Breastfeeding Support for Indian mothers

The following factors can contribute to an inadequate milk supply

  • Not getting enough sucking stimulation. A sleepy or jaundiced baby may not nurse vigorously enough to empty your breasts adequately. Even a baby who nurses often may not give you the stimulation you need if he is sucking weakly or ineffectively.
  • Being separated from your baby or scheduling feedings too rigidly can interfere with the supply and demand system of milk production. Keeping your baby close, day and night, and nursing often is the best way to boost your milk production.
  • Many mothers find that their milk production decreases when they return to work. Being separated from their baby for long periods of time, as well as the stress associated with re-entering the work force can make it difficult for moms to maintain their supply if they dont pump at regular intervals typically 2-3 hours
  • Limiting the amount of time your baby spends at the breast can cause your baby to get more of the lower calorie foremilk and less of the higher fat content hindmilk. Typically, babies need to spend from 20-45 minutes of nursing during the newborn period in order to get enough milk. Offer both breasts at a feeding during the early weeks in order to receive adequate stimulation. While some babies can get plenty of milk from one breast, after nursing only a few minutes, usually this happens after the milk supply is well established, and not in the early stages of breastfeeding.
  • If you are sick or under a lot of stress, your milk supply may be low. Hormonal disorders such as thyroid or pituitary imbalances or retained placental fragments can cause problems. Many mothers find that their supply goes down when they have a cold or other illness. Hormonal birth control methods containing estrogen may decrease your supply as well.
  • Using formula supplements or pacifiers regularly can decrease your supply. Babies who are full of formula will nurse less often, and some babies are willing to meet their sucking needs with a pacifier rather than spending time at the breast. If you need to supplement with formula, try to pump after feedings to give your breasts extra stimulation. If you use a pacifier, make sure that it isn’t used as a supplement for nutritive sucking.
  • If your nipples are very sore, pain may inhibit your letdown reflex, and you may also tend to delay feedings because they are so unpleasant. Often careful attention to the positioning will correct the problem.
  • Medical conditions like Tongue-Tie, Yeast Infections, and Flat or Inverted Nipples can cause nipple soreness and make it difficult for the baby to get the milk he needs. Correcting the problem so that nursing doesn’t hurt can help you increase the let-down and frequency of putting the baby on the breast, and that can result in increasing your milk supply.
  • Previous breast surgery can cause a low milk supply. Anytime you have breast surgery, there is a risk of breastfeeding problems, especially if milk ducts have been damaged. Generally, breast implants or breast biopsies cause fewer problems than breast reduction surgery.
  • Moms who have a Cesarean birth may need some extra time to recover before they physically feel like holding and nursing their new baby. This may cause a slight delay in the milk coming in, but once it does, moms who deliver via C-section produce just as much milk as the mothers who deliver vaginally.
  • Taking combination birth control pills – those containing both estrogen and progesterone (see article Breastfeeding and Birth Control) and getting pregnant while nursing (Nursing During Pregnancy and Tandem Nursing) can alter your hormone levels and cause a decrease in your supply. Smoking heavily, and taking certain medications can also adversely affect your supply.Type your paragraph here.

FAQ 3: How does milk production happen in the mother's body?

Breastfeeding works on a simple demand and supply principle. 
As your baby suckles, the hormone prolactin stimulates the mammary glands in mother's breasts to secrete milk. As your baby continues to feed, your body releases yet more prolactin. This places the order to mother's breasts to make enough milk for your baby’s next feed. The more your baby feeds, the more milk mother will produce. hence it is important for baby's to breastfeed on demand and babies should be allowed to decide the nursing duration and frequency