March 24, 2008,
B.B. asks from Waynesville, MO on March 15, 2008
Can It Come Back
I was breastfeeding my son up until I had to go out of town for a few months. I expressed milk for a while when I arrived at my destination. Now there doesnt seem to be any milk left. But sometimes I get sharp pains in my breast. Also if I squeeze my nipple a clear liquid comes out and then a real rich milkly looking thicker liquid comes out breifly. My question is after one stop breastfeeding for a while can your milk supply come back or is it gone forever? (until you have another baby)
2 moms found this helpful
T.C. answers from Topeka on March 17, 2008
Having breast fed my daughter for 4 months staight and then suplementing with formula til she was 7 months I can say it takes some time to completely stop producing milk. If you still want to breast feed you son I'd do what some of the others have recommending and get him latched on quickly. This will work so much better than a pump, because your body does know the difference because of how emotional the connection is between you and your son. Hopefully you can build your supply back up and keep breast feeding. Good luck!
M.W. answers from Kansas City on March 16, 2008
absolutely it can come back! There is no evidence to suggest the milk let-down reflex is gone. You just need re-stimulation. I suggest skin to skin contact as much as possible with your baby, and your man. Also, both can be sources of stimulation. Best of luck.
L.G. answers from St. Louis on March 16, 2008
My milk supply decreased significantly after going back to work and a string of illnesses in our family. I managed to get it back by nursing, pumping more and trying several of the things already mentioned. Here are 2 to add to your list - Japenese mochi sweet rice - recommended by my acupuncturist (I found rice cakes at Whole Foods that contain the Mochi) and root beer. I do see a difference with these. Oatmeal, lots of water and rest also seem to make a difference. Good luck!!
A.F. answers from Springfield on March 17, 2008
I have never had to deal with this, BUT, I have heard many stories where even an adoptive Moms, with some work, can start breastfeeding. If you want to continue I would put him to the breast the more often the better. I believe your body can kick it back in. GO FOR IT!! I mean really what do you have to lose by trying?
A little story I heard from a nurse: Mom has preemie baby, starts bringing SEVERAL ounces a day to the NICU, The nurses know that Moms don't usually bring such an excessive amount especially when the baby is not at the breast. So, they asked her. Her husband was "standing in" for the babies. I know this may not seem natural but, I say whatever works. Those babies needed it and she didn't have to go anywhere else or buy anything to help her out.
Not to say that you haven't gotten great advice, just a little something to "chew" on. I wish you the best!
J.O. answers from St. Louis on March 15, 2008
I too expierenced this and your body only supplies what is used. If the baby goes through a growth spurt, I found I produced more milk. If I was gone,. my body produced less. The key to being gone if you want to continue breastfeeding is to pump while your away to keep the production of milk happening. My guess is that if your still seeing discharge from the breast, your still able to produce. The pain could possibly be the drying up era. I would nurse as much as possible or pump in between to get that production up and going again before your completly dried up. Best wishes!
M.G. answers from St. Louis on March 18, 2008
yes, let the baby nurse frequently and the milk will come back. Just as when you first started nursing, the more you pump or nurse the more milk you will have. Just make sure you drink plenty of liquids.
R.D. answers from Kansas City on March 24, 2008
I firmly believe it can and will! I have read many of the responses, and believe everyone is right on the money! I do wish to add this: I drink Woman's Nursing Mom organic tea by a company called Yogi Tea. It has Nettle Leaf, Fennel Seed, and Fenugreek Seed in it, all things that are supposed to be good for lactation. Let me tell you, it works great! It tastes good, and drinking it regularly helps keep liquids in you, which also helps production.
A.L. answers from Kansas City on March 17, 2008
I'm not an expert by any means, but I am currently going through a somewhat similar situation. I had to stop nursing for a week - not months, like you - because of some medication I was on. The best thing for me to re-establish my milk supply was to take herbs: Fenugreek and Blessed Thistle. They were recommended to me by my lactation consultant, and have worked wonders. The only small disadvantage is that they can also be used as a natural laxative, so there's that to deal with - but totally worth it to be able to feed my little boy. (You can go to kellymom.com for more information about dosage and side effects.) I'm still not back to "full capacity," but after a week, I'm definitely getting there. Good luck! :)
A.S. answers from Kansas City on March 15, 2008
It is possible to get your milk back. Google "relactation" and you'll get a few hits. Check out this link on http://www.kellymom.com (which is a fantastic breastfeeding reference): http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/relactation.html.
