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Thread: Crazy oversupply/FFLD!

  1. #1
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    Default Crazy oversupply/FFLD!

    Hello ladies!
    I posted on this forum two years ago, when I had issues with EBF my son. Those problems worked themselves out Here I am, now, presenting an issue with EBF my 3 month old daughter...
    I have always produced an insane amount of milk, and had milk streaming out of my boobies with each let down... my right breast produces MUCH more than my left. I can't seem to find any solution to this - I've tried block feeding to temper things a bit, which worked wonders for engorgement, but only to a certain degree for my right side. I've nursed her in different gravity-assisted positions, which doesn't help. I've tried that 'scissors' hold, but frankly am unsure if it hurts of helps (mostly because I dont' know if I'm doing it correctly?) The let downs on my right side REALLY upset her, and I know they'll go away in a few weeks as she gains weight and grows, and can handle the letdowns.
    Just a few minutes ago I was nursing her and we both got so frustrated because she wants to suck (and I suspect that she's going through her 3 week growth spurt, which has brought on this sudden crazy amount of milk, which is unfortunate because it's all seemingly in my right boobie), but spit ALL of the milk out that came out of the right boobie. I'm telling you, it's SO much milk... I ran to the sink just to let some out, and OMG - tons! And huge streams! My poor little girl must be drowning.
    I apologize for the rambling, and don't know if I've provided anything helpful that would assist in answering my complaint/vent... but is this just a 'normal' occurrence that we both need to wait out? Should I start block feeding again?
    FYI - no issues with latching as far as I know, she's had plenty of yellow seedy poos. no pain when nursing (anymore).
    Thanks so much, ladies. I've been reading the LLL forums for a few weeks now, and they're so helpful when I feel SO very frustrated and at my wits end.
    Abby
    Last edited by @llli*abigailfeldman; June 23rd, 2014 at 11:10 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Crazy oversupply/FFLD!

    Also, I want to add that she is CONSTANTLY rooting... so I'm constantly trying to feed. She has PLENTY of output, lots of burps, not a lot of spitup though... so I know she's getting plenty. Maybe she's very gassy, which is why she's rooting?? But when she does latch, she often pops off right away... then she fusses again. And we re-latch, then she pops off. it's a battle, basically. She refuses to take a pacifier (which is good I suppose)

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Crazy oversupply/FFLD!

    Hey Abby, congrats on new baby and, welcome back!
    So here is what makes me crazy about overproduction and ffld. The thing that works best for really and true overproduction is almost always block nursing. But while block nursing, ffld can actually be WORSE. At least each time baby goes back to the side that has been "blocked" for a bit.

    But, assuming you have true overproduction that is not responding to time and good nursing frequency (and unfortunately I think it sounds like this is the case) then block nursing to reduce you milk production should help, even with ffld, in the long run.

    Also, for extreme op that does not even respond to block nursing, there is "full drainage and block nursing"-where you pump the breasts EMPTY (or close) one time, and then commence block nursing, going back to pumping as needed, but probably no more than once a day. But I would suggest try plain old block nursing again first. it's possible you need to block nurse for longer (more days) or do longer blocks to see results.

    as far as the scissors hold, basically you want to be pressing (gently) just at the edge of areola (more or less, as anatomy varies) in order to basically crimp the duct(s) so the milk flow is less. If you can explain why you think it might make things worse maybe we can suggest adjustments- do you mean, flow is worse, or you think the scissors hold is causing plugs, or other?

    As far as nursing reclined-here is an adjustment on that that worked for me. I only slightly leaned back, or even sat basically upright. But I positioned my son so he was up and down, head directly over tum, legs dangling down between my legs (he was big) or maybe straddling one of my legs. So his was more or less head tilted up, chin open, and the milk could flow straight down to tummy. Think baby giraffe. This really helped him handle the fire hose when I had terrible ffld.

    So have you read this on block nursing? The thinking on block nursing is changing and this technique is being approached with much more caution these days, with good reason- too often moms were block nursing when there really was no need and reducing supply TOO much. http://www.nancymohrbacher.com/blog/tag/block-feeding

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Crazy oversupply/FFLD!

    Thank you so much for your response!

    I think you are absolutely correct that block nursing is the way to go, in the long run. What is tripping me up is... if I block nurse on either breast for a period of time, the side that has been "blocked" will definitely be engorged. I try to relieve myself a bit by hand expressing, but the letdowns are still quite forceful (even the third or fourth one... it's insane). It's interesting that you mentioned the full drainage/block nursing option, because that's exactly what I did after getting engorged this time, and it was amazing how well it worked!! Do you recommend that I try that with my right breast only, to see if it responds favorably? I'm just so afraid of my body going 'oh no, I need to make more milk now that this breast is completely empty!'

    What I was doing with the scissors hold is not what you described, which means I was doing it incorrectly I was squeezing my areola between my pointer and middle finger, which made nursing a bit of challenge, but it did slow the flow somewhat. Of course, it created a poor latch so the milk was dribbling out of her mouth! I tried pressing down at the edge of the areola last night on my right side, but it made her lose her latch... I tried looking online for a picture but didn't have much luck.

    Speaking of dribbling, is it normal for babies to leak milk when nursing? Does it indicate a bad latch? She used to have a shallow latch up until about a week ago, but as she grows, it's definitely improved... but she still leaks, mainly when nursing from the FFLD breast. I'm assuming this just improves as she gets bigger.

    We have tried the nursing position exactly as you have described a number of times, but she still tends to choke. I'll keep trying though!

