There are a few reasons that you may need to induce lactation. The most common is to care for an adoptive child. Even if you did not give birth, you can still breastfeed your child. In this article, we will talk about how to induce lactation in a variety of ways.
How To Induce Lactation Quickly
If you have months to prepare, one of the most effective ways to of inducing lactation is having your doctor prescribe hormones. According to the Mayo Clinic, the two you will likely take are estrogen and progesterone.
These hormones simulate what happens in the body during pregnancy. Another hormone that you may be given is a galactagogue to help stimulate milk production. It is important to remember that successful hormone therapy can take six months or more.
You will likely stop taking these hormones about two months before breastfeeding. During pregnancy, these hormones fall during the last two months naturally. At this point, pumping on a regular schedule is the best way to get induced lactation.
Remember that adjusting your hormone levels will have more effects than just producing milk. You may experience menstrual, breast, and mood changes as well. Never attempt this without the guidance of a healthcare professional.
They can advise you if you need to change methods of birth control. Many types of birth control reduce fertility by adjusting hormones, so a new method may be needed to stop unwanted pregnancies.
Fenugreek is available at most health food stores. Very Well Family says it is something you can purchase in capsule form to help you achieve milk production. It is also the primary ingredient in nursing teas. Used since ancient times, some studies claim that it increases milk production by a whopping 900%.
Whether breastfeeding through induced lactation or birth, this is a popular supplement for mothers. It is not safe for mothers who are diabetic or asthmatic. According to a guide published by the Midwifery Group in Canada, Fenugreek and Blessed Thistle herb have proven to be helpful in increasing milk supply.
Red raspberry leaves are another herbal supplement thought to increase milk supply. It can be taken as a capsule or you can buy it in tea bags. It is extremely high in vitamins and nutrients, making it wonderful for your overall health.
Red raspberry leaves is incredibly important to talk to a lactation consultant or doctor before putting anything into your body. This is even truer when you are breastfeeding because everything will end up in your milk.
Essentially, doing this tricks your body into producing milk. It involves stimulating the nipple and aureola multiple times a day. This method is easier if you have a partner. The most effective way would be to have them latch on for about 20 minutes, eight times a day.
Not everyone will be able to do it that often. Aim for at least two or three sessions of about 20 minutes. This is basically dry breastfeeding. It may take weeks or even months for this to work, depending on your body and how often you do it. This is how to induce lactation if you do not want to take any medication or supplements.
If you do not have someone to help you, use your fingers to stimulate breastfeeding. Either way is conditioning your body to produce milk. This method takes a lot of patience but eventually, your body will understand what it needs to do.
Using a Breast Pump
If you need to know how to induce lactation quickly, this section is for you. Using a breast pump is more effective if you have previously been pregnant until at least the second trimester. It is similar to the natural way but you use a pump instead of another human being. This way is very natural as well because you are not putting anything into your body.
To do this, you will need to pump a lot. In the first 48 hours, it is recommended to pump every two hours during the day and every three during the night. The Canadian Breastfeeding Foundation recommends that after this initial burst you reduce the number of pumping sessions a bit.
At this point, aim for 10-12 sessions of roughly 15 minutes each. Use a low or medium setting to prevent your breasts from getting too tender. There are many types of breast pumps on the market, both manual and automatic.
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Some adoptive mothers may worry that because they are postmenopausal they have no shot at inducing lactation. Thankfully, that is not the case. Even women who have had a hysterectomy can produce milk.
The only essential thing is having healthy breasts. The natural and breast pump options are both things that can be tried. If the woman wants to try prescription hormones, the process is slightly different.
For postmenopausal women, the hormone replacement therapy will require Yasmin (to add estrogen and progesterone) and domperidone.
According to the Midwifery Group in Canada, this needs to go on for a minimum of 60 days. This is known as the “menopause protocol” for induced lactation. This method is reported to have the best results when used in combination with a breast pump.
Tips for Success
When you have decided how to induce lactation, the most important thing is to start as soon as possible. The more time your breasts have to prepare, the better. Any breast milk made before the arrival of your baby can be stored. This built up supply will come in very handy while trying to establish breastfeeding.
When you get your baby, start attempting to breastfeed right away. Nothing will tell your breasts to produce milk more than having a baby latched on to them.
During this time, www.breastfeedingbasics.com recommends using a supplemental nursing system to ensure the baby is getting all the nutrition he or she needs.
A supplemental nursing system is a small tube that you tape near your nipple. It feeds the baby expressed breast milk while also stimulating milk production.
Even when your baby is with you and you have successfully induced lactation, keep using your breast pump. This will help your supply go up and make sure you have plenty of expressed milk on hand if needed.
It is entirely possible to induce lactation for an adoptive mother. The method that works best for you will depend on how comfortable you are with the different options.
It may take a combination of two or more methods to get the results you want. Patience and commitment are key. We hope this article helped teach you how to induce lactation.