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Thread: Help!!!

  1. #1

    Default Help!!!

    Hi guys,

    I finally signed up for lll because I am really in need of some help! I am a working mom with a son who will be 12 months in a few days. When I am not working I exclusively breastfeed him, and then I pump at work and use EBM for his bottle during the day. Right now I nurse him 3 times a day (in the morning, right after work, and before bed) and he gets one full bottle at lunch while I'm at work. He is also loving solid foods and eats 3 square meals a day in addition to breastfeeding.

    Up until a few weeks ago my son has only had breastmilk, but ove the past 4 months or so my supply has slowly been declining and I finally had to supplement him with a little formula

    Right now I am to the point where I am hardly getting anything when I pump at work and I am struggling with this. I really want to continue breastfeeding but I am just not producing. I feel like I have tried everything under the sun to help. I have woken the baby up to nurse more (he has slept through the night for a long time); I pump in the middle of the night, I drink milk tea and a ton of water, I have tried mothers milk (both tablet and tincture); I have taken fenugreek, made lactation cookies, I eat healthy, and I have even tried taking table spoons of brewers yeast in water (horribly, horribly disgusting). Right now I am at a loss for what to do and need help.

    I am wondering what should I do. I have thought about giving him whole cows milk and just nursing him like I have been, but I don't know.

    I am also wondering if there is any other way to get my supply back. Like I said I really want to continue to give my son breastmilk and it makes me sad to think I might not be able to.

    I'm hoping someone can help!!! Please help!!!
    Last edited by @llli*taylremcmaster; May 25th, 2014 at 11:30 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: Help!!!

    Welcome to the forum and congratulations on making it to the 1 year mark! That's a terrific achievement, especially for a working mom. You put in a lot of hard work with the pump over the last 12 months!

    A lot of working moms wean from pumping at around a year, and just continue to nurse on demand when with their babies. That way they get to keep the enjoyable aspects of breastfeeding without worrying about supplying lots and lots of milk.

    If you want to get your supply up, then forget the tinctures and supplements. The best way to go about it is to increase the frequency and completeness of milk removal from the breast, either by nursing more or by pumping more, and using a really good pump that is in tip-top shape. It's a lot of work at 12 months! But still doable.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Re: Help!!!

    have you made sure pump is in good condition? Pump malfunction can be hard to observe and can be a big problem. Besides the poor pump output, how do you know your milk production is not at normal level? sometimes the problem is the pump. Of curse, a poorly performing pump will hurt milk production over time. If this coincided with long sleep stretches, that can be a one-two punch for production. I agree with mommal. While galactagogues do help many (but not all) moms, they can only help when they are used in conjunction with frequent and effective milk removal. Also the dosage matters and many moms don't take enough.
    If you are still nursing when home and your baby eats solids, at 12 months is formula or cow milk necessary? Is baby of healthy normal gain?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2012

    Default Re: Help!!!

    Agree with PPs. I'm a working mom who pump weaned at a year and continued to nurse when at home. Some moms feel that this has too big of an effect on supply and elect to keep some amount of pumping into baby's second year. If you decide to do that, at a minimum you might want to change out membranes, and possibly valves/flanges on your pump. And some pumps just poop out after a year of work-time pumping, even if you do the pump maintenance. (What kind of pump do you have?) So if you really want to continue providing baby with expressed milk, you might consider renting a hospital-grade pump to see if that helps. But the rule of thumb is that if you nurse 3 to 5 times in 24 hours, you have a toddler's dairy needs covered, as LLLMeg suggests. If you don't feel that baby is getting enough breastmilk, at that point you could consider adding in animal's milk (cow's or goat's) or other types of dairy like cheese or yogurt (as long as baby does not have a dairy sensitivity; since he is eating a lot of solids you could figure out ways to make up for the "dairy" portion of his diet with non-dairy foods, but it just takes a little more thought). Also, on the topic of solids, are you favoring nursing over solids when you are at home? You can have your LO eat most of his solids at daycare, and do lots of nursing evenings and weekends, to help maintain supply. And even if you don't have a lot of supply, you and baby continue to benefit from nursing - nursing is still SUCH a source of comfort for a toddler, and even small amounts of milk have immunological and other health benefits.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Help!!!

    Thanks so much ladies. I went back to work about 9 months ago and that's when I started pumping regularly. At first I just had a Playtex pump and then realized that wasn't going to work so I got an Ameda pump through insurance. I didn't think it was working well so I found this family/breastfeeding store who tested the pump for me...it turns out it wasn't working well at all so I ended up renting a hospital grade Medela pump for a few months and bought a brand new Medela pump as well. The Medela advanced pump is what I'm using now. Due to forgetting my shields at home here and there I ended up having to buy the full shield set so now I have 3 and I use a different one each day. (I use one set 1 out of 3 days).

    I do think I'm probably not emptying my breast frequently enough to build my supply back up. When I first went back to work I would pump around 8oz while at woek, and now I am barley getting 2oz. He is also eating solid foods like I said and he loves them. He eats breakfast, lunch and dinner. When I am home however nursing always comes first and then his solid foods.

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