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Thread: Milk Supply Dried Up Almost Overnight??

  1. #1

    Default Milk Supply Dried Up Almost Overnight??

    My little girl is 7.5 months old and I have been back to work since 3 months. I have always breast fed her at home and pumped at work (she takes 3 3ozs bottles a day at daycare). My supply started to decrease 2 weeks ago but I have been able to keep up by using a bag or two of frozen milk a week for daycare.

    Yesterday I pumped at work and after 15 minutes there was barley enough milk to cover the bottom of the bottle (normally I pump around 2ozs per side per session). After two pumping sessions at work I had less than 1oz for the entire day!

    Last night she was up 3 times to eat.

    I just tried to pump again and the same thing. There is virtually no milk coming out. I only have a couple of bags of frozen milk left and I do not want to use formula. Does anybody have any ideas as to what could be going on???

    Thank you

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Default Re: Milk Supply Dried Up Almost Overnight??

    Milk supply does not usually decrease abruptly from one day to the next, so I wonder if you are having a problem with your pump. Rehab measures, in order from easy to more complicated, are to change out the membranes, then valves/flanges, then call the pump maker and have them help you troubleshoot. Sometimes there can be a small tear or crack that can affect the effectiveness of the pump, even if you can't see it.

    Other supply reducers: pregnancy, hormonal contraceptives, and the onset of your period - usually in the days leading to your period starting. Some medications, including over-the-counters like sudafed. Some herbs, like sage and peppermint.

    Since supply was already starting to decrease, you may want to consider upping demand - by adding in another pumping or nursing session - for example pumping during your commute or when baby goes to bed. And/or increasing pumping time - 15 minutes is not long enough for some moms; even "pumping dry" can help, and sometimes you can get a second letdown if you pump longer. Also, doing breast compressions while pumping. It's great that you're doing lots of nighttime nursing, that's really good for supply - tiring I know but good for supply!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: Milk Supply Dried Up Almost Overnight??

    with the excellent advice from the PP.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2013

    Default Re: Milk Supply Dried Up Almost Overnight??

    I will also agree with the previous advice. I have to change the membranes out quite frequently in order for my pump to stay responsive--I must be particularly hard on them, I don't know, but I've been needing to replace them monthly! Thank goodness they are only about 3 dollars for 3 sets!

    How long is your total separation from baby? You may have been getting lucky keeping up with only two pumping sessions up until this point. I'm a mom who needed really high frequency pumping to keep up, so if you need any tips or tricks for maximizing your ability to work while adding in extra pumping, let us know what you do, and we can probably come up with some suggestions!
    Apologies for the short responses! I'm usually responding one-handed on my smartphone!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2013

    Default Re: Milk Supply Dried Up Almost Overnight??

    I just wanted to chime in that I have found I needed much more than 15 minutes to get two or three letdowns. I am nursing my 14 mo old and pumping still twice while at work. I get 8-10 ounces depending on demand at home with him nursing in the pump, and I use the hands free bustier while I work (fortunate to have my own office in my line of work, counseling) so I can just type away or whatever for about 25 minutes of pump time. I used to only pump 10-15 minutes and my supply really dipped. I know other working moms who had the same trouble. They thought they were just "losing milk" and had all these other theories as to why but really, they just needed to pump longer. My son at this point only nurses very briefly during the day, he's too busy and on the go, but he is much more efficient at this age and it takes him 7 minutes to get his fill whereas it takes the pump 25. It must be the parts need replacing
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