27 answers

Can You Get Pregnant While Breastfeeding?

I heard that you cannot get pregnant while breastfeeding. Is this true? Has anyone gotten pregnant while still breastfeeding their infant?

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Featured Answers

YES! I did it twice. Some women don't have normal cycles while breastfeeding, so many believe you can't get pg while feeding. After my first son was weaned I was getting ready to go ona diet, since I was not the type to cycle was breastfeeding i took a pg test before dieting. It was positive.

Everything that I have heard is YES!!! Be very carful if this is something you do not want. I breastfeed exclusivly for 25 months and got my period back after only 3 months.
N..

Add me to the list of those that it has happened to! My oldest children are both 7 and they are NOT twins. lol I most definitely did get pregnant while breastfeeding my oldest. I was under the impression that it couldn't happen either...so not true! I am thrilled that it did though. :)

More Answers

Breastfeeding as birth control is known as the Lactation Amenorrhea Method (LAM), and was first set down on paper at the close of a meeting of lactation experts in Bellagio, Italy, in 1988. Referred to as the Bellagio Consensus, the report states, "A mother who is fully or nearly fully breastfeeding her infant and who remains amenorrheic [nonmenstruating] will have more than 98 percent protection from pregnancy in the first six months postpartum."(8)

Although the phrase "fully or nearly fully breastfeeding" remained undefined, the statement was based primarily on studies of breastfeeding women in Western cultures. And by Western standards, "fully breastfeeding" has been generally understood as breastfeeding on demand--implying an average of 8 to 12 feedings every 24 hours for the first month or two of life, gradually dropping off to 6 to 10 feedings. Also by Western standards, one or more night feedings is customary until about six months of age, and often much later.

The phrase "nearly fully breastfeeding" would similarly remain open to interpretation were it not for subsequent studies investigating the effects of supplementation on the pregnancy rates of breastfeeding women. These studies, including one that explored the introduction of solids at an average age of five months, reveal that supplementation, even on a daily basis, does not substantially reduce the contraceptive effectiveness of breastfeeding. In fact, over the first six months postpartum, supplementation is associated with a failure rate of only about 3 percent. The reason for such a low failure rate is twofold. First, although women who give supplementary bottles or solids are more likely to menstruate during the first six months postpartum, LAM requires that they begin using another method of contraception immediately after their first period. In addition, many women remain amenorrheic for several months after introducing solids.(9)

http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0838/is_n72/ai_155...

2 moms found this helpful

Everything that I have heard is YES!!! Be very carful if this is something you do not want. I breastfeed exclusivly for 25 months and got my period back after only 3 months.
N..

Yes Yes Yes You can get pregnant while brestfeeding. I did.

Hi M., Yes, you definately can get pregnant. My son was 8 months old and was still breastfeeding. I had not yet had a period and became pregnant. My son is now 27 months and my daughter is 11 months. A friend of mine also became pregnant while breastfeeding and her son and daughter are 13 months apart. Congratulations on your babies. Take care, T.

I know you have your answer but YES. Your OB should have talked to you about protection at your 6 week postpartum check up. Did they? Mine did but maybe b/c it was my first baby.

Hi M.,

While you are less likely to get pregnant while you are breastfeeding it is still possible. I was breastfeeding my son when I got pregnant with my daughter-my son was 9 months at at the time. I also ran into a woman who was breastfeeding her 9 month old and was 8 months pregnant. So anything is possible. If you don't want to get pregnant again I would take precautions and not just rely on breastfeeding.

YES! I did it twice. Some women don't have normal cycles while breastfeeding, so many believe you can't get pg while feeding. After my first son was weaned I was getting ready to go ona diet, since I was not the type to cycle was breastfeeding i took a pg test before dieting. It was positive.

my kids are 11 and 1/2 months apart and i was breastfeeding when i got pregnant... just be careful!!

YES, you can become pregnant while breastfeeding. Per my OB, if you are nursing 100% of the time then you are as protected as about the pill - so it STILL can happen as abstinence is the only sure fire way not to get preggers. Once you introduce just ONE supplement bottle, it's out the window! I have known quite a few people to become pregnant while breastfeeding. You can take a mini-pill. It is not supposed to hurt milk supply but helps protect you a little more against ovulating.

YES. YOU CAN GET PREGNANT WHILE BREASTFEEDING. It is a myth that you can't. My girlfriend just got pregnant that way and now is having a "surprise" baby. Your doctor will confirm this.

