Tips to Increase Breastmilk Production
So many moms create goals for themselves for the length of time they want to breastfeed.
Just long enough for baby to get Colostrum
Extended into toddlerhood
All these goals are great to have, but sometimes they can feel so hard to accomplish.
If you are struggling with breastfeeding and looking for what items to invest in, check out my post with Items to Help With Your Breastfeeding Journey.
You may wonder if your baby is getting enough breastmilk or maybe you tend to get clogs often. I had an issue with my son where I was getting clogs every 2 weeks and I had constant clogs with my daughter. I also had mastitis with my son, and I really struggled nursing him during that time.
Check out my Top 7 Tips and Tricks for Managing Mastitis post to see if you are having the same issue.
If you really want to exclusively breastfeed, there are a few tips to try to see if you can increase milk production.
How can you tell if your baby is getting enough milk?
There are a few ways to tell if your baby is getting enough milk.
Your baby should be gaining weight within the scale for their age at every pediatrician appointment. If your baby is losing weight or not gaining, you should speak to your child’s pediatrician.
Your baby should be producing many wet diapers per day. Depending on their age, this could be up to 13+ diaper changes a day.
You Can Hear Baby Swallowing While Nursing
There is a very distinct sound when listening to your baby nursing to tell if they are drinking. I have always been able to hear my babies and that tells me they are still drinking. When the swallowing stops, I know they are done, and they usually pull off shortly after.
Ways to Increase Milk Supply
Your baby was just born, and you immediately do skin-to-skin. You can help your milk production by having your baby latch on right away. Both of my children attempted to latch shortly after they were born. I didn’t want to give up with my daughter, so they sent in a lactation consultant who helped my daughter latch, and we were on our way down our two-year breastfeeding journey.
2. Breastfeed on Demand
When your baby is showing hunger cues, put them on the breast. Following a schedule is not helpful for keeping your milk supply up. Many women are told to feed baby only every 2 hours or 4 hours. It’s ok to feed baby shortly after they just ate. Their stomachs are tiny, and they can get hungry sooner than you think. Remember, we as adults don’t always eat on a perfect schedule so we should not expect our babies to.
One of the best foods for boosting your milk supply, oatmeal is a superfood rich in nutrients. Many of the nutrients in oatmeal, including iron, are great for breastfeeding mothers. You can find many recipes online for oatmeal cookies, overnight oats, smoothies, and more.
4. Offer Both Breasts
Every time you nurse your baby, you should always offer both breasts. This will allow your baby to get as much milk as possible at every session. I find starting with the opposite breast at each feeding can help your baby not favor one breast over the other. My kids still favored one side over the other, but I was still able to produce enough milk in both.
5. Pump After Feedings
If you really want to booth milk supply, you can pump after every feeding. You may not get much milk out, but it can stimulate and cause your breasts to produce more milk. Eventually, you should see an increase in supply.
6. Talk to a Lactation Consultant
If you are not able to increase your milk supply or feel overwhelmed, a great option is to speak to a lactation consultant. I have talked to multiple lactation consultants over the years with both of my children and it has helped with so many issues, including latching, clogs, lip ties, and more.
You can find local lactation consultants by reaching out to your doctor’s office or the hospital you gave birth at.
There are many other ways out there to try to increase milk supply, but please seek a medical professional before taking any medications or supplements.
Whichever goal you set for yourself, don’t stress about it too much and remember that many amazing formulas exist.
Your mental health is more important, and your baby will not go hungry.
What are some ways that helped you increase your milk supply?