You spent nine months anticipating your baby’s birth, and now you’re finally holding the bundle of joy in your arms. Congratulations!
However, soreness and a low milk supply can take the fun out of your celebration if you struggle to breastfeed your baby. Don’t give up — we can help.
Our holistic postpartum experts at Earthy Ruby in Cupertino, California, specialize in caring for moms during and after pregnancy, and we offer treatment to ease the aches, pains, and breastfeeding challenges that often arise after delivery.
Here’s a look at how massage therapy can stimulate lactation and enhance the breastfeeding experience for you and your baby.
Every breastfeeding mom wonders if she’s making enough milk and if her child is getting adequate nutrition. Your breasts don’t have measurement marks like bottles, so how do you know how much milk your baby drinks?
Fortunately, your baby and your breasts give you clear clues about what’s happening inside your milk factory. For example, most women feel a tingling sensation when their milk begins to let down. If your milk doesn’t release or the letdown is delayed, your baby may become frustrated at the breast.
Other signs your baby isn’t getting enough milk include:
Most mothers have plenty of milk, but the milk doesn’t always make it to the baby’s stomach due to problems that occur during breastfeeding. Some babies fall asleep at the breast, milk ducts get clogged, bottles confuse the child, and the mother’s sleep and nutrition play a role.
We can ease breastfeeding challenges with evidence-based treatments, such as acupuncture to relieve stress, pain, and depression; life coaching to help you identify issues that interfere with breastfeeding success; and massage therapy to stimulate lactation.
Breast massage benefits you in several ways. Here’s a closer look at how our experts use this specialized massage therapy to enhance breastfeeding.
In the first few days following delivery, you may experience engorgement when blood flows to your breasts to help them amp up the milk supply. This makes your breasts feel hard, painful, and warm to the touch, making it difficult for your baby to latch on.
Breast massage can reduce engorgement and restore your breasts to their softer state, so milk flows more freely. Massage also reduces pain, so the experience is more comfortable.
If your baby doesn’t feed long enough or frequently enough, the milk stays in the breast ducts, hardens, and blocks milk flow. Breast massage eases the milk out of the clogged ducts and restores proper milk flow.
Mastitis is inflammation that occurs when you don’t address clogged ducts. In some cases, mastitis causes fever and flu-like symptoms. Massage therapy unclogs ducts and eases mastitis symptoms.
Breastfeeding for the first time can be uncomfortable or even painful. Massage therapy relaxes tight muscles, reduces stress, and reduces the pain associated with breastfeeding.
Studies show that by increasing your body’s production of oxytocin, the hormone responsible for the letdown effect, massage therapy can increase your production and improve the flow, so your baby gets plenty during each feeding.
Hardened nipples and breasts make it difficult for your baby to latch on. Breast massage therapy softens the tissues and makes feeding your baby easier and more successful.
Every mother and baby is different. Your postpartum treatment plan may include a combination of massage therapy, specialized breast massage therapy, acupuncture, and life coaching.
Contact us online or by phone to schedule a consultation with our postpartum experts and learn how our after-delivery care can rev up your milk supply and enhance the breastfeeding experience.