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Thread: Pump output less - 9 month slump or diet change?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    4

    Default Pump output less - 9 month slump or diet change?

    Hi all - thanks for all your posts and answers. I've read through many past threads, and they answer and reassure - so thank you in advance!
    Background: My daughter is 9 months today, and we've been BF from the beginning. yay!
    I work full time, pump four times at work, and nurse on-demand evenings, nights, and weekends. We cosleep and she nurses 2-4 times at night (not sure, I don't really wake up). She's not eating much for solids, is not very interested. My normal output has been consistent, thank goodness until now. I usually try for 10-16 oz, my daily normal is right at 14-15 oz. I typically get 4+ oz in my morning pumps, and 3 in my afternoon pumps. I use an Avent double electric pump.

    Four days ago, I stopped eating my typical oatmeal, fruit and peanut butter breakfast. I've switched to more grain-free, dairy-free, sugar-free eating, and I'm feeling really good with lots of energy. I'm definitely tweaking things as I go, but I'm trying to eats lots of good carbs, protein, and fat. I'm getting upwards of 1,800 calories, and trying to eat more to get to about 2,200. (I've noticed before if I eat any lower than that, my milk drops.)
    The last few days, my milk supply has definitely been lower. I'm getting 2-3 oz per pump, with about 10-12 oz total. I know that doesn't sound like a huge drop - but it's making me worried. I have a tiny freezer stash, and want to BF as long as possible. I've also started hand expressing after two pumps.

    Actual question: Do you think cutting out the oatmeal is causing less milk? Is it a typical 9 month slump? Am I not getting enough food? I can't pump any more/longer at work, but I could add a pump at night, I guess? Any other ideas? We're going to really hang out and nurse a ton this weekend. Thanks for your thoughts!

    ETA: I had my first postpartum period last month and I'm due for the next in 5 days if my cycle is back to its normal self. So it could be milk drop from that too.
    Last edited by @llli*em-mom; June 14th, 2013 at 12:44 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    2,207

    Default Re: Pump output less - 9 month slump or diet change?

    Hi mama, some thoughts:
    1) Oatmeal does stimulate supply, so it's possible that could be it.
    2) Could be related to your period. In my experience, sometimes I notice a supply drop with my period, sometimes I don't - so even if you didn't notice a drop last time, that doesn't mean that that couldn't be the explanation this time.
    3) Pump: all pumps are machines, and machines can wear down. I'm not familiar with the Avent pump, does it have membranes and valves that can be changed out? Sometimes even if nothing is apparently wrong, changing out the replaceable parts can fix things.
    4) I'm assuming no new hormonal contraception or other medications including OTC? And not pregnant? (Sounds like probably not, but just checking...)
    5) If none of the above... you're left with the 9 month pump slump.
    So what to do? I'd add back the oatmeal and change out the pump parts - those are both easy to do. And if there is any hormonal birth control etc - stop taking those. Otherwise, you're left with increasing demand to up your supply. So yes, another pump at night... Or, the other possibility is to consider renting a hospital grade pump for the next couple months, some moms really see an improvement with using a better pump. You've done great breastfeeding/pumping this long, just a few more months to go!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    20,653

    Default Re: Pump output less - 9 month slump or diet change?

    with the PP.
    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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