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Thread: No letdown after newborn sleeps 5 hours

  1. #1
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    Feb 2012
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    Default No letdown after newborn sleeps 5 hours

    I'm a second time mom to a 6 week old. My toddler was bfed for 2 years with no supply issues. With him, I was asked to force feed him every 2 hours bc he wasn't gaining weight quickly (never diagnosed with FTT or anything like that and very healthy). With this one, he has been gaining steadily since 1 week and I am thankfully able to feed on demand. When awake during the day, he nurses abt every 2-3 hours but sleeps for 3-4 once during the day and sometimes during the night. I feel letdown when I'm nursing him but not during the 3-4 hr naps which is different from my first son. Once, he napped for 7 hrs and I went through a few letdown cycles, but that's the only time. He also nurses very fast, like 5-10 mins. where my toddler took an hour! My breasts also don't seem to feel full after these stretches of naps. I'm worried my supply is lessening even though baby has wet and poopy diapers every time I change him. Is it just bc I'm producing as he needs and bc with my toddler I set the schedule of every 2 hours that anything longer than that made me engorged? It's just different this time around. Thanks for any feedback!

  2. #2
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    Feb 2012
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    Default Re: No letdown after newborn sleeps 5 hours

    hm, since he's gaining well (right?) and has good output, my first reaction is just: it's pretty common for some moms not to feel a letdown or to get engorged. i don't know about feeling it sometimes and not others, though.
    DS1 6/7/11
    DS2 10/29/13

    Nursing, pumping, cloth-diapering, babywearing, working professor mama with the awesomest SAHD ever.

  3. #3
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    Jun 2009
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    Default Re: No letdown after newborn sleeps 5 hours

    It's normal for breastfeeding to feel different with different kids. And it sounds as if you only feel the letdowns when there has been a very long stretch of no nursing. I know I tend to feel letdowns more intenesly if the milk is letting down with no where to go! And of course some moms never feel letdowns. So I would not worry about that part of it too much.

    On the other hand, very long stetches of time between nursing sessions or not frequent enough nursing could potentially harm production even if mom is cue feeding.

    So generally, how many times a day (24 hours) does baby nurse? If it's less than at least 8-10 times, that would be on the low side, and offering the breast in addition to cue feeding (not forcing, but offering) is not going to do any harm. Cues can come from mom or baby. It's fine to offer to nurse whenever you like.

  4. #4
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    Feb 2012
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    Default Re: No letdown after newborn sleeps 5 hours

    I nurse him at least 8x/day. My breasts just feel soft, never full. I also don't soak through my breast pads like I used to. These changes took place a week ago so it hasn't always been like this. I'm just worried I'm not making a lot even though baby is happy and having wet/poopy diapers often. He doesn't have another appt. for 2 weeks so I can't verify wt gain in the last week. I'm just used to the fullness every few hrs indicating the need to nurse and am worried this is the start of diminishing production. Are wet diapers and happy baby enough indication he's getting enough?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Default Re: No letdown after newborn sleeps 5 hours

    Are wet diapers and happy baby enough indication he's getting enough?
    Yes.

    For most moms, fullness is something that is experienced only when milk production exceeds demand. When supply and demand are well-matched, most moms will feel empty most of the time, and will feel full only when their babies skip one or more feedings in a row, like when their babies suddenly sleep through the night.

    Freaking out when you go from feeling full fairly frequently to feeling empty all the time is a really common thing. Most moms start out overproducing when their milk first comes in- that's nature's way of making sure that newborns get fed while mastering the tricky art of nursing. But the overproduction isn't designed to last, because making extra milk is a waste of your energy and also puts you at increased risk for things like plugged ducts and mastitis. But if you expect that you're always going to feel full while nursing, the point where you suddenly feel deflated all the time- that's really shocking, and it can be a real confidence-breaker.
    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
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    Jun 2009
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    Default Re: No letdown after newborn sleeps 5 hours

    Are wet diapers and happy baby enough indication he's getting enough?
    I am going to disagree with mommal here. (Stop the presses, as that rarely happens!)

    But according to the lactation text Breastfeeding Answers made Simple, neither wet OR poopy diapers definitively show all is well with how much milk baby is getting. Weight gain does show this definitively. Output is one very good indication all is well, and certianly a baby having good wets is not in any eminent danger. But the current research indicates that output does not always indicate baby is getting enough to GROW as baby should.

