Monthly Archives: August 2013

When To Stop Breast Feeding

Breast feeding is a very personal decision and choosing when to stop breast feeding is also a personal decision. Ultimately it is up to you to decide when the time is right for you and for your baby to stop breast feeding. This article provides some ideas for when to stop breast feeding.

When To Stop Breast Feeding : After Reaching Your Goal

help-milk-supplyMany breast feeding moms have a goal in mind for how long they want to breast feed for. If you have set a goal for yourself, you may not want to stop breast feeding until you’ve reached that goal.

If you have reached the goal you set for yourself, congratulations! Now that you’ve been breast feeding for a while, you may want to set another goal or if you feel ready to stop breast feeding and you feel your baby is ready to stop breast feeding as well, you can begin the weening process.

When To Stop Breast Feeding : The Surgeon General Says Don’t Stop Breastfeeding Until At Least 6 Months

Because of the amazing health benefits to baby (and thus to society) the Surgeon General of the United States recommends that all moms do not stop breast feeding until baby is at least six months old.

It’s well documented that breast fed babies do not get sick as often as formula fed babies do. All those extra trips to the doctor and hospital have a significant cost to society. Researchers estimate the United States could save $13 billion each year in unnecessary medical costs, if 90% of moms breastfed for 6 months.

When To Stop Breast Feeding : Fully Switched to Solid Food

Another idea for when to stop breast feeding is when baby is getting the vast majority of his calories from solid food. At this point baby is really just breast feeding for comfort and habit than out of nutritional need. Of course baby will continue to get health benefits associated with breast feeding but when baby is joining you at the table for every meal many mom’s feel that is a good time to begin the weening process.

When To Stop Breast Feeding :1 Year

Another milestone that marks a time when some moms choose to stop breast feeding is when baby celebrates his or her first birthday. Breast feeding for an entire year is a significant goal for many breast feeding moms and after the milestone is reached, mom feels it’s a good time to stop breast feeding.

Additionally after the one year mark, some moms begin to feel self conscious about continuing breast feeding a toddler, feeling that other people may judge her because her child is too old to breastfeed. However the choice is ultimately up to the mother. Some mothers choose to breast feed until baby is 3, 4 or even 5 years old.

When To Stop Breast Feeding : Baby Led

The last idea we’ll cover for when to stop breast feeding is promoted by attachment parenting proponents and puts the focus on the baby. The mom watches baby for signs that he or she is done with breast feeding. This can happen any time between 6 months and 3 years, but usually occurs between the first and second birthdays.

The toddler will being skipping breast feeding sessions eventually ending up with just one or two per day, usually morning and/or night. Once this happens the mom can begin distracting baby before the remaining breast feeding session with solid food, cow’s milk in a bottle, a favorite game, and so on.

We hope this article has helped you find when to stop breast feeding. If you need help with breast feeding, see our extensive library of helpful articlesClick for more articles about how to increase milk supply

Help With Milk Production

baby scaleMany moms are concerned with milk production, because, unless you exclusively pump, it’s difficult to see how much milk production you have. There are 3 basic ways to help with milk production. They are:

  1. Fix anything that can harm milk production
  2. Focus on frequently and completely removing milk
  3. Take an herbal supplement to help with milk production

Help With Milk Production #1 : Fix The Things That Can Harm Milk Production

The first way to help milk production is to investigate and correct anything that can lead to lower milk production. There are many causes of lower milk production and any of these can reduce the amount of milk you are producing. Sometimes the cause lies with the baby such as when there is a poor latch or when baby is often too sleepy to breastfeed thoroughly.

Other times lower milk production can be happen on the mom’s side. Things like thyroid dysfunction, breast reduction surgery, dehydration, stress and excessive exercise / weight loss can all contribute to lower milk production.

Investigating and fixing anything that can harm your milk production will help with milk production in the end. We’ve created a series of articles to help you diagnose potential causes of low milk production. See our article on the 27 causes of low milk production to get started.

Help With Milk Production #2 : Focus On Completely And Frequently Removing Milk

After you’ve investigated and fixed possible causes of low milk production, the next thing you should do to help with milk production is to focus on completely and frequently removing milk.

