Question of the Day
My problem is that I produce a lot of breast milk. Mothers around me tell me that they wish they had the same problem, so it's difficult to consult with anyone about my concerns. I have too much milk for my baby to easily consume, so I have to wipe or pump it away little by little. Is this the right way to do it?
Some mothers are worried about having too much milk, but there are also mothers who are worried about having too little milk. If the milk supply is high and the ducts are wide, the baby may strangely refuse to suckle.
Your child may also defecate a lot due to an imbalance in the aftermath of breastfeeding if the supply of milk is either very low or very high. Producing a lot of breast milk is hard for the mother, too. When you wake up in the morning, your clothes may still be wet even though you’re wearing a nursing pad, and many mothers have to then spend the day frantically doing breast pumping and breast care.
If your child has a lot of loose stools, they may develop a rash on her buttocks, which can be painful. If you have too much milk for your baby, how do you take care of it?
Will certain foods, such as sikhye (Korean Sweet Rice Punch), help?
It is difficult to reduce your milk supply with food.
The sugar component in sikhye promotes breast milk, which can make milk flow better. So, how about eating only malt? This may be able to help a little, but after all, it is difficult to control the amount of milk produced through food alone.
So, how is breast milk produced? When the baby sucks, an impulse is transmitted to the mother's pituitary gland. Hormones called prolactin and oxytocin are secreted, and prolactin gives the command to change blood into breast milk.
Oxytocin pushes out the milk that collects in the mammary glands, allowing the baby to feed. In a nutshell, it means that the act of your baby sucking leads to breast milk production.
Try reducing how much milk you express.
If you are worried about a lot of breast milk, you should reduce the sensation of sucking that triggers its production. If your child is already eating enough milk, there is no reason to express any more. If you keep expressing milk, the amount of milk you produce will increase. Avoid breastfeeding and expressing as much as possible when your baby isn’t hungry.
Of course, you shouldn't stop pumping overnight after you've been expressing a large amount. If you do this, excess breast milk can remain in the breast and cause diseases such as mastitis. Think of it as gradually reducing your milk supply. If you've pumped with a bottle, you'll be able to see how much milk you've been expressing.
Reduce the amount of milk gradually, such as pumping 100ml to 50ml, or expressing 2 times if you pumped 3 times. Ultimately, the goal is to not pump at the end.
Tip: You might be reducing the amount of breast milk expressed as planned, but there will be days when you suddenly feel tight and hot. In this case, express all breast milk immediately. Think of it as an emergency measure for mastitis. Of course, these situations should be on the 'just in case' level.
# Parenting advice from Director Hyang-Hwa Kwon
What if you are a mother with severe cases of milk ejection?
If you have a lot of milk and you have heavy ejections, try to express a little by hand before breastfeeding. You should never squeeze too much; the amount of milk expressed should be very little, around 3ml.
Bring a handkerchief or towelette and let the towel run off just enough to wet the towel (just enough to prevent spillage). If the ejection is not severe and your child is comfortable, there is no need to express it by hand.