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Thread: about to give up..

  1. #1

    Default about to give up..

    I have been trying to breastfeed my 1 month old. My milk supply is low. I never felt and still dont ever feel engourged.

    She was born @ 36 weeks 6 days. So she was premature.

    I feed my daughter on both sides, 5-10 min on one side, 5-10 min on the other side. I can hear her swallowing but only for about the first 5 min on each side. If i would ler her, she would nibble for hours. Theres only a few times she spits it out.

    After I breastfeed her, she still is smacking her lips wanting to drink more. So I give her formula. Sometimes she'll drink an ounce, sometimes up to 4oz. after each feeding.

    I try to pump as much as possible. Im using a medla hospital grade pump now to try and help build my supply up. Even in the middle of the night I'll pump. I drink mothers milk. I take fenugreek. I drink A LOT of water throughout the day. I get just enough sleep. I eat a balanced diet. Im thinking of trying blessed thistle.

    Everything is getting exhausting. I really want to exclusivly breastfeed, but I'm losing hope.
    Last edited by @llli*cstroe; October 4th, 2013 at 10:15 AM. Reason: added information

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: about to give up..

    Welcome to the forum!

    Feeling engorged isn't a necessary aspect of successful breastfeeding, so don't worry about that. And in general, drinking to thirst and nursing on demand is all that is required to maintain milk supply- so don't overhydrate, and don't worry if your diet isn't perfect or if you're sleepless and stressed.

    Some questions for you:
    - How often does baby nurse in a 24 hour period? Is she in the 10-12 range, the 8-10 range, or <8?
    - How does nursing feel? Is there any pain for you?
    - Is baby setting her own timing for feedings- i.e. is the 5-10 minute feeding her idea, or is it something you're doing by watching the clock?
    - How much formula are you using in a 24 hour period?
    - Are you supplementing after every feeding, or only after some feedings?
    - How often are you pumping?
    - How much milk are you pumping each time?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Default Re: about to give up..

    Agree with mommal's advice and questions.

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*cstroe View Post

    I feed my daughter on both sides, 5-10 min on one side, 5-10 min on the other side. I can hear her swallowing but only for about the first 5 min on each side. If i would ler her, she would nibble for hours.
    Also want to emphasize that there is absolutely nothing wrong with letting baby "nibble for hours." The first couple months of my babies' lives they were almost permanently attached to my breasts! That's how newborn nursing is, and that's what builds your supply. Most newborns are not efficient enough nursers to nurse for only 5 or 10 minutes - 30-40 minutes is more like it! (They do become more efficient over time, though, so you won't spend the rest of your life doing nothing but nursing!) I would set myself up on the couch with baby, my computer, my phone, a book or magazine to read and just let them nurse for as long as they liked. I can't tell you how many novels I read when nursing my newborns! If baby is smacking her lips wanting to drink more, let her nurse rather than giving her formula. (Depending on how much formula you are currently giving, you may have to gradually wean the supplements, rather than cold turkey, but the principle is to satisfy her at the breast rather than with formula). Also, 4 oz is WAY too much to be giving baby as a supplement. An entire meal at the breast is 2 or 3 oz, maybe 4 at the most. And formula is not as easily digested as breastmilk. So when you give her 4 oz of formula, it will sit there for even longer than 4 oz of breastmilk, and decrease baby's motivation to nurse, thereby decreasing your supply further.

    Don't lose hope mama, you can do this!

  4. #4

    Default Re: about to give up..

    I nurse probably 8-10 times a day.

    There really isn't pain when feeding, but I do notice a slight burning. She tugs a lot while she feeds so I don't know if that is the problem.
    At first and while in the hospital it hurt really bad, I left with blisters on my nipples. I talked with a lactaton consultant in the hospital and had to fix her latch. It was thn good. I still have to flip out her top lip.

    She does set her own times. And they are very random and speratic. Sometimes she will stay latched for 30 min on one side, let go then latch to the other one for and hour or visversa. At night she will latch for shorter periods and cry and fuss. I then give into formula because I feel like I'm starving her.

