Powders which boost milk supply

Every monday during my rounds of postnatal mothers and babies I am saddened and angered by the massive amounts of formula tins and jars of the so called “Ayurvedic powders supposed to boost the milk supply” I see on each bedside…

Why mostly on mondays… because sunday is the only day I am not around in the wards to give anticipatory guidance to moms.

I am not as much against these powders as I am by the negative impact prescribing these have on a new mother’s psychology…….adding something to build up milk supply, implies that the lady wasn’t producing enough….. what the new mum’s brain perceives is that she is incapable of fulfilling the needs of her baby! Then when there is breast fullness on Day 3/4 the credit goes to the powder….

Other harmful aspect is that the actual cause of baby staying dissatisfied at breast…. Which most commonly is a suboptimal latch goes unaddressed …

As a result their take home message is that the powder helped in making sufficient milk. So they started their breastfeeding journeys underconfident and insecure .

And if the latch is not good enough mom keeps having complaints that baby is dissatisfied or takes very long feeds or causes pain etc etc

Is there a solution to this? Fortunately yes!!

If everyone knew the simple basic principle of milk production, how to latch on a baby effectively and how to assess good milk transfer, we will not even need these powders.

Add to it a little more knowledge about a newborn’s tummy size, behaviour, significance skin to skin contact and technique hand expression… And we have a winning formula.

So in a nutshell..

Get information on breastfeeding from a good/ reputed Antenatal class when you are pregnant where they tell you about all these things before you deliver your baby and incase you face challenges after birth of your baby, get help from a trained lactation professional / LC.

PS: Till date, no scientific study has actually concluded that these powders actually boost milk supply!!

Published by Dr Shacchee Baweja IBCLC

International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) BPNI tranied Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF) Specialist

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