How I Increased My Breastmilk Supply

You can read about my struggles to breastfeed if you like or the reasons I chose to breastfeed, but this post right here is about how I addressed diminishing supply while exclusive pumping.

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I made sure I did everything I could to get rest. Nothing diminishes your milk supply as effectively as fatigue. Ask for help if you can. Nap with Baby! Do whatever you can to get rest.

Pray for peace or at least reduce stress. Stress is another breastmilk killer. Proper rest will also help with this.

Eat well. You have to eat the calories. I know a lot of us want to get rid of pregnancy weight as quickly as possible, but as you lose weight, so might your baby if you cannot produce milk. I noticed that for me, I had to eat protein or my supply would wane. (Nonalcoholic beer and oatmeal also worked for me.)

Drink well. You need fluids to produce a fluid. Drink water, juice, milk, whatever healthy drink you can get your hands on because you won't dehydrate, you just won't make milk.

Finally, empty your breasts frequently. If you are lucky enough to have a baby that nurses well, nurse more frequently. If you are pumping, pump more frequently. If you cannot (it interfered with my rest and caused me stress), power pump. To do this, pump about 15 minutes, wait 10, pump 10 more, wait 10, pump 10 more. Try it once or twice a day.

Finally, put the lanolin on before you pump or nurse just as a precaution. If you notice from my story, I never mentioned raw or sore nipples. I never had that problem. I bought one big tube and still have some left and I nursed for a year and a half!

P.S. If nursing proves too stressful or you are too tired or if you are unable to enjoy your baby because of it, get formula. It is ok. Really, it is more important that you feel healthy and your baby feels love. There are plenty of healthy and well-adjusted bottle-fed babies in this world! Just love your baby.

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