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Thread: Help with pumping vs block feeding in a.m.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Posts
    23

    Default Help with pumping vs block feeding in a.m.

    My four-month-old daughter has sort of abruptly gone from feeding three or four times a night to no night feeds and sleeping through. I have over supply issues to start with but in the mornings now I am super engorged and my baby is having tons of spit ups and stomach upset. It's been a little over a week and I was trying to see if my supply would just adjust on its own but I haven't noticed much difference by morning. How long does it typically take to adjust down to her needs without any interventions?

    The first couple days I did pump off about an ounce off each breast before I fed her but now I'm trying to stop pumping as I'm afraid that it's making things worse.

    I have use block feeding in the past to adjust my supply down with decent success but I'm not sure how to do this just in the mornings. By evening time my breasts feel pretty empty because she has ramped up nursing during the day to make up for the calories. she's not getting at night, I assume. Will block feeding just in the morning help fix that issue but not affect my supply in the afternoon and evening? Also how would I go about block feeding in the morning when she has already gone 12 hours without feeding? Would I alternate every other morning which breast I start block feeding on?

    The other option is to continue pumping a little bit every morning, which I don't really mind doing as I wouldn't mind having a little freezer stash. Will this just exasperate the problem?

    Also - somewhat related question. I'm having insomnia and Benadryl helps. I know it can dry up your milk, which I'm not worried about for overnight/morning. However, would this affect my supply all day? Again, I don't want to have less milk in the evenings. Is the affect short-lived (like as long as it's in your system) or does it have more permanent or lingering effects?

    Thanks!
    Last edited by @llli*jensmith; April 3rd, 2017 at 08:13 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    10,754

    Default Re: Help with pumping vs block feeding in a.m.

    I would not generally suggest block nursing at this age, especially if your baby is sleeping long stretches at night and that is already doing what blocking would do.

    The main problem if I understand it from what you have posted, is your baby is not nursing for 12 hours (?!) overnight and so understandably, you are getting very full so the letdown is very fast and there is a lot of milk in the morning. This is different than having the kind of extreme OP that warrants block nursing.

    What have you tried for encouraging your baby to nurse overnight again? anything more than 6-8 hours is a very long time for a 4 month old to go without eating. Nursing a baby also tends to be mildly sleep inducing for mom due to the hormones involved.

    If you cannot or do not wish to nurse your child overnight, I would suggest pumping once overnight, maybe before you go to bed, to relieve pressure overnight now and to keep your production in good shape. It is likely your baby will start wanting to nurse more often at night again in the future.

    Also - somewhat related question. I'm having insomnia and Benadryl helps. I know it can dry up your milk, which I'm not worried about for overnight/morning. However, would this affect my supply all day? Again, I don't want to have less milk in the evenings. Is the affect short-lived (like as long as it's in your system) or does it have more permanent or lingering effects?
    If something reduces milk production, it reduces over all production. There is no such thing as only night time or only day time low production- either a mom makes enough milk for her baby or she does not.

    If Benadryl acts on your body to reduce your milk production, the way to fix that would be to stop taking it entirely and do things that increase milk production, such as increasing the frequency of milk removal and staying well hydrated. (good hydration while you are taking it, in fact, good hydration always for breastfeeding moms, is helpful.)

    The bigger problem to my mind is that you are using an allergy medication to treat insomnia. Since benedryl is typically used temporarily for allergic reactions, I am not sure what long term use might mean for your milk and your baby. Also, I would suggest talking to your doctor about medication that treats insomnia (or anxiety, if that is the root of the insomnia) that is safe to take when breastfeeding. Many are.

    For accurate information on Benadryl and any other meds and breastfeeding, call the people at infant risk and they can help you with breastfeeding supportive medication information. http://www.infantrisk.com/

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Help with pumping vs block feeding in a.m.

    Thank you so much for your reply. I'll try to pump before bed and see if that makes a difference. I appreciate you explaining how certain things affect your supply overall. I had been using Benadryl just because I assumed it was safer than ambien or ssris for my baby but I'll talk to my doctor about it.

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