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Thread: Breast Milk Decreasing at 2.5 Months?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2006

    Unhappy Breast Milk Decreasing at 2.5 Months?

    Hello, I am a new mom of a very healthy baby boy who, until very recently, has had no trouble breastfeeding.

    History: In fact, he has always been at the 95th percentile for weight at his doctor visits. I went back to work a few weeks ago and have been trying my best to keep up with pumping (actually, I try to work from home at least two days a week so I can feed him directly). He has been feeding one breast about every three hours and taking in about 3 oz each feeding (at least thats about what I can get from pumping and how much filled him when he had breast milk from the bottle).

    Concern: These days, he can top off 4 oz each feeding, but I am struggling to get more than 1-2 oz sometimes when I pump. I also don't feel like my breasts are filling up as often or as much as they used to (size DD). I have a hard time sometimes telling if he is getting enough milk out of me and he is feeding for longer periods of time, where he used to come off at 10 minutes like clockwork. I am not sure how else to explain it, but I just feel like my breasts are dryingy up for some reason. Am I nuts? Any suggestions? I think I will try pumping the breast he does not feed from every time I feed him and see if that helps.

    Does anyone have any books that might address this topic, and also what occurs when you stop breastfeeding in general?

    Thank you in advance for any help you can offer!


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2006

    Default Re: Breast Milk Decreasing at 2.5 Months?

    Hi, I'm not an expert or a LLL leader, or anything, but I thought I'd throw in my 2 cents until someone more knowledgable has a chance to post!

    It sounds to me like your ds might be hitting a growth spurt. So, he will be taking in a lot more at this time and not seem to be satisfied as easily. You can't really judge how much milk you're producing by how much you pump. The baby is much more efficient! I also remember that around 3 months the supply/demand kind of levels out, so you're less likely to get engorged and your breasts don't *feel* as full.

    Hopefully someone else can help you with the pumping issue, as far as keeping up with your ds while you are working. I don't have any experience with that.

    Good luck!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Re: Breast Milk Decreasing at 2.5 Months?

    Pumping is not a good indication of milk supply so please don't gauge your supply by what you can pump. Baby's erratic nursing behavior isn't a good indication of supply either. And you cannot gauge supply because baby guzzles down a bottle after nursing either. Babies have a suck/swallow/suck reflex -- so, a suck triggers a swallow which triggers another suck and so on and so forth. The only real way to know whether mom has a supply issue is whether baby stops gaining (or starts losing) weight. A good precursor to this is to look at baby's weight diaper count. About how many wet diapers per day would you say your baby is having?

    Mom's milk supply usually begins to stabilize somewhere around the 12th week -- you are approaching this. It's common for your breasts to feel less full than they have. But milk supply depends on breast milk removal, or supply and demand. It is almost unheard of for a woman to suddenly lose her milk supply for no reason at all. In other words, it's almost always triggered by something -- baby spending less time at the breast, medications, etc. Since you are having a difficult time keeping up with baby's needs while you are at work, would it be possible for you to pump more frequently? Also, what kind of pump are you using? You may just need a more effective pump.

    The best suggestion is to simply watch the baby, not the clock. Try not to be too concerned with how long he's spending at the breast. Some babies change their nursing patterns almost as quickly as they change their sleeping patterns, lol. But him spending more time at the breast is not an indication that your supply is low. As the above poster mentioned, he could be going through a growth spurt. In which case he's placing more demand on your supply and your supply should catch up in a day or two as long as you pump as if to mimick his nursing patterns. Perhaps you could stay home the next few days and let baby increase your supply? A baby is much more pleasant than the pump

    You're doing a great job -- keep it up!!

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