How Can I Produce More Breast Milk??

Updated on November 05, 2010
S.R. asks from Westminster, CA
18 answers

My son is almost 6 weeks old and I am afraid that i am not making enough milk for him. he seems to be constantly hungry and when i pump i am only making about two ounces. I have recently (yesterday) tried Milk More Plus but have yet to see any results. Has any one taken it and if so how long did it take to work?!

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N.P.

answers from Santa Barbara on

Hi S.
I just completed my postpartum doula training and this is a not uncommon issue we come across. One of our recommendations is to go to bed with baby for at least 24 hours and let baby nurse as much as (s)he wants during that time. Also try to get lots of skin-on-skin contact with baby during that time. Your body should soon start responding as nature intended! I also recommend looking into taking Fenugreek tablets and upping your carb intake (oatmeal for breakfast etc).
A final point to consider would be baby's latch and how long (s)he is nursing for and whether (s)he is getting the fattier hindmilk. A lactation advisor or postpartum doula can help you with this.
Good luck!
N.
www.earlyattachment.com

1 mom found this helpful
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J.S.

answers from Reno on

Some women nurse to 2 or 3 years old and are never able to pump more than an ounce of milk. Don't worry about what you pump. Also I remember the growth spurts. They're so frequent at those early ages that I just sat on the sofa with no shirt for the 48 hours that it took her to get through it and thus stimulate my milk supply. Find a local support group or have a lactation consultant do before and after nursing weight checks, it'll give you confidence to know he's doing fine and getting enough. Oatmeal and mother's milk tea can help too.

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B.E.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi S.! Congratulations on your new baby boy! I increased my milk supply by pumping for five to ten minutes after my son fed. Nothing was coming out but the stimulation creates more demand and eventually it will continue to come after he's full! I would only do this for two weeks max. The issue with the increased supply is that it can be a blessing or a curse because if he only wants four ounces and you have trained your body to make ten, you'll be engorged and in pain until you stop the pumping trick and your body evens out. I like to believe that if you are breastfeeding exclusively and give him both sides each feeding, you will have as much milk as he needs. Good luck!

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A.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

I had a similar situation. Your milk is supply and demand! The more you feed the more you make. To get my milk supply up i would feed my daughter and then pump an hour after. I did this for 4 days and each day my milk increased! Good Luck and don't give up. You can always ask your Dr about it or try La Leche League. They help alot!!

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J.L.

answers from Los Angeles on

The more you nurse the more milk you will make. I know my son did the same thing at 6 wks. It's when they go through a growth spurt and want to eat all the time. It usually takes about 1-2 to days for your body to respond to make more milk by nursing. A six wk old only needs about 2 ounces at a sitting. Your body typically makes what your baby needs. If you still feel there is a problem then I would call your dr or better yet a lactation consultant. http://www.llli.org/
That is a link for the leche league they have all sorts of info. I know breastfeeding can be challenging at times, so best of luck.

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C.C.

answers from Los Angeles on

That pump doesn't get out all your milk... just drink drink drink water!!!

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J.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

My daughter would eat for 12 hours straight on several occasions. This was around 2 weeks, 3 weeks, between 5 and 6 weeks, then again at 3 months. All of these intense feedings correlated with growth spurts. She usually ate (on a regular day) anywhere from 30-45 minutes, and then was hungry again 2 hours later! I could barely pump 2 ounces myself. I learned 2 things from my OB at my 6 week check up. 1st- tiny tummies = tiny, frequent amounts. 2nd- your baby gets more out of you then your pump can. Your milk, in general, follows your baby cues. So yes, you are probably making enough. Hang in there and try not to be jealous of the moms whose babies eat every 4 hours :)

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M.B.

answers from Reno on

I found that my daughter was not latching on correctly and while she was sucking, she wasn't sucking efficiently. A lactation consultant at our local hospital weighed my daughter before she nursed and after to get an accurate amount on what she was actually taking in.
I drank the Mama's milk teas and I also would have a beer once a week (a good ale) and I swear my milk went crazy. I leaked for several months after a while (which was annoying but at least I knew she was getting enough)
The lactation consultant also recommended Fenugreek but I never had to use it. :)
Oh I should add, even when my milk went wild, there were periods where it seemed like she would nurse every hour during the day and several times at night. It didn't last long though and the doctor told us she was likely going through a growth spurt because her weight gain was perfect.