Hi M.,

Yes you can, and I did. My daughter was 7 months old when I got pregnant. I was breastfeeding, so I was taking a low dose birth control pill, and thought I was being careful, but we now have a beautiful 2 year old.

;-) H.

Add me to the list of those that it has happened to! My oldest children are both 7 and they are NOT twins. lol I most definitely did get pregnant while breastfeeding my oldest. I was under the impression that it couldn't happen either...so not true! I am thrilled that it did though. :)

That is completely false. You can get pregnant while breastfeeding. I did, when my daughter was 7mos. old. My doctor told me it's very easy to get pregnant while BF because of your hormone levels. I just had my 3rd child 2/1 and they are now 15 1/2 months apart :-)

I did! I just found out that I am 2 months pregnant and am still breastfeeding my ten month old! I only feed her about 4 times a day so I think my body regulated itself since it wasn't as often as before.

Hello M.:

Yes you can. I have a girlfriend that got pregnant while breast feeding. She thought that it was not possible. But she had a beautiful baby girl.

Dear M.,

My friend was still breastfeeding her child at night. She just found out that she is pregnant. Her dr. said that if she has her period she can still get pregnant. Good Luck!
B.

Hi M.,

I am currently breastfeeding my six month old son and I breastfed my daughter until she was 13 months. When Jessica was ten months old I got pregnant. Now some people will tell you that breastfeeding is a natural form of birth control but it has exceptions. From what I understand it is somewhere in the 90% effectiveness ONLY if you are exclusively breastfeeding AND for the first 6 months. After the baby hits 6 months the effectiveness starts to decline, even if you are exclusively breastfeeding. When my daughter was 10 months old, I became pregnant. Unfortunately I lost that child but it had nothing to do with the breastfeeding. I was surprised because I was breastfeeding, but I was also giving her baby food by then. Personally, my husband and I are going to start using protection now that our son is six months. Hope this helps and congratulations on the new addition!

Yes, you can get pregnant while you are breastfeeding.

Yes yes yes!! My boys are 13 months apart i breastfed for my first exclusively for 4 months...then supplemented do the math!!

YES! I was nursing my 10 month old and got pregnant! 9 months later I had a baby girl. Breastfeeding is not birth control!

Most definately you CAN, and yes, I did become pregnant while breastfeeding and continued to breastfeed while pregnant for about 3 months. It is less likely if you have not yet resumed your cycle, but still possible. The likelihood also depends on how often the baby nurses. I was 15 months post-partum when number 2 was conceived.(You may ovulate before you menstruate). You may want to consider the mini-pill if you are not ready for number 4. ;-)

Yes, yes, yes! I have a girlfriend that got pregnant while nursing. Someone told her that she couldn't get pregnant while nursing, and was she ever suprised.

Yes, it happened to me twice!!

Yes you can get pregnant while breastfeeding. HOWEVER there are certain times during bresatfeeding where it is very unlikely that you will get pregnant.

During the first 6 months, if you're exclusively breastfeeding (no formula, no solids, nothing but breastmilk for your baby) and your period has not returned it's quite unlikely. And if you continue to breastfeed it will frequently supress and delay ovulation for several months beyond the 6 months. Personally, I'm breastfeeding my son who is 10 months old - I still have not yet ovulated, but I chart my fertility to avoid pregnancy.

On average, mothers who breastfeed their children, do not specifically wean, and do not use any other method of birth control will have a baby every 2-3 years.

Hi M.,
I just recently asked my midwife this question....You definitely can get pregnant while breastfeeding. If you have not gotten your period back yet, timing wise-you don't know when the first time you'll be ovulating again. My midwife, Hilary at West Suburban Midwives in Oak Park is a great source of info, and she said yes, you certainly can get preg. while nursing. check their website, you can ask them questions too.

M. -

You absolutely can get pregnant while breastfeeding. Some women may not get a period at all while continuing to breasfeed - but many women do. And because you may not know when your periods will resume - you won't know when you will ovulate - which means if you have intercourse around that time - you can get pregnant. If you haven't seen your OB yet for your 6 week check up - make sure you ask about appropriate forms of birth control - if he doesn't ask you. But if you've already seen the OB - you need to call him up and ask about what your options are - right away! I work in the medical profession - and we've seen many women come in pregnant - thinking that they couldn't get pregnant while breastfeeding - so pls - unless you want another one fairly soon - check out your birth control options quickly!

Good Luck! P.

My friend's sister in law has two beautiful boys, both born within the same year... you CAN get pregnant while breastfeeding!

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