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Thread: losing supply??

  1. #1
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    Default losing supply??

    So here’s what’s going on:

    My 5 month old baby got a cold on Sunday. I have been trying to pump since then to keep up since I know when they’re sick it’s hard for them to eat with a stuffy nose and breathe. I have only been able to get half an ounce or less out a day. Compared to last week getting two ounces each time I pumped. (I usually pump every other day).

    In the last two days I have been pumping two to three times a day as well as power pumping at night and still having the same results. My baby is doing much better now. However now he is pulling away from the breast and screaming at different times during the day and eating ALL night long (before he would only eat once a night). Hes having a lil less than normal wet diapers.

    I also started the pill a week ago and am wondering if that is what’s causing this.

    He could be teething however, I don’t think that would affect my pumping. I’ve checked the pump replaced the batteries etc (I use Medla freestyle).

    Any ideas?

    Thank you for your time!

    Ang
    Last edited by @llli*newmommy5-13-13; October 24th, 2013 at 05:17 PM. Reason: adding info

  2. #2
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    Default Re: losing supply??

    I think that in this situation, the first thing you do is to stop taking the pill. Maybe it's the problem, maybe it's not- but it doesn't hurt to remove that variable from the equation. If your supply bounces right up after stopping the pill, you know that it's not a breastfeeding-compatible contraceptive for you, at least not right now, when your baby is so young. We're happy to talk you through alternative contraceptives, if necessary.

    The best thing you can do when you suspect a supply slump is to nurse as much as possible. Even if the baby acts super cranky about it and nurses through the night, it's the best thing for supply.

    Have you had baby's ears checked? Viral colds are often followed by ear infections, either bacterial or viral. And those can make a baby miserable, especially at 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!"

  3. #3
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    Thumbs up Re: losing supply??

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*mommal View Post
    I think that in this situation, the first thing you do is to stop taking the pill. Maybe it's the problem, maybe it's not- but it doesn't hurt to remove that variable from the equation. If your supply bounces right up after stopping the pill, you know that it's not a breastfeeding-compatible contraceptive for you, at least not right now, when your baby is so young. We're happy to talk you through alternative contraceptives, if necessary.

    The best thing you can do when you suspect a supply slump is to nurse as much as possible. Even if the baby acts super cranky about it and nurses through the night, it's the best thing for supply.

    Have you had baby's ears checked? Viral colds are often followed by ear infections, either bacterial or viral. And those can make a baby miserable, especially at night.
    I was actually told to start taking the pill when he was only 8 weeks old and I held off till now... I decided that if it doesn't change by Sunday (or if it gets worse) to go off the pill and see if that changes anything. (I've actually never tried anything else so I would like some advice on other types of birth control).

    No, I haven't had his ears checked... Ill call them Monday to make an appointment.

    Thank you for your advice!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: losing supply??

    Totally breastfeeding-friendly options (i.e. non-hormonal):
    - ParaGard IUD
    - barrier methods- make condom, female condom, diaphragm, spermicidal gels, creams, and inserts, cervical cap, sponge
    - fertility awareness method (FAM)- requires a lot of self-knowledge and charting, see Toni Weschler's book "Taking Charge of Your Fertility" for a primer on FAM and how to use it
    - Lactational amenorrhea method (LAM)- good for moms who are exclusively nursing day and night, who have babies <6 months old, who do not have their periods back, and whose babies never go more than 6 hours without nursing
    - withdrawal
    - non-penetrative sex, i.e. "outercourse"
    - abstinence
    - sterilization (vasectomy, tubal ligation)

    Anything on that list look appealing to you?
    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!"

  5. #5
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    Question Re: losing supply??

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*mommal View Post
    - fertility awareness method (FAM)
    - Lactational amenorrhea method (LAM)- good for moms who are exclusively nursing day and night, who have babies <6 months old, who do not have their periods back, and whose babies never go more than 6 hours without nursing
    Ive never heard of LAM before.
    How can you do FAM if you haven't had a period yet?

  6. #6

    Default Re: losing supply??

    I think you may be seeing a problem where there is none.

    Your child was sick, which may make it more difficult to nurse, it is true. Illness also often makes a child not WANT to nurse as much. Eating in any way, even from a bottle, can hurt of a baby has a headache, or a sore throat, or feels queasy, etc.

    This is all fine, because the vast majority of mild illnesses are short in duration and a few days of less milk/less nursing, even much less, is not going to hurt anything when a healthy baby is 5 months old! It is not going to hurt baby, and it is not going to hurt your milk production. If it DID hurt your production, baby is taking care of that now, by nursing all night long.

    I do not know why you were pumping every other day prior to baby getting ill, But I think it is very possible you have overly alarmed yourself by pumping when it was not needed, because baby was ill. Now you are power pumping at night, which is very likely to make YOU exhausted and susceptible to illness!

    Yes, hormonal birth control may harm production. Certainly. I am not disagreeing.

    But so does long stretches of not nursing. So does pumping instead of nursing, if you have been doing that (again I do not know why you were pumping every other day.)Even if the pumping is needed due top a separation, it is possible it will harm production overtime to pump instead of nursing! This is just a fact. of course if separations are long enough and frequent enough to interfere with breastfeeding, pumping is needed.