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J.B.

answers from Las Vegas on

The baby is the best pump. Just because you only pump 2 ounces doesn't mean that that is what the baby is getting. Breast fed babies eat more often then formula fed babies. Breast milk goes through quicker than formula. Your baby is growing quickly and needs a lot of nutrition. Your body should make as much milk as baby demands. Breast milk is supply and demand. If you don't think you are making enough milk then you can pump after baby eats and this will stimulate your breasts to make more milk. Is the pediatrician okay with babies growth. feel free to contact with further questions.

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R.P.

answers from Los Angeles on

My daughter ate every hour for 1/2 and hour for a couple of months. I got nothing done, but she is a healthy happy 11 month old now. You are making enough milk. Your baby is getting enough.
My mom talked about how she could never pump. Then we took a trip and left the baby with a sitter, and I pumped. It took me about 40 to drain the breast. This was after I had missed at least two feedings, and I only got about 4 oz. My mother said, 'No wonder the pump didn't work'. The thing to remember is that it takes longer to pump than it takes baby to eat, they are just more effecient.
hope this helps.
R

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S.W.

answers from Visalia on

i breast fed and pumped when i went back to work. i was told to think about my baby as i pumped. having a picture to look at is supposed to help. also make sure that you are still eating well and getting enough liquids. i never seemed to pump enough to keep her supplied when i was gone but it kept my milk going for when i was with her. i nursed her until she was about 10 moonths and used formula when needed. good luck!

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L.F.

answers from Los Angeles on

Dear S.,
Greetings!!!

CONGRATULATIONS ON YOUR NEW ARRIVAL! : )))

My son, Dylan Orion, was a marathon nurser for many months, and I specifically recall him nursing even more when he was about 6 to 7 weeks old. Our pediatrician explained that around the 6th week babies go through an amazing growth spurt, and I knew Dylan was definitely getting enough of my nutritious milk because he was constantly going through many diapers. But, I also know that nursing to Dylan can mean a trillion things....from hunger to love to comfort to you name it! I love breastfeeding my LUSCIOUSLY VORACIOUS MILKY MONSTER! It's the most amazing communication I've ever experienced with another being before. And, I am so grateful to the LA LECHE LEAGUE for all the help they've given me! If you haven't checked them out already...here's their website for California: http://www.llli.org/Web/California.html

There are many things that will naturally help enhance your milk: Brewer's Yeast, Fenugreek, Oatmeal, Hops (as you'd find in beer but can buy separately in a health food store) and of course, drinking lots of water is essential!!! I also love Traditional Medicinals ORGANIC MOTHER'S MILK Tea.

I highly recommend buying and reading "Let's Have Healthy Children" and "Let's Eat Right To Keep Fit" by Adelle Davis. You can find both books on AMAZON.

Adelle created this AMAZING drink for nursing MAMAS called "PEP UP" which I drink every single day, and I love how it's enhanced my milk. Here's a version of the recipe that my friend Alice sent me:

Combine in blender or mix with electric mixer:

2 cups fresh whole milk (I prefer ORGANIC PASTURES RAW MILK)
1/2 cup NON-INSTANT powdered skim milk (I've been substituting instant goat milk powder)
1 tablespoon brewers yeast (LEWIS LABS brand, non-GMO), gradually increased to 1/4 or 1/2 cup
1 teaspoon real vanilla
1 tablespoon good quality organic oil (cod liver oil or flax seed oil or another good vegetable oil mix...must be organic and raw, if possible)
1 or 2 raw ORGANIC eggs (as desired...there is NO bad taste to raw eggs in a blender mix...adds excellent protein.) If you are queasy about raw eggs, omit.
1/2 cup organic fruit or juice

This recipe also includes Calcium and Magnesium. But the best way to obtain the two is though a product called Cal Mag (which I also drink every night before I go to sleep). Peter Gillham's brand is my favorite!

PEP UP is the secret to high quality mother's milk in quantity. The baby, getting the B vitamins in the brewer's yeast will be much happier and satisfied.