The reason this helps with milk production is because the milk production is a supply and demand system. In other words, the body tries to make the exact amount of milk that is being removed. When you remove milk more frequently and more completely the body will want to respond with increased milk production.

Focus on completely removing milk by making sure you are breastfeeding on both sides during each breastfeeding session. Then, after baby is finished, pump each breast for an additional 10 minutes or until milk stops flowing, whichever is longer.

Focus on frequently removing milk by increasing the number of times you breastfeed or pump. To really help with milk production you should be breastfeeding/pumping every two hours as measured from the start of one session to the start of another.

We have created detailed articles on each of these topics to help with milk production. See how to help with milk production by completely removing milk and how to help with milk production by frequently removing milk.

Help With Milk Production #3 : Begin An All-Natural Herbal Supplement

Special milk-boosting herbs have been used since the times of ancient egyptians as a great way to help with milk production. These herbs work in the body to naturally increase milk-producing breast tissue, generate more milk, ease the letdown reflex and other benefits.

The results of an herbal treatment can be very impressive. One study showed that 75% of the women who took Lactiful Supply Max increased breast milk production. Those that showed an increase, increased their milk supply by 14.8 ounces of additional breast milk per mom per day!

See more about Lactiful Supply Max here.

Follow these three suggestions and you’ll get help you need with milk production! Click for more articles about how to increase milk supply

Pumping To Increase Milk Supply

Pumping is a great way to increase milk supply and this article will give you all the information you need to be successful in increasing your milk supply.

Why Does Pumping Increase Milk Supply?

breast-milk-pumpWhen done in the right way (which we will get to later in the article) pumping is a great way to increase milk supply because it places an additional demand on your milk supply. Your body wants to produce exactly the same amount of milk that is being removed. If it makes more than what is being removed, your body sees that as a waste of resources.

Put another way, your milk supply is a supply and demand system that wants to be in balance. Pumping works to increase milk supply because it forces the system out of balance by putting additional demand on the system. Your body should respond to that additional demand by increasing milk supply to match.

It is not an instant process. Your body will take some time to adjust to the higher demand, so don’t be discouraged if more milk isn’t produced right away. Give it a few days to a week and you should see measurably increased milk supply from pumping.

How You Should Pump to Increase Milk Supply

When pumping to increase milk supply you should focus on two strategies:

  • Frequently removing the milk
  • Completely removing the milk

To increase milk supply, you should be removing milk every 2 to 3 hours while you are awake and every 4 hours during the night. That timing is measured from the start of one breastfeeding session to the start of the next. If your little one breastfeeds for 10 minutes on each side (20 minutes total) and then you pump for another 10, for a total of a half hour, then you should begin your next breastfeeding session in an hour and half from when you finish pumping.

Increasing the frequency with which you breastfeed and pump will put more demand on your milk supply and your body should respond with increased milk supply.

The second part of the strategy to focus on when trying to increase milk supply is to focus on completely removing the milk during each session. To do this, be sure baby is breastfeeding on both sides during every session. If baby falls asleep, be sure to wake baby so that the second side can have some milk removed. After baby has finished breastfeeding, it’s time to being pumping to increase milk supply.

What you want to do is pump both side until no more milk is being removed, then continue to pump for an additional 5 to 10 minutes on both sides. This not only assures that the milk is completely removed, but also puts increased demand on your milk supply which will result in increase milk production.

Get an All-Natural Boost When Pumping to Increase Milk Supply

When pumping to increase milk supply many women benefit from taking all-natural herbal supplements that work to naturally increase milk supply. One such herbal supplement is Lactiful Supply Max. It include eight milk supply enhancing all-natural herbal ingredients, including one specifically that targets pumping!

Lactiful Supply Max includes fennel seed which increases the intensity and number of letdowns you will get when pumping (and breastfeeding too – but more women have trouble getting letdowns for the pump). More letdowns for the pump means a more complete removal of the milk which increases demand and that increases milk supply.

An observational study showed that Lactiful Supply Max increased milk supply in 75% of the women who took it. The average milk increase was 14.8 ounces of additional milk per mom per day and the product is fully guaranteed to increase milk supply or you get a full, prompt refund including all shipping charges.

