Ecological Breastfeeding

Carrie - posted on 04/21/2009 ( 18 moms have responded )

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I was just curious if anyone else is practicing ecological breastfeeding?

18 Comments

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Callie - posted on 08/19/2012

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I guess we tried. But my cycle starts right away no matter what. With my daughter I nursed every 2 hours around the clock and wore her and my cycle started at 6 weeks. With my son I made it to 9 or 10 weeks.

Stephanie - posted on 08/15/2012

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I am still nursing on demand, and I got my period back 4 months ago. At the time I started my menses, my baby wasn't even eating solid food, she doesn't like the paci and no formula touched her lips. Breastfeeding is not a form of birth control/child spacing for everyone. I didn't know what ecological breastfeeding was until I saw this post, but that's what we do:)

Carrie - posted on 04/24/2009

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Thank you for all your comments! It is good to know I am not alone. My son was planned using the natural family planning method and now I am ecologically breastfeeding my son. I enjoy every moment! But yes, I hear you on it not being a fail-proof birth control. I am doing it for other reasons, but am currently enjoying the non-ovulation part!

Lisa - posted on 04/23/2009

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Quoting Leslie:

well i nursed my babies, and didn't use pacifiers just cause i don't think they do anything. i fed my kids on demand and still got my period 28 days after i gave birth. i would think this means im ovulating.


AF reuturned for me when DD2 was 5 months and we started TTC.  I was still BFing at night and AF was a regular 35 days, but I had to wean completely before I actually fell pregnant, and then I think I wasn't ovulating "normally" much of the time.  My point is that AF doesn't mean you are definately ovulating.  I used ovulation tests to find out for sure.



 



This time I'm not risking it.  I'm BFing on demand, still feed overnight, but I don't want to get pregnant and Murphy's Law says if I assume that BFing will work as well as it did when I wanted to get pregnant then it won't work if I don't want to pregnant LOL

Leslie - posted on 04/23/2009

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hahha i guess when my first was born we were in a small 2 bed room so there was no room for that hahah. and personally i can't have a good sleep when the baby is there i worrie to much unless im sick then i kinda just die hahahah

Itsamystery - posted on 04/23/2009

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We have another bedroom set up... a parents retreat. Plenty of other rooms in the house too!!

Leslie - posted on 04/23/2009

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co sleeping seems like birth control cause it spoils the mood hahaha i dont think it healthy for the reationship..when is it just u time?? just my opinion

Lauren - posted on 04/22/2009

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i am! i think breastfeeding on demand is best and works well for my baby! she does use a pacifier at night sometimes, though (just because i can't put her in her co-sleeper attached to my boob- haha) Dr. Sears (askdrsears.com) has some recommendations for breastfeeding as contraception. He recommends baby-wearing and co-sleeping to help. My favorite thing to do is to put my baby in bed when she wakes up in the middle of the night and let her nurse and we usually both fall asleep together like this- i love it!

Erika - posted on 04/22/2009

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Sounds like ecological breastfeeding is the same as or similar to the Lactational Amenorrhea Method (LAM) of contraception. According to the La Leche League LAM is 98% effective in the first six months after birth. According to the La Leche League you are unlikely to become pregnant if you can answer no to all three of the following questions:
1. Have your menses returned?
2. Are you supplementing regularly or allowing long peroids without breastfeeding, either during the day (more than 4 hours) or at night (more than 6 hours)?
3 Is your baby more than six months old?

But every Midwife I talked to told me over and over again that breastfeeding is not a method of contraception so if you absolutely don't want to chance getting pregnant use another non hormonal method.

On a side note before I had my baby I used the Standard Daily Method and it was very effective for us. Here is a link to some information http://www.epigee.org/guide/sdm.html. Might be useful when your menses returns and if it is fairly regular.

Itsamystery - posted on 04/22/2009

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I did but didn't mean too, I just believed in nursing on demand and my baby wouldn't take a pacifier. I wanted to have my kids closer in age than ecological breastfeeding allowed, so it didn't work out very well for me in the end!! (I wanted a 2 - 2.5 year age gap rather than a 3 - 3.5 year age gap).

Leslie - posted on 04/22/2009

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well i nursed my babies, and didn't use pacifiers just cause i don't think they do anything. i fed my kids on demand and still got my period 28 days after i gave birth. i would think this means im ovulating.

Emily - posted on 04/22/2009

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I didn't mean to type two posts that said the same thing. I thought I lost the first one but I guess it posted after all.

[deleted account]

It is not really why I do it either. I do it becuase I think it is the right thing to do for my babies! (ok, toddlers too ;))

Emily - posted on 04/22/2009

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About ecological breastfeeding http://www.physiciansforlife.org/content...

I practiced it, though not really on purpose. I just believed in breastfeeding on demand and bedsharing. I actually wanted to get pregnant sooner than I did but didn't get my period back until Dylan was 2 years old. because I have regular cycles and clear ovulation symptoms I do use Natural Family Planning as birth control. I have gotten pregnant twice in the ten years I have been doing so. Both totally planned and on first try (unfortunately for my husband who enjoys trying more than I do!) but don't recommend it for everyone- nor do I recommend ecological breastfeeding for the express purpose of birth control. I just know way too many people who have gotten pregnant while exclusively breastfeeding and co sleeping some of whose babies were less than 2 months old when they got pregnant again!

Emily - posted on 04/22/2009

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From http://www.bygpub.com/natural/breastfeed...
Ecological Breastfeeding
Through ecological breastfeeding, women can naturally space their babies without using any birth control. This involves frequent nursings by the baby (breastfeeding on demand). This is achieved through mother/baby togetherness, having breastmilk be the primary food for baby (not supplementing with formula), feeding frequently at night (hormomes that encourage ovulation are released more at night), and not using pacifiers which may reduce the baby's need to suck at the breast. It is the frequency of the baby sucking which allows this to happen. When the baby sucks at the breast, it signals the mother to release hormones which supress ovulation.
This site has further information about it http://www.physiciansforlife.org/content...
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I practiced ecological breastfeeding though I didn't really do it on purpose! I actually wanted to get pregnant sooner than I did but didn't' get my period back til my oldest was two years old. I have used Natural Family Planning for ten years and have gotten pregnant twice. Both times totally planned. My cycles are very regular and ovulation symptoms difficult to miss. i don't recommend it (or ecological breastfeeding) for everyone. I have several friends who got pregnant while breastfeeding during the first 3 months most of whom nursed on demand and co slept. It doesn't work for everyone.

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