Welp. I took my cutie pie Nora into her 6 month doctor appointment last week and found out that she has dropped from the 40th percentile in weight to the 9th percentile. It's pretty hard for me to hear. I had great plans to nurse Nora exclusively for 8 months and never introduce a bottle. But, alas, sometimes things don't go as planned.
I've successfully breastfed two of my children without milk supply issues. With the other two, I had to stop breastfeeding at 4 months and 8 months. And now, here I am with my 5th baby. Her doctor is telling me my milk supply must not be where it should be. I'm pretty heartbroken. This is my last baby, and I wanted to really enjoy this last time breastfeeding. I love it so much, and I don't want it to end so early.
He sent me home with a bunch of formula, and I have put it away for now. I really don't want to use it. Don't get me wrong, I have bottle fed two of my kids and I don't think that each mother has to do things the way that she thinks is best. But, I really have a strong desire to nurse as long as possible. And I know as soon as I start supplementing, my milk will dry up. My baby is happy and looks healthy, so until she starts acting like she needs more than what I am giving her, I'm going to continue breastfeeding and doing everything I can to increase my milk supply.
So, I'm doing several things and have already noticed an increase in supply! I am so hopeful!! Here is what I have learned through my research and that have been prescribed to me by a doctor that you could implement in your diet and regime if you are struggling with the same issue:
1. Apply 1 drop of Fennel and Basil topically to support increased milk supply; avoiding the nipple area. I try to do this after Nora is done eating so that the smell isn't too strong while she is nursing. (If you would like to purchase these essential oils for your regime, message me and I'll help you out!)
2. Drink Traditional Medicinals Mother's Milk Herbal Tea every morning. This tea is supportive to increasing milk supply as well. I first heard about it at my pediatrician's office and immediately went to Whole Foods to purchase. It is an acquired taste, but I don't mind it. And I'll do just about anything to help with this!
3. Take 2 capsules of Fenugreek every morning and night. Another supplement known to increase milk supply. I am using the brand "Nature's Way," and purchased this at Whole Foods as well.
4. Eat foods that are known to increase milk supply like oatmeal, brown rice, spinach, asparagus, salmon, apricots, papaya, hummus, and carrots. This is a great article that talks about why each of those things are important.
5. Increase Water Intake! It seems pretty obvious to me that if you are dehydrated, your body will have a harder time producing milk. I am currently trying to drink a gallon everyday. It's a doable challenge!