Summary: After your period, you may notice a decrease in your breast milk supply. This can be frustrating and concerning, especially if you are exclusively breastfeeding. However, there are several ways to increase your milk supply after your period and ensure that your little one is receiving enough nourishment.
1. Continue to Breastfeed Frequently
One of the most effective ways to increase milk supply after your period is to continue breastfeeding frequently. The more you nurse, the more milk your body will produce. Try to nurse every 2-3 hours during the day and at least once or twice at night. This will help stimulate your milk production and increase your milk supply.
In addition, make sure that your baby is latching on properly and emptying each breast during feedings. This will signal your body to produce more milk and prevent engorgement or clogged ducts, which can lead to a decrease in milk supply.
If you need to supplement with formula, try to do so after breastfeeding rather than before. This will help maintain your milk supply and ensure that your baby is still receiving the benefits of breast milk.
2. Increase Your Fluid Intake
Staying hydrated is essential for maintaining a healthy milk supply after your period. Make sure that you are drinking plenty of water and other fluids throughout the day. Aim for at least 8-10 glasses of water per day, and consider drinking smoothies, soups, or other hydrating beverages.
If you find it difficult to drink enough water, try flavoring it with lemon, lime, or other fruits. You can also eat foods that are high in water content, such as watermelon, cucumbers, and soups.
Avoid drinks that can dehydrate you, such as alcohol and caffeinated beverages. These can reduce your milk supply and have other negative health effects.
3. Eat a Nutritious Diet
The foods you eat can also have an impact on your milk supply after your period. Make sure that you are eating a healthy, well-balanced diet that includes plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and healthy fats. Avoid highly processed foods and sugar, which can cause inflammation and disrupt your hormonal balance.
In addition, there are certain foods that are known to increase milk production. These include oatmeal, almonds, spinach, carrots, and brewers yeast. You can also try drinking herbal teas that are known to increase milk supply, such as fenugreek, milk thistle, and fennel.
If you have concerns about your diet or are experiencing any nutritional deficiencies, talk to your healthcare provider or a registered dietitian.
4. Get Enough Rest and Reduce Stress
Getting enough rest and reducing stress is also important for maintaining a healthy milk supply after your period. Lack of sleep and high levels of stress can disrupt your hormonal balance and decrease milk production.
Try to prioritize sleep and rest as much as possible, especially in the early weeks of breastfeeding. Take naps when your baby is sleeping, ask for help from family and friends, and avoid overcommitting yourself.
In addition, find ways to manage stress, such as deep breathing, meditation, or gentle exercise. You can also try taking warm baths or getting a massage to help you relax.
5. Consider Taking Supplements or Medications
If you have tried these strategies and still have concerns about your milk supply, talk to your healthcare provider about potential supplements or medications that can increase milk production.
Fenugreek is a commonly used herb that is believed to increase milk supply. Other supplements, such as blessed thistle or alfalfa, may also be helpful.
In addition, medications such as domperidone or metoclopramide may be prescribed to help increase milk supply. However, these medications can have side effects and should only be used under the guidance of a healthcare provider.
Experiencing a decrease in milk supply after your period can be frustrating, but there are several steps you can take to increase production and ensure that your baby is receiving enough nourishment. Continue to breastfeed frequently, increase your fluid intake, eat a nutritious diet, get enough rest, and reduce stress. If you have concerns about your milk supply, talk to your healthcare provider about potential supplements or medications that can help.