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Thread: inducing lacatation for toddler when pregnant

  1. #1

    Default inducing lacatation for toddler when pregnant

    I exclusively breast fed my son until he was 14 month old. Recently he (now 19 months old) is becoming very interested in nursing again. I have read so many re-lactating for toddlers tips and success stories and I am excited to try. The thing is, I am 15weeks pregnant.

    I have been unable to find any success stories where a mother was able to re-lactate while pregnant. I have read that it is not safe for the unborn baby to try to re-lactate and I have read that nursing while pregnant is not harmful for the unborn baby. But nothing on re-lactating. I guess I am wondering if it is possible to induce lactation while pregnant and if it is in fact harmful.

    Regardless, I am going to take the rest of my pregnancy to try to get my toddler used to my breasts again and eventually work on a latch using a SNS, as I do not want to miss this opportunity to get him back to breastfeeding

    Please help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,267

    Default Re: inducing lacatation for toddler when pregnant

    Welcome to the forum!

    I think there are 3 very good reasons why you're unable to find success stories about relactation during pregnancy.

    First, few people try.

    Second, the hormones of pregnancy inhibit milk production. Most moms who are nursing and who then become pregnant will lose some or all supply, and it's unlikely that relactation would be successful, simply because your hormones won't allow you to regain a lot of milk supply.

    Third, relactating- that is, regaining milk production- is generally discouraged during pregnancy because it requires frequent stimulation to the breast using a pump or a baby who is nursing like a newborn. This frequent, intense stimulation can cause uterine contractions which can induce preterm labor. While there are certainly some moms for whom this sort of stimulation would cause no problems, there are others who would end up with miscarriages or preterm births. To be on the safe side, it's best to avoid this sort of frequent, intense stimulation.

    If relactation is most likely off the table, what is still on the table? Well, there's something called dry-nursing, where the baby/toddler is allowed to suckle even though there's no milk there. This can be very comforting, and can help the child maintain his nursing skills, so that he knows what to do when the new baby is born and milk is again being produced. And because dry-nursing tends to be much less intense than relactating, it's probably safe to pursue during pregnancy, provided you are not a mom with a prior history of preterm labor or miscarriage. If you feel like your toddler's suckling is causing a lot of contractions, you will want to cut the nursing session short, and perhaps reevaluate your tolerance for risk.
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