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Thread: Not keeping up with baby demand?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    168

    Unhappy Not keeping up with baby demand?

    Hello ladies!
    First of all thanks so much for your replies to my previous posts. This forum is great for new moms like me!!

    Now... I'm having issues keeping up with my baby demand. She's been taking 3.5 to 4 oz bottles every 2 hours while I'm at work, for a total of 5 feedings. Oh! She's 4.5 mo, 15# and 25 in long, so she doesn't have any issues growing! Her diaper output is normal too.

    Back to the issue, I am pumping 4 times a day at work, and getting about 3.5 oz bottles every time. But I am missing one bottle to make up for that 5th feeding.

    I started taking fenugreek to see if I can pump more milk, but it hasn't work (yet). I am also eating oatmeal every morning.

    I don't think I can accommodate another session at work, sometimes I can't even pump 4 times due to the workload I have. I was going to try today, but I am afraid I will get less milk if with pumping sessions spaced out less than 2 hours.

    Also, since she's eating some much, my freezer stash is gone. I need to somehow recuperate!

    Any advice will be welcome!

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    504

    Default Re: Not keeping up with baby demand?

    Hi there! Congratulations on your committment to providing your baby with breastmilk while you are working! I have a few pieces of feedback for you, and I'm sure others will chime in.

    1) What your baby is taking from a bottle is definately on the high end. Only being able to go 2 hours after a 4 ounce bottle is a little much - that's 20 ounces. I'd try cutting those bottles back to 3 ounces, 3.5 ounces, max. How long are you away from her? (My DD is 6 months now and we just went up to 4 ounces, but this will last her 3 hours so she usually only has a total of 12 ounces from 8:30am-4:30pm - and she's not really into solids yet).

    2) Are you using slow-flow nipples? We're still using the newborn nipples on the Avent bottles. The faster the flow of the milk, the more the baby will drink - just like how we, as adults, tend to overeat when we are eating quickly. The slower flow supports breastfeeding in many ways, including allowing baby to realize he/she is full before he/she overeats.

    3) You're doing a great job pumping. Yes, you will get less milk at each session if you pump more frequently, but you'll end up with more milk at the end of the day and ultimately the more frequent pumping will boost your overall supply. Do you have a commute? Pumping while driving is a great way to squeeze in an extra session (like on the way to work).
    Last edited by @llli*worknpump; September 28th, 2012 at 07:45 AM. Reason: type
    Blessed with DS - born 9/2/09 - nursed/pumped for 12 months
    Blessed with DD - born 3/27/12 my dreamfeeder

    903 ounces donated.
    http://www.wakemed.org/landing.cfm?id=135

  3. #3
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    Jul 2012
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    Default Re: Not keeping up with baby demand?

    Thanks!

    Yes, we use slow flow nipples... well... we use the nipples that come with the Medela bottles. At some point we went back and got some Dr. Browns preemie nipples because she was choking so much with the bottle, and that seemed to work, but it was a lot of trouble (for my mom who's keeping her at home) to warm up the bottle, pass the milk to the Dr Brown bottle (their nipples don't work with medela bottles) and then fix the thing right so it wouldnt spill, and then feed the baby. My LO lets you know pretty good when she's hungry, so my mom didnt want to make her wait too long.

    I work 9 hour days, so I usually nurse around 5:30 - 6 am and then leave and come back around 5 - 5:15ish. My mom says she's been getting hungry every 2 hours sharp, so she eats at 8, 10, 12, 2 and 4. I try to pump at the same times but around 4 I am trying to finish up so I can go home, so I am not able to do that last 4pm session. Although I'm going to try my best now... probably next week (I'm leaving early today )

    Our ped also suggested last time to start giving her some rice cereal, not much, just for texture -maybe a tablespoon or so, in between feedings so maybe she's not starving for the next bottle. I may try to do that too but since I don't have any extra breast milk I can use to mix the cereal, I haven't been able to start that!

    Also, in case you're wondering, when I visit my local LLLI leader, my mom came with me and the leader taught us how to feed the baby with the bottle so we don't overfeed... so I don't think that's an issue.

    I'll cut back the milk in the bottle to 3.5oz. She gets mad if she only gets 3oz (we've tried that before...) and she fuzzes after she is finished...

    Thanks for the advice again worknpump!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
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    Default Re: Not keeping up with baby demand?

    I have been struggling with this myself and I don't have all the answers, but one thing that has helped me is to pump every night after baby goes to bed also. I have been sitting down in front of the TV (with a treat!!) and just letting the pump run for as long as I can (maybe 30 or 40 minutes). I feel like it's helping. I get a couple of more ounces for the next day and it is that much more stimulation to help elevate my supply. I also started pumping in the last few days with a rented Symphony (hospital-grade pump). It seems to work better for me than my PISA.

    If you last pump at 2 and she eats at 4, is she wanting to nurse when you get home at 5? If not, you could also pump for a few minutes when you arrive home and get another couple of ounces. If you don't pump or nurse by around 5, you're going more than 3 hours at that point, which probably is pushing it a little.

