Tuesday, July 10, 2012
Let's talk re-lactation.
First of all congrats on wanting to start breastfeeding again! And you are completely right, it's not too late. Milk has been found to stay in breasts in some women for YEARS after breastfeeding. First and foremost important thing and the absolute best way to increase supply is putting the baby directly at the breast. Now this may or may not be easy, but I will be here to help you every step of the way, and if you even need some help getting him to latch I will be more then willing to come help you. He is going to be used to the bottle, so he is going to fuss a lot and at times right out refuse the breast, but you have to be more stubborn then he is and he will eventually give in. The best way to start out is by undressing from the waist up, and stripping lil man down to just a diaper, and go somewhere quiet and comfy like a bedroom. Just cuddle, love on him and this stimulates milk production. Let him lay on your chest and offer the breast, try not to stress or be nervous and let it just happen. He may suckle, or he may just lick, you may try expressing a few drops with your hand and let him smell and taste, and this will help him latch. Don't do this when he is too full, or when he is starving. An hour or so after feeding is perfect timing, and also at night time. Once you get lil man to start to latch again, its time to work on supply. ALWAYS breastfeed before you offer a bottle, and always offer both sides. Decrease the amount given in bottles to about 3 oz, then 2 then 1, what this will do is make him hungry more often, and that’s when you offer the breast again.. stimulation to the breast will make more milk. Its supply and demand... Also, when a baby fusses at the breast he is actually signaling the breasts to make more milk or change the composition of the milk. I find this one of the most fascinating parts of breastfeeding.. that our breasts and brains can actually decipher what our babies cries are saying and what they need.! Is that not awesome?!?! Now, also on your end water is the most important physiological part of making breast milk. So drink, drink, drink!!!! Oatmeal, fresh, not processed, is another great food to increase supply. Mother’s milk tea, (you can find it online) also something great. Herbs that work are blessed thistle, and fenugreek. If you decide to buy either just let me know and I will tell you how much to take of each. Also if you have one, you should pump inbetween feedings. You are likely not to get anything so don’t be discouraged by this. All you doing is stimulating your breasts even more to make more milk. You want to offer the breast at least every hour until you have established a good supply again. I suggest having the baby sleep close, you can sleep with him, or have a bed right beside yours. And just offer the breast at night when he wakes up.. Try to get to him before he’s full out crying because he will be more willing to nurse that way. Also if you have any pacifers, toss them. If he wants to suck, even for a min, you offer the breast. He won’t always do this, but when first starting out it’s very important. You can offer a paci in the future again when breastfeeding is well established and formula is no longer needed. Also a great link to read is http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/relactation.html if you have any more questions feel free to message, and if you need any help with latching let me know.. And keep in touch and I will help you every step of the way. You can do it mama!