Breastfeeding as a Contraceptive

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Breastfeeding can be used as form of birth control only when a woman breastfeeds her baby exclusively after giving birth. That means the baby does not drink anything besides breast milk. The act of breastfeeding naturally changes a woman's hormones so that she does not become pregnant.

Keep in mind that while breastfeeding can be used for contraception, it does not protect you from sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Use a latex or female condom to reduce the risk of infection.

Also keep in mind that breastfeeding can only be relied on for six months after delivery. By the time your baby is six months old, you should start using another birth control method.

Many mothers begin breastfeeding shortly after giving birth. If you have problems with breastfeeding, get help as soon as possible so that lactation is not interrupted. A doctor, nurse, or midwife at a clinic can help.

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