As a newbie mother, there are a lot of questions that cross your mind. One of those many questions is whether you can get a period while breastfeeding. If you are breastfeeding your child after birth, there is a chance that your period might get delayed.
However, this might not always be the case, as some of the mothers get irregular periods in general. Prolactin, the hormone, is mostly responsible for delaying or preventing menstruation. When you are breastfeeding, the level of this hormone is high in your body.
For this very reason, you might not get your period or might experience light spotting when you are breastfeeding. Meanwhile, a few women get their period within a few weeks of giving birth, even when they are breastfeeding. When you start to wean your baby off your breast milk, you will again get back your period in regular intervals.
When Do You Start Menstruating After Childbirth?
You can get your first period after childbirth in five to six weeks. Or it might happen that you don’t get your period as long as you are nursing the baby. When you stop feeding your baby at night or start to give them formula, or start giving them solid food, your period will be back on track.
The first period after childbirth might be a little heavier than any other, there might be more cramps, and you might also get more blood clots. If you feel you are losing a lot of blood, then consult a doctor.
Does Menstruation Affect Your Milk Supply In Any Way?
Menstruation has a way of affecting the milk supply during the end of the cycle or during the entire cycle. This is because of the reduction in the concentration of prolactin. During this time, you might feel a little uncomfortable. You might even notice that your baby is coming back for more frequent intervals as there is a decrease in the milk supply.
Consult your doctor to look for possible ways in which you can increase the milk supply. Drink ample amounts of fluids, and if possible, discuss with your doctor if taking calcium and iron supplements could help you in any way.
Can You Start Menstruating While Breastfeeding?
There have been instances where women dont get their period until they start to wean their baby off breast milk. But you can even get your period in just a few weeks of giving birth. The timing is different for every mother. Irregular periods can be an aftereffect of your pregnancy and breastfeeding.
You are likely to get your period when your baby does not need feeding during the night. This happens when the baby sleeps for more than five to six hours. If you are nursing less or have started giving your baby solid food, you will get your period shortly.
Meanwhile, if you keep your baby close or carry them around in a sling or a carrier, there is less probability of getting your period immediately because you nurse your baby any time they want.
Can You Nurse Your Baby While Menstruating?
When you are menstruating, you might have sore nipples. Thus, it might be a little uncomfortable to breastfeed your baby during the initial days of your periods.
Here are some tips for minimizing the discomfort.
- Try to feed your baby frequently, keeping them on your breast, as that would improve the milk supply.
- Never use numbing cream to relieve the pain. This can make the baby’s mouth numb and make the whole process of breastfeeding uncomfortable for them.
- If the discomfort is getting too much for you, then it is best to consult a doctor and ask if you can use some over-the-counter pain reliever.
- If nursing gets too painful, try to pump the milk. It will get you enough milk supply for the time you need for the tenderness to go away.
If you are nursing your baby while menstruating, you will notice that your baby is refusing to latch on. This happens because there is a change in taste in your breast milk. The sodium and chlorine levels increase in your milk while you are on your period, and the level of lactose also goes down.
Because of this, the milk is on the salty side rather than sweet. You will find your baby getting fussy and feeding less because there is a change in taste or refusing to nurse. Once the period is over, your baby will get back to their regular nursing routine.
When You Get Back Your Period, Will It Be The Same As Before?
When you get back your period, it might be irregular in the beginning if you are still in the process of lactating. It is not anything unusual if you miss a period or even miss out on a few before you get the next one.
When you reduce the time of breastfeeding, your period will start to get back on track. You should contact a doctor if you are experiencing the following issues:
- Change in the usual pattern of your period.
- Irregular periods
- Bleeding between two cycles or spotting
- Bleeding is healthier than normal
- Long periods
- Painful periods
- Bleeding after you had sex.
Will Menstruation Affect Your Milk Supply?
When your menstruation returns, there will be little effect on your milk supply. But of course, you can keep breastfeeding if you choose. The change in hormones also has a way of affecting your baby’s feeding patterns. This could also affect your milk supply. But if you add a few breastfeeding sessions, it could boost the breast milk supply.
The breastfeeding and menstrual cycle could delay your new pregnancy. Some of the research shows that women dont ovulate during this time. They often dont ovulate or even drop an egg for six weeks after you have given birth.
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