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Old 12-31-2006, 03:56 PM   #1
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Mini pill and breastfeeding

Hi all,
DD is 4 months old and I have been exclusively breastfeeding her. I have never had any problems with breastfeeding up until a couple of weeks ago. About 3 weeks ago, I started taking the mini pill for birth control, since my OB said it wouldn't interfere with breastfeeding. However, about a week after starting to take it, I started noticing a difference in the amounts I was being able to pump, to the point where I eventually couldn't pump enough for dd to have while I was at work. SO, I stopped taking the pill and I think I am finally starting to produce more after spending all weekend pumping/feeding trying to get my supply up. Has anyone else had problems with the mini pill? Did it affect your milk supply or was maybe something else contributing to it?
thanks!

 
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Old 12-31-2006, 05:57 PM   #2
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Re: Mini pill and breastfeeding

The mini pill is not supported by breastfeeding professionals for this exact reason. It is best not to take any hormones while breastfeeding.

 
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Old 12-31-2006, 11:18 PM   #3
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Re: Mini pill and breastfeeding

I never had problem with low milk supply but I did however still get pregnant while using the mini pill. So it's probably best you don't use it since it lowers your milk supply. Another thing though if you run into low milk supply again there are certain teas you can buy at stores or online that can help increase your milk supply. My cousin used one she got at her local supermarket and claimed it was a real life saver.

 
Old 01-01-2007, 06:25 PM   #4
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Re: Mini pill and breastfeeding

The minipill IS for breastfeeding mothers and was designed for nursing moms. If however it lowered your milk supply which my doc said is very very rare you should ask your doc about another option. I have taken the minipill for about 11 months and had no problems. i love it. It has no estrogen like the regular pill which makes it safe for breastfeeding and isn't supposed to lower your supply. Maybe your body just wasn't used to it yet?? Good luck!

 
Old 01-01-2007, 07:00 PM   #5
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Re: Mini pill and breastfeeding

I was told the mini pill wasn't supportive to breastfeeding mothers. Internet searches I've done says basically that it's 50/50.

 
Old 01-01-2007, 08:30 PM   #6
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Re: Mini pill and breastfeeding

Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetea13
The minipill IS for breastfeeding mothers and was designed for nursing moms.
That only means that the medication is not contraindicated, which does not mean it is a preferred method of birth control. Hormone therapy is not the preferred method of birth control while breastfeeding. The mini pill is simply a drug that was deemed "safe" while breastfeeding, but like with anything else, there are side effects. One of those side effects IS a decrease in supply. For this reason the mini pill is not a preferred birth control method among beastfeeding groups.

 
Old 01-01-2007, 08:49 PM   #7
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Re: Mini pill and breastfeeding

If the minipill only works effectively while breastfeeding, therefore you can't take it and have it work effectively unless you are breastfeeding then I don't know how it is not a "preferred method" for nursing moms. It has a rare side effect that can possibly effect your supply. Just like everything else it "may" cause a low supply, however that is not the norm.

 
Old 01-01-2007, 09:31 PM   #8
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Re: Mini pill and breastfeeding

Almost everyone I know that has tried the mini pill, including myself, noticed a decrease in their supply. All of us started it after our 6 week checkup. I didn't even go through a full two weeks because I just couldn't/wouldn't take the chance of wiping out my supply. It took me a couple of weeks of nearly nonstop nursing to get it back up.

I officially hate hormonal birth control and refuse to take it ever again. I've had nothing but bad luck with the methods I've tried over the past four years!

 
Old 01-01-2007, 11:35 PM   #9
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Re: Mini pill and breastfeeding

