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  Topic Review (Newest First)
05-23-2014 12:28 AM

Are you sure that your milk is really slow? Often mothers think that their milk supply is low when it really isn’t. If your baby is gaining weight welll on breastmilk alone, then you do not have a problem with milk supply.


It’s important to note that the feel of the breast, the behavior of your baby, the frequency of nursing, the sensation of let-down, or the amount you pump are not valid ways to determine if you have enough milk for your baby.



Milk production is a demand & supply process. If you need to increase milk supply, it’s important to understand how milk is made – understanding this will help you to do the right things to increase production.

To speed milk production and increase overall milk supply, the key is to remove more milk from the breast and to do this frequently, so that less milk accumulates in the breast between feedings.

OK, now on to things that can help increase your milk supply:

  • Make sure that baby is nursing efficiently. This is the “remove more milk” part of increasing milk production. If milk is not effectively removed from the breast, then mom’s milk supply decreases. If positioning and latch are “off” then baby is probably not transferring milk efficiently. A sleepy baby, use of nipple shields or various health or anatomical problems in baby can also interfere with baby’s ability to transfer milk. For a baby who is not nursing efficiently, trying to adequately empty milk from the breast is like trying to empty a swimming pool through a drinking straw – it can take forever. Inefficient milk transfer can lead to baby not getting enough milk or needing to nurse almost constantly to get enough milk. If baby is not transferring milk well, then it is important for mom to express milk after and/or between nursings to maintain milk supply while the breastfeeding problems are being addressed.
  • Nurse frequently, and for as long as your baby is actively nursing. Remember – you want to remove more milk from the breasts and do this frequently. If baby is having weight gain problems, aim to nurse at least every 1.5-2 hours during the day and at least every 3 hours at night.
  • Take a nursing vacation. Take baby to bed with you for 2-3 days, and do nothing but nurse (frequently!) and rest (well, you can eat too!).
  • Offer both sides at each feeding. Let baby finish the first side, then offer the second side.
  • Switch nurse. Switch sides 3 or more times during each feeding, every time that baby falls asleep, switches to “comfort” sucking, or loses interest. Use each side at least twice per feeding. Use breast compression to keep baby feeding longer. 
  • Avoid pacifiers and bottles. All of baby’s sucking needs should be met at the breast (see above). If a temporary supplement is medically required, it can be given with a nursing supplementer or by spoon, cup or dropper.
  • Give baby only breastmilk. Avoid all solids, water, and formula if baby is younger than six months, and consider decreasing solids if baby is older. 
  • Take care of mom. Rest. Sleep when baby sleeps. Relax. Drink liquids to thirst (don’t force liquids – drinking extra water does not increase supply), and eat a well balanced diet.
  • Consider pumping. Adding pumping sessions after or between nursing sessions can be very helpful – pumping is very important when baby is not nursing efficiently or frequently enough, and can speed things up in all situations. Your aim in pumping is to remove more milk from the breasts and/or to increase frequency of breast emptying. When pumping to increase milk supply, to ensure that the pump removes an optimum amount of milk from the breast, keep pumping for 2-5 minutes after the last drops of milk. However, adding even a short pumping session (increasing frequency but perhaps not removing milk thoroughly) is helpful.
05-21-2014 09:46 AM

I highly recommend contacting Dr. Wolfson who is a board certified natural cardiologist that offers great advice here is his webstie and contact info


His office number is 480.535.6844 and the office girls are very helpful too. 

02-01-2014 08:46 AM

I found this link amazingly helpful!


For keeping up my supply, I drink about 2 litres of fennel-aniseed-caraway tea (delicious, you wouldn't think it!) and take a nap every day. Either with baby, or straight after a good feed and then DH takes him for a while. What also really helps is pumping after a feed, the Avent handheld pump is amazing!

01-31-2014 02:48 PM

Hi, I am an obsessed breastfeeder. I take so many supplements for my baby, we are 8 months strong.

The most important stuff that I take is coconut oil, DHA, moringa leaf, baoba powder, iodine, cholera and spiralina.

I also do mothers milk tea and supplements and dragon herb tea. I get it all at But you can search the net and find it all. But damn my kid id doing great on his milestones. I also don't drink tap water, i get bottles of palomar water delivered and make my own baby food. but nursing is the best, just need to crib train him, grr :)

12-26-2013 06:12 AM
Megan73 Thanks. I'll look forward to seeing it.
12-25-2013 02:25 PM
cynthiamoon I just emailed my LC for the details. She showed it to me months ago now, and I don't remember the specifics.
12-25-2013 01:26 PM
Originally Posted by cynthiamoon View Post

The studies show that 1/3 breastmilk is enough to see most of the benefits compared to exclusive formula feeding. 

