Low Milk Supply Tips

Chelseaszidik - posted on 10/20/2009 ( 565 moms have responded )

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This is a frequent question and many moms have some great advice. Please post any tips you have on increasing milk supply.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Rachel - posted on 10/20/2009

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**a nursing "vacation"--get in bed or some other comfy location with no top and cuddle baby skin to skin. Nurse often, even if its just comfort nursing
**stay well hydrated--not drinking enough water can often cause a supply dip
**eat healthy! Your body needs good fuel to keep yourself and your baby going :)
**Oatmeal is a natural milk booster--the old fashioned oats cooked on the stove seem to work the best but use what you have :) Oatmeal, cookies, even oat-based cereal
**www.kellymom.com has a list of other natural herbs you can take to boost supply. One of the most popular is fenugreek but some mom's find it doesn't work by itself and need to combine it with others (I used it in conjunction with blessed thistle). If you decide to take a supplement, please be sure to research it! Some of these are used for other things and can affect your health (for example, fenugreek is commonly used to help control blood sugar--if you have low blood sugar already, it can cause a plummet in your numbers).
**If you need to, break out the pump and use it for some extra stimulation :)
**If you are pumping for your little one and need to get more out, try playing with the settings on your pump. Changing the strength & speed of the suction several times throughout your session can help you get more milk or stimulate multiple letdowns. You can also do breast massage before/during pumping to encourage more milk to come out. Some women find pictures of their babies help them pump while others need to be distracted to get more (I usually read while I pumped).

Minnie - posted on 10/20/2009

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Put baby to your breast whenever baby wants it, even if baby nursed half an hour ago. Frequent and unrestricted access!

Jennifer - posted on 11/05/2009

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Quoting Susan:

I have a simliar problem with not enough for my growing baby. She is nearly 7 months and won't eat any solids. I talked to my OB doc and she put me on a 12 day supply of reglen. It took about 3 days to notice a difference but now I'm making enough to freeze some of what I depleted trying to play catch up. I too tried Fenugreek and Mothers tea. It may have made a difference but not much. I suggest talking to your OB dr. Good luck



I would be VERY careful with the Reglan.  A La Leche League leader, who happened to be a nurse practitioner, prescribed that to me with my first child.  She didn't know about my history of depression.  I had very little ppd until I started taking the Reglan.  After about a week on the meds, I became nearly suicidal and even had thoughts of harming my baby.  When my OB found out, he nearly croaked and told me to stop that med immediately and told me to triple my dosage of Zoloft for a week...that is a very dangerous med if you have a history of depression.  I currenly take Fenugreek and Blessed Thistle with my 4 month old and I am having much better luck than with my first child!

Michelle - posted on 10/24/2009

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Someone commented that you needed to drink lots or milk ... my nurse explained to me that you DO NOT have to drink milk to make milk ... I mean why would a cows milk help you to make milk? The cow doesn't need to drink milk to make milk.... Just drink alot of fluid and you will be good!



Another thing that helped me was to drink Mothers Milk Tea.... I LOVED IT and I also pumped right after her last feeding before bed and after her first feeding in the morning... especially since I started back at work. Since my daughter is now 8 months though i don't have to pump at night since my supply is quite steady ... But if I ever think she is going through a growth spurt I start pumping at night again. As soon as I could pump(my doctor, lactation consultant and nurses told me to wait till she was 4 weeks to pump) I pumped at least 2 times a day right after her feeding... only on one side at a time though ... so I would pump the right when she was done feeding and then the next feeding I would pump the left. I had a freezer full of milk in NO time. By the time I went back to work I had like 50 bags worth!!! If you add up those plus the ones before going to bed and after waking up ... THATS ALOT OF MILK.



Good luck to everyone! This is what women were ment to do, obviously we have boobs, what else are they there for (NOT OUR HUSBANDS HAHHAHA) Your body will do what it has to do just don't stress!

