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Can breastmilk dry up overnight? This is a common question some moms ask. Breast milk is full of essential nutrients that help the growth and development of a baby. Your baby’s first contact of food is the breast milk, as it contains nutrient to protect your baby’s immune system, helps to build your baby’s fragile digestive system and protect your baby from infection. Therefore, breast milk is important in the development of a baby.
Every mother can get worried when the supply of breastmilk gets low or completely dries up because this would affect the health and development of the baby. Below are some factors that can lead to your breastmilk drying up overnight.
Factors That Can Make Your Breast milk Dry Up
Stress can reduce the supply of breastmilk and result in it drying up, stress increases the level of some hormones in the body which can affect the supply of milk. When you experience stress, cortisol, adrenaline, and norepinephrine are secreted and this can affect the content of your milk, and make it dry up.
2) Not staying hydrated
Breast milk is made up of about 90% water and lack of copious fluid can reduce the supply of milk and make it dry up. Adequate hydration is essential to boost the production of milk in a mother. When the level of liquid in your body is high, there would be an adequate supply of milk.
Falling sick when you are breastfeeding your baby could lead to a decrease in the supply of breastmilk. Mild sickness might not necessarily decrease your milk supply, but symptoms of sickness such as vomiting, fatigue, or loss of appetite can lead to your breastmilk drying up.
4) Low food intake
Food gives strength for you to breastfeed and your milk supply. If a mother has a low food intake, there would be a low supply of breastmilk. Eat in bits to aid you to keep fit and lose the weight gained during pregnancy, but that can lead to a low supply of breastmilk and cause your breast milk to dry up overnight.
5) Intake of excess caffeine and alcohol
Excess alcohol and caffeine in a nursing mother’s body dehydrate and reduce the supply of breastmilk. It can also be passed through your breastmilk to the baby, and this might lead to a reduced intake of breastmilk by your baby. When your baby does not feed on your breastmilk, the supply reduces and eventually leads to your breast milk drying up overnight.
6) Infrequent feeding
Infrequent feeding can be another factor for your breastmilk drying up. When your breast is not stimulated by your baby, you begin to develop a low milk supply. It is advised that your baby feeds every 2 to 3 hours daily. When you regulate your baby’s feeding period, it results in a low milk supply and your breast milk supply begins to reduce until it dries up.
You need to get your breastmilk supply back after it dries up, so your baby can feed well and have the essential nutrients for healthy development. Below are a few tips on how to get your breastmilk back after drying up overnight.
3 Breast milk drying up symptoms
There are unmistaken symptoms you will experience when your breast milk is drying up. Find some of them below.
1. Your baby is not gaining weight as they should. Babies are supposed to gain weight steadily after birth. If this is not so in your case, then the baby is not getting enough breast milk.
2. The number of diapers produced by the baby is dropping. This signifies the amount of food they eat. Though, as they grow older, they tend to poo less, but if you notice that the number of used diapers is reducing for no reason, it may be they are not getting enough from your breast milk.
3. The baby is dehydrated. Signs of dehydration in babies include no tears when crying, sunken soft spot on their head, low energy levels, etc. If you notice these symptoms in your baby, then they are not getting much milk.
5 Tips on How to Get You Breastmilk Back After Drying Up Overnight
1) Have a healthy lifestyle
Having a healthy lifestyle increases your supply of breastmilk. You can stimulate the supply of breastmilk naturally by having a healthy daily routine. A healthy routine like proper rest, staying hydrated, taking food that can naturally stimulate your supply of breast milk, etc. This healthy daily routine is important in getting your breastmilk supply when it dries up. Breastfeeding is tasking and takes nutrients from your body. You need to actively replenish this nutrient to prevent your breastmilk from drying up.
2) Apply a warm compress to your breast
Applying a warm compress to your breast can simulate your breastmilk supply by opening the milk ducts. You need to apply a warm and moist compress to your breast before breastfeeding and massage it from the top of your breast to your nipple. Then, firmly massage your breast in a circular motion to move the supply of milk back to your nipple.
3) Keep breastfeeding your baby
It is essential that you stimulate the production of breastmilk on your breast by breastfeeding your baby at least once every 2-3hours daily. The more you feed yourself and the baby, the more your breast is stimulated to produce more supply of milk. Your baby needs to be latched on to your breast properly; this allows hormones, like oxytocin, to be released. It is this hormone that signals your breast milk to keep flowing.
4) Get a nursing supplementer
A nursing supplementer is an alternative method of feeding for your baby, that allows your baby to draw milk from the breast and the nursing supplementer device at the same time. This process makes your baby stimulate the production of breast milk while taking milk from the supplementer tapped to your breast.
5) Patience and determination
When trying to get your breastmilk back after drying up, you need to be patient and determined. It takes determination and patience to stimulate the glands that produce breast milk. Getting your breastmilk back is not an overnight process. It is possible to get your milk back, so don’t stress about the amount of milk being produced, with patience and determination, you’ll get to breastfeed your little one again.
Breastmilk is the first form of food a baby takes. It contains the essential nutrients needed for the healthy development of your baby. Your breastmilk can dry up overnight because of the reduction of the supply of milk. This can be caused by so many factors which include stress, infrequent feeding, high intake of alcohol and caffeine, etc. These tips will get your breastmilk back after drying up. It is important that you are patient as you try to get your breast milk back. Therefore, don’t be discouraged when your supply of milk does not flow as you have expected.