Wow! Do you have a link or citation?
12-21-2013 10:07 PM
cynthiamoon Oh, yeah.I just never warm her food. It's still a pain to do all that fiddling though.
12-21-2013 04:42 PM
Actiasluna Because ive found that he seems to just want to comfort nurse at those in between times..Latched on and falls back asleep right away. Sigh. Babies.
12-21-2013 04:38 PM
Actiasluna Oh, cynthiamoon, because I just get so exasperated getting up, warming the bottle up etc. we nurse, then bottle. The SNS i find hard to get hooked up to middle of the night, because i have to warm it, blahblahblah. if we could just nurse, I'd be much happier. Obviously we'd all be... By stopping, I don't mean nursing stopping, just not needing the supplement. Once and a while Griffin goes to sleep without the supplement but I've found that he usually doesn't sleep as well, same as julia. we arent really sleeping much anyways..What I have been doing is only supplementing with 2 of 4 feeding. These days my sleep deprivation is huge as he wakes 4 times between midnight and 8 to nurse. So, I'm doing supplement at midnight and 3 or 4-ish and nursing only the other two times.
12-21-2013 06:48 AM
cynthiamoon We didn't supplement at night for a while, but Julia slept poorly. Why do you want to stop?
12-19-2013 06:38 PM
Actiasluna Starling&diesal, I didn't think about cutting the supplement in the middle of the night. My son is 5 months now and I suppose I could do that. He won't starve! Also, we nurse first thing in the morning with no supplement and he seems ok with it, which is interesting to me because I feel like my breasts are super empty because he has nurse 2 or 3 times between midnight and 8, but he seems ok with it. The amount that is actually in there baffles me, how and why.
12-19-2013 12:04 PM

Sorry you're having troubles - this is very stressful. based on my experience, depending on the extent of the tongue tie it may need to be removed by laser by a pediatric dentist who specializes in infant tongue ties. Apparently the ENT/pedi clipping process is not sufficient for many tongue ties. My 9 week old was clipped (a small amount) at 11 days (not diagnosed until I saw IBCLC at 10 days, even though there was clearly something going on), and then lasered at 2 weeks as he still couldn't latch after the clipping. After the lasering we had to do 3 weeks of stretching and exercises to keep frenulum from regrowing, and help him start to use his tongue properly - hard, but it all worked eventually. I had similar supply issues by that point apparently created by lack of demand and ineffective nursing. They are now mostly resolved I think, but it was a long road. Based on all the reading and consultation I did, you are doing all the right things it seems, short of taking domperidone. I didn't end up taking that as things started to catch up around 5-6 weeks but I was very exhausted with a 2-3 hr pumping regime that is similar to yours. It can be very frustrating but don't give up. The things that helped me in addition to all you are doing were sleep (very hard to get indeed. But a few times I slept through my alarm for the pumping regime at night and ironically there was more milk as a result) and time - over time with the help of the exercises we did he started using his tongue more effectively and learning to latch, and that has helped tremendously. The stress of worrying about whether I was doing everything I could, as well as worrying whether my infant was getting enough food, was of course counterproductive. I have two older children and nursed both for 2.5 years with no issues, and gave away milk, so this was all a bit of a surprise.  If you can get some sleep, relax a bit, and use shared milk to get over the very difficult point you are it with less stress on you, you may find you start making more and more milk. Good luck - it sounds as if you are making a great effort to stick with it.

12-18-2013 09:53 PM
starling&diesel I did use the LA for night feedings.
I kept the LAs all ready to go in a chilled thermos by the bed, and just slipped one into place and latched baby on, while side-lie nursing.
We did end up with a few leaks and some
extra laundry, but we eventually got the hang
of it.
I really love LA for the night nursing we managed to do with it.
When my babies were newborns, I did sit up.
But as soon as possible, I had them side-lie nurse.
I should also mention that I ditched the nighttime supplements when my babies were 4 months and I knew that they'd be fine through the night after a bedtime top up and early morning supplement. They both nursed bare a lot during the night, even without the LA.
My 2.5 year old still nurses a couple of times a night.
12-18-2013 09:41 PM
Actiasluna starling&diesal, thanks for that.

A few of my close friends are pregnant and I am really not looking forward to watching them EBF with ease. It might break my heart, again. ugh. At the same time, I sincerely hope they don't have the same low supply difficulties I have.

Starling&diesal, did you use the lact-aid for late night feedings as well? I find I hard to use the SNS in the middle of the night and do
12-18-2013 08:50 AM
starling&diesel And for all involved in the pumping whilst driving discussion, here is a link to Mothering's User Agreement.