My milk supply started to decrease around the 3rd week on the mini pill. I started taking it when my son was 2 months old. He's 6 months now. I don't pump so I didn't notice the decrease right away. My son was just wanting to eat all the time. At first, I thought he was having a growth spurt. After a few days, it was worse and I could tell he was still hungry after each feeding so I quit before I finished the first month. Within a couple of days everything was back to normal.
When this happened to me I read that it doesn't affect most womens' milk supply, but some will produce less milk while others will produce more. I guess the hormones affect people differently. Also, when you pump over time I've heard/read that your milk supply will decrease. When I met with a lactation specialist she told me not to pump unless I had to for this reason. Although, I have a good friend who (mostly) pumped for 3 kids for up to a year and so did my SIL and didn't seem to have any issues. They nursed in the evenings and pumped while at work. I think your right, that it is most likely the minipill since your decrease happened when you started it.
If you haven't started your period yet you still have to be careful. I was surprised when I started my period when my son was 5 months old. It can happen at anytime when your BF. My personal opinion is that breastfeeding itself is birth control enough because your never in the "mood". LOL! Not sure if that happens to everyone, but my friends warned me of that, and they were right. But, when it does happen, we use condoms now.
I also have a friend who recently miscarried at 3 1/2 months, and never knew she was pregnant. She was breastfeeding and got pregnant the first time she ovulated. Her doctor suggested if she did NOT want to get pregnant again to wean her 10 month old and start the pill. For us, we want to wait awhile, but it would be ok if we had a accident. Breastfeeding is more important to me.
Is your milk supply better now?

 
Old 01-02-2007, 06:30 AM   #10
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Re: Mini pill and breastfeeding

Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetea13
If the minipill only works effectively while breastfeeding, therefore you can't take it and have it work effectively unless you are breastfeeding
You are incorrect. The mini pill can be used by ANYBODY. It just works differently then a regular birth control pill. Regular birth control contains high amounts of hormones (estrogen and progesterone) and actually prevents you from ovulating. Then when you take the placebo pill your body sheds the uterine lining, giving you a period.

When you take the mini pill it does not stop you from ovulating. Your ovaries still function. Since it DOES NOT contain estrogen, which is medically contraindicated for breastfeeding, it has been deemed safe. It works by altering the mucus in your cervix to make it hard for sperm to reach an egg, and it also makes the uterine lining very thin, so if fertilization actually happens it makes implantation difficult.

Because of the low hormones it has been deemed "safe" for those with a tendency to clot (which I am, I have a blood disorder, hence the reason I have researched this so much), those over 35 (who are more likely to clot) and those who are breastfeeding. HOWEVER, it is not PREFERABLE to take any hormones while breastfeeding. Yes, this pill is the lesser of all evils if you absolutely need to be on hormonal birth control, but ideally you should not take hormones while breastfeeding.

I will never take hormonal birth control again. Not only did I nearly die from a HUGE clot in '03, but further research has led me to believe that unnecessary hormone therapy is very unhealthy in the long run (but that's a whole 'nother thread).

Last edited by debating; 01-02-2007 at 05:21 PM.

 
Old 01-02-2007, 05:14 PM   #11
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Re: Mini pill and breastfeeding

Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetea13
If the minipill only works effectively while breastfeeding, therefore you can't take it and have it work effectively unless you are breastfeeding

I'm sorry but that is false. I'm on the mini pill right now and am reading the paperwork that accompanies it. The mini pill is effective without breastfeeding. Statistically.

 
Old 01-02-2007, 05:46 PM   #12
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Re: Mini pill and breastfeeding

I was told by my doc and the insert that goes with the minipill that you should choose a new form of bc once you start weaning. I also have friends that got pregnant the month they stopped nursing. It is just a chance I wouldn't want to take.

 
Old 01-02-2007, 05:52 PM   #13
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Re: Mini pill and breastfeeding

I appreciate everyone's opinions. I also very much appreciate previous posts on how to increase the supply. I took the fenugreek for 3-4 days after stopping the mini pill and that totally fixed the problem. I have now been off of the fenugreek for several days now and still have plenty of supply so thank God for that! Diane79, I loved your reply!!! We are sticking to condoms now because breastfeeding is so important to me. Also during this time, the baby went 3 days in a row where she went all night without eating (she always has been up once in the middle of the night to eat) so I was thinking that this could have made my body think that it could slow down production. Isn't the body an amazing thing? I also agree with North about the way that hormones seem to affect me. Hormones do affect people differently. When I was on the regular pill before I got pregnant I had a migraine for 3 days every period due to the drop in hormones. Anyway, I just wanted to see if this had happened to anyone else. Whatever the reason, I am just happy to be back on track Thanks to all for your support and feedback.

 
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