Re: Have I lost my supply?
What an ordeal you've been through! It's so great that you are so committed to breastfeeding your baby.
I have a few questions for you
1. What was her birthweight?
2. What does she weigh now?
3. How many wet diapers is she having per day?
4. When you do supplement (with formula or pumped milk) how are you supplementing.
Here is an article that can help you determine whether or not your baby is getting enough to eat:
Now for YOUR questions :)
It definitely sounds like you're on the right track. Let the baby nurse as often and as long as she wishes. You may feel like you're tied to the couch for a while, but this is crucial to get the milk supply back up. Using skin-to-skin contact will help. Taking the baby to bed with you will help a lot--prolactin levels are higher at night, so allowing the baby unrestricted access to the breast through the night can really help get a supply back up. Here are some articles that may help you with increasing supply:
1. How can I build up my supply to where my breasts feel full again and I get a good let down at each feeding?
and with cosleeping:
I strongly suggest you find a LLL Leader in your area who can walk you through the process.
When you MUST supplement, consider using something besides a bottle. Babies have to suckle differently at a bottle, and this can cause them to become less efficient at the breast. A Lact-Aid or SNS might work well--these use a tube, taped to the breast so that the baby sucks on your breast and the tube at the same time. This ensures that she takes all her meals at the breast, and you can gradually cut back on the supplementation and wean her off the tube. You'll need to find a LLL Leader or a lactation consultant to help you set something like this up.
No. The kind of infection you get with mastitis is not passed through the breastmilk to the baby. In fact, it's better for both of you if you continue to nurse through the infection. Moving milk regularly through the ducts helps the infection to clear.
2. Could my infection have passed anything on to my baby to cause her to not be pooping regularly?
I want to reassure you that it's VERY normal for a breastfed baby to start going a few or even several days between bowel movements, starting right around 6 weeks. As long as your baby is having at least 6-8 wet diapers per day, it's okay if she's going several days between dirty diapers.
You say that when your baby does have a bowel movement that it is soft. Constipation is defined by the texture of the poop (hard, dry, pellet-like), not by how often the baby goes. Based on your post, I would say your baby is NOT constipated and doesn't need the prune juice or the Karo syrup anymore.
Again, I want to reassure you that her bowel habits don't seem abnormal UNLESS she is showing other signs of not getting enough milk, like not having enough wet diapers.
3. What can I do to help my baby pass her bowls easier?
Some of this just happens with time as the baby's bowels mature. Some babies do better with certain positions. Try putting her in a position where she can brace and push her feet against something, or try putting her on her tummy. Some of the discomfort may be due to gas. Laying baby on her back and gently moving her legs in a "bicycling" motion may help her expel that gas. If she's very gassy all the time, you may consider your diet and see if something you're eating may be bothering her.
It might. It works well for some mothers. See the link on relactation above for info on how to use Fenugreek. Make sure YOU are eating enough, drinking to thirst, and getting plenty of rest. Some mothers also have success with oatmeal.
4. Will Fenugreek help?
Okay, I know I've just thrown a truckload of information at you here:eek: Please, please, please feel free to post back with any questions or clarifications that you might need. And keep us updated!
Hang in there! You're doing a great job!
Re: Have I lost my supply?
Thanks for the quick reply.
Her birthweight was 6 lbs 12.5 ounces.
Two weeks ago (at two month well baby) she was 12 lbs even.
I'm worried I gave too much sugar with the Karo and prune juice and not enough nutrients because of how much weight she has gained.
I'll count how many wet diapers she has during the next few days but she can go a few hours without a change. And sometimes the diaper is soaked and sometimes just damp. The last few nights she has slept through the night and when I change her diaper in the morning it is not completely soaked.
I supplement mainly breastmilk on cue after feedings. If she is still fussy or sucking her hands I will give her more by bottle, which is roughly every other feeding. I will give four ounces of formula maybe every couple of days. It used to be more like 4 ounces per day but I recently bought a Medela double pump so I've been able to express more milk.
I have tried to contact an LC in the league where we just moved. The only one is some 30 miles away and her telephone number on the website is missing a digit. I am visiting my parents for two weeks in another state while my husband is in a training school for a month. The closest LLL LC in their area is 1 1/2 hours away. Any suggestions? If I could get the number to the LC in my area I will definitely contact her when I get home next week!!
Thanks for all the info! And for the quick reply.
Re: Have I lost my supply?
Wow, her weight gain looks great! It sounds like she's definitely getting enough to eat, and the good news is that most of that is now coming from breastmilk!
When are you pumping the milk that you use to supplement? I'd suggest putting her to the breast during those times that you usually pump. You can try using breast compressions to get more into her during the feedings(I sound like a broken record tonight--I'm recommending these all over the place!):
1. Make a "C" with your hand and use it to support the breast with the thumb on the underside of the breast.
2. Any time she stops suckling, gently squeeze the breast. This will usually result in herstarting to suckle again.
3. When she starts to suckle again, let go. When she stops, gently squeeze again. Repeat, rotating your hand around your breast.
4. When the compression fails to stimulate suckling, burp her and offer the other side. If she's still not interested or stays asleep, then she's probably full enough.
You should be gradually cutting back on the amount of formula you use as well. Truthfully, if you're going a full 24 hours without using at all, then you probably don't need it any more. Just keep working on getting her to eat more during nursing sessions. Any time she acts like she's hungry, put her on the breast first. You may need to keep pumping some for several more days, but really work on just getting her take ALL of her nutrition at the breast and only use the bottle as a very last resort.
With regards to the LC, I'm not sure what website you're looking at, but try looking her up on www.ilca.org. You might also try calling some of the local hospitals to see if they have her number on file somewhere (and be sure to let her know that her phone number is wrong where you're looking at).
It really sounds like you're headed in the right direction. Just keep offering, keep encouraging her to nurse, use those breast compressions. It may take several days of just tons of nursing, but that supply will come back up!
You can do it!
Re: Have I lost my supply?
I just wanted to share that around 2 mo. my DD went from pooping every day to every 7-10 days. Once she went 15 days without a dirty diaper. I love sharing that story because it surprises people so much. The doctor said as long as the poop is soft there's no problem. He said there's so little waste with breastfeeding because it's such a perfect food. If you think your baby is trying to poop, I noticed holding my DD upright and letting her squat on my lap seemed to help. And, watch out when it's been a while since a dirty diaper- it'll be a massive blowout! Of course that's the trade off for only having to do it every week or so!
Hope things start going more smotthly for you!