    Sleep: There is no reason to expect that a baby who was sleeping longer sleep stretches early on to keep that up. Actually it is common and normal for a baby to wake more and eat more at night and in general after the much more sleepy newborn period. As far as why baby is fussing during the day, maybe it is because you are overfeeding baby by giving baby bottles on top of nursing.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: losing supply??

    with LLLMeg.

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*newmommy5-13-13 View Post
    Ive never heard of LAM before.
    How can you do FAM if you haven't had a period yet?
    LAM works only in the first 6 months, and only if you meet ALL the criteria. And, like any birth control method, it has a failure rate- you have to be on board with that if you're going to use it.

    FAM does work if you haven't had a period yet. But you'd have to be EXTREMELY careful and alert when using it, so that you can spot the signs of returning fertility without having a period to guide you. (E.g. "This increase in cervical mucus is coming around 10 days after my last period, so it's probably a sign of fertility" or "This large shift in temperature is probably an outlier because I am just a day or two away from getting my period and I already had a defined thermal shift earlier in the month".) You'd allow want to have a really good familiarity with the way your body tends to work. I personally don't think that women should just jump into FAM, unless they're okay with an unplanned pregnancy. They should have at least a few months of observations before they start using FAM, so that they are really pretty familiar with their bodies and know what to expect, and when.

    Basically, if it were me I'd pick one of the barrier methods.
    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!"

  8. #8
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    Smile Re: losing supply??

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*lllmeg View Post
    I think you may be seeing a problem where there is none.

    Your child was sick, which may make it more difficult to nurse, it is true. Illness also often makes a child not WANT to nurse as much. Eating in any way, even from a bottle, can hurt of a baby has a headache, or a sore throat, or feels queasy, etc.

    This is all fine, because the vast majority of mild illnesses are short in duration and a few days of less milk/less nursing, even much less, is not going to hurt anything when a healthy baby is 5 months old! It is not going to hurt baby, and it is not going to hurt your milk production. If it DID hurt your production, baby is taking care of that now, by nursing all night long.

    I do not know why you were pumping every other day prior to baby getting ill, But I think it is very possible you have overly alarmed yourself by pumping when it was not needed, because baby was ill. Now you are power pumping at night, which is very likely to make YOU exhausted and susceptible to illness!

    Yes, hormonal birth control may harm production. Certainly. I am not disagreeing.

    But so does long stretches of not nursing. So does pumping instead of nursing, if you have been doing that (again I do not know why you were pumping every other day.)Even if the pumping is needed due top a separation, it is possible it will harm production overtime to pump instead of nursing! This is just a fact. of course if separations are long enough and frequent enough to interfere with breastfeeding, pumping is needed.

    Sleep: There is no reason to expect that a baby who was sleeping longer sleep stretches early on to keep that up. Actually it is common and normal for a baby to wake more and eat more at night and in general after the much more sleepy newborn period. As far as why baby is fussing during the day, maybe it is because you are overfeeding baby by giving baby bottles on top of nursing.
    I am trying to get him used to a bottle so once a week he has ONE 2oz bottle other than that nothing other than me... I'm trying to build a stash so my hubby and i can have a date night once a week (we haven't since he was born) without me having to pump like crazy the week of... right now i only have 10oz stored... my goal is 16...

    I wasn't saying i was pumping to give a bottle while he was sick, but so that i didn't lose it for when he wants to eat it all again (not via bottle). Ive been pumping for a week now, at least once a day, and still getting less than half an ounce after 30+min of pumping.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: losing supply??

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*mommal View Post
    with LLLMeg.



    LAM works only in the first 6 months, and only if you meet ALL the criteria. And, like any birth control method, it has a failure rate- you have to be on board with that if you're going to use it.

    FAM does work if you haven't had a period yet. But you'd have to be EXTREMELY careful and alert when using it, so that you can spot the signs of returning fertility without having a period to guide you. (E.g. "This increase in cervical mucus is coming around 10 days after my last period, so it's probably a sign of fertility" or "This large shift in temperature is probably an outlier because I am just a day or two away from getting my period and I already had a defined thermal shift earlier in the month".) You'd allow want to have a really good familiarity with the way your body tends to work. I personally don't think that women should just jump into FAM, unless they're okay with an unplanned pregnancy. They should have at least a few months of observations before they start using FAM, so that they are really pretty familiar with their bodies and know what to expect, and when.

    Basically, if it were me I'd pick one of the barrier methods.
    Thanks... ill look into those.

  10. #10

    Default Re: losing supply??

    Ok, I misunderstood and thought you were pumping in order to bottle feed when baby was ill. got it.

    But I am still seeing a pump output problem, not a supply problem. If your milk has been enough for baby all along, you do not have a milk production problem, and the only reason you would start to have a milk production problem is if some pretty strong factor or factors have been acting negatively on your milk production.

    So, I agree, if you think you are seeing a reduction in milk production after starting hormonal bc, it makes a lot of sense to stop the bc if you have other bc options you are comfortable with. And know that if the problem IS the bc, once you stop taking it your baby nursing lots will bring your production back. That is how milk production works so well-even if illness or other problems make it dip temporarily, it usually can came back with little effort.

    My major point was to please not equate pump output with milk production. This is a common mistake and in many cases it leads to lots of unneeded worry and even harmful interventions.

    I suggest, read the following article from kellymom, or at least the opening about what is and what is not signs of low milk production. http://kellymom.com/bf/got-milk/supp...es/low-supply/

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