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Conceiving the 2nd Baby during or soon after lactation

  1. #1
    KittyMom is offline Banned
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    Conceiving the 2nd Baby during or soon after lactation

    We've trying our first one for about 6-7 cycles. Since I missed few ovulations due to very demanding working environment, I took clomid to induce my ovulation for 5 cycles.
    Now our first one is almost 4.5 months and since I am still breastfeeding, my period is still not returning yet.
    What I've learned, the odd to be pregnant during lactation is very small especially if period has not resumed yet.
    We actually have been trying for the second one although we know the fact that the odd is very small and in fact we are not sure if I ovulate at all. I have a very demanding career and now I just go to work 4 times a week. That's the reason we prefer our children's age to be as close as possible, so the sooner they grow up together, the sooner I can resume to go back to my full time career.
    Actually, I want to go back to my doctor and ask her to prescribe me clomid again, but I am pretty sure that my doctor will discourage me to conceive another baby too soon after I deliver the first one.
    Does anyone know how to increase the odds for conceiving baby during lactation?
    How fast will my period and ovulation return once I stop breastfeeding?
    Thanks!!

  2. #2
    LLL_Sarah is offline Registered User
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    Generally breastfeeding will prevent pregnancy for at least the first six months postpartum. This is called LAM (Lactational Amenorrhea Method). The method is not so good as a contraceptive measure after the mother’s periods have returned or after six months.

    Often mothers will start to ovulate again when the baby started to go longer between feeds, especially if this is during the night. Usually you are looking for a gap of at least six hours between feeds to signal your body to ovulating again. Most babies under six months can not manage a gap of six hours and I believe this is why few mothers get pregnant during this time.

    Expressing some of the feeds instead of direct feeding will also reduce the contraceptive effect. It is estimated that a mother returning to work and pumping three times a day instead of directly breastfeeding reduces LAM from 99% to 75% in the first six months.

    I’ve talked to many mothers who have used only breastfeeding to space their children and usually there is a two year gap with the mother getting pregnant between the 13th and 17th month.

    One mother I know has almost exactly two years between her first two children but a three and a half year gap to the next. She believes that her body took longer to conceive the third time because she was generally more tired and run down.

    So suggestions to conceive again are:
    • Keep in as good health as possible
    • Eat as nutritiously as possible
    • Express some feeding instead of direct breastfeeding and
    • Wait until the baby is able to stretch the night feeds to over six hours
    .
    Please remember that there is a reason that mothers don’t get pregnant again so soon when breastfeeding and that is because it is much better for the mother’s health to have a gap of at least two years between babies. Statistically a mother will have more complications if her babies are born close together.

    I’ve also looked up the drug Clomid, in the book Medications and Mothers’ Milk by Thomas Hale, to see what he says about taking the drug while breastfeeding. The book doesn’t actually talk about whether or not the drug gets into the milk but rather that the drug will reduce the milk supply, especially when taken in the early post partum period.

    Getting pregnant again is also likely to reduce your milk supply. Feeding while pregnant is considered a risk to the older child rather than the unborn child. So if you do manage to conceive before your first child has started taking a fair amount of solids do keep a check on his weight gain. Not only is it healthier for the mother but also for the older baby if there is a gap of at least two years.

    Best wishes,
    SARAH

  3. #3
    KittyMom is offline Banned
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    Dear Sarah,

    Thank you for your information.
    I have actually started pumping my milk since I went back to work. I pump 4 times daily: once in the morning, twice in the afternoon, and once before I sleep. I supplement the baby with formula since the pumped breast milk not enough for his daily intake. Baby is now supposed to have 5 feeding session, but now just 4. He now refuses to drink his milk since he is now teething. Unless he is half sleepy then he will refuse to drink.
    Before he was 3 months old, he is already able to sleep through the night for at least 6 hours without feeding.

    What I wonder is even though I am not often pumping my milk and baby has started to sleep over night, but neither my period nor ovulation has started yet. You probably can suggest me on what has happened on my body.

    I realized that having a longer gap between 2 children is healthier for the mom. But due to my demanding career situation, it's better for me to have another child soon unless if I just want to have 1 child.

  4. #4
    LLL_Sarah is offline Registered User
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    Dear KittyMom,

    In the latest issue of New Beginnings, the international magazine from La Leche League, there is an article called Fertility Treatment and Weaning. It is actually from their Toddler Tips column which is a situation and answer from mother’s column.

    The situation was
    My partner and I are hoping that I will get pregnant again in a year when our daughter is two. To get pregnant with our daughter, I had to take Clomid and progesterone supplements and will more than likely need to do so again. The fertility doctor wants me to have my daughter weaned by the time we try again, but I don't think she will be ready. How have others dealt with this situation?

    Their baby is a little older than you are asking about but I thought you still might be interested in the article. If you’d like me to send you a pdf copy of it please contact me at [email protected]

    Best wishes,
    SARAH

  5. #5
    KittyMom is offline Banned
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    Dear Sarah,

    Thank you for your recommendation.
    Surely I'm intersted in the article. I will PM you my email address so please send me the information.

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