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Thread: Low supply in evening?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    17

    Default Low supply in evening?

    My baby is 4 weeks old today and is being treated for reflux. In the last week and half he has home from feeding for 30 min every 2.5-3 hrs and being satisfied to feeding for 45-60 min every 2 hours. He also tends to cluster feed in the evening and overnight! He doesn't seem satisfied anymore and I don't know what to do! Tonight I fed him for over an hour (with both sides) and he was crying and inconsolable. I gave him a 3 oz bottle from my freezer stash and he drank 2.5 and is out like a light. Is my supply dropping? Or is is just less in the evenings. He has plenty of wet and dirty diapers and he's gaining weight. I am almost exclusively breast feeding but have been pumping once a day just to put a little milk aside(usually after a feed). I don't know what to do? Any suggestions

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,369

    Default Re: Low supply in evening?

    Welcome to the forum!

    If you're concerned about supply, the best thing you can do is to feed the baby as frequently as possible and count diapers carefully. As long as a baby has adequate wet/poopy diaper output, he's getting enough to eat.

    The feeding and behavior pattern you describe is very typical for a 4 week old baby, and is not an indicator of low supply. Breastfed babies often eat for long time periods and also feed very frequently, as much as every 1-2 hours or even more often. They have tiny tummies and breastmilk digests fast! Frequent feedings are particularly common during growth spurts, and there's a big one at around 3 weeks. Your LO could be going through his 3 week spurt late, or his 6 week spurt early! He could also be going through the fussy evenings period of his life. A lot of babies have severe evening fussiness, sometimes referred to as "the witching hour(s)" or " evenings-only colic." Here are some things that can help:
    - Nurse, nurse, nurse. And then nurse some more.
    - Warm bath.
    - Trip outside into the fresh air.
    - White noise (radio static, vacuum cleaner sounds, etc.)
    - Motion (bounce on exercise ball, rock, swing, stroller rise, car ride, etc.)
    - Closeness (snuggle baby close to your heartbeat in a sling)
    Coping with colicky evenings is all about derailing the baby's crankiness by changing up the incoming stimuli.

    The only thing I would be a little proactive about is the reflux. It's very common for babies to outgrow their dosage of reflux ends, and you may need to tweak that aspect of your baby's life.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    301

    Default Re: Low supply in evening?

    I could have written this (I think I actually did post something very similar!!) when my baby was about 4 or 5 weeks old. I think this is very normal and has nothing to do with your supply dropping. You just have to push through. It's hard but very very temporary. Getting in the car and going for a ride worked really well for us (we'd go pick up take-out for dinner and kill two birds with one stone--no one was going to be making dinner on those nights anyway!).

    We resorted to a bottle of pumped milk once or twice also. This is of course not a great idea because it is telling your body to make less milk. If you absolutely have to do this to save your sanity, it is a really good idea to pump after baby finally goes to sleep to replace the stimulation that your baby would have given you to get that milk. But before you give in, remind yourself that your baby feeding for hours on end with fussing--as frustrating and crazy-making as I know it is--it's GREAT for stimulating your body to make that much more milk tomorrow night. And that will help you pull through this very normal period sooner.

    Remember, your baby is programmed by nature to have a certain feeding behavior that in turn tells your body to produce exactly what he needs. And it really works! So as much as you can just breathe deeply, find distractions and power through, and know that it's not going to be like this forever, the better. Hang in there mama, you are doing so great!!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    17

    Default Re: Low supply in evening?

    Thank you both for the replys. I'm hopeful this is just temporary. Last night was rough and this am is not going any better! He's eating pretty much every hour and the only time he sleeps is when he falls asleep while eating. I've been changing positions frequently and have him in just a onsie to help. It would be frustrating but easier if it was just him and me but I have a 2 year old daughter that is feeling lack of mommy right now! I'm just feeling little helpless, overwhelmed, and like I'm losing my resolve with this. My experience was quite awful with my first so I really want this time around to be successful. He's continuing to have wet diapers so I know he's getting milk. In addition to all the above mentioned stuff he's having green VERY smelly poops! I've been reading about this in other discussions and was going to try to eliminate dairy for a bit but I'm not sure how long this takes to see if its a milk allergy or just fore milk/hind milk issue? I am willing to keep going, I guess I just want to know that this gets better.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    21,369

    Default Re: Low supply in evening?

    It gets better, I promise!

    Before you knock yourself out with dairy elimination, let's talk about your supply and letdowns. Oversupply and fast letdowns are a much more common cause of green poop than dairy. So, are you experiencing any of the following:
    - Frequent feelings of engorgement or fullness
    - Frequent leaking
    - Ability to pump multiple oz of milk with ease, if pumping
    - Strong letdown sensation
    - Baby may cough, gag, splutter, or click while nursing
    - If baby pulls off the breast while nursing, you may see milk stream or squirt from the breast
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    17

    Default Re: Low supply in evening?

    I am experiencing many of those things. I have to wear a breast pad but I'm not soaking them multiple times a day. I also can't really feel the let down. Occasionally, I feel a tingling in the nipple but not consistently. He does get mad sometimes and pulls away from me. He also chokes frequently too.

    As far as encouragement I frequently feel full if he goes longer than 2 hours and I also frequently experience the hard bumps(blocked milk ducts?) in the breast tissue. These are eased by frequent feeds or pumping. I have been pumping once a day, usually in the AM. Most of the time I pump after a feed and get 3-4 oz depending on how long he fed. If I pump an hour after he ate I will get 4-5 oz. this is pumping both breasts at same time.

    This morning he was feeding every hour to 1.5 hours and I pumped after he fed. He fed on one side and I pumped both. I only got 10cc from the breast he fed off of. I got 25cc on the non-fed side! I haven't pumped so little with him before so I'm a little worried

    He just frequently is fussy, rooting,and crying about 5-10 min after he eats and I don't know if he's hungry or it's the reflux. He was started on Prevacid for that a couple of days ago.
    It's these times I feel most helpless. I just don't know what he needs.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,369

    Default Re: Low supply in evening?

    Thanks for adding those details. It sounds like you have some degree of oversupply right now- you're feeling "full" if your LO goes more than 2 hours between nursing sessions, you're feeling localized engorged areas (the hard bumps), your pump output is better than average, and your baby is sometimes pulling off the breast and making choking sounds. Those are all very suggestive of oversupply and consequent fast letdowns. It makes me wonder if reflux is an accurate diagnosis, since fast letdowns can cause a baby to act reflux-y (gassy, spitting up a lot).

    Don't worry too much about feeling helpless. It's kind of normal at this point. Your baby is still so young and half the time he probably doesn't know what he needs any more than you do. It sounds like you're doing really well, and if you just keep nursing on demand I think you can expect to get through this fussy stage and have a really nice nursing experience!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

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