I'm trying to sort through the confusion that is over supply. My basic question is the one in the subject line, but I have a couple more as well. Here's some background info:
Breastfeeding got off to a pretty good start. Milk started to come in two days after my 6 wk old was born. She seemed to latch pretty good right away, but by two weeks, decided to see the LC because it was hurting for her to latch on the right side, but only some of the time. We got that fixed, and I mentioned to the LC that she would get fussy during some of her feedings, and while she didn't explicitly mention oversupply, she suggested letting her feed off of one side at a time, so that she could get to the 'cheesecake'. Looking back, I was feeding her off of both sides, and not allowing enough time on each side. So by three weeks or so, I started to notice a couple green poops here and there, and my midwife had mentioned that this could be a sign of not getting enough hindmilk. I finally put all the pieces together, and got to the part in the Womanly Art of Breastfeeding where they talk about oversupply, possibly OALD, and it definitely seemed to fit her: fussy at the breast, green poops (not frothy or mucousy though), and she sounded like she was under water when she fussed-- milk would be streaming out of her mouth even; engorgement was an issue, but not bad all the time. She has been gaining weight like a champ, which I think they also mentioned could go hand in hand with oversupply. (She is up to 10lbs, 13oz today--at birth she was 7lbs, 3oz) So I started block feeding. The little bit that I did seemed to help, no more green poops, she was back to be her happy self, and the engorgement was greatly reduced. (still leaking, but c'est la vie) Well, the past couple days she has gotten much more fussy, and sounding under water again, no green poops (yet), and I'm starting to get engorged again randomly after having the softest floppiest boobs ever. . So I'm thinking oversupply is starting to become an issue again? She nurses quite frequently-- 18-20 times in a 24 hour period. She seems pretty efficient, nursing for only 5-10 minutes on one side and seems pretty content with one side. Since she nurses so frequently, and only for 5-10 minutes, I'll offer the same side a couple times in a row, not sure if that would constitute block feeding or not. When I was doing what I thought to be block feeding, I went several hours on one side before switching--primarily because the engorgement was getting to me--is this correct block feeding technique? Anyway, I half-heartedly starting block feeding this afternoon but stopped because the engorgement on the right boob was getting so painful. So long story short, should I keep block feeding, and put ice packs on the engorged boob? When should I switch sides? And back to my original question: Can one block feed too much and cause a low supply? I think that's what's subconsciously keeping me from block feeding for longer periods of time, thinking that I could somehow hurt my milk supply. Poor girl has been soo fussy today--and just when she eats too
Sorry this turned into such a long and drawn out post. Thanks in advance to anyone who makes it to the end AND has advice for me!