Medela’s Factors That Impact On Breastmilk Supply

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Medela’s Factors That Impact On Breastmilk Supply

April 18, 2016

While it is rare for moms to have persistent issues with low breastmilk supply, there are several common factors that impact on breastmilk supply.

Problem: Infrequent Nursing

Your body will produce milk in response to stimulation of the breast. So if your baby is sleepy, ill or jaundiced, or you are separated from your baby for any reason, your milk supply will start to decrease.

Solution

  • Put your baby to the breast as often as possible until your supply has increased.
  • Feed on demand rather than on a schedule. This will ensure your baby is giving your body the necessary cues to produce the amount of milk she needs.
  • If that is not possible or is still not enough, using a breastpump that can pump both breasts at the same time, like the Medela Symphony, Freestyle or Pump In Style can help increase production.

Problem: Bad latch

A baby who is not suckling well will not stimulate milk production as well as a baby who is removing milk efficiently at the breast. In addition, a bad latch can cause nipple pain, which can inhibit your milk letdown, leading to increased nipple pain and a negative feedback loop.

Solution

  • Adjust your baby’s latch to help make it more efficient.
  • If you need help, ask your health care team for advice.

Problem: Stress

Cortisol is a hormone that is released into your bloodstream at times of stress and can interfere with the production of breastmilk1.

Solution

  • Identify and try to reduce sources of stress in your life. Getting enough sleep is an important part of stress reduction, so try and find ways to increase your sleep.
  • One possible solution is to pump expressed breastmilk that can be fed to baby by your partner or someone else once or twice a day, allowing you to get some rest/sleep.

Problem: Time of day

Your breastmilk supply will change throughout the day.

Solution

  • If you are trying to pump breastmilk to store for later use, try breastpumping in the morning, where your milk supply is at its peak, right after your baby finishes his or her first nursing session.

Problem: Certain medications

Combination birth control pills – those that contain both progesterone and estrogen – can impact on your hormone levels and affect your milk supply. Smoking heavily and certain other medications can also impact on your milk supply.

Solution

  • There are alternatives to combination birth control pills.
  • Talk to your health care team about your concerns with medications.

Problem: Pre-term infant

Babies who arrive much earlier than expected bring a number of unique challenges.

Solution

  • Your health care team should work with you closely to find strategies for breastmilk feeding your pre-term infant.
  • Learn about the Medela Symphony with Symphony PLUS and how it can help you initiate your breastmilk supply by clicking on the link below.

For information on more Breastfeeding Challenges go to medela.ca

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