Sometimes, establishing a strong milk supply can be a challenge. Here are 6 ways to help increase it :)
Nurse Often and For as Long as Baby Wants To:
Try to have baby nurse roughly every 2-3 hours, which is about 8-10 times in a 24 hour period; as you are breastfeeding, (and even just being skin-to-skin) the body produces amazing hormones like oxytocin and prolactin that help with bonding and milk production.
Take Care of Yourself:
Eat well, sleep well and increase your fluids. You will need about 1800-2200 calories a day while breastfeeding. Also, drink 6 to 8 glasses of water or herbal tea. Dehydration, fatigue and stress will decrease your milk supply.
Pump After Each Nursing Session:
Pump for at least 5 to 10 minutes after each feeding. Do this 8 to 10 times in a 24 hour.
Increase Your Milk With Help:
Speak to your healthcare provider, naturopath or midwife about nutritional supplements like fenugreek, blessed thistle, brewer's yeast.
Avoid Bottles and Pacifiers:
Until breast-feeding is well-established, try to restrict feeding to the breast. If you absolutely need to, use a cup, syringe or feeding tube.
Check Your Latch:
If baby is not far enough on the Areola, he or she may not be compressing the milk ducts adequately. Assistance from a lactation consultant, midwife or doula is extremely helpful.
Lawrence, Ruth A., MD, Lawrence, Robert M., MD. Breastfeeding A Guide For The Medical Profession Sixth Edition. Mosby. Philadelphia. 2005.
Ehrlich, Steven D., NMD. Brewer's Yeast. University of Maryland Medical Center. 2011: http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/brewers-yeast-000288.htm : Accessed June 14, 2012.