgery/injury, hormonal problems (e.g. PCOS), anatomical problems, medications she is taking (hormonal birth control, sudafed…), or smoking also have the potential to affect milk supply.

    Increasing your milk supply

    Milk production is a demand & supply process. If you need to increase milk supply, it’s important to understand how milk is made – understanding this will help you to do the right things to increase production.

    To speed milk production and increase overall milk supply, the key is to remove more milk from the breast and to do this frequently, so that less milk accumulates in the breast between feedings.

    OK, now on to things that can help increase your milk supply:

    Make sure that baby is nursing efficiently. This is the “remove more milk” part of increasing milk production. If milk is not effectively removed from the breast, then mom’s milk supply decreases. If positioning and latch are “off” then baby is probably not transferring milk efficiently. A sleepy baby, use of nipple shields or various health or anatomical problems in baby can also interfere with baby’s ability to transfer milk. For a baby who is not nursing efficiently, trying to adequately empty milk from the breast is like trying to empty a swimming pool through a drinking straw – it can take forever. Inefficient milk transfer can lead to baby not getting enough milk or needing to nurse almost constantly to get enough milk. If baby is not transferring milk well, then it is important for mom to express milk after and/or between nursings to maintain milk supply while the breastfeeding problems are being addressed.
    Nurse frequently, and for as long as your baby is actively nursing. Remember – you want to remove more milk from the breasts and do this frequently. If baby is having weight gain problems, aim to nurse at least every 1.5-2 hours during the day and at least every 3 hours at night.
    Take a nursing vacation. Take baby to bed with you for 2-3 days, and do nothing but nurse (frequently!) and rest (well, you can eat too!).
    Offer both sides at each feeding. Let baby finish the first side, then offer the second side.
    Switch nurse. Switch sides 3 or more times during each feeding, every time that baby falls asleep, switches to “comfort” sucking, or loses interest. Use each side at least twice per feeding. Use breast compression to keep baby feeding longer. For good instructions on how to do this, see Dr. Jack Newman’s Protocol to manage breastmilk intake. This can be particularly helpful for sleepy or distractible babies.
    Avoid pacifiers and bottles when possible. All of baby’s sucking needs should be met at the breast (see above). If a temporary supplement is medically required, it can be given with a nursing supplementer or by spoon, cup or dropper (see Alternative Feeding Methods).
    Give baby only breastmilk. Avoid all solids, water, and formula if baby is younger than six months, and consider decreasing solids if baby is older. If you are using more than a few ounces of formula per day, wean from the supplements gradually to “challenge” your breasts to produce more milk.
    Take care of mom. Rest. Sleep when baby sleeps. Relax. Drink liquids to thirst (don’t force liquids – drinking extra water does not increase supply), and eat a reasonably well-balanced diet.
    Consider pumping. Adding pumping sessions after or between nursing sessions can be very helpful – pumping is very important when baby is not nursing efficiently or frequently enough, and can speed things up in all situations. Your aim in pumping is to remove more milk from the breasts and/or to increase frequency of breast emptying. When pumping to increase milk supply, to ensure that the pump removes an optimum amount of milk from the breast, keep pumping for 2-5 minutes after the last drops of milk. However, adding even a short pumping session (increasing frequency but perhaps not removing milk thoroughly) is helpful.

  • Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum L.) appears to be the herb that is most often used to increase milk supply. It has been reported to be an excellent galactagogue for some mothers, and has been used as such for centuries. The few studies that have been done have had mixed results [Swafford 2000, Reeder 2011, Turkyılmaz 2011] . Keep in mind that in almost all cases, non-pharmaceutical methods of increasing milk supply should be tried first, as there can be significant side effects from both herbal remedies and prescription medications used to increase milk supply.
    A number of lactation consultants recommend eating oatmeal as a way to increase supply.
    But in general I think sufficient rest, good food, demand feeding, pumping after feeding, alternating breast are all important measures to keep the supply up

  • Brewer’s yeast!

  • I found Chinese porridge really helped my supply. Probably because it has lots of water in it but you might not find it to your liking. Fluid and either get bub to feed often or pump on a regular basis/after feeds. Sleep is also extremely important in milk supply so if you are lacking sleep because of bub try to get some help either your partner or a family member.

  • I have heard that oats can be a helpful booster, so to is demand feeding

  • i hope its going well

  • My mum makes a soup and adds all chinese black fungus, mushrooms, lily buds and all those types of mushrooms with chicken and stock. She suggest making soup everytime and so does all my family and friends and their breast supply increases a lot from it.

  • Lactation cookies, fenugreek and lots of expressing between feeding bubs. lots of fluids

  • Lactation cookies, fenugreek and lots of expressing between feeding bubs. lots of fluids

  • A big bowl of porridge everyday. Oats help to boost supply. Also take a good Magnesium Supplement with added extra vitamins. I use this one and found it helped the most.

  • I was lucky to never have this problem as my little one just cluster fed. The more bub drinks the more milk you will make. However I have heard about these cookies – could be worth a try!! http://www.bellybelly.com.au/breastfeeding/breastmilk-supply-increase-breastmilk-lactation-cookie-recipe#.U0TfDL-KDmI

  • Drink lots of water and pump pump pump! The only way to increase supply is to increase the demand. Also don’t stress, stress doesn’t help with anything.

  • Just be careful with Fenegreek tablets, can upset your baby’s stomach. A little trick I used was staying warm. If I put a jumper or my big woolie robe and was nice and warm I would have heaps of milk. Drink plenty of water, and relax, being tense holds back milk. If you can pump a little each day, after a feed. It might only be a small amount but over time will increase your supply (store what you pump).

  • Fenegreek tablets, goggle the dosage. My maternal and child health nurse recommended it and seemed to work for me.

  • Keep your fluids up and while your feeding sip on a cup of tea of cool drink to keep you hydrated and also express inbetween feeds as the more you express the more you will make

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