mom successfully breastfeeding baby

Can Breast Milk Come Back After Drying Up? 10 Tips for Relactation

Can breast milk come back after drying up? Sometimes a mom will have their breast milk dry up too soon or once the baby has been weaned and they might choose to breastfeed again. Some methods can be used to re-lactate and bring back a mother’s milk supply. Ways to bring back your breast milk supply are drinking plenty of water, breastfeeding often, and pumping often with eating the right foods.

Re-lactation

Re-lactation is the process of restarting breastfeeding in a woman who has stopped breastfeeding their baby for a long time by weaning.

This can be done through different methods, such as drinking plenty of water, breastfeeding often, and pumping often. It’s also possible to take supplements that help with milk production. Moms should not give up hope in trying these methods!

How to re-lactate and bring back your milk supply

If you have stopped producing breast milk, don’t worry! There are ways to start breastfeeding again.

The most important step is breastfeeding and pumping as much as possible. This will help your body to produce more milk.

The more milk you remove, the more it is produced. And if you want to re-lactate, the single most important thing you can do is breastfeed or pump regularly.

It’s also possible to take supplements that are known to help boost your supply. These include brewer’s yeast, fenugreek, and blessed thistle.

1. Breastfeed on demand

It’s important to breastfeed on demand in order to keep up your milk supply. This means breastfeeding as often as possible, and not waiting until the baby is hungry.

Frequent breast stimulation is above all the most important thing and will make the most difference when you are trying to bring back your full milk supply.

Try to feed the baby whenever they show signs of being hungry, such as making sucking noises or putting their hands in their mouth. This will help your body to produce more milk.

mom breastfeeding her baby

2. Power pump

Power pumping is a technique that can be used to increase your milk supply. This involves pumping for a set amount of time, followed by a break, and then doing it again. You should do this for as long as you want to increase your milk supply.

The best time to power pump is when your baby is asleep. This will allow you to pump without interruption. You can also use power pumping to make up for missed breastfeeding sessions.

It’s important to drink plenty of water while power pumping to prevent dehydration.

Related: How to Increase Milk Supply by Power Pumping

3. Use a hospital-grade breast pump

If you are having trouble producing milk, you may want to consider using a hospital-grade breast pump. This type of pump is more powerful than a standard breast pump and can help you to increase your milk supply.

Hospital-grade pumps can be rented from your local hospital or bought online. They are often expensive but can be worth the investment if you are having trouble producing milk.

When using a hospital-grade breast pump, make sure to follow the instructions carefully. Pump for the recommended amount of time, and take breaks in between.

Related: Spectra Breast Pump Settings for Best Results & Optimal Milk Output

4. Massage while breastfeeding

Massaging your breasts while breastfeeding can help to increase the amount of breast milk that you produce. Massaging your breasts will help the milk to flow more freely, and will also help to stimulate milk production.

You can massage your breasts while you are breastfeeding, this will help give an optimal output of breast milk.

If you are massaging your breasts while breastfeeding, make sure to do it gently. Make a C-shape with your hands on your breasts and apply small circular motions to massage your breasts.

You can also use breast massagers. They can really help!

Related: Best Breastfeeding Tips for Producing More Milk

5. Eat galactagogue foods to boost milk production

If you are having trouble producing milk, you may want to consider eating galactagogue foods. Galactagogue foods are foods that help to increase milk production.

Some of the best galactagogue foods include:

-Brewer’s yeast

-Fenugreek

-Blessed thistle

-Oats or oatmeal cookies

-Garlic

-Spinach

Eating these foods can help with making milk and help you to produce more breast milk.

Related: Foods to Increase Milk Supply for Breastfeeding Moms

6. Lots of skin-to-skin

Lots of skin-to-skin time increases milk supply. When a baby is skin-to-skin with their mother, they will feel more comfortable and relaxed. This will help them to nurse more often, which will, in turn, help the mother to produce more milk.

Skin-to-skin also has other benefits for both the mother and the baby. For the mother, it can help to reduce stress and promote bonding with her child. For the baby, it can help to improve weight gain, breathing rates, and blood sugar levels.

If you are having trouble producing milk, consider spending time skin-to-skin with your baby. This will help to increase your milk supply and will help you to produce more breast milk.

mom holder her baby

7. Hand express a little breast milk before you put baby to breast

If you are able to express a little milk before you breastfeed your baby, this will get them interested enough to latch on. This means you use both of your hands to squeeze or press on your breasts. Then the milk will come out and it will get your baby motivated to latch onto the breast.

This can be beneficial for mothers who are exclusively breastfeeding, as the baby will need to suckle on your breasts. If you don’t have any milk in your breasts, it may be more difficult for the baby to latch onto your breast and feed.

So if you want that extra little boost of breast milk, then before you put the baby

Related: 6 Steps to Get a Correct Latch for Breastfeeding

8. Pace bottle feed

If you are bottle-feeding your baby, you may want to consider pacing the feeding. This means that you should not feed the baby too fast. Instead, you should take your time and let the baby eat at their own pace.

