Are you worried about producing enough breast milk for your newborn child? Don’t panic. You aren’t the only woman who thinks about how can I increase my breast milk naturally. Recent data collected from disease control and prevention depicts that about 75% of women stop breastfeeding midday, usually within the first few months. One of the most common reasons for this is the lack of breast milk.
If your baby is getting breast milk twice a day it’s fine. However, there are ways to increase your natural production of breast milk. Before we dive into the ways, let’s first see what causes insufficient milk production.
Causes of insufficient milk production
Multiple factors affect your body’s milk production capacity. Below given are some reasons.
1. Emotional factors
Suffering from anxiety, stress, mental pressures or embarrassment can lead to the production of less milk. Women must make breastfeeding an enjoyable experience. They must feel free and relaxed while breastfeeding.
2. Medical history
Certain medical conditions influence milk production. For instance pregnancy-induced high blood pressure, high sugar levels, polycystic ovarian disease, and some pseudoephedrine-containing medicines. Regular intake of birth control pills can also interface with milk production.
3. Intake of alcoholic drinks
Regular drinking and smoking can reduce the body’s ability to produce enough milk.
4. Breast surgery
If you do not have enough glandular tissues due to breast operation, cyst removal, or mastectomy, it might interfere with the process of lactation. Even nipple piercings also damage the breast nerves that play an important role in milk production.
How can I increase my breast milk naturally?
Are you not producing enough milk for your baby? Are you willing to know what’s causing low milk protection? It can be because of any of the above-mentioned reasons. However, if you are wondering how can I increase my breast milk naturally, follow the tips listed below.
1 . Breastfeed frequently
Breastfeed often, so that the baby can decide when he/ she is full. When your newborn child sucks your breasts, hormones trigger the mild producing glands to release more milk. This is called the letdown reflex. To maintain a uniform production of milk, breastfeed about 8 to 10 times a day.
2. Pump between feedings
This is another answer to your “how can I increase breast milk naturally” question. Pumping in between breastfeeding can enhance milk secretion. Pumping makes your breasts warmer, thus giving you a more relaxed feeling. Try to pump when there is milk left in your breasts even after feeding, or when your kid has skipped a feeding.
3. Use both breasts to feed your baby
Whenever it’s time to feed your baby, feed on both breasts. Offer the first breast and let it feed milk unless it stops sucking anymore. Now offer the other breast. The stimulation of having both breasts breast-fed will facilitate the production of milk.
4. Lactation cookies
Lactation cookies are a good source. They have been linked to increased milk production. You can order them online or from any local store. You can also choose to make them at home. Lactation cookies contain galactagogues, that promote the production of milk. Few other items have the same function for instance wheat germ, whole oats, brewer’s yeast, flaxseed meal.
5. Other foods, herbs, and supplements
Other food items like fenugreek, ginger, garlic, fennel, blessed thistle, spirulina, brewer’s yeast, alfalfa, etc. are also known to induce the process of lactation. These items also help to grow your breasts naturally.
However, before you start taking these natural remedies, you must consult your doctor. Such natural food items also have side effects, which might be harmful to the baby.
Is your milk production low?
Low breast milk occurs rarely. Every woman’s body is capable to produce enough milk to feed the newborn. Your baby might cry, fuss, or might not breastfeed at a stretch. There’s no reason to think it’s because of low milk production. Gas pains, teethings, lack of enough sleep, or empty stomachs can also cause fussiness. All these can interfere with your breastfeeding, distracting the baby while you breastfeed.
If you are still worried about how can I increase my breast milk naturally, you must visit your child’s pediatrician. Regular visits and thorough check-ups can help you determine your milk production. It will also help you know if your child is undernourished. You can track feeding intervals and diaper changes and convey the information to your doctor.
If your body isn’t producing enough milk as per your doctor, you may intake supplements. However before you do that, talk to a well-known lactation specialist to prevent your breasts from accidental early weaning. Your lactation specialist will formulate a supplementation chart that is supposed to enhance milk production. You can gradually stop taking supplements as per the doctor’s guidance.