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Need a serious, FACTUAL answer

No, bashing please!! My son is 5 months old and is exclusively breastfed....but I smoke. Usually a half a pack to a pack a day. DH does too but we dont smoke around him [not even in the house, and never in the car] but lately when I've been pumping at work it seems like I'm getting less and less milk...I used to get 6 oz or so total, and now I'm lucky if I can get 4. BUT I've been under a lot of stress lately too over moving, working, money, etc. Does smoking decrease your milk supply? I've heard yes, and I've heard no but I'd like to know the real answer!!! Or, could I be decreasing in supply due to stress?? Please help me, I don't want to stop BF at only 5 months! :(

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 7:22 PM on Nov. 7, 2008 in Babies (0-12 months)

Answers (25)
  • PS...please don't tell me that smoking and nursing will stunt his growth, development, etc. I'm only asking if it affects milk supply.

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:24 PM on Nov. 7, 2008

  • In my personal experience, no it does not, but I'm sure the potential is there. It's more likely your milk supply is diminishes due to stress, dehydration, etc. Inrease your fluid intake, and perhaps pump more often for stimulation, and see how that goes. There's also something called Mother's Milk Tea you can drink, if you like tea, and feugreek supplements, that might help your supply.

    Answer by mamapotter at 7:29 PM on Nov. 7, 2008

  • This is a touchy subject for a lot and I am sure there will be pointless bashing soon. I am going to say that it is more likely the new stresses in your life rather then all of a sudden the smoking causing it.

    Answer by imtheonlysane1 at 7:31 PM on Nov. 7, 2008

  • I am NOT bashing but I am curious why you don't just switch to formula? Wouldn't that be healthier for the baby and easir for you as a working mom?

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:36 PM on Nov. 7, 2008

  • Probably a combination of the two.

    Answer by KatieCrandall at 7:39 PM on Nov. 7, 2008

  • Smoking has nothing to do with your milk supply. As mamapotter said it is prob due to stress and dehydration. If this problem occurs then you should consider mixing the formula with the breast milk. At least he'll get your milk too :)

    Answer by Steph319 at 7:39 PM on Nov. 7, 2008

  • Smoking and stress can both contribute to the decrease of your milk supply. However, breastfeeding under these conditions is STILL better than formula. Someone suggested increasing your water supply, fenugreek and blessed thistle work and Mother's Milk tea was my life saver!!

    Check this link out:

    Tons of useful info!!
    Good luck =)

    Answer by ivansmom07 at 7:41 PM on Nov. 7, 2008

  • If anything I would think that smoking would help your stress. If mixing doesnt work then its prob best to switch to formula completely so that you know he is getting what he needs. Mix the two first so that he gets used to the formula.

    Answer by Steph319 at 7:41 PM on Nov. 7, 2008

  • Anon 7:36, did you wonder if maybe 1) Formula is REALLY expensive, and why pay when you can get better for free? 2) Breastfeeding is best for babies. It's recommended that you BF even if you can't quit smoking because the benefits outweight the risks. WHY would you stop giving your baby the best thing for him? Why lose the bonding time? Breastmilk is the healthiest thing you can give a baby.

    Answer by AidensMommy608 at 7:42 PM on Nov. 7, 2008

  • Even if you smoke, breastfeeding is STILL better (to the person who suggested formula would be a better option) Yes, nicotine can cause supply issues, as any stimulant can. Stimulants constrict blood vessels, and have the same effect on milk ducts. Stress is also a well known supply killer, so you could be dealing with a combination of issues.

    Answer by 3maniacsmom at 7:45 PM on Nov. 7, 2008

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