My baby is 5 weeks old and my breastfeeding experience has literally been the most challenging thing I have ever gone through. I EBF the first 3.5 weeks and began supplementing with formula the 4th week per my pediatrician due to the baby not gaining enough weight. Talk about feeling like a failure. It literally broke my heart to have to introduce formula but nothing I did could put weight on her fast enough and she always seemed hungry despite nursing her on demand. My stress level hit an all time high and I feel like my milk production has been dwindling since. When I go to pump (for example, I have a hair appointment tomorrow and will be gone for several hours and will need her to have something while I am gone), I am pumping practically nothing (0.5-1.5 oz per breast, right more than left) and can barely make a 5-6 oz bottle in 2 days (my little girl is quite an eater- she has already taken 8 oz bottles-it is insane but I was the same way as a newborn). I typically nurse her from one breast for 20-30 minutes, which she seems content with most of the time, and pump the other to get the most milk- if I nurse her from both, I can barely pump anything.
Some background: I already have done oatmeal, barley (a beer here and there), mother's milk tea, all day pj sessions, skin to skin, etc as often as I can. I also gave up dairy at week 3 to see if that helped her gain weight/decrease fussiness and it seemed to help a bit. I only supplement her in the evening with 2-4 oz depending on what she takes and it is after nursing. I nurse her every 2-4 hours (on demand) for a minimum of 20 minutes per session, sometimes from both breasts, other times from just one, depending on my nipple discomfort level or if I need to pump later for a bottle.
So, getting to my questions:
Someone told me I should be pumping immediately after every feeding to increase my milk supply- is this true? What if I am pumping on nipples that won't give me milk? What is the best way to integrate pumping into increasing my supply?
Should I be nursing her from both breasts at every feeding? I am getting mixed advice.
Is there a chance my baby is colicky and I am interpreting her fussiness as hunger? In the evevning (5pm-11pm) she is nursing every 1-2 hours until bedtime (10pm ish) and screaming like she has never eaten before until I give her the supplementation bottle right before I put her down. The only thing that soothes her is my boob, but I can hardly keep up as my milk production is so low and feels like it is dwindling and the pain after nursing her so frequently gets me more irritated/stressed.
Thanks for any feedback- you guys give great advice.