As we know, menstruation is connected to pregnancy, fertility and even breastfeeding. One of the first signs of pregnancy is missing a period. And while you are pregnant, the hormones keep your period away. When you finally gave birth and decide to breastfeed, does breastfeeding stop your period? Your period may stop for weeks, months, or even longer. So how will menstruation affect breastfeeding and your baby? And when should you expect your period to come back?
Moms may have many questions about what they should when their baby. This article will help learn everything you need to know about your period and breastfeeding.
The truth is, it is hard to be exact when it comes to when your period will start again because every woman is different. If you are bottle-feeding your baby or you combine bottle feeding and breastfeeding, your period will come back as soon as 5 to 6 weeks after you give birth. If you are on full breastfeed including at night, your period may not start until you stop breastfeeding or until you stop night-time breastfeeding. This is because the hormones that cause your body to make breast milk can stop your body from making the hormones that control your periods. When your baby starts breastfeeding less often, you may start spotting or spots of blood.
Actually, the bleeding you have right after your baby was born may seem like a period but it’s not. That bleeding is called lochia, and it is a mixture of blood, tissue, and mucus from your uterus. Lochia starts as bright red bleeding. It can be heavy and contain blood clots as well. It will start to slow down after a few days. It will eventually become color brown, then yellow or white. This bleeding can last up to six weeks.
Breastfeeding can hold your period longer but in some cases, you could get your period back right away even when you breastfeed.
You will get your period way back sooner if you do these things:
- You decide not to breastfeed your baby.
- Also, you do not exclusively breastfeed, so it’s every two to three hours.
- You use bottles to feed the baby
- Your baby is now starting to sleep through the night.
- You are starting to give solid foods.
- You begin to wean your child.
If your period returns, it doesn’t mean that you have to wean your baby now. It is perfectly safe to breastfeed even when you are in your period. It is not harmful to your child or to you at all. Your breast milk is still healthy and nutritious for the baby. But, the hormonal changes leading to your period can affect your breast milk and the pattern of your baby’s breastfeeding for a few days.
You don’t have to worry because you may not notice any changes when your period returns and even if there some changes, your baby won’t mind as well.
However, it’s also possible that the return of your period can cause:
- A dip in your breast milk supply
- Tender nipples
- Taste of the breast milk has changed, the breast milk will become saltier and less sweet
Now, moms should not be worried because it is normal to have your period back even when you are breastfeeding. When you exclusively breastfeed though, it may take longer to come back. When you just use bottle-feeding or use less of breastfeeding, your period will come back sooner as well.
We hope that this article has helped moms all over the world about breastfeeding and period. May you have a healthy breastfeeding journey and may your kid grow up to be strong and healthy.
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