When it comes to breastfeeding, many women are prepared and ready for a beautiful life changing experience. After imagining finally getting together with baby, breast feeding is supposed to be effortless, right? Breastmilk is best for supporting a baby’s health, in addition to providing nurturing and physical closeness.
However, for some mothers the magic of breastfeeding their baby doesn’t happen. For some reason or another, many women experience difficulties with producing enough milk. Some mothers are incapable of producing enough breast milk, so that they have no choice but to use formula. However, some ladies don’t realize that they are the reason why their breast milk production is low.
There are a few contributing factors, which can cause a mother to not produce enough breastmilk for her child. Depending on how a mother chooses to live her life, certain behaviors surrounding her lifestyle contribute to low breastmilk supply. Luckily, for most mothers, a low breastmilk supply can be fixed. It is vital for a woman to assess her lifestyle, patterns, and health in order to produce more breast milk. In the worse case scenario, there is always formula to save the day and feed her child.
15 Nursing Irregularly Will Cost You
It cannot be championed enough. If a woman decides to give her all to her child, by opting to breastfeed her little one, she should nurse all the time. Nursing on demand creates a good flow of breast milk production for baby. When a mom decides to pass up on an opportunity to nurse, it gives her body the signal to lower breastmilk levels.
That’s right, when mom chooses to give baby formula, a bottle, or ignores hungry cries, breastmilk can dry up faster than an ice ball in hell. So, if a mom is not honestly nursing her child on demand, or is seeking alternatives to breastfeeding her young, the milk will not be around for long.
14 Depending Too Much On The Binkie
Pacifiers can be a real life saver for a mom. Not only can they quiet down a fussy baby, the calming suckling on a pacifier can make a little one drift off to sleep.
However, if a mom is always popping a pacifier in baby’s mouth anytime their little one objects and makes a fuss, they might be interfering with their breast milk production. Sometimes babies cry, because they are hungry. When a mom is constantly supplying baby with a pacifier over milk, the breasts get the signal to make less food.
Yes, not all mothers want to nurse in public, or sometimes they are feeling too tired to nurse. However, breast milk operates on the laws of nature and biology, not the whims of a mom.
13 Cutting Calories To Lose The Mommy Pooch
When mom gets pregnant, she may enjoy eating to her heart’s content, and indulging in whatever craving comes her way. After baby, getting the baby weight off can be a real challenge. Instead of patiently giving her body enough time to recover from being pregnant, some moms just won’t wait. Extreme exercising coupled with a restrictive diet, not only can reduce breast milk, but can cause nutritional deficiencies and stress out a mom’s body.
It can be difficult to embrace a new body for some mothers, replete with new curves. However, barely eating enough for one is not a healthy way to go. In fact, extreme dieting may not only hurt baby’s chance of getting enough optimal breast milk, but can put a mom’s body in shock or starvation mode.
12 The Baby Has A Bad Latch
When learning how to properly breastfeed, it can be a real learning curve for mom and baby. Some moms may find breastfeeding uncomfortable, or even downright painful. Usually, this is caused by poor latching habits of mom and baby. If a woman doesn’t learn the correct way to nurse her child, it can make the breastfeeding experience less than desirable.
Babies who are unable to latch on correctly, may not only lead to very sore and cracked nipples, but may actually reduce the amount of breast milk they get. Thankfully, a mom can utilize a nursing consultant to assist with better breast feeding methods. If things become too much, there is always the breast pump. Poor latching on can lead to reduced breast milk levels and other problems.
11 There's Oil On Everything
Fried foods can be downright delicious. It has to be the crispy textures and seasoning within a coating of breading, which really make a mouth and stomach happy. Unless a mom eschews a diet full of fried and fattening foods, thanks to problems with oil, hypertension is right around the corner. And guess what? Breast milk production does not like it when a mom is suffering from high blood pressure.
When it comes to determining why breast milk is low, a mom can look no further than her plate at the dinner table. Food choices are very important. They not only give mom and baby enough nutritional security, but have a significant affect on the quality and quantity of breast milk a mom produces.
10 The Girls Are Fake
When it comes to the girls, many ladies want them to look their very best. There can be some stress over feeling confident and beautiful. After having a baby, some women choose to undergo a breast augmentation procedure. However, ladies who choose to have breast augmentation before baby arrives may be in for a surprise.
Turns out, depending on how much glandular tissue a lady has in her lady lumps, and the type of procedure she undergoes with the knife, breast milk may be affected. If a woman chooses to have some cosmetic procedures done to the girls, it would be good to mention wanting to breast feed afterward. Typically, nursing is not a problem for surgically enhanced breasts. However, the risk of low breast milk levels is a big possibility.
9 Passing The Bottle
Formula is so convenient. In fact, it might be kind of addictive going through the ritual of pulling out powder, measuring the correct amounts, adding water, and giving the formula a thorough shake before serving. When it comes to making breastmilk, production increases when there is feeding on demand. That means feeding breastmilk, not formula.
Women who pass the baby a bottle of formula more than giving their wee one the breast, can develop lower breast milk levels, or have difficulty nursing their little one. Some babies who drink formula, actually begin to prefer drinking from a bottle, than drinking from the nipple. This can leave moms with engorged breasts, that eventually may even cease producing milk altogether.
