The shortage of formula caused by supply-chain issues, worsened by a recall by Abbott Nutrition, has left parents scrambling to find ways to feed their kids.
It may be easier said than done for most women to “just breastfeed” their baby – that is, give their baby milk from the breast or express their breast milk.
During this time of formula shortage, the breast milk versus formula debate has risen once again in the U.S.
She made headlines with her tweet, “Try breastfeeding!
Parents can access it on demand for free, leading to renewed breastfeeding conversations.
Parents who rely on formula have many reasons, even if they want to breastfeed exclusively.
For many parents, breastfeeding isn’t a reliable solution to the formula shortage.
Natural Low Milk Supply In Some Women
One of the most effective ways to increase milk supply is to pump or nurse more. The more she pumps or nurses, the more milk she’ll produce.
Women with insufficient glandular tissue (IGT) may not be able to pump or breastfeed since they lack enough breast tissue.
Most mothers, even if they can breastfeed, supplement their milk supply with formula.
Health Conditions Can Affect Milk Supply
A variety of health factors can also prevent women from exclusively breastfeeding.
Several conditions, including obesity, diabetes, thyroid dysfunction, and pregnancy-induced high blood pressure, can negatively impact breast milk supply.
Previous breast surgery, such as breast reduction or augmentation, can also impact milk supply, as can certain medications, like pseudoephedrine and hormonal contraceptives.
Lactation Support Can Be Expensive For Some Women
The advice of a lactation consultant can provide women who are struggling and still determined to breastfeed with crucial guidance and even increase their milk supplies.
However, insurance companies never had to cover lactation assistance until a few years ago.
For some women, it’s not that they can’t breastfeed.
Still, they don’t want to: although there are plenty of reasons not to breastfeed exclusively, there’s another reason breastfeeding isn’t an alternative to the formula: Some women are unable or unwilling to breastfeed.