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Thread: Period starting = Baby weaning?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    1,512

    Question Period starting = Baby weaning?

    My LO is only 8 months old and I would like to breast feed her for 1-2 years. However, I just started spotting this morning so I think my priod is coming back. Does this mean my body will stop producing milk and I will have to wean? I know some moms nurse for a very long time, how do you keep the milk going? I have not cycled since December 2005 (20 months!) and I am not ready to cycle again!
    Any suggestions?
    Samantha: born 3 1/2 weeks early on Sept 2006 6lbs 4 oz 18 inches long with situs inversus totalis. Now a strong healthy little girl that wants to be a NICU doctor, loves her little sister and breastfeeds her dolls!
    Milk donated with while nursing first LO: 2,200 oz
    Alexandra: born 3 weeks early on July 2010 7lbs 8 oz 19.5 inches long.
    Milk donated with while nursing first LO: 1,200


    For information on becoming a Breastmilk Donor http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    1,567

    Default Re: Period starting = Baby weaning?

    No, your body will not stop producing milk when you get your period. Many, many women breastfeed (or even exclusively) when they have their period. I have had mine for a few months now, and there is still lots of milk! I know a woman who has breastfed all her children to 3-4 years of age, and she has lots of milk, even with her period. No worries about that!

    Some women DO notice a temporary dip in supply when they are on their period. Don't worry about it, your LO will be fine. Nursing on demand ensures that there will be enough milk at all times, except in extenuating circumstances where a woman doesn't produce enough- you'd know by now- its rare. But having your period doesn't really matter otherwise. You keep the milk going by nursing your LO on demand. As long as there is sufficient sucking, there will be milk. If your LO all of a sudden wants more, she will suck more, and therefore more milk will be produced. Its supply and demand. (Amazing, isn't it???)


    Getting your period back often means that your LO is sucking less overall than before. I read a book called "Breastfeeding and Natural Child spacing" that explained to me how it works. Basically, the more the child sucks on your breast, the more hormone is produced that suppresses getting your period back. Most women who EBF (no pacifiers, no bottles, nurse on demand, no solids before 6 months) get their periods back around 1 year to 14 months or so. Some much longer, some much sooner. Its dependent on the sucking and each individual relationship.

    Some women get their periods back, and then their LO nurses more often again, and it goes away. Your first period or so may be light, or very heavy. Mine was just spotting for a few cycles.

    Hope this helps!
    Mommy to 3 beautiful girls!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    107

    Default Re: Period starting = Baby weaning?

    I got my period back when Mez was 18 months old. He is now 49 months old (just over 4 years) and is still nursing.

    Around the time my cycle returned, I noticed there were a few nights where he didn't nurse as much. Then my cycle returned, and then he went right back to nursing several times a night. Anyway, as far as I know, it's the night nursing that suppresses some women's cycles. Has your child skipped a night nursing recently?

    -Lauren

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    1,512

    Default Re: Period starting = Baby weaning?

    Thank you both for the information. My LO just started to sleep through the night about 1 week before her 8 month birthday. Her last feeding is at midnight or so and then she does not wake until 5:30am. She started playing with a few solids at 6.5 months and now screams with excitement when I bring her dinner out! Before almost 8 months, she would wake every 2 or 3 hours to nurse (and refuses bottles at night). Part of me a thrilled to get some more sleep (although I still wake every 2 hours to look in on her ) but part of me worries about her weaning. For the first few nights I pumped at night just in case but my DH is discouraging me from doing so because I really could use the sleep (work full time).

    My spotting was only 2 days and it was very light but the stomach cramps were horrible and I have never in my life had cramps before. Yes, I was lucky and now I understand what all the complaining is about!
    Samantha: born 3 1/2 weeks early on Sept 2006 6lbs 4 oz 18 inches long with situs inversus totalis. Now a strong healthy little girl that wants to be a NICU doctor, loves her little sister and breastfeeds her dolls!
    Milk donated with while nursing first LO: 2,200 oz
    Alexandra: born 3 weeks early on July 2010 7lbs 8 oz 19.5 inches long.
    Milk donated with while nursing first LO: 1,200


    For information on becoming a Breastmilk Donor http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    436

    Default Re: Period starting = Baby weaning?

    Quote Originally Posted by LaurenS View Post
    Anyway, as far as I know, it's the night nursing that suppresses some women's cycles. Has your child skipped a night nursing recently?
    My period came back at 7 months and around that time Jeremy had was definitely doing a LOT of night nursing -- and still is a year later! My period has been pretty regular during all of this time and it certainly hasn't led to weaning. (I'm thinking of night weaning soon, but that's another story.) My supply does drop usually right before AF (and sometimes before ovulation as well). Then it picks right up again. We at almost 18 months and still going strong.
    Annie
    Mama to Jeremy Daniel (12/10/2005)


    I'm a late cloth convert...and you? :tumbsup

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    Default Re: Period starting = Baby weaning?

    My period restarted when my son was 8 mos, too. While I didn't have any supply issues (or weaning issues), I did notice that after my cycles returned, I was horribly sore for a few days around ovulation. I don't think it happens with everyone, but just something to be aware of.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    436

    Default Re: Period starting = Baby weaning?

    Quote Originally Posted by ljgrile View Post
    My period restarted when my son was 8 mos, too. While I didn't have any supply issues (or weaning issues), I did notice that after my cycles returned, I was horribly sore for a few days around ovulation. I don't think it happens with everyone, but just something to be aware of.
    Yes me too, horribly sore mid-cycle. This month it wasn't bad, for some reason, but for the past few months I've dreaded the week around ovulation as latch-on was really painful. Then it's fine for the rest of the month. Hopefully you'll escape this!
    Annie
    Mama to Jeremy Daniel (12/10/2005)


    I'm a late cloth convert...and you? :tumbsup

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    31

    Default Re: Period starting = Baby weaning?

    My periods returned at 5 months and as ive always had short cycles it means that ive 4 periods in the last 3 months. :-( Tommy slept through for 2 weeks at 5 months and thats when i got them back. He is up nor twice some nights but usually sleeps very well so i'm sure thats why i got mine back. I do get a dip i supply and he is not a happy boy when my period is about to start - i assume its to do with hormones, but it gets back to normal once the period starts.

    So don't worry - it doesn't affect your supply, or ability to breastfeed, it just means you're like me, one of the unlucky ones who get it back while they're feeding! :-(

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