Emma - posted on 10/21/2009

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Don't switch breast til a 3 hour mark. The baby will get a higher calorie milk called hindmilk instead of foremilk so it will keep baby sustained til you switch breasts. Worked great for me. Also like all the others, drink lots of milk, nurse often etc etc etc

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Demitria - posted on 08/22/2010

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drink 8 glasses of water and tea throughout the day then put ur breast of a schedule like every two hours (pump them) then in about a week it will be there

[deleted account]

Frequesnt, on demand breastfeeding is the best way to increase your supply. Many mothers find that various supplements (fenugreek etc) help them, though I would suggest they must be taken in conjunction with frequent breastfeeding.
There have been no conclusive studies on the benefits of such galactogogues, benefits are usually anecdotal, but anything that helps you is good. I tried guinness - probably an old wives' tale, and I don't think it made any difference, but I love guinness!

Drugs such as domperidome (motilium), maxolon, pramin,reglan, and maxeran can have as a side-effect an increase in breast milk.I would suggest that, as with any drug, you discuss it with a health professional. Again, in my opinion, these should be taken in conjunction with frequent breastfeeding.

Nicky - posted on 08/18/2010

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Try Milk Thistle capsuels. I had exactly the same problem and a friend suggested I try it. It worked! I have more than enough breast milk now :-) You can find them in the pharmacy or at healthfood stores. Hope this helps :-)

Alicia - posted on 08/18/2010

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keep pumping and nursing as much as possible. If you dont own a pump contact your local health department and see if you can rent and electric one through wic. I just found out and my baby is six months old. I had low milk supply issues and tried everything. Even taking fenugreek capsuls they did work. Also try hand expressing your milk its hard at first but if you can get any milk out keeping doing it a few times a day. I hope some of these help you.

Melissa - posted on 08/18/2010

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I have read that eating rice or almonds is good for increasing milk supply.

Angela - posted on 08/16/2010

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Whatever you do, try to avoid supplementing formula. It stretches out babies stomachs so your breast milk will never be able to fill baby...eventually your supply will dwindle.

[deleted account]

LInda, the reason it's recommended that breastfeeding mums eat a good diet is so they can be healthy and cope with the streeses of life with a baby. Mothers have been breastfeeding their babies for thousands of years, often in conditions of famine and extreme poverty. If you don't have a good diet, the mother misses out, not the baby.

[deleted account]

if your not eating enough your milk supply will be low. mother should get 2400 calories a day and it helps to take that prenatal we all love so much. ;)

[deleted account]

Mom's that suffer from low iron or anemia will struggle to make milk. You'll usually have symptoms of being tired and headaches. If you have those along with low milk supply, I would suggest to have your iron checked and eat some red meat. I've also hear that Fenugreek and Blessed Thistle can help the milk supply.

Arlea - posted on 08/13/2010

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If you are asking about fenugreek, you can nurse while your on it, no problem.

Rocio - posted on 08/13/2010

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hi. I always wondered if it really worked but i'm always to scared of transferring it to my baby. How long do you wait until you feed again after drinking it?

Arlea - posted on 08/11/2010

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Last week i tried Fenugreek to increase for pumping and it increased my milk three fold, of course drink lots of water as well. Doseage i was taking 3 pills 3 times a day (they say if you do not take enough it will not work at all) Good luck!

Michelle - posted on 08/10/2010

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satisfy your babies sucking needs only on the breast and not with a dummy or bottle.

Becki - posted on 08/09/2010

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the more baby has the more u produce. I also express and it ranges from a 5oz to 9oz bottle after he had fed depending on how much he has eaten xx

Tessa - posted on 08/06/2010

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Like the other moms, I recommend nursing as often as possible. When your breasts are emptied, your body receives the signal to make more milk.

Also, the amount and TYPE of fluid you drink can be a contributing factor. Personally, I notice when I drink more caffeine than usual, my supply seems to dwindle. I love a good iced latte, so I know it's hard. Nonetheless, I say stick to non-caffeinated beverages.

