Breastfeeding can come with its challenges, especially for new mothers. From plugged milk ducts to sore nipples, there are many things mothers have to worry about when feeding their babies straight from their nipples.
One issue many mothers might run into is uneven milk production. For some moms, one breast produces more milk than the other. It can be alarming because it might mean your baby is not getting enough nutrients that they need.
But uneven milk production is not the end of the world. Find out below what causes an asymmetrical milk supply and how to improve production.
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Which Breast Usually Produces More Milk?
An uneven milk supply happens to plenty of mothers. It is not alarming or worrying. You should be fine if you can produce enough milk to supply your baby’s daily nutrients.
A study comparing milk output among mothers with low birthweight infants suggested that milk production differs between left and right breasts. It is also said that the right breast produces more milk. Meanwhile, according to a blog post by the Western Missouri Medical Center, 75% of moms create more milk in their right breast, regardless of handedness.
Why Do I Have Uneven Milk Supply?
No breasts are identical, so do not be surprised if one breast produces more milk than the other. There are different reasons why your breasts have an uneven milk supply.
First, your breasts are made up of different amounts of milk ducts. One breast might have more milk-making tissues than the other. Thus, you might notice one breast producing less milk than the other.
Another reason is the letdown. One of your breasts might let down too forcefully and make your baby drink from the other breast. Likewise, a weaker letdown might not give enough milk for your hungry baby.
This leads to the next reason: you and your baby have preferences. Maybe both of you prefer nursing with one breast over the other because it is more comfortable and produces the right amount of milk.
Finally, trauma or surgery to the breast can impact your milk production. Surgeries like breast implants and breast reduction can affect the milk ducts and cause uneven milk production.
How Do I Increase Milk Production With an Uneven Milk Production?
Some parts of your body cannot be changed, such as the number of milk ducts and milk-making tissues in your breasts. However, you can follow these easy steps to induce breast milk production in one or both of your breasts.
You can start by breastfeeding with the less productive breast. Aim to begin your nursing session with the weaker breast since your baby is more vigorous at the start of feeding. Try to direct your baby as much as you can to the less favorable breast as much as you can.
You can use a breast pump to induce more milk production when you are not breastfeeding. Alternatively, you can massage your breast to increase milk flow and productivity.
Finally, encourage your baby to nurse with the less-preferred breast. Try new feeding positions or offer your breast when your baby is sleepy. These are some methods to get your baby to latch onto your less-productive breast.