Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Day 16: Low Supply Links {31 Days of Making More Milk}

Day 16! We're halfway there! Thanks for coming back, I've had a lot of fun so far, and there is still endless material to cover!

There is so much good information out there written by wise and qualified women. I can't stress enough how important it is to get good, earlier-than-later support from a qualified, board-certified lactation consultant (she'll have IBCLC after her name), in addition to help from family and friends. However, be aware that sometimes the advice friends or family gives (or strangers, ever had that happen?) is actually not correct

It's also important to know all the various factors that can contribute to low milk supply, such as incorrect latch, timed and scheduled feedings, hormonal issues, etc. If you target the root cause(s) of your low milk supply, along with appropriate supplementation, you will likely make enough milk. 

I have a great example. A very good friend of mine just had her third child. She struggled with milk supply with both her previous two, and was resolved to do as much as she could to support and increase her supply: good nutrition, rest, supplements, pumping, and the support of her midwife. A month in, she was noticing that her supply was dropping, and was feeling more than a little discouraged. There were a few issues to address: the use of nipple shields, overactive letdown on one side, and really long feedings. But, and I find this so amazing, she was doing some reading on KellyMom and found out that it was her LATCH! This whole time! Even after the nurse told her it was fine! She adjusted her daughter's latch to get the breast tissue deeply and comfortably into her daughter's mouth, and felt the different immediately as her milk began to transfer more efficiently. Wow.

Sometimes going back to basics is the best way to troubleshoot, and a simple adjustment can make all the difference!

Using traditional supplementation to increase supply when there is another reason for low production can result in too much milk, which may not seem like a problem to someone who struggles, but it definitely is and carries its own challenges.

Here are some of my favorite web links and articles about low milk supply:

Physical Methods to Increase Milk Supply from Low Milk Supply
Increasing Low Milk Supply from KellyMom
"Is tongue-tie the hidden cause of your feeding problems?" from the Analytical Armadillo (we dealt with tongue and lip tie issues! Read about it here and here.)
How can I increase my milk supply? by Becky Flora, IBCLC
Hidden Hindrances to a Healthy Milk Supply by Becky Flora, IBCLC
Increasing Your Milk Supply by Anne Smith, IBCLC
Optimizing Your Milk Supply After Returning to Work or School by by Becky Flora, IBCLC
Increasing Milk Production from Low Milk Supply
I'm Not Pumping Enough Milk, What Can I Do? from KellyMom
Getting Milk Production Off to a Good Start from Low Milk Supply
My Breasts Feel Empty! Has My Milk Supply Decreased? from KellyMom
Achieving a Good Milk Supply from MilkShare
The First Six Weeks: Milk Supply by Paula Yount

And for even more reading, if you're a nerd like me,  the "Low Supply" keyword on KellyMom brings up a ton of great information!

And if you're someone who will deal with chronic low supply due to medical or physical issues, this is THE BEST information:

Living with Chronic Low Milk Supply by Angie Cannon, D.M.A., Hilary Jacobson, Beverly Morgan, IBCLC 

Happy Reading! 

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This is the sixteenth post in the series 31 Days of Making More Milk. Read yesterday's post about milk-makin' beverages or start from the beginning here


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