    Thank you so much again!

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Crazy oversupply/FFLD!

    Do you recommend that I try that with my right breast only, to see if it responds favorably? I'm just so afraid of my body going 'oh no, I need to make more milk now that this breast is completely empty!'
    OK, just to be clear, I cannot recommend anything in particular as I am not a med. professional or an IBCLC. So, just so you know! As an LLLL I can (and am happy) to offer suggestions and info. I do suggest for any breastfeeding issue, to see an IBCLC if at all possible.

    Here is the study on FDBF, this may help you decide how to proceed. Certainly I know of no reason to you could not do this on one side and not the other(?) Yes, the risk is that pumping like this will cause more overproduction! But remember the pumping is a one time only or as needed thing. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2075483/

    What I was doing with the scissors hold is not what you described, which means I was doing it incorrectly I was squeezing my areola between my pointer and middle finger, which made nursing a bit of challenge, but it did slow the flow somewhat. Of course, it created a poor latch so the milk was dribbling out of her mouth! I tried pressing down at the edge of the areola last night on my right side, but it made her lose her latch... I tried looking online for a picture but didn't have much luck.
    This idea for ffld is pretty new to me-I was personally able to help my kids handle the flow with positioning and very frequent nursing. So I have only seen this demonstrated once, briefly - I think you want to maybe go very slightly further back on the breast, maybe? so as not to interfere with baby's latch, and be sure to not press IN to the breast (toward the chest wall) and more like pressing the fingers toward each other. The reason I think pressing in might be an issue is this is a technique for hand expression and might make milk flow faster. On the other hand, if baby is dribbling but nursing happily, getting milk, and not getting flooded, then? I don't see dribbling in that case as a problem except it is a mess. Probably you are going to need to experiment and find what works best for you-it is not as if milk ducts are in the same place on every person.

    Speaking of dribbling, is it normal for babies to leak milk when nursing? Does it indicate a bad latch? She used to have a shallow latch up until about a week ago, but as she grows, it's definitely improved... but she still leaks, mainly when nursing from the FFLD breast. I'm assuming this just improves as she gets bigger
    . I think dribbling is in many cases normal and may be a way for baby to handle the overabundance of milk- my oldest did this, even after we had corrected his latch and all was otherwise well. But yes, this certainly CAN indicate a poor latch, I think it indicates that baby is unable to create a proper seal. So again, that may be another reason to see an IBCLC to have latch assessed. I think it is mentioned in the blog I linked above, that sometimes when a mom reduces her milk production to normal, baby ends up not getting enough due to a poor latch-when there was more than enough milk, baby gained well, but when the supply normalizes, the poor latch becomes more of an issue and baby does not get enough.

    We have tried the nursing position exactly as you have described a number of times, but she still tends to choke. I'll keep trying though!
    Leaning back more does not help?

    I know this is frustrating! hang in there!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Crazy oversupply/FFLD!

    Hi again! So I've postponed replying just to see if a couple days would help clear things up, but unfortunately it seems things are the same/slightly worse. I am in the process of finding an IBCLC (the one I used to see left our pediatrician's office, sigh!).

    I have tried the uphill positions over and over, and she still seems to be unhappy, regardless of how much I incline/decline my body in the seat. When you say frequent nursing, does that include when you're block feeding? She used to nurse ALL the time, but over the past few days it seems like she's been distancing herself from nursing... I wouldn't call it a nursing strike per se, but she gets VERY, very upset with all the letdowns (particularly after coming back from block nursing and I have tons and tons of milk and letdowns). She has been tongue thrusting and pursing her lips a lot in response to my attempts to nurse her. I know it could mean she's full, but she doesn't really take that much milk in since she cries through many nursing sessions. On the other hand, she does have 6-8 wet diapers and a few poops a day, so I am 99% sure that she is gaining just fine right now.

    This is all so sad to me. Since I'm going back to work in September, I wanted to dedicate the next few months to nursing (since I'll be pumping and using bottles once I go back to work)... I know that time will take care of this, but she is just so darned unhappy with nursing right now. I ALMOST made the decision to just start pumping and using bottles now since I'm just going to be doing it later anyway, but nursing is tons easier. It really does pain me, though, to hear her screams and push me away when she's hungry but keeps getting squirted in the face :-/

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Crazy oversupply/FFLD!

    When you say frequent nursing, does that include when you're block feeding?
    A 3 month old is often going to nurse less often and shorter even when all is entirely well. They also tend to be fussy when nursing around this age, just fyi. It's just an age thing.

    But yes, absolutely. You always want to nurse baby as often as baby will. Don't force, of course, not that you really can anyway. But offer. Nursing sessions may be short, that is normal when there is fast letdown. If you are block nursing, you will be nursing on one side for two or more feedings. Some moms have to nurse one sided for a long time to get results. But nursing frequency should be as high as baby will. Tjis is important for a few reasons.
    What happens if you take baby off when the flow starts, and relatch?> or hand express until you have a letdown before latching?
    I am glad you plan to see an ibclc. Time does usually help, but imo This is a long time to be struggling with such severe op and ffld. It's time to get this taken care of so you and baby can enjoy nursing.

    Did you read the articles I linked? Do you meet the criteria for block nursing?

    September is over 2 months away. Your baby will be 5 months old. That is a lot of time to fix the issues you are having. Getting breastfeeding feeling comfortable and natural and pleasant for mom and baby is probably the very best way to ensure breastfeeding continues when faced with the challenges that occur after mom goes back to work.

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