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Thread: Breastfeeding w/ medical need for sleep?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    2

    Default Breastfeeding w/ medical need for sleep?

    I'll ask my question first then give some background. I want to get recommendations on breastfeeding during the day but supplementing w/ expressed milk at night. I know this will be tricky and is not usually recommended b/c of difficulties of establishing milk supply and issue of nipple confusion. Given that, how do I increase my chance of success? I require at least 6 hours of uninterrupted sleep. I would hate to have to go directly to formula - so I'm trying to come up with some sort of compromised plan.

    Here's my background (sorry so long, but I wanted to give the details): I will be a new mother soon and am trying to do some pre-planning. I have a medical condition where the normal course of treatment is medication with heavy duty meds. I have gone w/o medication for this pregnancy - and so far so good. However, I may be pushing my luck and don't know how long after the baby is born that I can go w/o meds. I am not willing to take these meds and breastfeed. I know that there is a list of meds that indicate safety during breastfeeding. The combo of meds I'd take would vary between an L2 and L4, I believe -but given the changing state of information on risks and meds, this is just not a chance I'm willing to take (I'm very familiar w/ research and science).

    In order to avoid meds, I absolutely require good sleep. I plan to sleep during the day when the baby sleeps, but that will likely not be enough for me. Typically 8-10 hours of good nightly sleep is mandated for me. My doctor and I are willing to reduce to 6 hours of uninterrupted sleep a night w/ regular naps. I have night help - and could have another give a bottle of expressed breastmilk during those 6 hours.

    Given those conditions, are there any suggestions? Given the establishing milk issue - I may be able to stretch things in the beginning and have less uninterrupted sleep. It is all a matter of possibly pushing my luck - but I'd be willing to do so for a short while if needed. I don't feel comfortable more than 2-3 weeks, though.

    Any ideas?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    18,063

    Default Re: Breastfeeding w/ medical need for sleep?

    You might be surprised how well you'll sleep when breastfeeding.
    all the hormones its like a natural sleeping pill.
    Have you thought about co-sleeping? IT might be worth a try.
    and who knows you might get a baby who sleeps well right from the hospital.

    When mine were newborns I would take them to bed and just nurse and sleep.
    I think your plan sounds like a good one, if you have somebody to help at night. I would pump as soon as you got up and then feed the baby.
    You'll figure out what works for you!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    534

    Default Re: Breastfeeding w/ medical need for sleep?

    I just wanted to agree with the pp! My 1st daughter was formula fed and slept awful! I got NO sleep! My daughter now is completely breastfed and we sleep great! We do co sleep and even when she wakes to eat I latch her and drift right back of to sleep! I am amazed at how different it is this time around. I really am not tired!

    Good luck!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    1,492

    Default Re: Breastfeeding w/ medical need for sleep?



    You sound like you're doing some great preparation to do what's best for your baby and for you.

    I'm sure a LLL leader can give you better details than I, but if you're nursing on demand during the day, your milk supply should be protected. As you know, the first few weeks are critical to your supply and your LO's nursing "expertise." From your post, you sound like you've accepted the 2-3 weeks of short sleep. I am not a regular pumper, but generally, moms have their best sessions in the morning. Pump first, then let your LO nurse. You may notice that you don't get as much as you expect when you pump. This is because no matter how great the pump, it will never be as perfect as your LO at getting all the milk out. So don't worry if it takes you several pumping sessions over the course of the day to get one or two nursing's worth.

    Then again...you may be one of those amazing pumpers who makes all the other moms jealous

    Good luck and I wish you a baby who sleeps like a champ!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    6,959

    Default Re: Breastfeeding w/ medical need for sleep?

    Dear friend,
    Try scrolling down to the "Chronic Conditions- Mother" area of the LLL forum! You will find many women who have conquered such barriers. I sent you a private msg.
    Last edited by carpentergirl; December 22nd, 2006 at 02:54 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Breastfeeding w/ medical need for sleep?

    Thanks for all your replies - they are very helpful!!

    - Holly

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