To see more about how Lactiful Supply Max can help when pumping to increase milk supply, see this 30 second introductionClick for more articles about how to increase milk supply

Improving Milk Production

help-milk-supplyImproving milk production involves just three steps. They are:

  1. Correct any thing that may be causing lower milk production
  2. Let your body know you want to improve milk production
  3. Improve milk production with an all natural herbal treatment

Step 1 : Improving Milk Production by Correcting Issues That Can Cause Low Milk Production

The first step to improving milk production is to investigate the causes of low milk production to see if anything is causing your milk production to be lower than it should. If you can find and fix a cause of low milk production, then your milk production should naturally improve on its own and you may not have to do either step 2 or step 3.

There are many causes of low milk production. Some have to do with the baby such as acid reflux, poor latch or cleft lip and others have to do with the mother such as stress, breast surgery, or postpartum hemorrhage. We have an entire article series of 27 causes of low milk supply. This link will take you to our overview article which has links about each specific cause and what to do about it.

Step 2 :  Improving Milk Production by Letting Your Body Know You Want More Milk Production

The second step to improving milk production is let your body know you want more milk. You do this by increasing the demand on your milk production. Your body naturally wants to find a balance between how much milk is produced and how much milk is removed (either with a pump or breastfeeding or a combination of the two). And your body will try to adapt to increases in demand.

Babies have frequent growth spurts and during these times they will demand more milk and breastfeed much more often. During these times the mother’s milk production will increase to meet the increased demand from baby. You can do the same thing even when baby is not having a growth spurt by frequently and completely removing breast milk. See the linked articles for detailed specifics about how to improve milk production through frequently and completely removing more breast milk.

Step 3 :  Improving Milk Production with All-natural Herbal Treatments

The third step in improving milk production is start an herbal regimen. Lactation herbs have been used since the times of the ancient Egyptians to improve milk production and they continue to be very popular today. They work by naturally stimulating additional milk production. You can grow your own lactation herbs, mix and match available herbs using our lactation herb guide or you can purchase an all-in-one commercial solution.

All-in-one commercial solutions come in a variety of formulas, however only one has had an actual study done on it. That observational study showed that Lactiful Supply Max improved milk production in 75% of the women who took it. For those 75%, the average improvement in milk production was an additional 14.8 ounces of breast milk per day! So results from all-natural herbal treatments can be very impressive. Lactiful Supply Max comes with a full guarantee that it will improve your milk production or you get a complete, prompt refund, including all shipping charges. You can learn more about Lactiful Supply Max here.

Improving Milk Production Conclusion

Follow these three steps and chances are great that you will improve your milk production. Click for more articles about how to increase milk supply

Let Down Milk

breast-milk-pumpMany new moms whether breastfeeding or pumping want to know about the let down of milk. This article will cover what the let down of milk is, some things that can hinder the let down of milk, and tips on how to let down milk more easily and frequently.

Let Down of Milk Defined

The let down of milk, sometimes called a “milk letdown” or more clinically known as the “milk ejection reflex” is the process of moving the stored breast milk from the milk glands down the milk ducts out the nipple and into the breast pump flange or baby’s mouth.

The sucking sensation of either the baby or the pump travels along nerves to the mother’s brain and causes the pituitary gland to create oxytocin and prolactin. Prolactin is the lactation hormone and causes milk to be produced. Oxytocin is the let down hormone and causes the milk to be let down.

Can You Feel Milk Let Down?

help-milk-supplyWhether you can feel milk let down or not varies from woman to woman. Some women feel milk let down all through out the time when they are breastfeeding or pumping. Others feel milk let down when they first start breastfeeding, but then gradually they stop feeling milk let down. Other moms never feel a let down of milk.

The important thing to remember is that feeling milk let down is not an indicator of if milk is letting down or not. It’s also not an indicator of low milk production. Some women, even with really great milk production never feel milk let down.

Some Things That Can Hinder The Let Down of Milk

There are some things that can hinder the let down of milk. If you’re breastfeeding and find it painful, the anticipation of pain will often hinder milk let down. (Of note, breastfeeding should not be painful, most of the time painful breastfeeding is caused by an incorrect nipple latch. See our article on how to have a pain-free latch.)