It sounds like you still have milk, but maybe not that much. I'd try nursing instead of pumping. You shouldn't gage how much milk you have by how much you can pump, it's misleading. Babies are much more efficient at getting milk than machines. Nurse and nurse often, pump if you miss a nursing session. Drink plenty of water. You might also want to try eating oatmeal every morning, it helps produce milk.
Some people will recommend fenugreek. I'm very leery of herbs, you should do your research before trying it and talk to your doctor. You can't take it if you have certain health issues, risks, or take certain medications. Herbs aren't regulated by the FDA, so you never know what you're going to get. Here's a link on fenugreek: http://www.kellymom.com/herbal/milksupply/fenugreek.html
You can also get a prescription from your doctor to help with your milk supply.
You might also want to check out the Le Leche League: http://www.llli.org/WebUS.html. Contacting a lactation consultant would also be a good idea. If you don't already have one, your doctor can probably recommend one, or the hospital where you delivered probably has one on site.
Hope this helps. Good luck!!
M.T. answers from Kansas City on March 16, 2008
You need to drink lots of fluid, stimulate your letdown reflex more frequently either by nursing or pumping (you might even have to do that 6-8 times a day) and try fenugreek. It is an herbal supplement that helps increase breastmilk supply. But you have to take about 9 capsules a day. I was recommended that by several lactation consultants. By the way, it will make your breastmilk smell like maple syrup! You should also contact your local la leche league or lactation consultant. You can usually find these people by your hospital.
A.S. answers from Topeka on March 16, 2008
I agree with everyone, but wanted to add some info about the Leche League they were talking about. There is one that meets in Wamego the 2nd Monday of every month at 7:00 pm and held in the nursery of the United Methodist church at 600 Lincoln St in Wamego. Enter through the west door of hte Fellowship hall on Lincoln and proceed left toward the nursery, 2nd door on the right.
Here are some ladies you can call directly any time.
S.W. answers from St. Louis on March 16, 2008
I just met a woman at my La Leche League group who had to stop for 2 weeks due to a surgery. She did start again, and has been going strong for another 10 months! I'm not sure what the process was, but it certainly worked. You might try the La Leche League website, and then possibly find a group and some support. She said it was all very helpful for her.
M.N. answers from St. Louis on March 16, 2008
B., You have received great advice:
a)contact your local LaLeche group.
b)Natural Herbal supplements boost your supply--Milk thistle is one as well.
c) this one is strange, but Natural Yeast as in Beer, yes Beer (I could not do the beer, but you can find natural yeast at a health food store)
d) Constant skin on skin, letting your baby sleep on your chest--I like what one mom said, have your husband help stimulate your glands.
e) Pumping machine--the most boring, but helps in between the feedings to increase and motivate your production.
A Positive note, one could actually keep "leaking" for up to two years after stop nursing. Being around another mom that is lactating will increase your supply as well. Just like another mom said, plenty of non-nursing moms have become "adoptive-nursers" by stimulating a natural process in their bodies given to women by God.
God Speed. M. N.
L.K. answers from Springfield on March 16, 2008
My mother-in-law breastfed her adopted baby. She was 49 or 50 and had had her uterus and ovaries removed. If she could get the milk flowing you can too!
S.D. answers from Topeka on March 16, 2008
Latch baby on whenever you can for 10-15 min on each breast the sucking will stimulate breast milk supply also to increase your milk supply eat Oatmeal it can be cookies oatmeal cream pies that filled my breast up till I was engorged,also there's mother's milk tea and several options you can contact your local breastfeeding clinic also in the hospital where baby was born and thay have several more options for you can call and make an appt for you and baby to seen
T.Z. answers from Topeka on March 16, 2008
The amount of milk you produce is directly related to how much stimulation your nipples/breasts receive. If you go back to expressing or nursing regularly your breasts will likely begin producing more milk again. It may be difficult at first, but the pay off of once again providing your milk for your little one may be well worth the effort. La Leche League has a wealth of information on this. I would contact them or visit their website at llli.org