And a relevent slice to share here:

General Conduct
Mothering aims to be a welcoming environment to discuss subjects pertaining to and surrounding natural family living. We appreciate that members come to our community at different places in their parenting journey and one of our goals is to welcome and educate new members. With that in mind, we expect our members to keep conversations civil and on topic, and uphold the integrity and diversity of the community. We value the honest and supportive exchange of ideas and opinions, and we ask that members avoid negative characterizations and generalizations about others.
12-18-2013 08:34 AM
Originally Posted by lilmamita View Post

Also, just wanted to add:

My struggle with supply has been extremely emotionally trying.  And I found it extremely frustrating when people who hadn't had much trouble establishing a breastmilk supply would make suggestions like "Eat oatmeal" or "Drink Mother's Milk tea"  I wish it were that simple.  I know people are just trying to be helpful, but every time someone says that stuff it is like a little stab at my heart.

Alright, mamas, back to the topic of the thread.

lilmamita, I just wanted to drop in and say that my breastfeeding challenges were the hardest thing about being a new mom.
I was so surprised that it wasn't easier than it was, and I was absolutely shocked when I didn't have enough supply and no amount of pumping, crying, herbs, food, teas, tincture, latch investigation, nursing position experimenting, meditating, praying or commiserating made it even an one ounce improvement.
It really hurt to watch the ease with which other new moms nourished their babies.

What worked for me was the Lact-Aid, and supplementing with donor milk and formula.
I kept both my kids exclusively at the breast that way, and never used bottles or nipples.
I did move them onto whole foods earlier than I would've liked to.
As well, it's worth noting that by persevering and nursing so long with my first, my milk supply was almost double when I had my second child.
One thing remains true, it will get easier. I promise you that. hug2.gif
12-17-2013 04:59 AM
Sphinxy You're right, the hair dryer comparison was ridiculous, because unlike pumping, I could still put the hair dryer down in an emergency if I needed to.
12-15-2013 07:26 PM
JNajla No kids in the car. I think you're overreacting, and I will continue to pump occasionally while driving if I need to. Apparently everyone on here is a model driver who doesn't listen to music, doesn't talk to the passenger, doesn't talk to your kids in the backseat, doesn't eat or drink in the car, or ever talk on your phone or look at it for that matter. And comparing having a pump strapped on to using a hairdryer while driving is just beyond ridiculous. Seriously. Go be judgmental somewhere else. *rolls eyes*
12-13-2013 11:18 PM
Originally Posted by JNajla View Post

What do the bottles being in front of me have to do with anything? How is that any worse than people who eat in their car, talk to the passenger, yell at their kids in the backseat or talking on the phone? Being able to pump during commutes helps to continue pumping. It takes me 30 min to pump since I'm an exclusive pumper. It's a major time saver for me.


You are sacrificing your mobility by having that gear there, as well as putting yourself at great risk if the airbags deploy and smash the bottles into your face and chest. 


Almost EVERYTHING you have listed has been proven to cause accidents and increase passenger mortality. Headsets especially were just part of a major study that proved they are no better than hands on talking on the phone. Don't kid yourself saying this is safe.


Somethings you can choose to do, like eating and pumping in the car, other things are beyond your control, like needing to handle kids in the backseat.


I think what Sphinxy is saying, that I echo, is that a few ounces of breastmilk are not enough of a health benefit to cancel out the risk of distracted driving. Seriously. The studies show that 1/3 breastmilk is enough to see most of the benefits compared to exclusive formula feeding. 


Do you do this with kids in the car!? 

12-13-2013 10:19 AM
Sphinxy @JNajla - first off, I understand that you are an exclusive pumper and that it takes you 30 minutes to pump. You don't have to convince me that pumping while driving is incredibly convenient for you. But convenience has absolutely nothing to do with whether it is safe. There are a great many things that I would do during the time it takes me to drive to work if I thought they were safe - dry my hair for example. But it's not safe, and in my opinion, neither is pumping. You aren't going to convince me otherwise, so there's really no point in continuing this discussion. If it were only you who I thought was put it danger by this distraction then I wouldn't have even continued to respond this much. But when you get behind the wheel of a car you are responsible for how your actions affect others, too. I have used a double electric pump with a pumping bra, I know how it feels and how it impacts my range of motion. And my bottom line is that I wouldn't want me or my kid on the road with someone who was pumping. I understand that you disagree with me and won't be changing your behavior based on my opinion. So now is when we agree to disagree and walk away.
12-13-2013 09:29 AM
JNajla What do the bottles being in front of me have to do with anything? How is that any worse than people who eat in their car, talk to the passenger, yell at their kids in the backseat or talking on the phone? Being able to pump during commutes helps to continue pumping. It takes me 30 min to pump since I'm an exclusive pumper. It's a major time saver for me.
12-12-2013 06:27 PM
Actiasluna lilmamita, I am right there with you. I cried for months every day about my supply. Months. And I have tried EVERYTHING. I am so tired of people saying eat oatmeal or alfalfa sprouts or oatmeal cookies. Pfff. I don't believe that the type of food you eat helps supply. I beleive having a healthy diet is good but not certain foods.. I have seen no personal evidence and I've tried it all. Many people who have never experienced low supply (like really low, like you and I and many others experience) have a hard time understanding the heartbreak that is related to not being able to feed your child when all you want to do is just that. Using formula broke my heart so much and still does. But eventually I had to stop crying, for my son. For myself, I am just happy when the amount of formula he eats goes down. Then I feel a little better because I know he is getting a little more breast milk. I totally how you feel. Many of my friends think I've obsessed too much over my milk supply. (Their milk was always good or oversupply) So I've stopped talking about it because it seems too emotional for people to hear.
12-12-2013 08:30 AM

