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Thread: Breastfeeding almost 12 months dip in supply

  1. #1

    Default Breastfeeding almost 12 months dip in supply

    Hi Everyone,

    Thank you for taking the time to read my post.

    I am a breastfeeding working mom of an almost one year old (one on the 30th!). I had been pumping between 10-12 oz per day and sending him to daycare with 4-3oz bottles daily but recently my supply has dipped down to between 6-8oz. Nothing has really changed. I'm just wondering if I should start supplementing some cow's milk with the breast milk? Today I sent him with 4-3oz bottles 1/2 was breast milk 1/2 was cow milk. I'm wondering how I can get my supply back up. I want to breastfeed for at least 2 years or until he self weans. I breastfeed him every 3 hrs when I am at home still and he still gets up twice throughout night to eat. He is eating solids more as well too.

    Thank you

    Stephanie

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    1,907

    Default Re: Breastfeeding almost 12 months dip in supply

    Hi Stephanie, welcome to the forum!

    Congrats on a year of breastfeeding, working and pumping! That's wonderful! It's common for moms to see a dip in their pumping output as the first year progresses - often times even at 8 or 9 months. So the fact that you are not seeing the dip until almost a year is actually really great. The good news is, at a year you start having more options in terms of what to feed baby. If you are nursing baby between 3 and 5 times per 24 hours (which it sounds like you are doing), you are meeting baby's "dairy" needs, but it's fine to give cow's milk too; just keep in mind that as baby starts eating more solids, his overall milk intake declines. It's normal for supply to start decreasing in baby's second year as baby's solids intake picks up - that's the natural course of weaning, which is a slow and gradual process that starts when baby starts eating foods other than your milk. In fact, a lot of working moms cut back on pumping starting at a year or even stop altogether, while continuing to nurse when together with baby at home. I personally stopped pumping at a year and my 22 month old is still happily nursing! There are moms who do continue pumping into the second year, as well, so if you do want to continue sending expressed breast milk to daycare, that's fine too - it's really up to you. But I wouldn't worry about expressing less milk at this point, or trying to increase supply - the most important thing if you want to continue to encourage nursing is to continue encouraging baby to breastfeed when you are together.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    19,886

    Default Re: Breastfeeding almost 12 months dip in supply

    Welcome to the forum and congratulations on making it to 12 months and beyond of nursing! WTG, mama!

    It's 100% normal for working moms to see a "pump slump" in the later part of the first year. Often it happens around 8-9 months, so you're lucky you went this long without having a problem. Pump slumps happen for a variety of reasons, usually including some or all of the following:
    - Baby eating increased quantities of solids and consequently nursing less
    - Baby sleeping longer stretches at night
    - Pump getting worn out- most pumps are good for only about a year of heavy use
    - Change in shield size- a lot of moms find that they need a different size of shields as time goes on and breast shape changes a bit
    - Not enough pumping opportunities at work
    - Returning fertility- many moms notice a dip in supply around menstruation

    Now, you've made it to 12 months without having a problem, and that is wonderful!!! What you do at this point is very much up to you. A lot of moms wean from pumping at a year, continuing to nurse only when they are with their babies. If you would like to continue to pump, you should feel free to do so. If you want to boost pump output, try adding in more pumping sessions, waking your baby to nurse at night, rehabbing your pump, and trying new shields if you feel that shield fit is an issue.

    At 12 months, you can start offering whole animal milk in place of or in addition to your milk. You can give your child bottles/sippies/cups of animal milk, or you can offer him other dairy products like whole milk yogurt and cheese. Just one thing: don't mix animal milk and your milk unless there is no other way your baby will drink the animal milk. The reason is that the storage guidelines are different for unfinished breastmilk and unfinished animal milk. Unused breastmilk can go back in the fridge, unused animal milk goes down the sink. You don't want your hard work being poured down the drain if your baby doesn't finish the whole bottle.

    ETA: Bfwmomof3: Jinx!
    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

    Default Re: Breastfeeding almost 12 months dip in supply

    Thank you for the advice. I am still breastfeeding him when we get home/before bed and then he gets up around 11-12pm to eat then around 3-4am to eat. If the 3 times quantifies the "dairy" needs what should I be sending for him at daycare? Cow Milk? He does get cheese as well. Loves cheese. and also Loves water. Give him water when he eats solids at home. Normally on days I have off I'll breastfeed him and then 20-30min later give him some toast and cheese or some fruit and puffs then normally 3 hrs later do same thing.

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