    Also, if your mom could just stretch her out by just 15 minutes each time, so she eats at 8:15, 10:30, 12:45, and 3:00, then you'd be home by the time she's hungry again at 5 or 5:15 and she will only have gotten 4 bottles. Easier said than done, I know, and it might not help if she then ends up eating more because she's hungrier at that point, but it might be something to try.

    Just ideas that might be worth thinking about. It's not easy, I know!

  5. #5
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    Feb 2012
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    Default Re: Not keeping up with baby demand?

    4 pumping sessions if you are gone 9 hours should be good. Can you pump longer per session and try to get a 2nd letdown? Add breast compressions? Play with the pump settings? Sometimes less suction actually gets more milk.

    Really though it sounds like you're making plenty of milk...14 oz if you pump 3.5 oz each time and pump 4 times at work. The 'rule of thumb' for babies being fed expressed milk is 1-1.5 oz per hour of separation from mom, so if you're gone 9 hours 14 oz should be enough...

    You say you nurse at 6am. Are you leaving at 6, or what time do you leave? I would move that nursing session as close to the time you leave as possible and that should help your baby need a little less while you're at work. Also, I find it helpful to squeeze in two nursing sessions in the morning and 'tank baby up before I leave. Hope this helps!
    First-time mama to Joshua, 10/29/11. 29 months and going strong! for 14 months; now finished with pump weaning!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    Default Re: Not keeping up with baby demand?

    Everyone has good advice for keeping up with baby. I thought I would add that I used the Medela slow flow nipples for a little while. The milk would shoot out as soon as the bottle was tipped over to be placed in baby's mouth. The Avent slow flow seemed to actually have a "slow" flow in comparison. We now feed only Avent. My LO is 3 1/2 and uses the #2 Avent nipple. It seems to be working for him.

    Also, try to pump after you nurse on your days off. You may not get much, but it'll add up eventually.

    Good Luck. You're doing great!!

  7. #7
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    Feb 2010
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    504

    Default Re: Not keeping up with baby demand?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*mamat View Post
    Everyone has good advice for keeping up with baby. I thought I would add that I used the Medela slow flow nipples for a little while. The milk would shoot out as soon as the bottle was tipped over to be placed in baby's mouth. The Avent slow flow seemed to actually have a "slow" flow in comparison. We now feed only Avent. My LO is 3 1/2 and uses the #2 Avent nipple. It seems to be working for him.

    Also, try to pump after you nurse on your days off. You may not get much, but it'll add up eventually.

    Good Luck. You're doing great!!
    Same here about the nipples. I found the Medela slow flow nipples on the fast side. We also prefer the Avent bottles. And we are still using the "1" newborn nipples - at 6 months. Also - if you have a Medela pump, you CAN buy an adapter for it so you can pump directly into the Avent bottles. Check amazon.com for them.
    Blessed with DS - born 9/2/09 - nursed/pumped for 12 months
    Blessed with DD - born 3/27/12 my dreamfeeder

    903 ounces donated.
    http://www.wakemed.org/landing.cfm?id=135

  8. #8
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    Jul 2012
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    168

    Default Re: Not keeping up with baby demand?

    Thanks for the advise!!

    @joshuas.mommy - as soon as she goes back to sleep around 6:30 I get ready and leave around 7. I'd hate to wake her up after I get ready to nurse again! Plus I'd be late for work (which has happen a bunch of times when she doesn't go back to sleep).

    I do pump long enough to get 2 letdowns, I usually have a let down and when the flow slows down I switch to the stimulation speed to get the second one. Otherwise there's no way I can get what I'm getting!
    I'll check the avent bottles and nipples... Maybe that would help.

    And I also tried over the weekend to pump after I nurse but I don't get much more, maybe 1/2 or 1 oz total.

  9. #9
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    Aug 2012
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    Default Re: Not keeping up with baby demand?

    How much fenugreek are you taking?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    Default Re: Not keeping up with baby demand?

    I am taking 3 pills 3 times a day (sometimes I forget at night though...) but that's what my local LLLI leader recommended whenever I had supply issues early on.
    I thought it would be too much and maybe I would get engorged or something, but it has not happened... maybe is not working now? I don't know. I don't think it hurts if I keep taking it, it should help some (I hope)
    Thanks again everybody!! I have a few ideas now that I'll try. This morning I was late for work cause she woke up right at 6:45 (after her usual 5:45 feeding...) when I was getting ready. So it should be ok today!
    So...
    I'll get some Avent nipples and bottles to try
    I'll keep pumping every 2 hours at work, and see if I can make 5 sessions total.
    I reduced the milk amount to 3.5oz per bottle to see...
    And I told my mom to try to strech 10 to 15 min after a feeding is due to see if we can make 4 feedings instead of 5.

    We'll see... Thanks again! If you have any other ideas let me know! with my previous history of low supply I kinda freaked out for a little bit, but after everybody saying I'm doing pretty good I calmed down!!

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