Pacing the feeding can help to ensure that the baby takes in enough milk, and will also help to prevent them from becoming used to getting that fast flow that bottles can have but breasts usually only have that flow with the letdown.

If you are bottle-feeding your baby, make sure to take your time and allow them to eat at their own pace by tilting the bottle a little less and having it more parallel to the floor. This will help them to get the most out of each feeding and will also help to prevent them from preferring the bottle over breastfeeding.

Related: Best Glass Bottles for Breastfed Babies

9. Supplemental tube feeding with help of a lactation consultant

If you are having trouble producing milk, you may want to consider supplemental feeding. This means that you will give your baby formula or pumped milk (from you or a donor) in a tube that is attached close to your nipple while you are breastfeeding.

Supplemental feeding can be done with the help of a lactation consultant. A lactation specialist can help to guide you through the process of supplemental feeding and can help to make sure that your baby is getting the nutrients that they need while helping you with the tube placement.

If you are trying to re-lactate, supplemental tube feeding may be a good option for you and your baby. With the help of a lactation consultant, you can make sure that your baby is getting the nutrients they need and that you are providing them with the best possible care.

10. Offer the breast when they are not too hungry

If your baby is not too hungry, you may want to offer them the breast. This means that you should not wait until they are starving before you offer them the breast.

When a baby is too hungry, they may become frustrated and will not be able to latch on correctly. This can make it more difficult for the mother to produce milk.

If your baby is not too hungry, try to offer them the breast when they are calm and content. This will make it easier for them to latch on and will help the mother to produce more milk.

How long does re-lactation take?

It can take a few weeks for the mother to start producing milk again or it can take a few months. However, with the help of different techniques and the right foods, moms can produce milk again.

You might be able to make enough milk to exclusively breastfeed or you might make just enough for a few feedings. Both are great. Any amount of breast milk is better than no breast milk.

mom holding here baby in bed breastfeeding

Adoption and induced lactation

Induced lactation is if you haven’t breastfed before and you are trying to start after surrogacy or adoption. Which is much different than re-lactation.

There are a few different ways that you can induce lactation. You can take a medication called domperidone, eat specific foods that are known to help you make milk, or use a breast pump often.

If you are considering induced lactation, it is important to talk to your doctor first. They can help to guide you through the process.

Induced lactation can be a great way for mothers to provide their adopted baby with breast milk. It may take a few weeks or months, but it can be very rewarding in the end.

Related: Best Breast Pumps to Induce Lactation Fast

Signs your milk supply is increasing

If you are trying to re-lactate, it is important to be aware of the signs that your milk supply is increasing. This will help you to track your progress and will give you a sense of encouragement.

Some of the signs that your milk supply is increasing include the following:

– You feel more engorged in the morning

– Breasts feel heavier

– You hear gulps shortly after you start breastfeeding

– Your baby is gaining weight

– Breasts are leaking

– Milk is being expressed when you pump

When to move on

There may be times when it is best to give up on re-lactation. This may be if the mother is not seeing any progress or if she is stressed and overwhelmed. It’s not worth your mental health to get a few more ounces of breast milk out.

It is important to remember that every mother is different and that not all techniques will work for everyone. If one technique is not working, try another one.

If you are feeling discouraged, talk to your doctor or a lactation consultant. They can help you to decide if it is time to give up on re-lactation.

mom holding here baby smiling

Ways for mothers to find help with their breastfeeding journey

Breastfeeding can be a difficult journey, but there are ways to find support. Here are a few suggestions:

– Talk to your doctor. They can provide you with advice and support.

– Talk to other mothers who have breastfed. They can offer you emotional support and advice.

– Join a breastfeeding support group. This can be online or in person. The La Leche League is a great organization for in-person support and there are a lot of great Facebook breastfeeding groups out there as well.

– Contact a lactation consultant. They can help you with any breastfeeding issues you are having.

– Read books or articles about breastfeeding. This can help you to understand more about the process and how to troubleshoot any problems you may be having. I love The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding.

-Get support from your partner or family member. Have them help with anything from taking care of the baby while you pump to doing the dishes while you have lots of skin-on-skin time with your baby.

Related: How to Prepare for Breastfeeding in 15 Tips

Final thoughts

If the mother does not breastfeed for an extended period of time, her body will eventually stop producing milk. Can breast milk come back after drying up? Yes, however, it will take some time and patience. If the mother starts to try to re-lactate and follows these tips, she may find that her milk supply comes back.

The mother can try different techniques to bring her milk supply back such as drinking more water, breastfeeding regularly and pumping often, and taking supplements that are known to help bring women to a full milk supply.

If you’re interested in bringing your milk supply back after it has dried up, talk to a lactation specialist or your healthcare provider for more information.

Be sure to read Breastfeeding for Beginners: 12 Tips to Breastfeed Successfully and 15 Tips for What Helps Milk Come in Faster