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Thread: 5 months - Is there hope?

  1. #1

    Default 5 months - Is there hope?

    Baby girl is 5 months old. Breastfed and supplemented with anywhere from 6-12 oz formula per day. My supply dwindled starting month 2 due to tongue tie/ineffective removal and has never bounced back (tie revised at 3 months). I'm on 100mg domperidone/day. I pump once a day after she goes to sleep and sometimes one other time during the day, but I nurse a LOT. Like probably every 45min/1 hour. And practically all night long (I don't supplement during the night). I think she gets most of her breastmilk at night. She drinks long and steadily and has two heavy diapers per night. Totally don't mind the night nursing; I'm sure it's saved us. I'm not going back to work thankfully. But even as recently as 3 weeks ago she was only getting 4-6 oz formula per day, which I would honestly be totally fine with if that's what I could settle on. But now it's more like 10-12 oz per day. We've fluctuated like this before and I don't know what to attribute it to. Her nursing sessions during the day have been super short, like 2 min per side. She's distracted to boot.

    Is there any hope to get my supply up? I know I should pump more, but I don't know where I would fit it in. I still hold her for naps (they're just 40 min anyway) so can't pump then. I think she gets frustrated with my slow flow, and I think my letdown (which I've never felt) takes a while, if I even have one. I feel like she eats better when my breast are fuller and it comes quicker. Is that false thinking? Should I try a Rx oxytocin?

    I do all the other supply boosting things- eat a lot, hydrate, oatmeal, moringa & goats rue. I took fenugreek+blessed thistle a while back, stopped for a while and started again a few days ago, but I haven't seen a difference.

    I don't mind if she gets a bottle here or there,
    I just want to be able to satisfy her most of the time without worrying about topping her off all day.

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

    Default Re: 5 months - Is there hope?

    Hi welcome to the forum, sorry you are having this issue.

    But even as recently as 3 weeks ago she was only getting 4-6 oz formula per day, which I would honestly be totally fine with if that's what I could settle on. But now it's more like 10-12 oz per day. We've fluctuated like this before and I don't know what to attribute it to.
    Usually fluctuations like this in a situation like yours would indicate a tendency to overfeed with bottles. How is baby's weight gain lately? Would it indicate possible overfeeding? What are you doing to reduce the potential for overfeeding?

    Nursing lots overnight is normal behavior at this age, as is distractibility and short feedings. In other words, none of those are reasons to supplement or increase how much you supplement. Poor weight gain would be.
    Is there any hope to get my supply up? I know I should pump more, but I don't know where I would fit it in.
    There is hope but yes, you would have to pump more often, or hand express. When you do pump, how much are you able to pump at once, typically?

    I feel like she eats better when my breast are fuller and it comes quicker. Is that false thinking?
    Is it a false thinking? No, not if your baby has trouble extracting milk or your letdown is unusually slow. But all moms start letting down "slower" at some point, usually be this age, so all babies have to get used to that slower letdown and most do so just fine. If baby is having trouble getting a good seal on the not full breast, that is a latch issue.
    Should I try a Rx oxytocin?
    We cannot advise you that specifically, but if your really think your letdown is a problem, I guess this is something to consider. have you tried fennel?

  3. #3

    Default Re: 5 months - Is there hope?

    Very interesting about possible over bottle feeding. I just always go by her cues. I nurse whenever she or I feel like it, or more, and then a partial to whole 2oz bottle if necessary. Never more than 2oz at a time. But I guess I could redefine my interpretation of "necessary". Her weight gain is fine. We overcame a drastic drop in percentiles early on & are back to a solid 47%, nothing to indicate over eating. One possibility is when my husband is around, he has tendency to give unnecessary bottle, but my fault for allowing it.


    I know!! I need to pump more. I don't know what it is. I tell myself I'd do anything to breastfeed, but when it comes down to it, I don't pump. It's not like I even hate the act of pumping. It sits right there on the dining table at all times. I guess it feels like I'm neglecting my daughter, sticking her in a bouncy chair or on the floor. But she obviously is fine for 15 min by herself. I'd say I get average 1.5oz when I pump. Less during the day, little more at the late evening one (though not last night).

    As far as the letdown/flow situation, maybe I'll ask my midwife if she could prescribe oxytocin. Baby latches fine on breast, full or not. Have not tried fennel, I will look into it.

    Thank you for your advice!

  4. #4

    Default Re: 5 months - Is there hope?

    And that's usually pumping soon after nursing.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    10,754

    Default Re: 5 months - Is there hope?

    I would suggest try reducing the size of the bottles- are you using paced bottle feeding? And give husband smaller bottles as well. An entire meal at the breast could be 2 ounces or less at least some of the time, so giving baby 2 ounces after nursing may be too much.

    I'd say I get average 1.5oz when I pump. Less during the day, little more at the late evening one (though not last night).
    And that's usually pumping soon after nursing.
    So that actually sounds like entirely normal pump output. To put it another way, here you have 1 ounce or more left in the breasts after baby nursed - in that case, does baby even need a bottle? If she seems to need more, could you instead offer to nurse again or nurse longer?

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