    Yesterday I used about 15oz of formula in 24 hours
    I supplement only when she still smacks her lips after I switch between both side multipule times or if she. Is really fussy I will give her 1oz then try to breastfeed her again.

    I pump usually 3 times a day. Morning, noon, and at night. In the morning I tend to get between 1/2 oz - 1oz. At the noon n night feeding I get between a couple drops to 1/2oz.

  5. #5

    Default Re: about to give up..

    She sets her own feeding times. And they are all random. I still only her swallowing for a few minutes. I switch her between breastwork after she detaches and usually cries and fusses. After multiple switches I give into formula.

    She spits up quiet a bit also. Not everytime but probably everyother time. Sometimes its very little and other times its a lot!

    Ive tried giveing her a pasifier despite everyone saying not this soon. But she wouldn't take it anyways. She just wants to be attached to me.

    She has spent hours just sitting there with my nipple in her mouth not sucking or nibbling.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Default Re: about to give up..

    Breastfed babies don't eat according to a schedule. What you describe sounds like normal breastfeeding behavior. Sometimes long sessions, sometimes short. Sometimes baby will feed for hours on end - cluster feeding - typically in the evening; sometimes baby will go a couple hours between feeding. All normal! Here's more information from kelly mom:

    Did the LC check for tongue tie? You might also want to check in with her again about the burning, make sure you don't have thrush or some other issue.

    So at this point, you are using quite a bit of formula. The average milk intake of a 1 month old is about 24 oz, ranging between 19 and 30 oz. So she is getting at least half the milk she needs from formula. And you are not nearly matching that with what you are pumping, so it's likely that at this point, your supply is lower than baby's demand. Which doesn't mean you can't build it back up! You can build your supply back up while slowly decreasing the formula. This article explains how to do it in a step-by-step way:

    What kind of pump are you using? As the article mentions, using a double-electric hospital grade pump (usually rented) is the best way to build your supply back up on this type of situation. But most important is putting baby to the breast as often as possible. The switch nursing you are doing is great for building supply too.

  7. #7

    Default Re: about to give up..

    That puts my mind at ease knowing that her breastfeeding behavior is normal!

    The LC did check for tongue tie and she doesn't have it. And after reading about different positions from kellymom site I tried a few different positions and I noticed if I position her different it I don't feel that sort of burning feeling. I will see the doctor on Monday to make sure I don't have thrush or anything else going on.

    After talking with the doctor on Monday I am going to use kellymom step-by-step way to bulk my supply up and hopefully wean her off the formula!

    I am renting a Medela Lactina Select double-electric hospital grade pump right now to help build my supply up. I've been using it for 3 days now.

    I also notice she falls asleep at the breast, I'll try to wake her up and switch sides she'll suck a little bit then fall back to sleep. I then lay her down and she'll be back up to feed in a few minutes. Is there anything I can do about her tugging while feeding?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Default Re: about to give up..

    That sounds great!

    Tugging: have you tried supporting her head so she "stays on" better? I'm not totally sure what you mean by tugging, but I'm picturing it like her falling away from the breast and pulling the nipple with her? Do you use pillows to support her, like a boppy or brest friend type pillow, or simply loose pillows that you can use to keep her close? I found the boppy worked for me at that young age.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Re: about to give up..

    That is what I was picturing too-baby getting pulled off nipple by gravity. Laid back position helps with this as well. I think normal nursing feels like a "gentle tugging" but it should not feel uncomfortable. I wonder if breast compressiosn would help, maybe baby is tugging due to needing a "shot" of milk- of course breast compressions are helpful for baby sleepy at the breast and getting more milk into baby as well so no harm in trying those...

    Have you tried switching sides a few times each feeding? That is another milk production upping/waking sleepy baby trick.

    I have to go and cannot do links- google jack newman Breast compressions for good breast compression info. Search "toolkit" on this site to get to the tear sheet toolkit that has a pdf about laid back breastfeeding.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

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