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Thread: Thinking about EPing

  1. #1
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    May 2012
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    Default Thinking about EPing

    Okay I know a lot of you are going to say dont do it but I've been really thinking about EPing. I have heard it is more time consuming but I'm struggling with BFing. I think I have too much milk and my LO will only latch on for 5 min at a time and within that 5 min she unlatches a lot. I've tried the block feeding but doesn't seem to help. She's become really gassy and I feel bad for her. Today she was hungry and just wouldn't latch on so I pumped and gave her a bottle. She did great and is actually sleeping. I've been going back and fourth with this and I'm unsure what I want to do. I was thinking about still nursing at night (because it is easier and she seems to do okay at night) and maybe when out and about.

    My question is for those who EP how long do you pump for and have you seen a descrease in your milk supply? I heard that could happen and I don't want to chance that but I need to do something!

  2. #2
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    May 2012
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    Default Re: Thinking about EPing

    Oh and I pumped today for about 5 min and got about 5 oz. out of one breast. If she's eating 5 min. is that what shes getting? If so I don't feel so bad for her only eating 5 min but if she gets that much why would she still be hungry every hour

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Thinking about EPing

    How old is your baby? I had oversupply and overactive letdown and after awhile my baby started nursing just a few minutes at a time and got plenty of milk. You can't really compare pumping to nursing though. Young babies typically should not be taking in 5 ounces at a time from either breast or bottle. It is much healthier for them to drink smaller amounts more frequently.

    Have you tried nursing reclined? I would lean back on a few pillows, put my baby on my stomach, and let him latch. It helped enormously with my OS/OALD related issues. Laid back nursing can take a lot of readjusting and tweaking your positioning to find something that works really well, but it is definitely worth the effort in my mind. Also, block feeding can take awhile to lower supply significantly. It took a few months for me to get to where I was more or less comfortable.

    There are others here who can answer the EP questions better than me. In the meantime, maybe try nursing in a laid back position to see if it helps.
    K. Sophia - Mama to my little lactivore, the amazing Mr. X (11/10).

  4. #4
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    May 2012
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    Default Re: Thinking about EPing

    She is 2 weeks old. I know shes still young and we are getting the hang of it still. I just feel so bad for her. It has nothing to do with me always feeding or the time but all about her. I have tried the laid back position but she wants nothing to do with it. Weve tried the side laying poisition and sometimes she does great sometimes not. I think the block feeding has worked (not so much for her eating) but my breast have been feeling fuller and hurt more so I think some of my milk might be drying up?? I even cut our dairy (but I just started that yesterday)

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Thinking about EPing

    I had really bad oversupply, so I feel your pain (literally!) and frustration. But for me, pumping actually made my oversupply worse and made me more susceptible to clogs and mastitis, so I would strongly suggest you keep trying to get breastfeeding down rather than start pumping at this point. EPing is a major pain in the long run, and you are still in the very very early days! It can take a while to get breastfeeding down, but it is SO WORTH IT. You can do this!

    Just take it one day at a time. You probably have OALD as well as oversupply. Two week olds are notoriously fussy eaters, and OALD can really make it harder at first. The fact that you are trying to start block feeding and your breasts are full and painful probably makes your letdowns even MORE intense and difficult for your baby to handle. Have you tried hand expressing a bit before nursing? Or even pumping just a little bit, to get those first intense letdowns, and then latching your baby on? (Be careful about the pumping, of course, it can aggravate your OS, so just go easy on it.)

    Be careful going so long between nursings that you are in pain. If your breasts are hard and lumpy, you should be hand expressing to get the milk flowing a little bit. Otherwise, you're at higher risk for mastitis.

    I know this is tough right now. I've been through it! I was beside myself when Joe was two weeks old, and wasn't sure I would be able to continue breastfeeding (of course, since I was making enough milk for four babies, I had no idea how to quit, either! ). But I pushed through it, kept up with the blockfeeding, and I am so glad I did. I went on to nurse Joe happily for years after that and it was a great accomplishment and joy to me. You can do this too!


    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Thinking about EPing

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*joe.s.mom View Post
    I had really bad oversupply, so I feel your pain (literally!) and frustration. But for me, pumping actually made my oversupply worse and made me more susceptible to clogs and mastitis, so I would strongly suggest you keep trying to get breastfeeding down rather than start pumping at this point.
    This was my experience too. The pump was nothing but trouble for me!

    2 weeks is so young. Breastfeeding pretty much stinks for most of us at 2 weeks. Give it some time. The block feeding really does help, but it can take awhile. Staying away from the pump will help too. I used cold compresses to ease the pain from engorgement, and they helped a lot.

    You can work out some of the gas in between feedings. I would give tummy and back massages and bicycle my baby's legs throughout the day. Then in the evenings, when the gas was at it's worst, I would give him a nice warm bath. All this helps a lot with the gas. Some babies are just gassy, and you can't necessarily attribute it to anything about breast feeding. My son was gassy long after I got my oversupply under control.

    I know it's brutal right now, but you will get a huge return on your investment if you see it through. It gets better. Way better. I promise.
    K. Sophia - Mama to my little lactivore, the amazing Mr. X (11/10).

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Thinking about EPing

    Congrats on new baby! What an exciting, tiring, confusing time!

    Try putting the pump somewhere you can't get to easily, closet, attic, trunk, another house, it sounds like it's becoming a crutch. Although it is comforting as a new mom to see all that milk flowing & knowing baby is getting so much, 2 weeks is too early to be pumping unless your babe has a medical condition and it is certainly contributing to your OS/OALD. My lactation consultant has also said there's new info that OS/OALD is being mistaken for dairy allergies.