If you are pumping and finding it difficult to let down milk for the pump, it may be that you’re not responding well to the machine aspect, especially if baby is somewhere else – at a sitters for instance. If that’s the case, make a let down kit of an unwashed baby clothing or blanket that smells like baby, a slideshow of your favorite photos of your baby and a recording of your baby’s sounds. Next time you’re pumping try to emotionally connect to your baby with the items from your let down kit. The more emotional you can get, the more likely you will let down milk.

Finally stress can hinder the let down of milk. If you are feeling stressed particularly while breastfeeding or pumping, find a way to relax and you will likely let down milk more easily.

How To Let Down Milk Easily And Frequently

Here are some steps you take to let down milk more easily and frequently. No matter if you are breastfeeding or pumping, being by creating a relaxing environment. Make sure where you are sitting is comfortable and you are able to relax all your muscles. If you are pumping at work or school make sure you have a private area with a door you can lock.

Before you begin breastfeeding or pumping, take a moment to relax all of your muscles. Start with your neck and shoulders and concentrate on relaxing each muscle as you work your way down your body.

If your partner is available, have him use his knuckles to gently walk down both sides of your spine while you breastfeed or pump. This sensation can get additional milk let downs.

Consider taking an all-natural herbal supplement that includes a let down enhancer. Lactiful Supply Max not only boosts milk production, but also includes an ingredient that helps generate more frequent and stronger milk let downs. See Lactiful’s ingredient page for more information.

Use these techniques and you will let down milk more easily and frequently! Click for more articles about how to increase milk supply

How To Get Breast Milk

breast-milk-pumpWhether you want to get breast milk as a supplement for your baby, or if you’ve heard it can help battle cancer or if you just want to make some breast milk ice cream this article will show you how to get breast milk.

You have 3 basic ways to get breast milk:

  • Get breast milk from a local source
  • Get breast milk from a remote source
  • Make more of your own breast milk (if you’re a lactating mother)

How to Get Breast Milk Option 1 : Local Source

There are many local sources for fresh or frozen breast milk if you know where to look. We’ll start with the easiest options and work toward the more involved options. The first option to get local breast milk is to think about any friends, relatives or neighbors that have recently had a baby in the last two years. Even if they are no longer breastfeeding or pumping, contact anyone who you are comfortable talk with to see if they either have extra breast milk (some moms pump extra breast milk and store it in the freezer) or if they know of another mother who milk have extra breast milk. Often, breastfeeding or recently breastfeeding moms, know other breastfeeding moms.

The next local option to get breast milk is to contact your local Le Leche League leader. Le Leche League is a national organizing that promotes and supports breastfeeding moms with local chapters in most cities. Find out who the leader is by searching online or by calling your hospital or birth center. Next reach out to the leader and explain why you want to get breast milk and she may be able to put you in touch with one or more local moms willing to donate breast milk.

Finally, your last local option for how to get breast milk is to contact your birth center (if you have one) or local lactation consultants. Again, find these contacts online or by calling the hospital then explain why you want to get breast milk.

How to Get Breast Milk Option 2 : Remote Source

If local options for how to get breast milk do not pan out, another option is to get breast milk from a milk bank. Milk banks are places that accept donated breast milk. They then pasteurize the milk and carefully bag and freeze it. The milk is then sold. You might be lucky enough to have a milk bank within driving distance, but if not, many milk banks will  overnight frozen breast milk to anywhere in the USA. Click or tap here to find locations of milk banks in North America.

How to Get Breast Milk Option 3 : Increase Your Own Breast Milk

If you’re a lactating mom and want to get more breast milk, we have an entire collection of how to articles and advice. If you think your something may be causing you to have lower than normal milk production, see our 27 causes of low milk production.

If you want to increase milk production, see our article on the 11 way to increase milk supply. And finally once you are getting more breast milk, be sure you are storing it correctly with our breast milk storage guidelines.

We hope you’ve enjoyed our article on how to get breast milk. Leave questions in the comments below! Click for more articles about how to increase milk supply