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Q&A: Re-lactating?

Breastfeeding wasn't really working out, and I gave it up. I regret this decision and want to breastfeed now at eight weeks postpartum. Can I re-lactate?
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Updated
August 18, 2016
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Yes. In fact, women are able to re-lactate years after they stop breastfeeding (to feed an adopted baby, for example). With good support, you can work to rebuild your milk supply and teach baby to breastfeed. A lactation supplementer will be key — this is a device that holds fluid (breast milk or formula) that baby receives through a little tube as he suckles on your breast. This way, baby practices nursing AND stimulates your milk supply while he gets his dinner.

Contact a lactation consultant (IBCLC) ASAP for help. She’ll be able to help you and baby learn to breastfeed, teach you how to use the supplementer, and offer more tips for building your supply of breast milk.

Please note: The Bump and the materials and information it contains are not intended to, and do not constitute, medical or other health advice or diagnosis and should not be used as such. You should always consult with a qualified physician or health professional about your specific circumstances.

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