5 Reasons for Low Breast Milk Supply in Mothers

Insufficient breast milk supply is one of the primary reasons for mothers to discontinue breastfeeding at an early stage. It has been observed that a low supply of breast milk occurs either due to the baby’s inability to effectively breastfeed or any health complications the mother is experiencing. During the initial days, the baby may go through various medical conditions like, cleft palate or neurological issues, metabolic disorders, malabsorption of nutrients, etc. which directly affect the baby’s ability to have a fruitful nursing session.

Typically, breastfeeding mothers suffer from either Primary or Secondary Lactation Insufficiency and can happen due to various reasons. Five percentages of mothers complain about Primary Lactation Insufficiency which is the result of breast surgery, breast abnormalities or other health-related issues.(1) Secondary Lactation Insufficiency, which is common among mothers, occurs owing to irregular feeding routines or use of supplements.

If you’re a nursing mother and feel that there is an inadequate supply of milk, the first step is to take help from a lactation consultant or healthcare professional and get it checked. Keeping the health conditions aside, there are various other reasons which can also lead to an insufficient supply of milk during breastfeeding. Check them out.

1. The baby is not getting a good latch

A good latch is one of the most conducive factors that help establish breastfeeding in new mothers. If your baby is not getting a firm and perfect latch, there are high chances that you’re not being able to produce enough milk for your baby. Poor breastfeeding attachment is the most common reason for a low supply of breast milk and therefore you need to check that you’re holding your baby in the correct position while breastfeeding for her to get a good latch on.

2. You’re not feeding your little one enough

The more you breastfeed, the more you’ll be able to stimulate your body to produce a healthy supply of milk. Newly born infants need to be fed around 10 – 12 times a day in order to provide them with all the necessary nutrients for their proper growth and development. Paediatricians and lactation experts suggest that infants should be breastfed whenever they show any sign of hunger. During the initial days, it is essential that you keep your little one well-fed for her to build a strong immunity for a healthy future. Frequent breastfeeding, especially during the first few weeks can help you produce an ample amount of breast milk thereby enabling you to keep your baby well-nourished for overall development.

3. Your baby is breastfeeding for shorter durations at each feeding

Being a mother you should know that your baby needs to be fed for approximately 10 minutes on each side of your breasts for her to grow steadily as well as help you maintain a proper flow of milk supply at the same time. Keep it in mind that if your baby is nursing for 5 minutes or less, she is not taking-in sufficient breast milk needed for her holistic development. Furthermore, to drain the entire milk from your breasts your baby needs more time and it is pivotal that you completely drain out the breast milk for improved milk supply.

4. Your baby is going through a growing phase

It is a known fact that when your baby is going through a growing phase they experience a drastic change, especially in terms of their appetite. Owing to which during this time, babies feel hungry at short intervals and therefore need to be breastfed often. It is apparent that in that period you may feel like having an inadequate supply of breast milk. This is a natural process and you need not have to worry if this happens. As already mentioned, the more you feed your baby with breast milk, the more milk your body produces. Keep on breastfeeding your baby whenever she demands to be fed and within a few days, you’ll realise that your breast milk production has improved.

5. Take help from a lactation expert and keep yourself calm and relaxed

Even after breastfeeding your baby often at regular intervals if you still feel like having a low supply of breast milk, it is advisable that you approach a lactation consultant or healthcare professional and get the necessary help. A medical practitioner may prescribe you galactagogue which is an effective medicine that stimulates milk production in nursing mothers.

Besides, keep calm and relaxed while expressing which can help you ensure a proper flow of breast milk supply. Use relaxation techniques like listening to music or deep breathing during nursing sessions for you to have a stress-free and relaxed mind and body.

Take care of the above factors and you’ll be able to experience a fruitful and comfortable breastfeeding time which not only ensures a healthy future for both you and your little one but also works as a catalyst in strengthening the bond between you two.

Wish you blissful motherhood ahead!