8 Mom Didn't Have A V Birth
Women who have C-sections definitely need to follow up with their medical provider, once they have settled down with their new baby. There is a risk to breastmilk lurking silently within them, if mom and her doctor are unaware. Unlike a vaginal delivery, which allows for a clean removal of the placenta following the birth of a baby, c-sections can make things complicated.
Sometimes fragments of the placenta can be left behind in a mother’s uterus. This creates some biological interference to the production of breast milk, and can also develop other health issues for a new mother. It is vital that a mom is aware of any changes with her body, such as feelings of abdominal discomfort. Especially if she had a C-section and wants to nurse.
7 Picking Up The Juice
After avoiding drinking because of pregnancy, some women relish enjoying more than just a glass of wine after having their baby. However, moderation is important. When a woman chooses to drink herself into oblivion, or is drinking more than just socially, breast milk can become affected.
No, baby will not be enjoying breast milk that tastes a bit like it has a hint of rum or cognac. In fact, drinking and breast feeding really shouldn’t mix. There is a risk of passing on traces of alcohol to a little one, if mom nurses to soon after a glass or bottle of alcohol. Also, the breast milk may not only be in a lower amount, but less palatable to baby. No drunken babies here, only shots of breast milk.
6 Hands Are Always In The Medicine Cabinet
If a mom has to take a certain prescribed medication, but still wants to breastfeed, it is best that she consult her physician. Certain medications, even over-the-counter drugs can interfere with breast milk production. There is also concern over trace amounts of pharmaceutical drugs entering a woman’s breast milk supply. No mom wants to pass anything undesirable to their child.
Depending on the nature of the medicine taken, certain elements can make breast feeding a child difficult, or unreliable. If nursing seemed a breeze, until mom started back on her medication, the pills might be the culprit. Alternatives to prescribed medications may be possible, which have a lesser influence on breast milk levels. It is best to consult a medical professional when there seems to be a problem.
5 Not Getting Enough Shuteye
When a newborn baby is prone to crying and waking up fussy every two hours, because they are in need of a diaper change or some food, sleep seems like a distant memory. No matter how sleep deprived a mom can get during those early months with baby, losing sleep can equal losing breast milk. A mom in need should seek out the help of a good friend, family member, their spouse, or other to catch a break. Some ladies try to get a nap in when their little one is asleep.
Eyes with dark circles will not be the only thing that drops, if a mom doesn’t get enough rest. No matter how healthy a mom’s diet, breast milk production can slow down tremendously if mom doesn’t get enough sleep.
4 Taking Puffs
Cigarette smoking is a highly addictive activity. Although some moms choose to quit when pregnant, after baby arrives, the cigarettes return in full force. Despite the negative effects cigarette smoking has on mom and definitely baby’s health, mom’s are found puffing away with abandon.
Guess what? All those cigarettes may provide a short escape from stress, and give a feeling of short energy bursts, but they are a breast milk killer. It would seem that more women who smoke, would rather give their baby a bottle of formula anyway. Life is about convenience and compromise, except when it comes to cigarettes for a die-hard smoker.
If mom is suffering low breast milk levels, it might just be the fault of the cancer stick dangling from her lips.
3 High Blood Sugar
Mothers who have diabetes and take insulin have reason to be concerned about nursing. It is not so much an issue that insulin may leech into the breast milk supply. The problem is that breast milk takes glucose from the body, in order to be produced. So, if a diabetic mom chooses to have a baby and breastfeed, nursing may throw off her glucose levels. Of course, it is a good measure to consult a physician if there is any major concern.
A mom with diabetes may find that she is slow to produce a significant quantity of breast milk for her baby. Nursing diabetic mothers who take insulin should look out for signs of hypoglycemia. Most diabetic medication should not negatively affect baby.
2 The Silent Breastmilk Killer
Stress really is a mind killer, and a breastmilk killer too. When a mom is stressing too much, negative hormones build up in her body, taking away energy toward healthy breast milk production. Passing on breast milk to a baby filled with stress hormones can lead to behavioral problems. Also, stress can really make nursing challenging, as breast milk levels can really go down, and fast.
It is critical that a mom who chooses to nurse relaxes. Taking time out for a walk, reading an enjoyable book, taking a long bubble bath, meditation, or even yoga can make all the difference. There is no manual for a perfect motherhood, so stressing out about every little thing does more harm than good.
1 Which Health Problems Play A Role?
The thyroid gland in the human body is responsible for regulating the metabolism, and levels of calcium in the blood. Women who experience anemia, may be suffering from thyroid malfunction. When the thyroid is having problems, women who choose to nurse may produce less milk. The thyroid is also responsible for producing prolactin and oxytocin in the body.
The thyroid gland can have problems during pregnancy, or after pregnancy. Studies are still ongoing as to how strongly the thyroid affects a mother’s breastmilk production, but experts agree that a dysfunctional thyroid interferes with quality nursing. In some documented cases, women who experience health problems thanks to an under-active or over-active thyroid, see an increase in breast milk production, once they make some lifestyle changes and seek medical intervention.
Sources: Science Daily, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Mayo Clinic, Lactation Matters, La Leche League International, Cosmetic Surgery, BFAR