Breastfeeding is a beautiful but challenging journey that you embark on with your baby. It’s not always easy to achieve and it can be hard to find someone to talk to when you have an issue!
Additionally to your midwife and Plunket consultant, getting free support online can be really useful.
The goal of the BreastfeedingNZ Facebook community is to help all mums with the information, support and comfort they need during their breastfeeding journey. We are also here to help make breastfeeding a natural and normal part of everyday life and bring more and more New Zealand mums on the breastfeeding journey.
Mamas join the community to share their experiences and issues, ask for recommendations, and give helpful and positive support to other mamas in need. We also regularly share useful tips and informational videos by accredited breastfeeding professionals, like this one about managing your milk supply.
On the page, Mums often reach for advice and engage with other mums around topics like teething, reflux, painful feeding, going back to work, Mama’s wellbeing, etc.
Here are frequent questions the mamas share with the community, and the recommendations we or other mamas give them.
How to Increase Low Milk Supply
Mama reaching for help: “Hi ladies I’ve tried everything… how can I get a larger supply? I hired a Medela and I only get max 50ml from the good breast now… ten from the other. Baby is 8 weeks.”
Breastfeedingnz: “Basically, the more you breastfeed and express, the more milk you will produce, so offer baby the breast often, and make sure that he latches well. How much you express doesn’t tell you exactly how much milk you have, because baby is able to take milk out better than any pump. Oatmeal and fenugreek seeds are said to help with milk supply as well. This page will have many more tips. Best wishes and please let us know how you get on”.
Other mama’s comment: “I’m here with you mumma. Been building supply steadily for 4 weeks now since week 2. I used a Medela swing at first, the hard silicone wasn’t ideal and was only getting 5ml each side. Switched to Milkbar double pump made in nz, 20ml first time and building by 10ml each express every few days. It’s taken a long time, but I’m finally making enough for her after 4 whole weeks of draining my breast completely. A good breast pump for your breast and double doses of fenugreek is invaluable. My breast needed 6 hours to refill completely in the beginning, so I just expressed when they were engorged ahead of baby’s feed. It turns out, my breast responds better to my pump than they ever do to my baby, so it an accurate indication of my supply. Don’t be discouraged because your breast doesn’t seem to respond as quickly. Hang in there, it will happen for you and its extremely satisfying.”
Extending Feeding Time
Mama reaching for help: “My son is 2 weeks old (was born at 36w) and is exclusively bf. I have a good milk supply and he latches well but each feed he only feeds for 5-8min and on one side only. I strip him off, rub his back/hands/feet to encourage him to keep sucking. Once he comes off I burp him and change his nappy before encouraging him to relatch but he seems to be full &/or tired. He is wanting to feed every 1.5-2 hours particularly at night. All of my friends who have babies a similar age are feeding 4 hourly for around 30min. I would really like to extend the duration of his feeds and the period in between feeds (especially at night). I am worried he is going to get used to snacking and that it could be a hard pattern to change down the track. He is gaining weight well so no concerns about the overall volume of milk he is getting. Does anyone have any suggestions, or should I just be guided and led by him around when he wants to feed? Thanks.”
Breastfeedingnz: “Hi! I would be guided by him. His coming early means that his sucking is more tiring for him. It sounds like you are doing a wonderful job and he will soon get stronger and able to last longer if he needs it. Meanwhile take good care of yourself and catch up on sleep when you can.
I’ll pop this up now so the other mums can encourage you too.”
Other mama’s comment: “Prolactin (milk-making hormone) levels peak at night so lots of stimulation overnight is going to help your supply establish and last up to and beyond 12 months!!! Hang in there, you’re doing an amazing job and very soon the sleepless nights will be a distant memory. In the meantime, monitor bub’s wees and poos as those are the best indicator that he’s getting enough xoxo”.
How to Wean my Child
Mama reaching for help: “How do I stop breastfeeding???? I’ve tried everything and my girl is a month away from being 3yrs old.”
Other mama recommendation: “If you mean stop feeding her, with my daughter I decided to finish a month before she was two. I realised her wanting it was more for connecting with me, especially after coming home from work. When she asked for it I said no, it is all finished. She cried but I told her we can cuddle instead. She only asked for milk twice more and both times we cuddled instead. I made sure we had extra cuddles during the few days it was happening.”
Join the Breastfeedingnz Facebook community for free advice, information and support from our breastfeeding experts. This is a nurturing and comfortable place where you can ask questions and share your own experiences with other mums who are on the breastfeeding journey. You don’t have to do this alone!
Always remember, you are doing an amazing job Mama <3