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Bf as contraceptive

(17 Posts)
Haahoooo Sat 24-May-14 15:45:42

I've done my googling and know breastfeeding is quite an effective contraceptive if you're exclusively breastfeeding a baby under 6 months, and your periods haven't returned.

DS is only five weeks and ebf, however also gets expressed breast milk in bottles regularly to give me a break. Can't find much online about the impact on the effectiveness of contraception.

Hope the regular expressing means it still works otherwise we might be looking at a very small age gap

Any thoughts?

meditrina Sat 24-May-14 15:51:03

If by 'having break' you mean going longer between feeds than your baby would be demanding, extending he time between feeds by some hours, then you cannot rely on lactational amenhorrhea.

If you express at the time your baby would be demanding a feed, then you'd be OK (but I don't quite see how that gives you a break).

It does need to be on demand fedding, and round the clock fri there to be a protective effect.

But as it is possible to conceive before your periods return, this is not a method to rely on if another PG would be disastrous so soon.

strawberryshoes Sat 24-May-14 15:51:55

You will be looking at a very small age gap!

There is no guarantee breast feeding will be effective as contraception even if your period has not returned and cd is under 6 months. It might work, but it might not...

schlafenfreude Sat 24-May-14 15:57:29

No it won't necessarily be effective. LAM is maintained in something like 98% of women but expressing isn't the same as feeding direct.

That said it did work for me unintentionally, but either you need to use other contraception or be prepared for a small gap!

Midori1999 Sat 24-May-14 16:01:11

According to the NHS, LAM is pretty much as effective as the pill if used correctly, only 1 in 200 women will get pregnant.

I think that if you are going any longer than about 3hrs between feeds due to giving expressed milk or if you are giving bottles often, this would make the method unreliable.

The failure rate surely accounts for women who ovulate before the 6 months mark? (And obviously before their first period)

Salazar Sat 24-May-14 16:03:57

Just use condoms? Is the risk really worth it?

Unless of course, you actually don't mind getting pregnant again.

leedy Sat 24-May-14 17:38:43

Yeah, my period was back before 6 months even with EBF, feeding on demand, no bottles, soothers, all the stuff that's supposed to keep it at bay - DS2 just had a week or two of sleeping longer than usual and BAM, ovaries back in action. Much as I didn't want my period back I wasn't going to start waking him up...

Muddlewitch Sat 24-May-14 17:44:43

I got pregnant again when DD1 was 4 months and EBF, no period, so if it would be a problem to have another so close then take extra precautions. It was hard I was pregnant and breast feeding for years!

Haahoooo Sat 24-May-14 20:37:51

I do go longer than three hours between feeds sometimes due to expressed milk so I think we'd better add another form of contraception into the mix. Not particularly keen on condoms but I think there's a type of pill compatible with bf. Will investigate. Thank you

pommedeterre Sat 24-May-14 20:40:17

No periods is not guaranteed. For me bf made no difference.

Stopped bf dd1 at 7 weeks ish. First post birth period at 12 weeks.

Dd2 bf for nine months, ebf no bottles no nothing until 5 months. First post birth period at 12 weeks!

MissYamabuki Sat 24-May-14 20:41:55

Oooh OP if EBF for babies under 6 months was a good contraceptive I wouldn't be here! My mum got pregnant with me when my sister was 3 MO, no periods.
Good luck smile

tertle Sat 24-May-14 22:01:10

I thought about this but soon decided that it wasn't worth the risk! You can take cerazette when breastfeeding or have a non hormonal coil fitted. I'm on cerazette. Not convinced by it yet (supposed to stop periods but I've just had an 8 day bleed...) but it's only month 1 so will see how it goes. Talk to your midwife who can advise you.

Salazar Sat 24-May-14 22:44:29

Tertle. I'm on Cerazette and it has been life changing. No periods (or babies) for 5 years. I'm in heaven!

Haahoooo Sat 24-May-14 22:53:34

Thank you for the tip re cerazette. Now I know what to ask for. We're undecided as yet between 2 or 3 DC (DS is DC2) but would prefer a bigger age gap...

Tabby1963 Sat 24-May-14 22:57:33

Hmmm, we had sex for the first time exactly three months after DD's birth. She was EBF. I got pregnant immediately grin.

HamAndPlaques Sun 25-May-14 00:01:51

A hormonal coil, i.e. mirena, is also compatible with bfing.

NickyEds Sun 25-May-14 13:53:37

I was told that with cerazette a third of women have a regular period, a third bleed irregularly (side effect which is main reason women come off it) and a third don't have a period at all. It's perfectly possible to get pregnant whilst ebf- my sister did....twicesmile

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