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Thread: drying up at 4 months?

  1. #1

    Unhappy drying up at 4 months?

    I am exclusively pumping breast milk for my daughter. I had to do this with my busy lifestyle and in the beginning my daughter had latching issues. Recently, I feel like my bbreasts are full of milk but when I pump- BARELY anything comes out. It just dribbles out instead of a full stream like I used to get in the past.

    I try to drink a TON of water- but I think it is just an illusion that they are full. (I literally leak but when I go to pump nothing comes out!). I am not sure if it is because I lost weight too fast- I have not worked out - just walk- but I am almost 10 pounds less than I was before baby.

    I don't want to transition to formula yet- but I am almost done my reserve supply and my daughter is in the 95 % for weight- so she is ALWAYS hungry.

    Can you please advise if this is what it feels like to dry up? The feeling that you are full but you are not?


  2. #2

    Default Re: drying up at 4 months?

    I have also changed the membranes on my pump and it seems to be working perfect- but it feels like the suction is not enough- yet when I am done pumping- my nipples are sore like it was too strong (i have to put it all the way on high). in the past i never had to go on HIGH but now thats all I can do to get anything out. :-( HELP! (also i gave birth in italy so i dont have a lactation specialist here to call)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: drying up at 4 months?

    Welcome to the forum!

    Some questions for you:
    - What sort of pump are you using?
    - How often do you pump?
    - Have you tried to get baby to nurse, or will she nurse?
    - How much milk does baby drink over the course of 24 hours?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: drying up at 4 months?

    What kind of pump are you using? How often are you pumping? Has your period started?

    If baby will nurse, it's better. EPing gets harder as baby gets bigger...I've been doing it for almost 18 months as my fourth son could not nurse becasue of a birth defect.
    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!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Re: drying up at 4 months?

    I suggest you call around and find a place you can have your pump tested. There is a machine that tests suction I believe. Call the manufacturer and have them walk you through troubleshooting. Sometimes it really is the pump that is the problem. Pumps are just machines and they malfunction and wear out just like any other machine. If you are using a personal use pump, eping is basically beyond the capabilities of that kind of a pump, although some moms do have success with those pumps. But a hospital grade rented pump is more what you need for eping.

    Have your ever had luck with hand expression before or after pumping, or breast compressions while pumping?

    Unfortunately the fact is it is difficult for many moms to maintain appropriate milk production when eping, no matter what pump is used. Pumps do not extract milk as well as babies do, plus a baby will nurse more some days, nurse longer certain times etc. etc. rather than on a set schedule, and this type of behavior helps keep milk production where it needs to be. Feeding your baby exclusively your expressed milk for four months is truly something difficult and special, and even if formula supplementation is needed now, you can continue to pump what you can, every drop of breastmilk is healthy for baby. Also if you have any interest in encouraging baby to nurse at the breast again, that is still a possibility. Just FYI.

    Galactagogues help in many cases. I suggest you check out the low supply articles on kellymom.com and the book Making More Milk.

    maybe back off on the water if you are pushing it. Drink to thirst. Tons of extra water-beyond your normal thirst- does not help milk production. Since your breasts feel full but nothing is coming out, could some kind of engorgement based swelling be going on? Engorgement is caused by extra fluid in the breasts clogging things up, sort of like when your sinuses are stuffed when ill but nothing or little comes out when you blow your nose.

    Weight loss is normal when nursing, even going down below pre-pregancy weight is normal, but your weight could be a concern if you are underweight and cannot gain no matter what you do.

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