Last but not least, oatmeal really is a good supply booster. :-)

~Tessa
BreastfeedingMomsCafe.com

Sara - posted on 08/06/2010

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Fenugreek!! great way to boost ur supply i also heard drinking barley tea helps :)

Cheri - posted on 08/06/2010

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get a sling, put baby in it, latch & go! lol. Mother's milk tea, homemade old fashioned oat cookies, and 120 oz of fluids a day! :) Also, happier mom's have more milk! :) watch comedies! I try to watch stand up on netflix instant watch as much as possible! :) You watching funny stuff makes the whole house happier! :-D

Danielle - posted on 08/06/2010

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I had a big problem with my milk in the beginning. My daughter was colic so I spent all of my time tending to her and not eating right. I had to remember to take the time to eat a meal when I needed to and not just grab a peice of fruit or granola bar. After I started eating right, I pumped twice a day for about a week and all was good. Plus it made it easier for when I started back to work I had alot frozen already (she wouldn't eat it...but it was less stressfull later nonetheless)

Leslie - posted on 08/04/2010

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I have been breastfeeding my 10 month old and now I am in need of storing some milk....I dont produce enough for that though...my body only makes enough for her, which has been perfect up until now...I was reading the responses but was wondering if anyone had any tips for my situation. Thanks so much!!

User - posted on 08/01/2010

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have you tried goats milk instead of soy? sometimes with foster babies i cut the formula 1/2 and 1/2 with goats to cut down on soy formulas.

Jennifer - posted on 08/01/2010

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What has worked for me and my own little circle of moms is whole grain/multi grain (more multi than whole)! Cream of Wheat, multi grain cheerios, Trader Joes multi grain hot cereal etc... Anything that metabolizes fast and easy is a great milk producers for my friends and I.

Katrina - posted on 07/31/2010

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Having the wrong size bra can cause milk supply issues. My SIL was noticing she was pumping less and less. One of her bras broke so she was wearing her sleeping bra until she could run out to get new ones in a couple days. She almost instantly began pumping tons more! When she went for new bras she was measured and she needed a bigger cup size. Her supply is back to where it was. Far too many ladies wear the wrong size bra and don't even know it.

Wendy - posted on 07/30/2010

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when questioning milk supply keep in mind a few things. Newborns will nurse as often as every 20 min - 2 hours.
A newborns stomach is the size of a shooter marble at birth.On day 3 it has grown to the size of a ping pong ball. On day 10 it is usually the size of an extra large chicken egg. An adult should have the stomach the size of a softball.
It does not take much to fill up a baby when they are first born. There are many herbal remedies to increase milk supply. Research has also shown just holding your baby increases the production of oxytocin that increases the production of milk in mom.

Wendy - posted on 07/30/2010

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In regards to drinking milk while breastfeeding and osteoperosis. Current research has shown that the longer you breastfeed the less likely you are to have osteoperosis as well as breast cancer later in life. The research shows that after a mom is done breastfeeding the calcium is returned to the bone mass, and then some. So breastfeeding actually increases the bone density. It also reduces the risk of breast cancer for your baby.

Camille - posted on 07/29/2010

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drink lots of water and pump every two hours they also have tea you can drink to help

Maryke - posted on 07/28/2010

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People who's breasfeeding should know, its works on a demand and supply method. The more your baby drinks (demands) the more your body will supply for you child! Drink lots of water / Tea / Weleda Black Thorne with Apple Juice! Try to stay away from caffeine and alchol.

Raquel - posted on 07/27/2010

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Response to Michelle Pangrace:

the reason they say to drink lots of milk is because if you don't drink enough milk while breastfeeding, you will be more prone to have osteoporosis when you are older. This is because your breasts will need to pull calcium from where ever they can find it if you are not maintaining an adequate amount in your system to support your bones and your milk supply.

Harata - posted on 07/27/2010

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eating vitamin b and drinking warm and hot drinks i feel it helps me.. but i drink alot of water to make sure there is fluids. eating healthy and drinking healthy all is good.

Natara - posted on 07/19/2010

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I heard to keep baby feeding frequently as muh as you can,& milk should start increasing.

Rachael - posted on 07/15/2010

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i got it at babies R Us, but I am sure they have it other places as well. I would google it to find where.

[deleted account]

Something that worked for me aside from drinking lots of water and nursing more often was taking marshmallow pills. They are all natural ingredients and do not harm the baby. Now I have a high milk supply.

Jessica - posted on 07/14/2010

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When I was having issues with low milk supply I started pumping once a day at night after my baby was asleep. That extra "feeding" increased my milk supply and it only took up 10 minutes of my day. Also make sure to drink plenty of water and eat healthy. If I haven't eaten very much then I have problems with my milk letting down.

