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How does Breastfeeding affect Fertility

For most people who breastfeed, fertility is suppressed for some time after birth, as the body devotes energy to grow the new nursing baby.  This actually makes breastfeeding an extremely effective form of contraception.  In fact if a baby is under 6 months old, exclusively breastfeeding, and the woman's period has not returned, breastfeeding is 98% effective as a contraceptive.  After 6 months fertility is more likely to return (as baby starts solids and reduces breastmilk intake), but for many people breastfeeding continues to have a substantial impact on fertility.  Where one breastfeeding women may get her period back at 3 months pp while fully breastfeeding, another women may find herself frustrated as she is now 18 months post-partum, desperately wants to have another baby, but hasn't had a period yet.  Another may be having menstrual cycles but finds them to be longer or shorter than before, and find themselves subfertile while breastfeeding.

This consultation is designed for those women who are wanting to conceive while breastfeeding.  It can be done in person or via skype and will involve a discussion around breastfeeding and fertility and the effect on hormones concentrating on the individual dyad's feeding pattern.  It will cover ways of changing the feeding pattern in order to maximise chances of a normal fertile cycle and methods of tracking the cycle in order to identify any fertility issues.  It will also cover weaning, or temporary weaning if necessary in order to maximise chances of pregnancy.

Next Steps

If you have any questions about a session or would like to arrange to meet, please get in touch.

Important Information

All material on this website is provided for educational purposes only. Online information cannot replace an in-person consultation with a qualified, independent International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) or your health care provider. If you are concerned about your health, or that of your child, consult with your health care provider regarding the advisability of any opinions or recommendations with respect to your individual situation.