Yes. It is possible to breastfeed your adopted baby. You can do so by induced lactation, a process that can be done even if you have never been pregnant or reached menopause.
The American Academy of Pediatrics highly recommends induced lactation.
Adoptive mothers or mothers can also use the method used to induce lactation with babies born through surrogacy. These methods can help women produce milk for babies who have never been pregnant before.
It is important to consider the reasons for wanting to breastfeed. It is the ideal way to ensure your baby’s health and requires absolute dedication because it will be the way your baby will obtain nutrition for their body to help them grow up into a healthy person.
Prepare yourself mentally
Breastfeeding also requires mental preparation. Babies are required to feed every 1.5 – 2 hours, so you and your partner have to ensure that you meet your baby’s needs. Breast milk is digested faster than formula, which results in your baby feeding often.
Reading this article means you are preparing yourself for this possibility or want to learn more about how to breastfeed your adopted baby possibly. The milk a woman can make through induced lactation varies from woman to woman. There is currently no sure way to know how much milk you will provide your baby ahead of time. Any amount will greatly benefit your baby.
Breastfeeding is not just about the milk, but the relationship you share with your baby. Use the time you are breastfeeding to bond with your baby too. Do not become stressed about milk.
Allowing yourself to relax relaxes your baby, and since your baby’s demand produces breast milk, this will allow your body to sync with your baby’s needs and help you provide the nourishment they need to grow.
Here are some ways you can successfully breastfeed your adopted baby.
Ideally, you would want to start the process of inducing lactation before your baby arrives. The ideal time needed to induce lactation with hormones is six months.
It is important to understand the underlying factors that trigger the production of breast milk.
Naturally, breast milk is triggered into production by interacting with the hormones estrogen, progesterone, and human placental lactogen. This happens during the last months of the pregnancy.
After delivery, the body produces the hormone prolactin, which initiates milk production with the
fall of estrogen and progesterone.
If your baby’s arrival is months away, you can work with your doctor, who will prescribe hormone therapy with progesterone and estrogen that mimic the effects of pregnancy, to allow your body to adjust the same way it would be pregnant. Your doctor will have you stop the treatments two months before you start breastfeeding. At this time, your body will start producing prolactin.
The process of breastfeeding your adopted baby
You will be advised to pump for 5 minutes, three days every day. Once you are comfortable and producing a consistent amount of milk, you will be advised to pump for 10minutes every 4 hours, including pumping once during the night.
You will increase your pumping time to 15 or 20 minutes, every 2hours to 3 hours. You will be advised to continue this routine until the arrival of your baby.
If you find yourself short on time, your doctor may use Dr. Newman’s accelerated protocol where you will take a recommended prescription or herbs such as Blessed Thistle herb and fenugreek seed and domperidone, which is to be taken 30 minutes before any meal.
The menopause protocol is available for women who have naturally reached menopause or have had their reproductive organs surgically removed.
It is important to work with your doctor or healthcare provider for the best outcome for you and your baby.
Consistent breast milk supply
Having a constant high source of breast milk is important for your baby. Breast milk production adjusts itself according to your baby’s needs, creating a supply and demand process.
The more milk your baby needs, the more milk your body will produce.
Your doctor may recommend continued pumping to create high demand, ensuring you produce enough milk for your baby.
Focus on bonding while breastfeeding
It is important to remember that breastfeeding is not only about the milk, but the bonding experience with your baby.
Your baby is at a sensitive time in their lives because they are transitioning to a new family and Mother. It is important to understand this from your baby’s perspective. They need your reassurance regarding their security, the reinforcement of your love, and the creation of a stress-free environment to settle into.
Do your best to remain stress-free about your milk production. Being stress-free will allow your body to relax and produce more milk and also give your baby the comfort they need in making their adjustment.
Remember that they have known a different person as a mom for nine months, so it’s best to help them adjust well. They love you too.
Work with a lactation consultant.
Working with a lactation consultant is the best way to ensure that you successfully breastfeed your baby.
A lactation consultant is a healthcare provider who can help you successfully breastfeed your baby. They are certified by the International Board Certified Lactation Consultants and work to help provide personalized solutions for poor milk production, the low weight of the baby, struggles with breastfeeding, helping your resolve emotional or physical barriers that inhibit successful breastfeeding.
They also help you physically and mentally prepare for your baby. It has been found that women who work with a lactation consultant are 16 times more likely to stick to breastfeeding, enjoy it, and help their baby get the best health.
It is important to take your time to research and find a great lactation consultant who is a great fit for yourself and your baby. Your lactation consultant will play a large role in your first few months with your baby, and you must be comfortable with them and work well together.
Breastfeeding is a wonderful experience for yourself, your baby, your partner, and your other children. It reinforces the security of the family unit and ensures that you are healthy, and so is your growing baby.