Rachael - posted on 07/14/2010

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when my son was born I was concerned about not having enough milk. Babies R Us sells and herbal tea called Milkies tea. It is a fennel based tea with thistle and other herbs in it as well. About 2 hours after my tea my breasts were extremely full. I was super uncomfortable until my son woke up from his nap.... I was full all day, and the tea tastes great. Not sure if there is science behind it, but it worked for me!

Andrea - posted on 07/13/2010

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I have BF my son exclusively for the first 3 and half months. During the last few weeks I have had to mix the milk w/ formula..I am just not pumping enough !!! I have tried everything..(except fenugreek, which I am looking into now), mothers tea, which i CAN NOT drink ), pumping every 2 hrs, which isn't always possible, I eat oatmeal every morning, I only ... When I nurse him he is very satisfied and seems full. But I am pumping about 2oz and each pumping and he is drinking about 6-7oz at each feeding. HELP!!! I don't know what else to do !!!!

Marie - posted on 07/13/2010

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I've been breastfeeding now for almost 5 months, and my supply fluctuates with my baby's growth spurts. So what I did was nurse him whenever he wanted and after he finished nursing, I would pump right after to drain the rest of the milk that was left in the breasts. That always increased my milk supply. But I was told after about the first 3-4 months, your milk supply becomes stable. So now I pump what he eats, no more no less. Also, hydrate and eat and snacking often helps keep it up.

Stephanie - posted on 07/12/2010

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When my twins were between 3 and 4 months I noticed a decrease in my supply (which I read was common at that age). I started take Fenugreek (herbal pill) and drank some nasty anise tea and it seems to have picked up a bit, but the biggest help was getting back to not feeding them too often. I went back to ever 3 hours and that has really made a difference.

Jen - posted on 07/09/2010

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Yogi Tea Mothers Milk helped me allot with my first child, there is also a Milk Maid Tea by a brand called Eath Mama, Angel Baby.

Somthing else I was suggested by my pediatrician is fenylgreek, which can be taken in pill form. It is an ingrediant that is in Curry. She suggested taking it in the low amount first, and increase as you need to, but you can end up stinking like curry.

Hope this helps! Dont forget to drink a TON of water, eat lots of snacks and enjoy that Skin to Skin contact!!

[deleted account]

Nursing on demand, pumping more often (even if that means getting up in the middle of the night when your little one starts sleeping through the night), and drinking lots of water. You should take your weight and divide it by 2 (that is how many ounces you should drink minimally per day).

Racheal - posted on 07/09/2010

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oh and you have to be hydrated not with soda or alcohol, but water or 100% juice or gatorade.

Racheal - posted on 07/09/2010

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FREQUENT AND UNRESTRICTED. and get rid of that damn pacifire!! (if you have one) plus watch your baby not the clock, if baby just nursed 20 minutes ago and wants it then give him your breast, remember is not just for milk its for comfort and the more suckling the more milk is produced. PLUS..the best thing i can tell you is this than you make your own decision: milk supply is a supply and demand process! empty your breast fully and frequently equals more milk. dont switch after 20 minutes or whatever they tell you to do. offer ONE breast for him to eat on fully, and when finished on that side you can offer the other, if he doesn't eat on the other side completly just start with that side next, or if your supply is really low pump that side out till its empty then again start on that side...so on and so forth!..

GOOD LUCK

Nicole - posted on 07/09/2010

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Feed as often as the baby wants it.... Also I have learned to drink ALOT of water... These are 2 things that I have learned and I breastfeed my son til 12 months and I plan on doing the same with my daughter!

Natasha - posted on 07/09/2010

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Try the supplement fenugreek! I started taking it when my son was 6 months because he was demanding more food even starting solids. He's 8 months old now and it's helped me out a lot! There are so many things women can do to increase their supply. I wish so many moms wouldn't give up breastfeeding so quickly!

Anita - posted on 07/07/2010

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Lots of water, mothers milk tea, and reglan from the DR. these worked for me thanks

Anelise - posted on 07/06/2010

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Drink Mother's Milk Tea. Also, if you are pumping....pump more often. Drink plenty of water. Someone told me that beer helps. And they do have non alcoholic beer so it won't hurt the baby.

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