As a breastfeeding mother, initially one of my biggest concerns was whether my baby was getting enough milk or not. Trust me when I say that I used to lose my mind thinking about it so many times in a day. But it was only a few weeks down the line that I realized the things I should and shouldn’t have done to increase breast milk supply.
I did so much to ensure that I was producing enough milk, and it did help me as well. This is why I want to share with you all the things that do and don’t help in increasing your breast milk supply.
But before I begin, I want you to know that if you have just given birth to your baby, your milk will not come instantly. It takes up to 2-3 days for the milk to be produced after giving birth. The thick yellowish liquid that comes out is colostrums which is even more important to be had by your baby than your breast milk alone.
Important Tip – Do not stop breast feeding right after birth because your milk is not coming in. Wait for a few days. If you stop, then it will most definitely not come in.
So here is a list of things that you must do to ensure your milk supply does not reduce.
1. Pump, Pump, Pump
If you have been following y previous many articles, you must already know how important it is to pump your breast milk. Breast milk works on a demand and supply basis. The more the breasts are emptied, the more your body will work towards producing milk to filling the breasts back in.
If you feed your baby from one breast alone at a time, then use a manual or electric breast pump for the other breast. This way both your breasts will be emptied and your body will be signaled to produce more.
ALSO READ – How To Store Breastmilk
2. Breastfeed more often
Like I said above, the more you feed or empty the breasts, the more your milk supply will be. A lot of times, for comfort, we resort to giving formula to our babies instead of breast milk. This gives a signal to your body to not produce more milk because the breasts have not been emptied.
Slowly your body stops making enough milk to feed the baby. Even if you have to give formula or otherwise, ensure that you express the milk to make up for the missed feed. Or, simply, breastfeed as often as you can.
3. Make sure you’re rested enough
Believe it or not, there are many factors that affect a mom’s milk supply. If you are tired, stressed, unhappy, sleepy, distressed or depressed, chances are you will have reduced milk supply. If you are a breastfeeding mother, it is important for you to rest enough and be healthy if you want to make sure your supply is good.
I know for a new mom it may be difficult, but it is not impossible either. You have to eat a well-balanced diet and take enough fluids to remain hydrated. Take care of yourself and you will definitely see a change in your milk supply soon.
4. Avoid the use of pacifiers and bottles
The more pacifiers or bottles you use for your baby, the more he gets used to them. The problem with being used to them is that pacifiers and bottles require a different sucking motion, with no effort on the part of the baby at all. While with breast, the baby has to make an effort to suck and take milk out from the breast.
When babies are used to effortless sucking, there is a tendency in them to refuse the breast because they have to suck harder. And when they have an improper latch or are unable to empty the breast, you tend to have low milk supply because you body doesn’t make it anymore.
ALSO READ – Pacifier Addiction – Ending The Pacifier Habit
This is about the things you must and must not do to increase your breast milk supply. Keep watching out for this space as I will share some tried and tested foods and supplements that help increase milk for you.
How about you? Do you have a problem keeping up your breast milk supply? What techniques have you applied so far that have helped you? Do you have any question related to breast milk supply? Let us know and we’d be happy to answer any doubt you may have.