    It is true that breasts feeling softer do not, on their own, indicate low production. This is normal when milk production reglulates, just as mommal describes. But three things make me feel just a bit more cautious in your case- 1) how young baby was when this occured and 2) how relatively infrequently baby nurses and 3) you, an experienced mom, have some concern, you are noticing something that feels 'off' to you.

    I am not saying anything is wrong, most likely, nothing is. Truly.

    When was the last weight check? If was recently-in the last two weeks- and all looked good, with no major changes in your diet, babies nursing habits or output since, fine. But if you have not had baby weighed for a few weeks and you have any concern your baby may not be getting enough, why not go in for a weight check? It can do not harm, (as long as no one freaks out and calls for supplementation if it's not needed) and if weight gain is not where it should be, the earlier that is identified and fixed the better. And if there was any issue, all that might be needed is to nurse one or two more times a day or encourage longer nursing sessions.

    Have you started any hormonal birth control?

  7. #7
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    Feb 2012
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    Default Re: No letdown after newborn sleeps 5 hours

    Nope, just breast feeding ;-). I did pump every 2-3 hours for 15 mins. the first week bc baby was in NICU for jaundice and made so much excess milk I was engorged constantly even when baby nursed (which was abt every 3-4 hours). Nurses also used the pumped milk to feed him in the middle of the night or when I couldn't get there quickly enough when he was crying. Thankfully, he latched on fine . I haven't pumped again since. He slept for 4 hours at night for a week and then 2-3. He is really quick nursing and then kind of hangs out and then another letdown will happen. He also sometimes gets fussy and pulls off if the milk isn't coming out fast enough (but sometimes it comes out too fast and he pulls off). I'm going to nurse more often and let him hang out longer to see if that makes a difference. I was happy this baby didn't nurse as much and often as #1, but I guess that's not always better. He showed good wt gain at his 1 week, 2 week, and 4 week appts. but doesn't go again until 6/24 (2 m). Perhaps related (just thought of this) I thought I had mastitis bc my breast was tender and I felt yucky but I felt better the next day and the tenderness is gone. I do have an itchy, red line where it was tender but that seems to be going away. Baby also has a yeast infection and white tongue but nurse said it was milk and my nipples don't hurt. And my toddle was always underweight and nursed constantly for 18 mos.
    Last edited by @llli*ehoneybee; June 5th, 2013 at 04:17 PM.

  8. #8
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: No letdown after newborn sleeps 5 hours

    Hmm, baby has a yeast infection and a white tongue? A white tongue alone could just be milk. But both a white tongue and a yeast infection- I assume it's in the diaper area?- sounds very thrush-y to me. Since thrush can be quite uncomfortable for a baby, and thereby lead to reduced nursing, I think I might go back and see the pediatrician and discuss getting treatment for you and the baby. And both mom and baby do need to be treated, even if one member of the nursing pair is asymptomatic.

    If you're relying on breastfeeding for birth control, you need to follow all the following rules for it to work:
    - Baby must be <6 months old
    - Baby must be exclusively breastfed- no bottles, no solids
    - Baby must never go >6 hours without nursing (i.e. baby cannot sleep through the night)
    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!"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    49

    Default Re: No letdown after newborn sleeps 5 hours

    I have my 6 week appt. in 3 days. I'll ask Midwife abt possible thrush then. I keep going back and forth between not worrying and worrying! He just slept almost 5 hours (7-11:45 pm) and I just changed him and nursed on one side for 10 mins. and now im going to give him the other side. His diaper had poo and was wet but not heavy (in 5 hrs., should it be sopping?). And Mommal, I know that bfing is no guarantee of bc, but it worked for my first, here's hoping it'll work this time . Also, I have a baby scale at home that I can chk out of curiosity (not digital, though). Btw, after 5 hrs., breasts did not feel full but letdown began within seconds of him latching on.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    49

    Default Re: No letdown after newborn sleeps 5 hours

    I meant to add in my previous post, I can see how good poopy/wet diapers are not an indication of good feeding since my toddler had those and was always underweight. This baby is gaining well so I will know if the scale doesn't show good wt gain something needs to be done.

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