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Thread: Decreased milk supply with b/c. Help!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    NYC
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    Unhappy Decreased milk supply with b/c. Help!

    (A little background) My son is 10 months old. I got an IUD put in when he was 5 weeks old. 4 months ago, I had a very painful miscarriage that lasted a full 3 months. I didn't know I was pregnant and didn't know I was having a miscarriage as my midwife said it was normal and was due to my IUD. Of course I listened. I ended up calling the Midwife who put the IUD in when the bleeding got so bad I was crying in pain and couldn't take care of all four of my kids. She came the next day and came to find out that I was hemorrhaging. She immediately took the IUD out, put me on "bed rest" till my bleeding slowed and prescribed the birth control pill Ortho Tricyclin.
    Thank God I have stopped bleeding and all is back to normal. But, my milk supply (as she warned would happen) has decreased significantly. My son eats 3 full meals a day. He loves to nurse though, as do I. He seems so frustrated that my milk let down is not as fast and doesn't last as long as it used to. He nurses for maybe 5 minutes in total on both breasts and seems unhappy. I am unhappy as well. I nursed my third till she was 23 months old and I want to try and do the same for him. Especially since he seems like he completely unready to wean. I am currently taking Fenugreek capsules which seem to be helping some, but it's not helping enough.
    Any and all help would be wonderful. I want to cry thinking that this could possibly be then end just because I am on a strong birth control.
    Thank you in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,341

    Default Re: Decreased milk supply with b/c. Help

    Welcome! I am sorry you have been having such a rough time. A miscarriage and then issues with supply- both very upsetting. There's nothing anyone on earth can do to "fix" a miscarriage, but problems with milk supply generally are fixable. Is there a reason why you need to be on a combination pill like Ortho-Tricyclen rather than on a progestin-only pill or alternate form of birth control? A progestin-only pill is less likely than the combination pill to impact supply, though there is always a risk to supply when you're using hormonal contraception. Barrier methods of birth control, like condoms, diaphragm, cervical cap, etc., are totally breastfeeding-compatible.

    If there is a good physical reason why you need to be on a combination pill, then this still doesn't need to be the end of breastfeeding for you. As long as your baby will nurse, you will continue to have milk- perhaps not as much as he likes but it shouldn't just disappear unless he decides to stop nursing. The more often you offer the breast, the more he should get, since frequent emptying of the breast can in part compensate for lower supply. Since your LO is eating a lot of solids, offering to nurse right before feeding him his solids may be important: when a baby is hungry, he's going to nurse enthusiastically and drain the breast as thoroughly as possible.

    If the above advice isn't getting you where you want to be, you may want to incorporate pumping into your routine. If the baby can't increase your supply by nursing, perhaps some pump work will do the trick. There are also herbs (Blessed Thistle, oatmeal) and drugs (Reglan, Domperidone) you can take in addition to fenugreek- start with the herbs, and consider the drugs as a last resort.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    1,293

    Default Re: Decreased milk supply with b/c. Help

    good advice.

    just wanted to say i am sorry you are going through all this. mommal is right, a miscarriage and decreased supply are both very difficult

    we use condoms, i feel better that way. all the best to you mama.

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