Do you want to produce more milk for baby? Check out this working mom’s tips on how to increase milk supply.
In this article, you’ll read:
The struggles of a breastfeeding working mom
Mommy Sarrah’s tips on how to increase milk supply
As Moms, we want nothing but the best for our kids. That includes giving them the proper nutrition, and for babies, the best way to do that is through breastfeeding.
“Breastmilk is the best for babies up to 2 years and beyond.” We hear and read that everywhere. Even different brands of formula milk say that too, and we believe it. Unfortunately, for some Moms, breastfeeding can be very stressful. Why?
Image courtesy of Mommy Sarrah
Switching from mix-feeding to exclusively breastfed then back
Increasing your milk supply can be a struggle especially if you are a mom working in the office or in the field. I’ve been there so I know. Honestly, I still feel guilty sometimes because I was only able to breastfeed my daughter for 8 months and with a mix of formula.
Don’t get me wrong, I tried my best to exclusively feed my daughter, Miracle, with breastmilk. She was mixed-fed when she was a newborn, so when she was almost 2 months old, I tried to decrease the amount of formula milk that I was giving her until we fully transitioned her to drinking only breastmilk.
But one day Miracle was being really fussy and she wouldn’t even latch on to my breasts. So we brought her to the pediatrician only to find out that she was already dehydrated. At that point, the doctor advised that if my daughter’s not getting enough milk from me, we should supplement my breastmilk with formula milk.
When the doctor told me that, I felt like I failed on that part as a mother. I tried everything to increase my milk supply – unlimited latch, power pumping, drinking a lot of water, and taking lactation vitamins twice a day, and more, only to get my daughter dehydrated in the end. She was only 2 months old at that time.
That was when I accepted the fact that maybe I wasn’t as blessed as the other moms who have tons of stored breastmilk in their freezer because my body is different. In fact, every woman’s body is different. At least I could still feed her with my breastmilk.
Struggles of a breastfeeding working mom
If that was hard to accept, it got even harder after a couple of months.
It seemed impossible to keep my milk supply up while I was working. I think the main reason behind it was because I couldn’t express milk consistently.
There was this time at work when I was only able to pump an ounce of breastmilk during the whole nine-hour work shift. Sa inis ko, ininom ko na lang ‘yong milk. It was so frustrating.
There were a lot of factors like stress at work, inconsistent meeting schedules at work which then resulted in an inconsistent pumping schedule. Also other factors like lack of budget to buy lactation goodies and more contributed to my dwindling milk supply.
We got to the point when we were just doing comfort feeding. I would just let my daughter drink from me when I come home from work. It just became so stressful and my baby slowly lost interest in latching that I finally decided to put an end to our breastfeeding journey.
At that time, I felt that there was no more hope for me. However, yours can be a different story.
Tips on how to increase your milk supply
If you are currently struggling in increasing your breastmilk supply, there are a lot of things that you can try to increase your milk production.
Everything starts with understanding that women have different bodies so what worked for others may not work for you, so you really have to try everything.
Here are some of my tips on how to increase milk supply while working:
1. Remember that milk production is based on supply and demand.
If there is more demand for breastmilk, the body will work harder to supply what is needed. The secret is to just let your baby latch for as long as they want.
If you are mix feeding, slowly lessen their formula intakes each day until they no longer need it.
2. Take malunggay supplements.
Low milk supply can also be due to different factors like stress so it is important that you boost your immune system and increase your vitamin intake.
Malunggay supplements are super helpful. Personally, I would recommend Mega Malunggay. It has a higher dosage of moringa olifeira (which is a natural galactagogue) compared to other brands, but then again, it depends on what works for you.
3. Drink Milo every day.
They say it has malt that helps with milk production.
Image courtesy of Mommy Sarrah
4. Eat dishes with soup.
Try “sinabawang tahong” or “halaan”. You can add malunggay leaves to it to make it more effective.
5. Eat oatmeals and/or lactation cookies.
There are online stores that sell lactation cookies in Instagram. It’s also available on Shopee/Lazada.
6. Stay hydrated.
Drink a lot of fluids. You should drink 3-4 liters of water per day.
7. Drinking buko juice is also effective for some breastfeeding moms.
It is packed with electrolytes that prevent moms from being dehydrated.
8. Have a regular pumping schedule, and follow it religiously.
Pump at least 5 times a day. The more, the better.
9. Power pump at least once a day even if no milk is coming out.
It will send a signal to your brain that it needs to produce more milk. A lot of moms swear by power pumping to keep their milk supply up.
10. Get a massage to relax your body and stay away from stress.
Stress is the number one killer of milk supply, so try to relax as much as possible while you’re breastfeeding.
Image courtesy of the author
Most moms are only able to pump 3 to 4oz every session with an interval of 3 to 4 hours, so if your output is just the same as that, then your milk supply is just enough. Just continue what you are already doing. If you are able to pump more than that, then consider yourself blessed.
However, if your regular output is less than that, please do not hesitate to mix feed. You’ll just stress yourself more which may only affect your milk production.
Your last resort is to visit a lactation consultant and ask for advice on how to increase your milk supply.
But if you tried everything and there’s still no positive result, then maybe you just have to let it be. What’s important is you are still able to breastfeed your baby even if you have to supplement it with formula.
Disclaimer: brands mentioned by the author are just suggestions that are based on the mom’s experience and are not affiliated with theAsianParent Philippines.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sarrah Jane Mae Jove is a wife and mother of one bubbly little girl. Aside from working from home and taking care of her husband and daughter, she also loves writing in her free time.