Enough milk for your baby?

Many mommies give up breastfeeding because they think that they do not have enough milk supply. The secret to breastfeeding is frequent feeding. The law of economics where demands = supply applies to breastfeeding too.

But is your milk supply really low?

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If your healthy baby shows these signs, then your milk supply is fine.

  • At least six to eight very wet cloth nappies in 24 hours (provided no other fluids or solids are being given), or at least five heavily wet disposables.
  • A very young baby will usually have two or more soft bowel movements a day for the first several weeks. An older baby is likely to have fewer than this. In fact some breastfed babies can go up till 21 days between bowel movements. As long as the baby is well and there are plenty of wet nappies, there is nothing to worry about. The normal range can be from more than six a day to one every ten days. The colour of baby’s urine should be pale yellow.
  • Good skin colour and muscle tone.
  • Your baby is alert and reasonably contented.
  • Good weight gain (of about 115-400g per week for the first three months) and growth in length and head circumference.

Some reasons for low supply are

  • not enough feeds, or feeds too short
  • poor latching
  • changing sides too soon
  • tension, pain or over-tiredness ( bearing in mind that most new mothers and fathers would feel this way)
  • supplementing with formula
  • Using of pacifier
  • introduction of solids too early
  • hormonal change in the mother eg ovulation, menstruation and pregnancy, contraceptive pill
  • drugs, prescribed, over-the-counter, and herbal
  • illness
  • very very rarely, a physiological inability ( inborn or from surgery)

The following quick handout guides which I think are very useful for many here :
· Is your baby getting enough? from www.kellymom.com

Compiled from the following sources:

Contributed by Florence Tan

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