Periods & Milk supply

Periods & Milk supply
DOES YOUR PERIOD DECREASE YOUR MILK SUPPLY?

OK so you have had your baby and one of the perks has got to be that you don’t get your period for a while right? Whilst many women who are exclusively breastfeeding their babies will be free of menstrual periods for approx. 3 – 6 months or longer it can vary. This is called lactational amenorrhea. Frequent nursing inhibits the release of hormones that cause your body to menstrate.
Most breastfeeding mums will find their periods come back somewhere between 9 and 18 months after their baby’s birth. Weaning your baby will almost certainly cause your menstrual cycle to return, but most people find that they do not need to wean in order for their cycle to gradually resume.
Once the dreaded flow has returned it can be common to have a drop in supply at certain points in your cycle, often from mid-cycle to around the time of your period.
It can also be less comfortable to breastfeed at this time. This is due to the hormonal changes and is only temporary.
If you do notice a drop in supply try:
A daily dose of 500 to 1,000 mg of a calcium and magnesium supplement from the middle of your cycle through the first three days of your period may help minimize any drop in supply.

Julia Daly
IBCLC
www.morethanmilk.co.nz

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