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Thread: Nighttime nursing and supply

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
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    Nw suburbs of Chicago
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    Default Nighttime nursing and supply

    Hello ladies, first time poster here. My son is 6 weeks old and for the past couple of weeks I've been nursing in the side lying position at night. However, we can't seem to get the hang of it on the left breast. When it's time to switch, I just move to the couch for an hour or two until he's eaten enough to drain the breast. I'm going back to work in a couple weeks and I'd like to be able to stay in bed all night. My question is, if I can't get the hang of the left side, can I just feed him on the right side all night? Will my right breast make more and my left make less at night only? Or will my whole supply get outta whack?

  2. #2
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    Jan 2014
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    NY
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    Default Re: Nighttime nursing and supply

    Why not try another position in bed? I happen to find nursing sitting, cross-legged, with my baby across my lap, the most comfortable position for nighttime nursing (even more comfy than side-lying) so that's what we do (my son is 3.5 months). How many feedings are you giving during the night? If you do one (which isn't that likely considering your baby is only 6 weeks old) then you can do just one side. But I can't imagine using 1 breast for 3 feedings at night and it shouldn't affect supply. For me, side-lying position doesn't my baby get a good enough latch.

  3. #3
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    Jan 2014
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    Minnesota
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    Default Re: Nighttime nursing and supply

    We do a lot of reclined nursing at night - http://www.llli.org/btissue5pg04. When I am at my sleepiest my husband watches us so if I fall asleep he can take her from me once she finishes. I would be worried about mastitis in the unused breast if you stuck to just one side all night.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    NY
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    624

    Default Re: Nighttime nursing and supply

    I think there is no real way to answer this question definitively, because every mom is going to be a little bit different, based on her own personal physiology. I personally would not have been able to make it work just feeding off of one breast at night, because I have a low storage capacity. My supply would have gone down too much in the unused breast, and my baby has always needed both breasts!

    That said, 6 weeks is still pretty little. I had only just started to figure out side-lying nursing when my daughter was 6 weeks old. I would try and try, but a lot of times I couldn't get baby to latch unless I sat up in bed. In our case, it got much much easier when baby grew a little bit. By the time I went back to work, we were masters at side-lying, and that baby pretty much stayed latched on to me in bed almost all night long! So I would advise you to just keep working at it, and try not to worry about what might happen in a few weeks. A few weeks is actually a long time when it comes to newborn development and growth. You'd be surprised how much can change!
    Apologies for the short responses! I'm usually responding one-handed on my smartphone!

  5. #5
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    Nw suburbs of Chicago
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    Default Re: Nighttime nursing and supply

    Well if I had to guess I'd say he's nursing about 4 times in 8 hours. I'm afraid for him to roll off of me if he was on top of me. I really liked the idea of side lying nursing because I can go back to sleep as soon as I latch him. If I'm sitting up or laying back I'll have to stay awake while he's nursing, which is usually 30-40 minutes. I just want to find something that maximizes my sleeping time. As for storage capacity and supply, I had mastitis a few weeks ago and was able to exclusively nurse him on one side for two days while i pumped the other, so I think i could feed him for 8 hours on one side. I'm just worried about whether my supply in the other breast would only be less at night or in general.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Nighttime nursing and supply

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*avesnovuelan View Post
    We do a lot of reclined nursing at night - http://www.llli.org/btissue5pg04. When I am at my sleepiest my husband watches us so if I fall asleep he can take her from me once she finishes. I would be worried about mastitis in the unused breast if you stuck to just one side all night.
    I tried that position and I don't know what I was doing wrong but it was hard to latch him and when I did his head kept falling to one side and taking my nipple with him and I'm not sure if I could do that while sleeping. Unless it just takes a lot of practice..?

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Nighttime nursing and supply

    I don't recline quite as far as in that picture and I use my knees and a pillow to keep baby in place. I inevitably have to readjust to go back to sleep once she is done, but lately I gave been so tired that I barely remember our nighttime nursing sessions.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Nighttime nursing and supply

    Oh, I see what you mean. This is how I would nurse him on the couch. Can you sleep nursing like that in bed?

  9. #9
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    Minnesota
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    Default Re: Nighttime nursing and supply

    I fall asleep nursing no matter what position we are in. We don't keep her in bed with us though. I fall asleep and then DH takes her to burp and rock. I will generally roll over onto my side but I hardly remember waking up.

  10. #10
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    Jan 2014
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    Default Re: Nighttime nursing and supply

    My goal is to get him out of our bed. I never wanted to co-sleep. I only started because I was tired and my husband and I missed each other because at one point my son nursed all night long. Now I'm just not sure how to transition back. The past three nights he has fallen asleep in his bouncer or carseat. We left him in them and went to sleep but he would end up back in our bed after the first feeding...

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