Our son was born at 36weeks, on the 26th, and thankfully he only spent a week in the NICU. We brought him home for the 1st time last night and so far everything is going well.
We're feeding him every 3 hours, a mixture of breast milk & formula.
Q1. Mom started pumping the day after giving birth and so far, 8 days later, she's only producing about 1oz per breast. Is this normal?
She's pumping every 3 hours
Q2. Is there a time frame when she should start BF before its too late?
We're using the bottles that the NICU gave us. Not sure what type of nipple it is but he's drinking all his bottles per feeding.
Q3. From what I've been reading here, the baby is a better extractor than the pumps but do you think now is a good time to start BF seeing as how she's only producing an ounce?.. & is there a signal from the amount she produces, from the pumps, that would signify a green light to BF?
Q4. When do we start heating the bottles?
We're giving them at room temp.
I'm sure I'll have more questions but thats it for now, It's 1am....
Thank you for your time.
Re: NewBorn Q's
Congratulations on your baby!
Have you attempted breastfeeding at all? I would say now is the time to start the relationship, especially since your son was not terribly premature. The reason most premature babies do not attempt to breastfeed and are given formula is because they are either not strong enough to suck (and would waste too many calories trying) or have not yet mastered suck/swallow/breath. How big is your son? My guess would be that he is ready.
First and foremost I would stop supplementing with formula. It is important for milk production to have your body understand how much milk the baby needs, so feeding him more than is being extracted from the body is detrimental to the supply. It may be necessary at first to provide a bottle of expressed breastmilk if he is not strong enough to feed entirely off the breast - especially if he is small, you do not want him to expend too many calories trying, therefore losing weight - but it is then important to pump, simulating that he is eating.
To increase supply and attempt getting your son right on the breast, I would suggest lots of time in bed. Sound great, doesn't it?! Mother and child should do kangaroo care - lots of skin to skin contact. This will get your sons natural rooting instincts going and for mom it will get her body stimulated to produce milk. Try not to get frustrated or force the baby, this will only upset everyone and could cause a negative connotation for the baby. Instead I would offer the breast as much as possible and rejoice in any sucking that he does. The most important thing about weaning a baby off a bottle and onto the breast is patience. It can be very frustrating - I understand entirely, my baby was born at 33 weeks, spent 4 weeks in the NICU and was not directly on the breast until 40 weeks. Try to stay calm and know that it is possible and can be done. Skin contact, pumping for stimulation (and the bottles if necessary) and no formula are my suggestions.
One last thing, you asked about bottles and I would say stick with what you have for now, especially if you are planning on him being directly on the breast some day and he is happy with those (although I would probably get a Preemie nipple to get him used to sucking harder). If you plan on using bottles later, come back and post the question again. Lots of ladies here have opinions on what have worked for them.
Good luck and please come back with questions, comments and updates!