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Extended breastfeeding moms - what contraception do you use?

(10 Posts)
eskimomama Tue 19-Jul-11 15:13:37

Hello all,
I am still breastfeeding my 21 mo DD, and never wanted to use the minipill Cerazette as it's got such a bad reputation and I'm very sensitive to hormonal changes + I have had very bad experiences with wrong-dosed pills in the past (before pregnancy), I could only tolerate a low dosed combined pill.

However both DH and I aren't very fond of condoms after 21 months of using them...wink

I've read that after 1 year babies are less sensitive to hormones in their mother's milk and sometimes GPs are ok to prescribe combined pills at that time, but I'm not sure if it's just because they think babies do not need so much breastmilk after 1 year anyway - as estogens seem to decrease the milk supply in many women...

I would be very grateful to hear about your experiences!

RitaMorgan Tue 19-Jul-11 15:17:00

How about a copper coil? I am keen to avoid hormonal contraceptives too, not sure if I'm a bit too squeamish for a coil though!

organiccarrotcake Tue 19-Jul-11 15:19:23

Have you read "Taking Charge of your Fertility"? If you are back to regular cycles (assuming the BFing isn't scuppering that) then it's a very reliable way of either avoiding pregnancy, or getting pregnant if you later want to.

When I say very reliable - it's not as reliable as, say, the combined pill but it depends on what your requirements are.

kindlekid Tue 19-Jul-11 15:22:06

Hi eskimomama, I am still breastfeeding my 2.7 year old dd2. Last year I went to the doctor because I was feeling run down and my cycle was only 21-22 days long. I was finding the frequent periods very draining.

The doctor put me on the combined pill. I was very surprised and I reiterated to him that I was breastfeeding. DD was 18 months at the time and he reassured me it was safe to use.

I took it for 2 packs but I was never comfortable with taking it and stopped again. I didn't see any negative effects on dd and didn't notice a drop in milk supply.

Back to condoms again. Not ideal but at least it takes worrying about dd out of the equation.

eskimomama Tue 19-Jul-11 15:50:23

Thanks for your suggestions all.
Kindlekid good to hear you didn't notice a drop in your supply, and I understand being reluctant to continue too. What bothers me is the possible long term effects on the estrogens, even at a low dose, on the little one.
But maybe there are none and I'm worryin too much (I'm like that!)

RitaMorgan I'm a bit scared of the coil, because if I don't tolerate it, I can't stop it as quickly as I would with the minipill...

organiccarrotcake I will def read this today smile

ShowOfHands Tue 19-Jul-11 15:57:40

I had a complete contraceptive failure with condoms and so had a copper coil fitted. When I wanted it removed I went to the family planning clinic and they removed it straight away.

mawbroon Tue 19-Jul-11 17:45:46

My body has just cranked into gear recently since ds2 started going longer at night without feeding (about time! he's 16months and i bet it won't last either!!) so this brought about the contraception question.

I was ttc for 2.5yrs and was charting, checking fluid and cervix etc, so I am going with that for now. We are not planning another dc, but it would not be a disaster if I got pg. I wouldn't rely solely on this method if another pregnancy was a complete no-no.

I think my idea would be a copper coil, but I have a heart shaped uterus, so I can't have one because it is possible for implantaion to take place on the other side of the uterus.

BertieBotts Tue 19-Jul-11 18:49:03

I use the combined pill. My doctor said that it can reduce milk supply, but when it is well established (DS was past 2) it's less likely to. He said that the hormones present in it are only synthetic versions of those you would produce while pregnant, so they pose no harm to a child, as breastfeeding while pregnant wouldn't. (I have a very BF-friendly GP grin)

I did notice some symptoms of lower supply (uncomfortable ducts while feeding) and I'm no longer able to squirt milk, but drops do come out if I squeeze. It hasn't dried up though and even the discomfort disappeared fairly quickly. DS was well able to get my supply back to where he wanted it, even though his feeding pattern is irregular and he can sometimes go a day without feeding at all.

Northernlurker Tue 19-Jul-11 19:00:46

I breastfed dd3 till past 2 and used the minipill. My brand was called 'Neogest' and it was no bother.

eskimomama Tue 19-Jul-11 20:10:06

Thanks again ladies for all the information!
BertieBotts very useful info, I never thought about the "breastfeeding while pregnant" connexion... and I'm glad you had a BF-friendly GP, they usually aren't, especially so after 6 months!!

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