Any ideas on how to increase milk supply?

Sarah - posted on 12/11/2009 ( 23 moms have responded )

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I have a two month old baby girl. She was born with a cleft pallet and was in the NICU for the first month and a half. Now that she's home I'm having trouble keeping my milk supply up. I pump every 3 hours for 30 minutes each time sometimes more. I take a fenugreek pill twice a day and drink plenty of fluids. The only other thing I've heard of that's supposed to help is more sleep, but I don't know how that is possible when you have a new baby and you have to pump every 3 hours. haha Any other ideas?

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Sheila - posted on 01/14/2010

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get an electric pump that is dual sided and express untill you dont get any milk for like 5 minutes of pumping dont drink anything caffinated i switched to decaff everything and my milk went from one side being completely dry to it being the more dominant producer my son is almost three months and if you lay your baby on your bare chest belly to belly in a calm and quiet room with just the two of you nothing else on your mind that may help it helped me and my son has already more than doubled his birth weight... good luck and let me know if it works

Kelly - posted on 01/14/2010

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ok from what i understand just pumping will make ur milk go away after a while mine did.. u need to get ur baby if possible to latch on and drink from your breast her self.. the body needs to know its a baby on ur boob not just a pump. ur body knows a difference and will stop producen milk if your baby is never on ur boob.. i learned that the hard way.. so i suggest actually going back to the hospital and they have trained professionals to help u with getting ur baby to latch on they helped me..once ur baby latches on ur body will kick in and the milk with start comen in a lot better pumpin will only make ur milk go away after a while

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Angela - posted on 02/03/2012

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I've been using Breastea from breastea.com and my milk supply has increased quite a bit.

Tiffany - posted on 03/26/2010

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I never had a problem with that, but my grandma told me when she breastfed she would take one gulp of beer and it would help her milk when it started diminishing. Hope it helps :)

Crystal - posted on 03/03/2010

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if u have to give her formula while you pump its okay.. sorry
good luck and god bless you both!

Crystal - posted on 03/03/2010

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I had problems producing milk also... my grandmother (who doesnt drink) told me to drink 3oz of a beer (i think a malt will even work) because she said somethin in it will help me produce more milk. i dint drink beer at all but i drank the 3 oz while my baby was napping pumped twice and threw out the milk and then with the third pump i gave her the millk. my doctor had agreed to what i was doing also as long as i pumpoed twice before and threw the milk like i said!

Emily - posted on 02/27/2010

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There is an herb, called Fenugreek which is also a culinary herb in many cultures. I've heard it helps to increase milk supply (and makes you smell like maple syrup!), but probably not as reliably as increasing the time and frequency that you pump milk. Of course this all needs to go hand-in-hand with good nutrition. Good luck, and I realize this is a month or two too late....

Jaclyn - posted on 02/12/2010

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I'm not sure if your still having a problem or hot but my doctor told me to drink a beer. Also to rub around your breast.

Denise - posted on 01/22/2010

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I HAD the same problem. A few things you could try.



If you think you need a supply and fast try taking Brewer’s Yeast.

You can buy this at any store. Better alternative than drinking beer.



Fenugreek is something else you can try but I never found it.



Make sure you drink plenty of water though. It always makes a diffrence.



Hope this helps.

Sheila - posted on 01/22/2010

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pumping at night is also helpful to increase your supply make sure you eat enough and sleep enough cause if you dont your body will pull the fat out of your milk to keep your body going

Nicole - posted on 01/22/2010

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i was told that you make a majority of milk at night and if you needed to boost your supply then you should express between feeds through the night and it's also a matter of your body will make as much as she needs and our body learns that through the amount of sucking i'm not sure however if the pump has quite the same effect as i planned to only express right from the start and i was warned it would be very difficult to get the amount right if i didn't allow him to attach and demand feed for at least a couple of weeks. your doin great keep it up. just keep on trying and you will get there.. if any ov that made no sense please don't hesitate to question me bak.

Jessi - posted on 12/29/2009

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when I was breastfeeding I had to eat constantly to keep my milk up. you could try that!

Rebecca - posted on 12/28/2009

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Take the pressure off of yourself...don't feel guilty! You do the best you can and go with your heart as to when enough is enough. Just be the best mommy you can be and if that means supplementing with formula or going altogether with formula or continuing with what you are doing...just listen to your own heart and not everyone elses. You'll be a better mother when you take the pressure off of yourself...

