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A member asked:

are there benefits for mother breastfeeding adopted child? my husband and i are wanting to adopt an infant, and i was told by a lactation consultant that i could begin re-lactating by a series of steps needing to take place before hand. i know the benef

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. David Serlin
Family Medicine 21 years experience
There : There are absolutely no drawbacks to trying except frustration. I applaud you for your interest in breastfeeding. As you mention, there are numerous benefits to breastfeeding for both moms and babies. However, it is difficult to start lactating in this situation, but certainly not impossible. If you really want to try and i encourage you to(the benefits of breastfeeding are many), i would listen to the steps offered by your lacation consultant. I would suggest among them, getting a breast pump and pumping to try to get the supply started. Depending on the age of the infant, part of the problem may be that the baby is not interested in latching and sucking because they get used to the bottle. The effort needed to suck on the breast is higher, since the baby won't really get any milk for a number of days until your milk supply begins to come in and that is frustrating for the baby if you pump for a few days, you may get your milk supply up and running and can then have your baby feed more effectively. I applaud you for wanting to breastfeed and hope it works, but it will take patience for both of you. I suggest googling the term "relactation" for more details and ideas, especially if you have breast fed any children of your own in the past. If you haven't before, the concept is the same, you are just beginning just a little further back from the starting line to catch up.
Dr. Ronda Dennis-Smithart
Specializes in Pediatrics
Bonding, : I've assisted adoptive mom lactate; all felt it enhanced bonding. Adoptive moms who lactate don't usually have an adequate breast milk supply and will need to supplement with formula, which can be given via a supplemental nutrition device taped to mom's nipple, so baby receives breast milk and formula simultaneously. May reduce breast cancer, in post partum-wgt loss, shrink uterus. Congrats!

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