If you choose to breastfeed for a month or a year, you will eventually want to stop. Some women may have their breast milk supply dry naturally, but most do not. Read on to learn a few tricks to help speed this process up.
Method 1 of 2: Recommended-Doctor Advice
Wean gradually, if possible. Start replacing one or two meals a day, and work your way to stopping altogether. This is the safest and most painless way your body will slowly stop producing milk.
- Breasts that are not weaned slowly but suddenly can become painful, swollen, and even put mothers at significant risk for the development of mastitis.
- If you’ve been pumping and want to stop, here’s a typical schedule that will deprive you of your pump slowly but surely:
- Day 1: pump for 5 minutes every 2-3 hours
- Day 2: pump for 5 minutes every 4-5 hours
- Day 3-7: Pump just long enough to relieve discomfort
Take a painkiller containing ibuprofen or acetaminophen. This should reduce your discomfort and some swelling.
Avoid stimulation of the nipples as this will trigger the production of milk.Wear a firm bra, but not too tight. Opt for clothes that are loose and less likely to show milk spots; Consider using nursing pads to absorb milk leaking.
- Taking a hot bath, while inevitably involves some stimulation, can help relieve chest pressure and relieve discomfort.Avoid direct stimulation of water whenever possible.
Avoid pumping your milk as it signals to your body that it needs to produce more. If you start to become swollen, pump just enough hand to reduce your discomfort.
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Drink lots of water. If you become dehydrated, you will actually start to produce more milk, and your discomfort increases.
In severe cases, talk to your doctor about estrogen injections. Estrogen injections have fallen into disuse, although they have already been used to promote estrogen suppression. Some forms of estrogen injections contain known carcinogens.
- If you have problems consistent with suppression of lactation, ask your doctor about taking medicines like bromocriptine (Parlodel).Doctors generally do not recommend taking Parlodel because of the increased likelihood of hypertension, stroke and heart attack.
Prepare emotionally. Hormone levels will dramatically change as your milk production decreases, which will cause mood swings. Many women feel guilty, inadequate and sad.Getting started with these emotions can be the most difficult part of the whole process, but having a good support system will help.
Method 2 of 2: Unconfirmed Remedies
Drink sage tea. Sage contains a natural estrogen that has the reputation of drying milk production. You can find the wise in one of two ways:
- Like a tea: buy sage tea at your local specialty health store, and prepare it along with some milk and honey.
- As a tincture: buy a tincture sage, which is mixed with a little alcohol, in a health food store. This tincture is reputed to be a little more efficient than sage tea in drying out its milk production.
- Apply cold compresses or cabbage to your breasts.Cabbage leaves work very well as they are cool, and there is a component to them that naturally dries up your milk.Apply them all over your chest and replace them whenever you want.
- Take vitamin B6.Vitamin B6 is reputed to stop the body’s production of plasma prolactin, which is what causes mothers to produce breast milk. Several studies, however, did not find statistically relevant data to suggest that vitamin B6 women actually helped suppress lactation.
- Use cheap maxi pads to help absorb the milk leak. I know it sounds weird, but it works with keeping your clothes dry. Just cut it in half and stick to your bra. Do not cut into quarters, thirds, etc. because you will end up with a soft white mess.
- For the first few nights you can leak significantly. Try wrapping a towel and attaching it across your breasts using a fitted shirt.This will absorb the milk without creating a mess. The extra cover can also help you find a comfortable sleeping position.
- Also, consider first weaning your baby from the breast, slowly reducing the number of times you nurse until it is zero. Then pump in the nursing place, say, 4 times a day, until it is 0, taking out a pumping session every 3-7 days. This allows you to slowly reduce your milk production without the pain and swollen breasts.Understand that the most difficult sessions to take out are the nighttime blowjobs (before bedtime or overnight) so be ready to show some tough love or let your partner take the wheel at these times for a few days until your baby fits To the new scenario.
- Do not use heat on the engorged breasts. This will increase the pain and can trigger the production of milk.
- Do not bind your breasts.