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Thread: losing my supply?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    199

    Default losing my supply?

    At the beginning of the month I got an IUD. I bled for a few days due to insertion then stopped. For the past two weeks I have been bleeding again with cramps like I am on my period but the bleeding is very light). My dr says this is normal and my cycle coud be messed up for up to 6 months. The past couple weeks my supply has seemed to slowly dwindle. I went from pumping 18 ounces on average at work to pumping 11 today (in a 10 hour period - 3 sessions). My DS is 16 weeks. He has still been eating 12-18 per work day so my supply of frozen milk is slowly being depleted. When I am home (I work only 3 days a week) he has been eating every two hours except at night. I have been drinking mother's milk tea 1 time daily for 2 weeks. This used to make me engorged. I started with 2 cups today because of my measly amount of pumped milk. I have also been eating oatmeal for breakfast and downing the water (at least 64 ounces). Could the IUD/"periods" be affecting my supply? Is there anything else I can do to increase my supply? I don;t want to slowly dry up. I want tp nurse until at least 12-15 months.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    NE PA
    Posts
    1,089

    Default Re: losing my supply?

    A couple of things could be effecting your supply. Some women do have trouble with supply after getting the hormonal IUD put in. The other thing that I would check is to make sure that the horns on your pump are still the right size- as you progress with breastfeeding sometimes you need to change sizes to get the most effective pumping. What kind of pump do you have? you said you are pumping 3 times over 10 hours- that may not be enough for you. I think that I would initially check the horns and pump to make sure you have the right size and nothing is getting worn out. Then I would try to pump more often if possible. If your pump will work on battery power or a car adaptor you can try pumping in the car on your way to work if you aren't already. If none of these suggestions are possible/or don't work then I would definitly see about getting the IUD pulled. Some women are just more sensative to hormonal BC than others
    Jessica

    Moma to DS1-the monkinroanie (3/09) and DS2-the sweet pumpkin (5/12)
    Strong Women- May we have the delight of knowing them, the courage to be them and the privilege of raising them.
    And yes I know my spelling terrible (is that spelled right? )

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    19,878

    Default Re: losing my supply?

    Great advice from the PP.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    199

    Default Re: losing my supply?

    How do I tell if the horns are still the right size? I got a size up from what my medela pump in style advanced came with. What other things besides the rubber seals could be worn out? I don;t have time to pump more than I currently am, my job is very busy and I am lucky to get the amount of sessions I already get. In the past with this many sessions, I was pumping an average of 14-16 ounces a day - sometimes as much as 20. I didn't have a problem when the IUD was first placed, only when I started bleeding - could it be that I am having a sort of period and that is affecting my supply? I hate to have the IUD removed because it cost over 1000 to put into place so I would like to try as many other things as possible first. If it is the IUD, will taking things such as the mother's milk tea or drinking lots of water etc. not help? Will my supply continue to dwindle or can I get it stabilized at a higher level than it is currently by taking these other measures? Thanks so much for your help.
    Please excuse my typos, I am always NAK.

    DS since 1/30/11

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    19,878

    Default Re: losing my supply?

    If the horns are too small, your nipples will rub painfully against the sides of the collection tube. If they are too large, you will see your nipple and areola tissue shoot in and out of the collection tube, accompanied by a loss of suction.

    I don't think the "period" you're experiencing is likely to be the cause of the drop in supply. It's not a real period, YK? The Mirena is damping down all those natural hormonal fluctuations that are what make your cycle happen... It's more like the shadow of a period.

    Taking Mother's Milk tea may help. Drinking more water might, but it's typically not necessary. Most women need only drink to thirst. What will probably help more than anything you consume is what you do with your pump. Pump more frequently, pump for longer time periods, pump after nursing when you're with your baby.

    Whether or not your supply will continue to dwindle... It depends. Some moms can stop the slide without needing to do much other than continuing to pump at their normal level. Other moms will see continued diminishment unless they really work at it and start adding in a lot more pumping sessions, or troubleshoot their current pumping situation (shield size, pump motor, etc.). It depends on how badly the IUD is affecting your supply, and how your body responds to pumping. Pumping typically doesn't maintain supply as well as nursing does, unfortunately.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Nashvegas-ish
    Posts
    324

    Default Re: losing my supply?

    Absolutely agree with PPs.

    And my personal experience is this:

    My supply was *fine* until I got the Mirena inserted, then my supply plummeted. I tried every relactation method known to man and those would help for a day or two and then stop.

    I paid to have the Mirena removed and my supply instantly rebounded 75%. It never did get back to the volume I was producing pre-Mirena and did lead to us having to supplement (and I basically "relactated" the rest of the time that I nursed my daughter with herbs, foods, power pumping, the whole nine).
    Wife to DH February 17, 2004.
    First time mom to my precious baby girl, welcomed to this world August 3, 2009!
    Birth: 6 lbs. 6 oz. and 18.5"
    6 months: 14 lbs. 14.5 oz. and 26"
    1 year: 20 lbs. and 30"

    Woohoo! We made it one year!


    Learn more about us at my blog.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    199

    Default Re: losing my supply?

    Thanks for the info. I am concerned about the IUD being a problem. I will nurse often on the days I don't work (and try pumping a couple times during the day also). I don't want to lose my supply, so I am going to watch ot very carefully. I will also do more compressions while pumping to get more milk out.
    Please excuse my typos, I am always NAK.

    DS since 1/30/11

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Nashvegas-ish
    Posts
    324

    Default Re: losing my supply?

    Good work, Mama. You definitely want to get as much milk out as you can because if your breasts are left un-emptied they have a tendency to think "Hrm, she's got milk left over after feeding so she must not need as much".
    Wife to DH February 17, 2004.
    First time mom to my precious baby girl, welcomed to this world August 3, 2009!
    Birth: 6 lbs. 6 oz. and 18.5"
    6 months: 14 lbs. 14.5 oz. and 26"
    1 year: 20 lbs. and 30"

    Woohoo! We made it one year!


    Learn more about us at my blog.

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