Make & Maintain Your Milk
Your first milk (colostrum) is thick and golden. Early milk comes in very small amounts – yet is full of nutrients and proteins that boost your baby’s immune system.
Your milk will change over the first 3-5 days into larger amounts of mature milk, which has more water to satisfy your baby’s thirst.
When your amount of milk increases, it is often referred to as “coming in.” This is misleading because your breasts were not empty before this time – they already have milk in them for your baby.
Move it or lose it!
- Making a full supply of milk requires frequent removal of milk from your breasts.
- If milk is NOT removed from your breasts, your body is given the message to make less milk.
- You should use breast massage, hand expression and/or pumping to remove milk (and keep making milk) if you are separated from your baby
At first, Tonya didn’t want to breastfeed because she had heard it could hurt.
But with all the health benefits for her baby and herself, she decided to try.
After her baby was born, she did try, and just as she expected, it did hurt her nipples a bit. Her lactation consultant and peer counselor helped to find the source of the pain and make changes to reduce the discomfort.
This helped, but then a few days postpartum she felt pain in both breasts. Again, she got help from a skilled support person, and was able to stick with it.
In a couple of weeks all the discomforts were gone and never came back. Tonya is still breastfeeding at a year out and is very happy she continued – the discomfort in the beginning was worth it!