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  • "mrsjasper" started this thread

Posts: 8,532

Reg: Nov 2nd 2005

Location: Lancashire

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Tuesday, January 6th 2009, 9:11pm

Breastfeeding as contraception

There is a method of contraception called LAM, Lactation Amenorrhoea Method. If you are fully breastfeeding (no supplements with formula and no solids), you have no periods AND your baby is under 6 months old, then this is as reliable as the progesterone only contraceptive pill (slightly more confusing now as there is a new progesterone only pill called Cerazette which is as reliable as sterilisation yet completely reversible), so its around 96-98% reliable. If you are supplementing, weaning on to solids or your baby is older or you are having periods, then it can't be relied upon and you should use another method if you want to avoid pregnancy. This is a recognised method of cntraception, not an old wives tale, I have it from Professor John Guillbaud who is IT in the world of contraception.

La Leche League clarifies further:
You have a less than 2% change of pregnancy (comparable to most other methods of contraception) if you can answer no to all 3 of the following questions:
1. Have your periods returned?
2. Are you supplementing regularly or allowing long periods without breastfeeding (more than 4 hours during the day and 6 hours at night)?
3. Is you baby more than 6 months old.

If the answer to any question is yes then the chances of pregnancy increase, however frequent expression of milk may provide enough breast stimulation to suppress ovulation.

This applies to women of 'normal' fertility.