Also, just wanted to add:


My struggle with supply has been extremely emotionally trying.  And I found it extremely frustrating when people who hadn't had much trouble establishing a breastmilk supply would make suggestions like "Eat oatmeal" or "Drink Mother's Milk tea"  I wish it were that simple.  I know people are just trying to be helpful, but every time someone says that stuff it is like a little stab at my heart.

12-11-2013 10:06 PM
Actiasluna lilmamita, I use the powdered formula only in my SNS. You just have to keep your eye on it to get on the clogs before it gets too much, otherwise baby gets frustrated. The way that I clean the tubes is that I run water through them by squeezing the bottle when I'm cleaning it, if that makes sense. If its really clogged, I sort of squish the tubes between my fingers all the way down the length of them and am able to squeeze it out. Then I run water through it. I try to do it with nice hot water to loosen the clogs. Also, at the top, where the holes are in the lid part, that is connected to the tubes, (I hope this makes sense) that part can get the most clogged and it took me months to, I sort of carefully squish the tubes so that whatever is in that top part comes out the holes. Sometimes I replace the whole thing, for example if they break. But mostly I clean them and its very doable. I hope all that made sense, I have the worst baby brain these days.

I know the SNS can be very very trying to get used to. I was extremely stubborn and have totally mastered it. If it wasn't for the SNS, I would not produce the 20-30oz per day that I produce. I don't pump, because I can't get any in a pump and I find the very discouraging. My baby is better at extracting the milk anyways and so is yours. Remember, if its not working, you can always do a bottle. smile.gif
12-11-2013 05:28 PM
Sphinxy The bottles are in between you and the steering wheel, limiting your range of motion. Believe what you want about it being safe, but I wouldn't want to be on the road with someone who was pumping behind the wheel, and I wouldn't choose to put others in that position either.
12-11-2013 03:36 PM
JNajla I hook the pump on and hook it up before I even start my car and then I don't touch it again until I park my car at work. So I'm not multitasking. It's no different than having a phone headset attached to my head.
12-11-2013 10:59 AM
Sphinxy I get that a pumping bra is very convenient. I have one and enjoy the convenience of having my hands free in the comfort of my home. But I believe when we're talking about multitasking while driving we must ask ourselves, "would I want my child on the road with someone who was doing X?" When it comes to applying make up, reading a newspaper, or texting I say No... and now I can add pumping to that list also.

I'm getting off topic so I'll bow out of the conversation now.
12-11-2013 10:21 AM

JNajla - That gives me some hope.  I think I'm only making like 4-6 oz of milk a day right now, so I hope I can at least increase substantially (I've given up hope on ever having a full supply).  I will be going back to work in January and am planning to pump as much as I can at work (I should be able to do it pretty much whenever, unless I am in a meeting).


Actiasluna - I actually have an SNS and used it some early on.  I was told you can't use them with powdered formulas, that they clog.  And powdered formula is all they have here.  I thought about trying it anyways since whether it clogs or not I am not using it right now.  I kind of wonder if I could get Simón back on breast with that.  I think it would be hard still, because he is accustomed to the bottle which is far more easy for him.  I may give it a try and see what happens.  I guess since he's a fuss bucket I worry some that I would get it all prepped and he'd still reject the breast with SNS.  Though now that I think about it, if that happens I can just pour the formula into a bottle and give it to him that way.


Sphinxy - I do all kinds of things while pumping.  The whole thing becomes background noise after a while.  I could see myself driving while pumping if I had a car.

12-11-2013 12:36 AM
JNajla I wear a hands free bra and let it do it's thing while I'm driving, I'm not even paying attention to it. It takes me 30 min to pump because I'm an exclusive pumper, so no, I can't pump when I get to work. I'm training for a new job so it's only going to be for 2 more weeks anyway.
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