The first 48 hours after labor, you produce colostrum. Colostrum is the first stage of breast milk that is more yellowish in color and thicker in consistency filled with a lot of good nutrients for your baby. Colostrum is not much in quantity so do not freak out about not producing enough. Most likely, the nurse will help you to hand express it so you can cumulate the colostrum on a spoon then feed it to your baby. After 48 hours you start producing more milk, the look of what you produce changes from yellow to white with a more viscous consistency. Do not let people freak you out that you do not have enough milk for your baby! It takes time.
Milk production is a supply demand mechanism meaning, more often your breasts are emptied either by nursing or pumping, more milk your body will produce. Meeting that demand takes time since your body will not go from producing an ounce to 3 ounces over night so be patient.
My son had difficulty with latching on due to he had tongue tie and I almost lost all my milk production. Hand expression was not enough to stimulate my milk production and I almost lost all my milk in a weeks times frame. I also did not have the pump yet so my breasts were not stimulated to produce more.Once he had the revision done, he wanted to feed more but I did not have enough milk. We had to supplement until I was able to meet his demand. To boost up my production, I had to visit whole foods store to get some supplements, and I did a lot of praying. If you feel like you’re not producing enough and going through similar struggles, here is what I used:
1- Ensure you’re drinking plenty of water. When I say plenty, I mean half of your body weight in ounces is your bare minimum. Soups and herbal teas count towards your daily water intake since they do not dehydrate your body. Unfortunately, juices are not very good for you since you do not want to overload your system with sugar. Remember to limit your caffeine intake as well.
2- Mothers milk tea has lot of good ingredients. Drink 3 to 5 cups a day as the instructions say. Many stores such as whole foods, target or walmart has it or you can order it online. You can also get the ingredients of mothers milk tea separately which I found to be more helpful for me.
3- I got FenuGreek which is one of the ingredients in Mother’s milk tea. You can find it in wholefoods store or order online. Mine came as capsules and I took three capsules a day with meals. Fenugreek really helped me boost my milk supply.
4- The best of all is loose fennel. You can just brew it at home, and one cup in the morning and one cup in the afternoon helped a ton. Fennel apparently helps with a lot more stuff so I may continue with fennel tea even after I stop breastfeeding.
5- Another remedy that I used is Milk thistle. I also got this from whole foods and probably you can find it online for a better price. It’s a drop so you drop for drops in a cup and drink it. I honestly did not feel like it helped much and for some reason on the bottle it says beware if you are breastfeeding?!!
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