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Thread: Just started round the clock BFing, need encouragement

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    North Texas
    Posts
    33

    Default Just started round the clock BFing, need encouragement

    My daughter is almost 37 weeks and has been in the NICU for 2 months. We started breastfeeding at 34 weeks at least once a day. On Friday she was transferred to Pediatrics and I was able to start rooming in with her and offering get breast every feed. And since that started my amount pumped dropped, from 392mL the day before to 332mL.

    I know that some decrease is to be expected since she is able to transfer some milk. I'm just worried because I've had a really hard time getting my supply up and she still needs a bottle after breastfeeding. She was getting 49mL gavaged at every feed and for the last day we've managed to forgo any gavaging. Instead she spends about 15-20 minutes at one breast, then I offer her a bottle and she takes about 40mL. Then I pump and where I was getting from 40-50mL I'm now getting 30-40mL. This repeats every 3 hours. I pump for 30 minutes. I'd prefer it if I was pumping at or more then she needed in the bottle each time. I started fenugreek a week ago and that helped to boost me out of a plateau.

    We've done pre and post weight and she gets about 10-15mL at breast. She gets nepsure formula added to her bottles for extra calories. I'd love yo get her off the formula because it makes her very gassy. She has a good latch with the nipple shield and a strong suck, she's just not transferring as much milk as I'd like her to. I have a rather slow flow, and a gentle let down. As I said at breast she seems to average about 1mL per minute. I don't let her go more than 20 minutes at the breast because otherwise she gets to tired to take her bottle. She needs to take ask her meals via nipple with nothing gavaged for at least two days and still gain weight before we can bring her home.

    I know that she's doing very well considering her age. And I think eventually we'll get to exclusive breastfeeding. I was just so looking forward to breastfeeding her and an feeling a bit like a failure. I know I'm not but I it's hard to quiet these doubts. That I'll be able to produce enough milk; that she'll be able to transfer it.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,911

    Default Re: Just started round the clock BFing, need encouragement

    Reading your story, I am amazed at what you have accomplished.
    Despite requiring supplements, your baby is getting your breastmilk and is nursing at the breast. This alone is a remarkable success considering your challenges. If for some crazy reason you were unable to nurse one more second or provide one more drop of breastmilk for your baby, you could still not call what you have done a failure by any rational measure.

    She needs to take ask her meals via nipple with nothing gavaged for at least two days and still gain weight before we can bring her home.
    I wonder if an at the breast supplementer (aka lactation aid- sns, LactAid, or handmade) has been tried? These are not always going to work, however, for a baby with very slow transfer at the breast it seems like it would help. They can be used with a nipple shield.
    Here is some more info: http://cwgenna.com/smartnothard.html

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    Louisville, Kentucky
    Posts
    291

    Default Re: Just started round the clock BFing, need encouragement

    You are doing amazing, amazing, loving work for your little girl. There is NOTHING about your story that is a failure; from what you have described, it sounds like you and her are persevering despite some pretty difficult initial circumstances.

    If you do decide to try the at breast supplementer, is there staff at the hospital that can help you position it/learn to use it?

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