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Thread: Running on empty...HELP!!!!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    185

    Exclamation Running on empty...HELP!!!!

    I'll try to keep this as short and to the point as I can and if I miss anything please ask me to fill in whatever is needed.
    My daughter was born on November 7th, I nursed her in the hospital and switched to pumping only and giving her breastmilk in a bottle once we were home. I have two older children and couldn't manage to get them to latch well. My oldest lasted 24 hours at the breast and my middle child made it a week before I switched to formula. I've been pumping and feeding her breastmilk solely so she's never had formula at all.
    About a week or so ago my oldest son decided it would be nice to share the cold bug he brought home from school with everyone else in the house. My milk supply went WAY down. I had been getting about 3 to 4 ounces out of one side and 2 or 3 out of the other when pumping every 4 hours. It went down to just about an ounce out of each side and I had to pump every 3 hours to keep up with her feedings.
    I got in touch with a Lactation consultant and got help with her latch since I read here that nursing will increase supply better than just pumping. She latches well and then somehow seems to always end up breaking the seal and getting latched wrong, I can't get her to keep a good latch for more than 2 or 3 sucks and then I spend an hour with her on my breast trying to get her to have a decent meal. I just nursed all afternoon the other day and when she did eat it was only for about 5 minutes and then she refused it, then she would be cranky and crying hungry within another few minutes, she finally started getting the hang of latching but still wasn't content and was nursing every 45 mins to an hour. With two older children, one of whom is a toddler it's hard to spend all day with her attatched to me and keep up with their needs too. So I'm pumping but feel as if I sabotaged my supply by nursing her and not just pumping after working so hard to get it back up and keep it steady. I'm now barely getting an ounce out of each side per pumping and am still pumping every time she eats so that I keep up with her needs.
    I'm so close to calling it quits or supplimenting her, I've tried to set small goals for myself...such as.."I'll keep her on only breastmilk till I hit 4 weeks" once I hit 4 weeks then I re-set the goal for 6 weeks, and I plan on pushing it back further and further....if I say...I plan on pumping and feeding her breastmilk untill she's a year old I know it's too daunting a task and if I do end up not making it I would be too dissappointed in myself.
    I need any advice you might have on how to increase my supply. I've read the links and tried most of the suggestions on them and nothing seems to be helping, I'm barely keeping up with her and I'm trying to hard to keep up and not have to give her formula. Here's my schedule

    I pump 8 or more times a day and usually get about an ounce out of each side recently.
    I take fenugreek 3 times a day but have to watch my blood glucose levels carefully because it tends to make my sugar levels run a little lower than recommended.
    I've given up all caffine, increased my water drinking so much that I feel like I'm pregnant again in the bathroom all the time.

    I'm really not sure what else to do...any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
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    Default Re: Running on empty...HELP!!!!

    HI Mama!
    Congratulations to you on being so determined! I wanted to just throw a couple of things out to you....1st you will need to pump AT LEAST times a most newborns eat 8-12x a day! So that is not an abundance of pumping...though I imagine it feels like it.
    2nd while I personally think there would be sooo much less work involved in getting her to your breast, I respect your decision to pump exclusively and think any way the baby gets your breast milk is a win. Stay determined!
    3rd, I know of several mothers here that HAVE MADE IT pumping exclusively Those women usually converse on the "Pumping" board farther down. I invite you to post on that board and see what kind of responses you get! Also read through some posts of people who are doing it! I think it helps so much to know your not alone. I will go down there and bump some threads for you, If you don't find the answers your looking for, feel free to start another thread. I think you will find what your are looking for down there. Good Luck! ANd congratulations again on being so determined!

    Way too lazy for formula

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    2,539

    Default Re: Running on empty...HELP!!!!

    My DS nursed at some point during every hour of the day for the first 2 months, and sometimes for 4 hour stretches. I can understand that would be difficult with your other children. Is there anyone that you could call to help you even if its just for a short while? In order to give you guys a chance to get the hang of it. If you can BF as often as possible, that would help your supply. If I understood right, it is possible (though difficult) for her to get a good latch right? The first couple of months were the most difficult so far for us, hang in there

    Maybe try to have a specific feeding to start out with that you BF only while your older children are distracted by something like play time or nap time? just a suggestion. I hope some other moms will share their experience. All the best and good luck!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    185

    Default Re: Running on empty...HELP!!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by surfinrn&mom2mason View Post
    My DS nursed at some point during every hour of the day for the first 2 months, and sometimes for 4 hour stretches. I can understand that would be difficult with your other children. Is there anyone that you could call to help you even if its just for a short while? In order to give you guys a chance to get the hang of it. If you can BF as often as possible, that would help your supply. If I understood right, it is possible (though difficult) for her to get a good latch right? The first couple of months were the most difficult so far for us, hang in there

    Maybe try to have a specific feeding to start out with that you BF only while your older children are distracted by something like play time or nap time? just a suggestion. I hope some other moms will share their experience. All the best and good luck!

    It would be great if I had help from anyone but I live 6 hours away from my closest family, and as my husband is in the Navy his schedule rotates so it's hard sometimes to have him here to help. She rarely gets latched on right...I watched all the videos on latching that someone sent a website link for and even though I know I don't have flat or inverted nipples mine do appear to be a great deal smaller than the ones I've seen in all the articles and videos...maybe that could be a factor in her latching problems

  5. #5
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    Sep 2006
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    Default Re: Running on empty...HELP!!!!

    has anyone mention using a nipple shield?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    185

    Default Re: Running on empty...HELP!!!!

    I bought one but I couldn't tell if I was using it right or it was helping, she seemed to choke on it more than suck on it

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    2,539

    Default Re: Running on empty...HELP!!!!

    there are different size shields, and they are supposed to be fit to mom, not to the baby's mouth. (I like to use the shield as a "last resort" so that you can avoid having to wean from the shield later).

    Are your nipples plyable enough to make a "sandwitch" with? Does that make sense? I mean (if using cradle hold) to make a C shape with you hand, use your thumb on the top of your breast and your index finger on the bottom behind the areola and squeeze to that it's like a sandwitch for her to "bite" on to. That way she can get further onto the areaola.

    It is really hard to help with this since I can't "see" you, are there a LLL meetings near you? or are there any support meetings at the local hospital for new mothers? It sounds like you would really benefit from some "person to person" assistance. Please keep posting, I have faith you and all us mommas on here can figure something out

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    185

    Default Re: Running on empty...HELP!!!!

    more of a finger sandwich than an big PB&J one LOL but I understood what you were saying

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    2,539

    Default Re: Running on empty...HELP!!!!

    thats a good sign...your humor is intact! that's half the battle

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