Are you unsure whether you are producing enough milk during breastfeeding? Especially if you feel overwhelmed and tired and the baby does not seem to stop crying, you doubt yourself. This causes a chain reaction. Feeling stressed and tired as it is, you start to worry that your baby is not satisfied. It raises anxiety and stress and that can, in turn, affect milk production. We understand that the first few months with your baby are the most precious. We want to help you experience it in the most comfortable manner, so please read on.
If your baby is gaining weight well on breastmilk alone, your milk supply is not too low. On the other hand, if your baby is very sleepy and needs help to awaken him/herself, loses weight and has infrequent stools, it is wise to monitor whether your baby gets sufficient milk.
Stress can be one of the factors that influence your milk production to be too low. As a new-born mum you have quite some things to digest. Be patient with yourself and your baby. Once your confidence is growing as your breastfeeding progresses you baby will thrive and you will both be happy. In general, mums are much more relaxed and easy going with their second child. And also your exhaustion can affect your milk supply.
An important question is what to eat during the feeding months that will ensure a good supply of milk. Whatever you eat in the post-delivery and nursing period will directly affect the amount of milk that is provided and it will affect your baby. One of the best ways to increase milk supply is to actually continue breastfeeding. It will stimulate the nerves and help to produce more milk in the breast. While your baby is drinking, your body signals to increase the milk production.
Key to increase milk production is to frequently remove milk from the breasts, so that lesser milk accumulates in between the feeds. We advise:
New mums happen to experience some struggle with breastfeeding. You are not the only one and certainly not a failure. Breastfeeding should not be painful and it may depend on the baby’s positioning at the breast. Please check with your Lactation Consultant or your midwife for advice. Lactation is a hormonal thing. Once you feel stressed out or even feel anxiety, your body will produce adrenaline which then overrules the prolactin hormone and your production might slow down.
If you are breastfeeding, make sure that you take plenty of fluids during the day. As long as your body is well hydrated, it will assist with the milk production. Think of water, herbal tea and fennel tea. A good rule of thumb is to have a drink when you sit to feed your baby. Do not wait till you feel thirsty as it is the final step for your body to let you know that you are dehydrated.
Don’t be afraid to ask other mums for advice. Perhaps your own mum or your sister, a mum of 3, or a good girlfriend whose baby boy is doing so well. They would love to support you as a new mum worrying about her breastfeeding skills. Or discover more expert advice on breastfeeding to make life easier for you and your baby.