Rose - posted on 12/27/2009

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Hi Sarah, my name is Rose, all the way from New Zealand. I had a long stressful birth and had a really hard time for the first 2 weeks, with certain painful family events, lack of sleep and a husband who had to go back to work and a mother in law that would not leave. Every time I went to feed him he would suck suck then be a sleep. I pumped so much I ended up bruising my self took fennel greek and doperidone.
I to lost my milk and had to use formula. Koby is now 6 months and I express up to 600mls and top up with formula. There are 4 other mums in my coffee group that have had the same problem, be it lack of support or a long birth, you just don't get the support in feeding and get to stay in hospital for long, one night then your out. You could always do that but either way you need to do whats best for you and your baby. People put way to much pressure on mums to BF, you've done your best and I did mine. I still feel guilt that he's not completely BF, but hes happy healthy and we love him. Besides I'm only 5 foot 1 and weigh 99 pounds and had a 9 pound 6 baby. Good luck and my heart goes out to you on this one.

Sarah - posted on 12/27/2009

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thank you every one. I think a lot of the reason why I'm not getting much milk is my daughter can not suck on my breast itself because of her cleft pallet she has to use a special bottle and a tube in her side to feed. I was trying to express enough milk that I wouldn't have to give her formula. Pumping is not as good as a baby sucking and I think I'm just not ever going to be able to get enough milk because of that. I appreciate all the comments though! :-)

Lise - posted on 12/26/2009

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I would say no to formula IF you want to bf. The more formula you give, the less milk your body produces. Oatmeal REALLY helps increase supply - I started eating it every day, and it soon helped. Nursing as frequently as you can makes the biggest difference. Breast milk works on supply and demand - the more milk your body THINKS you need to produce, the more milk it WILL produce. You can pump after feeding or between feedings to increase your supply. I started pumping one boob while she ate on the other, and now every time she eats from one I feel letdown on the other - so that worked! :)

I felt like I wasn't producing enough milk for about 2 weeks, and started drinking water and eating oatmeal. Also let the baby nurse on demand (still do). Milk came in strong around 3 weeks. You CAN do it if you want - just takes some persistence and a willingness to give yourself up to your baby's needs.

There are also herbal things you can take - mother's milk, fengrueek (spelling?)... Check out kellymom.com - they have GREAT advice for increasing your supply. Also keep in mind when babies have growth spurts - my baby's 6 week spurt caught me by surprise!

Good luck!

Catherine - posted on 12/24/2009

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Sarah, I found that if I expressed for 20-30 minutes and then put my daughter to the breast for 20 minutes that my milk supply slowly (very slowly) increased. I also had more milk in the morning and less in the evening, so would express more often and produce more amounts in the morning and use this in a bottel during the evening.

supposedly, snacking on protein rich foods (eggs, cheese etc) can help with the quality of your milk.

But my health visitor said the best thing to help increase milk supply was baby sucking at the breast and I have to say I found this to be true, though we have always had to top up with forumla milk, I'm glad I persevered with breast feeding as my 81/2 month old still has one breast feed each day!

Ginger - posted on 12/22/2009

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giving formula is not a bad idea i had to do that but keep pumping you milk is the BEST thing that baby can get dont give up!!!! if you do want to go the formula route mix it with your milk. your milk helps break down the formula and its easier on your little one. dont give up though! up if you feel you cant anymore dont get down on yourself it sounds like you are trying really hard. but I agree with the woman that said you can sleep with your baby! that got me through many nights. just lay on your side and feed her. it will help your body produce more milk with her nursing on you instead of a pump good luck toots!!!

Christina - posted on 12/15/2009

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You can sleep with a new baby. Don't have to pump while sleeping...I found that the bad kind of stress (frustration) can put a mental block on the source of the stress (baby=milk, man=no sex drive). So you need to find some time for yourself and de-stress, whether it's reading a juicy novel for 30-minutes or giving the babe to someone while you take a walk. Don't think about the baby or anything that's stressful. Try yoga if you want. It's kind of like finding something when you were looking for something else. You're focusing too much. Anyways, that's what I figured out when it happened to me.

Reema - posted on 12/15/2009

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hey god bless you and bless your daughter,I heard about somthing and tried it and it worked, eat eggs on breakfast and put on it olive oil,
and tell me if it works.
good luck

Sarah - posted on 12/14/2009

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thanks for the ideas, I think I'm just going to have to start supplementing with formula. :-/

Faten - posted on 12/14/2009

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God be with you...As for me, i tried many things and few helped me, like lentils, red beans, oat, parsley....

Bridget - posted on 12/13/2009

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gosh, it's been a few years, but i think tea was supposed to help with milk supply...also just a tad of beer apparently but i didn't try that... but i tried green tea, that worked with my daughter, i had plenty of supply for my son, but hey, good luck.

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