Hope this helps! Please free to call me anytime: (323) 906~2784 or e~mail me at [email protected]____.com (Mama to 21 week old Dylan Orion) : )))

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T.G.

answers from Los Angeles on

Don't worry I am sure you are fine. I went through the exact same thing with my son always wondering if he was eating enough etc. He was born early so this was a big concern. He is now 5 months and very healthy. Also breastfeeding is alot easier. What really helped to ease my fears was I joined a weekly lacation/breastfeeding classs. I went once I week (there were always a lot of moms there). We would basically breastfeed our babies in a group and the consultant would walk around and make sure the babies were latched on correctly and answer all of our concerns. We also weighed our babies at the beginning and after the feeding to make sure they were getting enough.

I still take More Milk Plus and also drink Organic Mother's Milk (both of which I get at whole foods). They seem to help. Also try oatmeal in the morning. I also drink TONS of water. I usually keep a water bottle near me when I am pumping. Staying hydrated is key.

Don't worry about what you are pumping as this is not an indication of what baby is getting. Babies are more proficient at feeding at the breast

Good luck!

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M.O.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi S.,

I've nursed five children, so I know a little about breast-feeding! To produce milk: more fluids, REST, eating really really well, and probably more than you think. Don't worry, you shouldn't gain weight, you'll "nurse it off" and you'll be fine. Your job right now is to provide the best nourishment in the world for your precious baby, there is nothing on earth that can compare with breast milk, it cannot be duplicated, so just try to rest and let everyone else do as much of your work as possible (I know this is hard with a three year old too!) but every time you sit down to nurse, get a big glass of water or juice and try not to drink much soda (it is a diuretic and robs your body and bones), and just relax and feed your baby. Trust me, you won't be sorry, it is the best thing you'll ever do! Oh, and the other most important thing is to nurse OFTEN and as long as you can on each side. As you nurse longer, the baby gets the important "hind" milk (the "end" milk), which has the most nutrition. It is the best for him and you and will stimulate more milk production. At his young age, I would not wait a full four hours between nursings.
Good luck and write with any more questions.
Marti O. PS--pumping just does not simulate nursing. It helps, but it just doesn't stimulate milk production like really nursing your baby does. Trust me, he will nurse more and you'll get more milk if you do the above suggestions.

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R.S.

answers from Honolulu on

I use More Milk Plus myelf and give it to most of my Doula clients and all my friends for a baby gift. Here's the scoop.

For the More milk Plus you need to take:
4 drops per 10 pounds of the mothers weight.
IE: A 100 pound mom takes 40 drops with 8 ounces of water.
It tastes best in Cranberry juice.

Take the drops every HOUR or two for the first 24 to 72 hours.
(Not while you are sleeping, just during the waking hours)

It will work if you take it right, I call the stuff Viagra for Boobs. It usually takes 2 to 3 days to notice the increase. If it doesn't work you might need to drink more water. At least two 1.5 ltr water bottles a day. If you still don't notice a difference, try the Special Blend More Milk with the Goat's rue. It will do the trick!

Also, you will never pump as much as your baby eats. I was nursing 3 children at the same time and I could only pump 2 ounces with the awesome $300 breast pump. 6-9 weeks is your first major growth spurt. Hang in there!!

You can call me anytime at The Kona Coast La Leche League ###-###-#### Good Luck! R.

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L.H.

answers from Los Angeles on

I think that is a common fear... I remember worrying about it too and my daughter is 19 months now and healthy!

My lactation consultant suggested an herb called Fenugreek (I took 3, 3 times per day) that's available at GNC and probably health food stores.

Also, keep pumping! Pump after you nurse even if you don't get a lot it will still stimulate things! I seemed to get more milk when I'd tell myself "I'm pumping this for my baby, I'm pumping this for my baby" or looked at pictures.

Lastly, don't be shy - call your hospital's lactaction office or even your pediatrician could refer you. I have a GREAT consultant that works near Long Beach Memorial (not too far from you!) that was a life saver!! Send me a message if you want the info.

Good luck, mama! I am sure you are doing just fine!!

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M.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

all this is great information. everyone has made a wonderful and important point.

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