We all know breast milk is the best source of nutrition for babies. However, some moms find it hard to lactate or provide their babies with sufficient amount of breast milk. There are even cases when the mothers simply cannot produce any. This is further complicated by the fact that most babies seem to get discouraged with breastfeeding once their first attempt at it fails.
Fortunately, there are a few valuable tips on how to stimulate lactation:
The best way to stimulate lactation is breastfeeding itself. While the baby sucks on the breast, gently press the areola area to help release breast milk. Don’t be discouraged if it seems like no milk is coming out. Stopping the process will only further lessen your milk supply. The wonder about breastfeeding is that, as experts say, the more you breastfeed, the more milk you will produce. The important thing to do here is to breastfeed often, even if it seems like you are not producing enough milk. Just be patient with the process.
Minimize the Use of Formula Milk and Pacifiers
Formula milk should only be used from time to time, not as the regular basic feeding. Babies used to formula milk tend to nurse less often. And less use of breast milk will also decrease its supply in the mother. Pacifiers have the same effect. If used often, they tend to accustom babies to sucking on pacifiers instead of the mother’s breast, making them reject breastfeeding eventually.[INPOSTLB]
Use Breast Pumps
Breast pumps are useful tools for stimulating lactation. The pump helps gently suck milk out of the breast and channel it straight to a feeding bottle, either for immediate feeding or for storing. Pumping and storing milk is a great solution, especially for a working mom who is out most of the day. However, relying too much on pumping takes away the bonding that happens when the baby sucks directly on the mother’s breast. The best way then is to use pumping just to stimulate lactation and to proceed with breastfeeding when milk starts flowing smoothly.
Drink Enough Water
Experts say keeping mothers well hydrated can help stimulate milk production. It is not necessary, though, to drink lots and lots of it. Excessive water supply does not increase a mother’s milk, but enough water can help stimulate its production. Thus, make sure you drink enough water daily.
Drink Moringa or Malunggay
It is common knowledge that Moringa or malunggay—a nutritious green leafy vegetable in the tropics—can increase breast milk supply and stimulate lactation as well. Many OB/GYN doctors recommend it. You can mix it with stewed food or take it as a natural supplement in capsule form, as per doctor’s recommendation.
Moms always want the best for babies. Just follow these pointers to stimulate lactation and your baby will likely enjoy the most nutritious food there is for them.