severely diminishing milk supply
i have a three month old. up until about two weeks ago everything with breastfeeding was going good. i have always fed him on demand. however, he is not satisfied lately. my breast feel completely deflated all the time. I never have "pains" when it is time for him to eat. I never have a let-down. I try to pump and get nothing. I will pump for thirty minutes both sides and not even get an ounce. when he eats, he will suck for a few minutes. i can hear him gulp and see him swallow. that will only last for two or three minutes at the most. then he kicks and cries. the same thing happens with the other side. i try to manually compress my breasts while he eats, but it doesn't have an effect. when i manually compress them without him latched on, only a small thin stream comes out for the first three or four compressions. then nothing. i am completely scared and frustrated. i do not want to have to put him on formula. i have an older son that i breastfed, and this did not happen with him. i am interested in using herbs, but have no idea what/how much to take. i am 5'1" and currently 145lbs. any help you can give would be so so so so greatly appreciated.
Re: severely diminishing milk supply
:hello Welcome to the forum!
I'm sorry you feel like your supply is down. From what you describe, I'm not sure that it really is, since most of what you describe is normal.
Baby not satisfied lately? Well, there is a big growth spurt around 3 months, and that often leads to frequent feeding, leaving mom feeling drained. Teething could also be the culprit.
Not feeling let-down? Many moms don't. I never did, and I nursed my daughter for 3 years. Not feeling a let-down is not the same as not having a let-down.
Breasts feel deflated? Normal after a certain period of time- your supply adjusts to meet your baby's needs very precisely, without a lot of extra milk lying around to make you feel "full". (And again, a growth spurt can cause you to feel extra drained.)
You pump and get nothing? Not necessarily a matter for concern. Many moms do not respond to the pump, and pumping is not a good indication of supply. What sort of pump do you have? Not all pumps are created equal, and yours may be underpowered for your needs. Manual expression is similar- it doesn't work for everyone, not everyone is equally good at it...
Baby eats quickly? Normal. Most babies increase their efficiency as time goes on, getting full feeds in under 10 minutes. You're hearing your baby gulp and swallow, so you certainly still have milk!
Baby fusses after eating? Normal for many babies. What do you do when your son kicks and cries? Do you offer the breast again, or do you offer a bottle or babyfood?
Herbs you can take:
Originally Posted by @llli*msdiscomachine
-Fenugreek - I suggest buying the seed online, it's cheaper and fresher than the pills from the health food store. Put a tablespoon of seed in a mug with hot water, drink the tea, and swallow the seeds. Do this several times a day, and you'll notice your sweat and urine developing a maple syrup smell- this is normal and an indication that you are taking enough. Fenugreek is safe unless you are diabetic.
-Blessed thistle - available in pill form from the health food store
-Oatmeal - yup, just a big bowl of oatmeal!
Steps I suggest you take to put your mind at ease:
-Contact a lactation consultant and pay her a visit
-Call your doctor or midwife and get checked out for the physical conditions that can cause low supply, like polycystic ovarian syndrome and hyperthyroid and hypothyroid (which is particularly common postpartum)
-Watch your baby's diaper output. Remember, what goes in can be evaluated by looking at what comes out!
Hang in there! It really sounds like things are okay. :hug