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Thread: keeping up milk supply

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    42

    Default keeping up milk supply

    Hello Everyone! I'm new to the board, and I wanted to get some advice from other moms out there. I had my first baby in November of 2004. We nursed successfully for the entire 3 months I was out on maternity leave. However, several things happened that caused my milk supply to decrease drastically. I was very upset about having to go back to work, so I'm sure that the stress sabotaged me, plus, the baby began sleeping through the night at 2 months of age. I thought that maybe my body just didn't respond all that well to the pump, but I did pump some when I was home on leave, and did just fine. The gist of it is that I was forced to eventually start her on formula, and that just killed me. I tried everything I knew to do to build my supply back up again, but nothing worked. I had wonderful support and suggestions from my LLL group and leaders, but after 4 months of trying, she was refusing the breast altogether, and I finally gave up.

    I am pregnant again, due in December, and I want to do everything in my power to make sure that my milk supply does not drop again. I was wondering if there were any other moms out there in a similar situation, and if they had any suggestions for the second time around. I'd be grateful for any advice you can offer!

    Thank you so much! Tracy

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    3,900

    Default Re: keeping up milk supply

    The best thing you can do to help assure your milk production stays up is to nurse as soon as possible after the birth, and (especially during the early weeks) as frequently as possible. This will assure that your milk production is at optimum levels when the control of milk production switches from hormonal control (early stages of lactation) to local control (milk production is dependant on removal of milk from the breast).
    This is NOT a LLL resource, but it does a good job of explaining how things work:
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/milkproduction.html

    If you have more questions about your specific situation, I would be glad to help!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    42

    Default Re: keeping up milk supply

    Jolie,

    That was a very helpful link for me. One question...a piece of advice I got at my local LLL group was to pump one breast while nursing on the other, then switch. My concern with doing this is that the baby won't be getting enough. Would this be a good thing to do, or would the pumping sessions in between feedings be better? I'm thinking that if I pump more while I'm out on leave while I have the baby with me, then maybe my body will respond to it better when I'm back at work. And should I pump more often during the day while I'm at work? When I was trying to rebuild my supply, I was pumping pretty much every 2 hours. What would your recommendation here be?

    Thanks so much for your help and advice! I so want things to go smoothly this time so that I don't have to put my baby on formula! My daughter is perfectly healthy and very smart, so the formula certainly didn't do her any harm, but it's just not the ideal, and I want to avoid it. Not to mention the feelings of failure that accompanied that drop in supply. It was a very hard time for me.

    Thanks again! Tracy

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