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Thread: to let down or not let down?

  1. #1

    Lightbulb to let down or not let down?

    okay so my prior post was me trying to figure out how to produce more since i was returning to work.

    weight
    birth-8.2
    4 days-7.5
    9 days-7.12
    1 month-8.3
    5 weeks-8.6
    next appt is at 2 months so fingers crossed

    diapers
    3-4 poops
    5+ pees

    she currently stays with her dad during the say and drinking about 7.5-9oz (3 bottles) while im gone from 8-4:30pm. i nurse about 5pm and onward until about 7am.
    im currently pumping 3 times during my work day, but will most like do 4 once im out of training.
    my first pump is always the best.
    10am at about 3-3.5oz.
    12:30 at about 2.5oz
    3pm at about 2oz.
    even though i really wish i could get 3 at each one since thats what seems to satisfy her.

    okay so my main question/concern is let down.
    i still cant seem to understand what it is and if im achieving it?!
    how do i know? if im not how do i achieve it?

    maddieb where you at with the knowledge?!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    10,693

    Default Re: to let down or not let down?

    (Yoda voice) Letdown means milk there is

    Seriously letdown means the hormonal process where milk releases from the milk ducts and down into the nipple and out. If milk is coming out, letdown has happened. Since the body is always making milk, we need the milk to stay in the breasts until baby nurses. The stimulation of baby nursing (or pumping or hand expression) causes the milk to come out. Also, especially in the early weeks or months, some moms letdown between feedings/pump sessions and when that happens the milk either leaks out or it comes down to the nipple but does not come out.

    Some moms feel letdown and others do not ever feel anything. Both are normal. I have felt it strongly with some babies and not at all with others. Generally if a mom does feel letdown, the feeling eventually lessens or goes away entirely.

    So my question to you would be, why are you concerned about letdown - do you think you are not pumping enough milk or have some other concern?

  3. #3

    Default Re: to let down or not let down?

    ohhhh okay.

    I can definitely feel it. and then I immediately start leaking and my first thought is..."what. a. waste."

    i feel like my daughter is going through a growth spurt so I am concernced if im pumping enough.
    shes eating about 9oz while Im at work and im currently putting out about 7.5 while pumping at work so...... what do i do?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    10,693

    Default Re: to let down or not let down?

    shes eating about 9oz while Im at work and im currently putting out about 7.5 while pumping at work so...... what do i do?
    First, make sure your pump is working optimally. Your pump manufacturer should have troubleshooting tips for you.

    Try adding hand expression or massage to pump sessions to increase pump output. If you need more suggestions on either of these let me know.

    Then, make sure baby is not being overfed or milk wasted. 9 ounces would be about right for a 6-9 hour separation. If you are separated from baby less than that, it may be baby is being overfed. Also many caregivers think they have to discard any leftovers in the bottle. This is not the case with breastmilk, the bottle can be put in fridge for next meal. Also of course if they are getting leftovers frequently, they may need to make the bottles smaller.

    If your pump is working well, hand expression or massage does not help and baby is not being overfed and there is not much waste, then the solution would be to 1) Pump some other time during the day to make up the difference or 2) Supplement with formula as needed. Unfortunately some moms just do not respond all that great to pumps and it is not uncommon for a mom to need to pump either more often at work or outside of work to get enough.

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