Milk Supply

Question:

My milk supply has gone down! How can I increase it?

Answer:

Tomi,

Thank you for your question. There are many things that can cause supply to go down but it is important to know if it is really lowering or if it is your body adjusting to what your baby is intaking.  It would be helpful to get some additional information like how old is your baby? Are you exclusively breastfeeding or is baby also getting expressed breastmilk or supplementing with formula? Are you feeding on demand as in when baby is showing signs of wanting to feed or are you doing more of a schedule like every 2-3 hours?  Is the baby eating solids?  Are you on any medication like birth control?  All of these things can impact a supply.  Without knowing these specifics we can give you some general information about supply.  It is important to not time feedings and not to watch the clock.  If your baby is rooting around, sucking on fingers or smacking lips, these are signs baby is hungry.  The more your baby is at the breast, the better your supply will be as baby is generally the best way to get milk out and in response your body will replenish what has been removed.  If baby is eating solids, offer the breast first as the majority of nutrition through the first year should be breastmilk,.  Solids at this point are for taste and texture practice and should be offered one at a time (to watch for allergies) and so baby does not fill up on solids and not maintain your supply.  If baby is getting breastmik in a bottle or supplementing, you would need to pump or hand express to ensure your body is releasing milk and also replenshing the milk.  What goes out is replenished.  If it is not removed, your body will eventually reabsorb it and will not make more meaning your supply will go down.  We hope this is helpful for you and if you can update on the questions that will help answer more specifically. 

Best wishes,

Gina Ciagne, CLC

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