Retaining Your Milk Supply
For many nursing moms, keeping up their milk supply is difficult. They find that for whatever reason, their supply is not great, or they feel like their baby is not getting enough milk when they are nursing.
There are several free methods that a mother can use, as well as products she can buy which are said to increase milk supply. A nursing mother should always check with her doctor or her baby’s pediatrician before starting any new regimen to increase her milk. She can also call her local chapter of the La Leche League for help and advice.
Make sure your baby is latched on correctly to begin with. Many times, if the baby is not latched on right, it will be hard for them to get the milk, making them not want to try. The more you nurse successfully, the better supply you will have. When nursing, especially early on try not to go more than 2 or 3 hours without feeding your baby. If for some reason this is not possible or you are away from your baby, have a breast pump handy and pump milk, keeping your breasts stimulated and your milk glands producing milk. Try to get your baby to nurse for at least 15 minutes on each breast, during each feeding. If your baby is full and doesn’t want to nurse anymore, end the feedings by pumping the rest of your milk. Your breasts don’t know if it is a baby or a pump, they just know that the milk is needed.
It is also important to keep up your food and calorie intake while nursing, including your milk consumption. You need extra calories when nursing your baby to produce the milk and assure that your body is getting the nutrients it needs. Your body will take what it needs first, so if you attempt to cut back or diet during this time, it is likely that your body will not have enough resources to make a sufficient amount of milk and your mlk supply will be effective.
There are a few products on the market that you can buy online or at specialty stores that are supposed to help increase your milk supply. They work for some women, for others they might not. One is Mother’s Milk, also known as Mother’s Milk Tea. It is a drink for nursing mother’s that has been used for centuries by European women, made up of herbs and is traditionally used just to increase the milk supply.
Another popular herbal supplement a nursing mother often takes is called Fenugreek. It is supposed to increase milk supply in less than 72 hours and has no side effects for the baby. Again, talk to your doctor or your babies pediatrician, as well as a lactation consultant before trying either of these methods for increasing your milk supply.
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