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Thread: Milk supply, and encouragment!!

  1. #1

    Exclamation Milk supply, and encouragment!!

    Hi, I don't even know where to begin..

    I am in need of some major help and encouragement. I have a six week old daughter. She was delivered via C-section. During recovery they had given me a nipple shield almost immediately. I just took her off the shield a few weeks ago. I'm pretty sure we have a good latch, there is some room for improvement though. Where I need help is, my supply and getting her on a schedule. She also has been supplementing with formula as well due to weight gain issues. she was losing weight and not gaining. I did have mastitis the second week of her being here. It seems like after that my supply on that side has been compromised. I feed her for 20 minutes on each side, where she has never really "pulled" herself off when finished because she would be latched on all day if possible. Afterwards she acts hungry still, so that's where the supplementing comes in. I don't want to supplement anymore. I want to make enough for her. I want her satisfied with just my milk alone. I have tried everything. Mothers milk herbs, pumping after nursing, and feeding on her demand. Nothing seems to be working. Is there anything else I can do??? I can only do so much because I have a 2 year old as well, and he acquires attention too.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,271

    Default Re: Milk supply, and encouragment!!

    Welcome to the forum and congratulations on the new baby! First of all, how are you feeling? Are you recovering okay from the c-section? Are you feeling physically well? Getting enough help around the house, and with your older child? This is the time when moms- particularly those who have had difficult births and/or complicated recoveries- should be taking it easy and having other people pick up a lot of the load when it comes to housework and care for older children. Right now you should be caring for your newborn and yourself first, and letting others take care of the rest (as much as possible, anyway).

    Second, what do you mean when you say you need help getting your baby "on a schedule"? The reason I ask is that schedules generally work against breastfeeding success, because breastmilk is produced on a supply = demand basis. Whenever a mom adheres to an inflexible schedule and spaces her baby's nursing sessions out to some artificial interval, she is interfering with that supply = demand equation. When a baby gets fewer opportunities to demand, mom's milk supply is going to be lower than the baby wants and needs it to be.

    Now, there are schedules and there are routines. Schedules are not generally compatible with breastfeeding; routines, on the other hand, are very breastfeeding-friendly. With a routine, you're looking to keep everything in your baby's life consistent and predictable. Try to open the curtains at around the same time every morning, and turn the lights, stereo, and TV off around the same time each night. Make stroller rides and bath times as predictable as possible. Do these things and hopefully your baby will respond by becoming more predictable. But keep in mind that 6 weeks is extremely early to expect a completely predictable pattern of waking/sleeping/eating, and that breastfed babies are designed to feed frequently!

    Third question: how much supplemental formula are you using in a 24 hour period? If it's just a few oz per day, it's possible that you'll be able to drop the supplements immediately, or in just a few days. If it's a lot more than that, you'll need to slowly wean from the supplements, decreasing the supplemental amounts a little bit at a time. Let us know what amounts you're using and we'll walk you through the process. Basically, what you're looking to do is to increase the baby's demand by decreasing the supplements- and when demand goes up, supply goes up, too.
    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

    Default Re: Milk supply, and encouragment!!

    I'm feeling great! My infections have been cleared up for quite some time. As for getting help around the house and with my 2 year old I definitely do! She doesn't eat every 2-3 hours. It's more like every half hour(and she already feeds for up to 40 minutes). That's if i'm not supplementing! I guess what I am wondering is, will she ever go longer in between feedings? She never seems satisfied. That was like that before I even supplemented. As for the supplementing, I only give her up to 6oz per day( a few after BFing). Just depends. I hate giving it to her so I try to give least as possible.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,271

    Default Re: Milk supply, and encouragment!!

    With a six week-old baby, long and frequent feedings are completely normal. Infant tummies are tiny, the average feeding is small (relative to the large amounts taken from a bottle by formula-fed babies, that is) and breastmilk digests fast, in only 90 minutes or so. It's really common for a young baby to go just 1-2 hours, or even less, between feedings, and that's counting from the beginning of one feeding to the beginning of the next. So when you're not supplementing, your baby is actually giving you a normal feeding frequency.

    You're using a relatively small amount of formula per day, so I think you can get rid of it fairly quickly. I'd take your bottles down by 1/2 oz starting today, maintain that for a day or two, and then drop down by another 1/2 oz, and continue until you're only nursing. My guess is that you'd be done with bottles in under a week if you did that.

    Your baby will eventually go longer than 70 minutes between feedings, I promise!!! By the time most babies are a few months old, they can generally go somewhat longer- though again, breastfed babies thrive on frequent and on-demand nursing, and you should never expect your baby to demonstrate a completely predictable "schedule".
    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!"

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