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Thread: Does overactive letdown ever go away?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
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    289

    Default Does overactive letdown ever go away?

    Just wondering if OALD ever goes away or did for anyone? I have normal supply with OALD, it still hurts every time. No matter if I'm totally relaxed/asleep or wide awake and stressed.

    I still see spraying a few times even though my breasts are not full or engorged (haven't had that problem in months).

    One side is much more painful than the other, the lower producing side, which I don't understand. My only theory is maybe it has to work harder during letdown to push the milk "down"?

    Baby is almost 8 months
    and Mama to two little girls

  2. #2

    Default Re: Does overactive letdown ever go away?

    My baby is a year and I still have *some* pain during letdown. But not so much during feedings anymore but more so in between. Is that what you are talking about? Or do you mean pain associated with nursing or latch? Or letdown pain but only when nursing?

    Personally my letdown hurts more if I let down when baby is not nursing-for example, if I have been away from baby for some time or we have been busy and baby has not nursed for a while and I letdown. I don’t feel engorged, and my breasts stay soft, and I don’t even leak much of anything anymore, yet it does feel as if I kind of fill up with milk, and then it can hurt when the milk letsdown, which can happen if I hear my baby or think about her or it can just happen. I have no idea if I spray or anything anymore, as baby does not pop off during feedigns really...but I did a couple months ago.

    But the pain is much less of an issue than when baby was very young, and I would say it has progressively gotten better. However I am not sure we are talking about the same thing. For me, letdown pain is (usually) so momentary it is really not a big deal. It hurts longer if I cannot nurse when I letdown. It hurts enough for me to basically say 'ouch I need to nurse.' And I kind of reflexively press in on my nipples as that seems to help. The old fold your arms across your chest move if I don’t want to explain to whoever I am with "ow, yeah, I gotta go, my baby needs to nurse." So it hurts but for so short a time it is not a problem. If you are still having pretty bad letdown pain, or some other type of nursing related pain, you might want to talk to an IBCLC if that is possible.

    As far as why it hurts on one side and not the other, that may have something to do with your personal breast anatomy maybe? Letdown sensation is so weird, some moms feel nothing, other moms feel something but would not call it pain. In my experience, while I had overproduction and OALD with all three kids, I only felt letdowns at all with my second two and it definitely hurt(s) with both of them. But with my oldest there was never any letdown sensation at all.
    Last edited by @llli*lllmeg; August 6th, 2013 at 11:32 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    19,890

    Default Re: Does overactive letdown ever go away?

    Ever see any changes in the color of the nipple? Maybe the nipple turns white, or bluish-purple?
    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!"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    289

    Default Re: Does overactive letdown ever go away?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*lllmeg View Post
    My baby is a year and I still have *some* pain during letdown. But not so much during feedings anymore but more so in between. Is that what you are talking about? Or do you mean pain associated with nursing or latch? Or letdown pain but only when nursing?

    Personally my letdown hurts more if I let down when baby is not nursing-for example, if I have been away from baby for some time or we have been busy and baby has not nursed for a while and I letdown. I don’t feel engorged, and my breasts stay soft, and I don’t even leak much of anything anymore, yet it does feel as if I kind of fill up with milk, and then it can hurt when the milk letsdown, which can happen if I hear my baby or think about her or it can just happen. I have no idea if I spray or anything anymore, as baby does not pop off during feedigns really...but I did a couple months ago.

    But the pain is much less of an issue than when baby was very young, and I would say it has progressively gotten better. However I am not sure we are talking about the same thing. For me, letdown pain is (usually) so momentary it is really not a big deal. It hurts longer if I cannot nurse when I letdown. It hurts enough for me to basically say 'ouch I need to nurse.' And I kind of reflexively press in on my nipples as that seems to help. The old fold your arms across your chest move if I don’t want to explain to whoever I am with "ow, yeah, I gotta go, my baby needs to nurse." So it hurts but for so short a time it is not a problem. If you are still having pretty bad letdown pain, or some other type of nursing related pain, you might want to talk to an IBCLC if that is possible.

    As far as why it hurts on one side and not the other, that may have something to do with your personal breast anatomy maybe? Letdown sensation is so weird, some moms feel nothing, other moms feel something but would not call it pain. In my experience, while I had overproduction and OALD with all three kids, I only felt letdowns at all with my second two and it definitely hurt(s) with both of them. But with my oldest there was never any letdown sensation at all.
    I think we are talking about the same thing, but mine hurts when I am nursing and letdown occurs. It only lasts maybe 20 seconds, but it is enough for my whole body to tense. It's definitely a hard, painful pinching feeling. Whichever breast is not being nursed hurts more, actually, so I guess it's not just one sided. It's funny, I went through labor just fine but I hate how this feels!

    I haven't noticed color change but maybe I missed that.

    It's just weird, because in the beginning there was no sensation for months, and then all of a sudden it hurt and stayed that way, I'd say it's been 5 months like that.

    Who knows...maybe it will go away eventually? Hopefully! I mean, she nurses like 14 times per day, so that's a lot of painful letdowns. Oh well, no big deal I guess. It's also interesting how the brain works, it seems the more tuned in I am when nursing (especially if we are skin to skin) the stronger it feels. And oddly at these times I see the spraying, almost as if the more pain the stronger the whole letdown ends up being.
    Last edited by @llli*karrieperry; August 7th, 2013 at 04:43 PM.
    and Mama to two little girls

  5. #5

    Default Re: Does overactive letdown ever go away?

    OK, yes that sounds like letdown sensation. Yes I also will feel it more strongly on the 'non nursing' side. I figure it is as simple as the milk has nowhere to go so it hurts more. In my case this is still happening but it is much, much less than earlier, again, it has progressively gotten better.

    There may be more than the pain in how you are personally experiencing this. Pain itself can set off any number of strong emotions. Also "letdown" is caused by a hormonal release that some mothers experience negatively- emotionally, and for some, even physically. IN very severe cases it is almost unbearable and very difficult for some moms. This is something that has only recently been suggested and as far as I know there have been no formal studies about it. But it is known as D-MER and you can find more info here: http://d-mer.org/

    While I do not experience anything like D-MER, I often feel a burst or swelling of emotion when I letdown. I may tear up, I may feel a lump in my throat, in some cases I may even sob a bit, that kind of thing. This is clearly a response to the hormones of letdown for me. For some reasons this feeling is MUCH more pronounced with this baby than my first two. I am someone who is very comfortable with these kind of emotions and don’t look on this negatively when it happens, but I think for some other moms this could feel negative.

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