    Due to overzealous hospital staff, I was given a Symphony and told to pump 5 min before and 15 min after every feeding starting from about day 2 after my c-section even though we had no complications with his latch or his eating or colostrum or milk coming in. This led to incredible OS/OALD, which made Aidan even more cranky, gassy and uncomfortable. When we were finally able to get the OS under control, OALD was under control and he was a lot less gassy.

    As I remember, at two weeks we were still finding a comfortable position to nurse even though there were no latch issues. And I remember filling up 3 of the 2.5 oz milk cylinders at a time for the 5 min pump before nursing. They sent us home with the pump & instructions to continue but not when to stop leading me to believe this is what we were to do forever. I think around 3 weeks I was about to run screaming into the night with lack of sleep due to having to get up to pump before he wanted to eat and his inability to sleep due to the gas from OS . Then I remembered this site and learned some tricks for the OS/OALD and packed that pump away. It's not going to be comfortable for a few days with the block feeding but as others have posted, hand express enough to the first intense letdown, then get baby to latch. Do not pump after, do not pump before. Express this milk into a bottle if you want or into a diaper or towel. It's mostly gas-causing skim milk anyway. Expressing any more with the sucking action of the pump is going to send signal to your body baby is really hungry, or you have multiple babies and you are going to make more milk.

    Get some bags of dried beans and keep a rotating supply in the freezer. They stay cooler longer but not too cold to put right on the skin to ease engorging discomfort. Take baby to bed, just lay there nursing & spraying away until you two can get into a comfortable pattern. It's going to take more than a day. She's used to getting fed through a tube 24/7, not latching and sucking. You are probably not used to having a babe at the boob. There's a learning curve and you've only be at it for 2 weeks!

    Ultimately you are going to decide if you are going to EP. If you continue to pump to give your baby bottles so she can sleep she is going to start to refuse you and you will be unable to feed her at night or when out and about. She will prefer the bottle & cry and fuss more than she does now about having a little gas. It will be heartbreaking. EPing is going to be fairly smooth right now being so young. As she grows and becomes more present in the world, her awake times being longer than nap times you are probably going to wish you didn't make the decision to EP. Depending on when that is you will have more difficulty getting her back to breast.

    You are truly fortunate to have a baby that does latch well with no pain and I'd hate for you to lose that. Congrats on the amazing job you've been doing so far!

    http://www.llli.org/faq/oversupply.html
    www.llli.org/faq/foremilk.html
    http://kellymom.com/bf/got-milk/supp.../fast-letdown/
    http://kellymom.com/bf/concerns/mother/engorgement/
    http://kellymom.com/health/baby-heal...e-intolerance/

  8. #8
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    Mar 2006
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    Default Re: Thinking about EPing

    Seriously?! Go back and read some of my posts. I have to EP, and I STRUGGLED to do it...and I HAVE an OS. Pumping is MUCH HARDER.

    Your baby is 2 weeks old. Breastfeeding is hard right now. It WILL be better and most likely soon. But pumping....you will be trapped by a pump every 2 hours for the next 3 months for15 minutes at a time, because you have to put in the time or it doesn't matter how much you get in 5 minutes now...if you don't put in the time, you will dry up in just a few months.

    And what do you do when your baby is crying? Seriously, it was super hard to EP. I had no choice.

    For OS, you have options. Try reclined nursing. I laid down to nurse all the time, and my baby learned quickly to let the excess dribble out the side of his mouth. Start it going, get the worst of the milk over with then put baby on. Block feed. That takes time, and it huts a bit while you are doing it, but it works, and it will help.

    Pumping sucks. I am sitting here pumping, when I could be sleeping, because to get us out of the house, I have to get up an hour before anything else can happen I have to stay up late to pump every night it is a short term gain with far reaching, unexpected losses. Yep, you are having a hard time right now, but EPing won't solve anything long term.

    EPing also costs a fortune. It ran me about $2000 for bags, pump rental, various parts trying to make it easier on me and less painful, extra stuff so I wasn't washing thing 10 times a day, feeders (my baby could not use bottles and required special feeders), all kinds of things. I wore out 3 pumps. I had to have my hospital grade serviced. Formula would have been cheaper.

    Seriously. Rethink this. Put the pump away. You would give up snuggling your baby to pump?!

    Sorry. I am really missing breastfeeding lately.
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  9. #9
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    May 2012
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    Default Re: Thinking about EPing

    Thanks for the feedback. I am going to try and stick it out. I know it's still early it's just so fustrating. The nurses also told me to pump after she ate if she didnt have a good feeding SO I think thats when all the problems started The pump is away and I'm hoping this gets better soon!!!!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Default Re: Thinking about EPing

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*Angie0712 View Post
    Thanks for the feedback. I am going to try and stick it out. I know it's still early it's just so fustrating. The nurses also told me to pump after she ate if she didnt have a good feeding SO I think thats when all the problems started The pump is away and I'm hoping this gets better soon!!!!
    I started pumping early with Joe too because he didn't latch on much in the first days, and I'm convinced that ratcheted my oversupply way up. It was really frustrating (and painful, dealing with engorgement!). Again, be careful as you wean off the pump not to let your breasts get rock hard and lumpy, which can cause clogs or mastitis (believe me, that is the LAST thing you need right now). Keep your eye out for sore, red areas developing on your breast, that's an early warning sign. Try taking lots of warm showers and massaging your breasts and expressing a little milk to soften them. This will give you relief but it won't exacerbate your oversupply like the pump does.


    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

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