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Thread: Can't nurse effectively to keep up "demand"

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    221

    Default Can't nurse effectively to keep up "demand"

    My wee man is not an effective latcher and tends to chew at my nipples especially if he is stressed. He has only just started nursing without a nipple shield (at 6 weeks) and recently my nipples got so sore that nursing became counterproductive. I decided that seeing as bottle feeding was what he has been doing since week 1 and thus was less likely to make his suckling habits WORSE, I would exclusively pump for 3-5 days to give my nipples a chance to heal.

    Back to exclusive pumping, however, I notice that my supply is lower than it was after 1 week exclusively breastfeeding and pumping when I was engorged. It seems that he is just not effective at removing milk from the breast... either that or it was because he was unwell following his vaccinations. He wasn't emptying both breasts as I would when pumping and I was getting engorged and he was sleeping longer and skipped a couple of feeds.

    Basically at the moment he has been demanding feeds every 2 hours or less and I can't seem to pump more than about 75-80ml (2½oz?). I'm use to pumping between 110-170ml (3.7oz-5.75oz) and that will see him satisfied for 3-5 hours.

    There is every possibility that he's just going through a growth spurt, or recovering after a bad week due to feeling off-colour from the vaccinations.

    Basically what I want to know is; how long will I have to wait before my supply picks back up? If I keep pumping till I'm empty after he feeds (when he's back on the breast) is that likely to keep my supply up? And how would I increase my supply if I'm pumping and he's still hungry.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    1,437

    Default Re: Can't nurse effectively to keep up "demand"

    Hi ,

    Do you have someone locally who could work with you to improve baby's latch? Getting a good latch is very important, but it can be hard to do without help.

    Once you get baby nursing effectively, your supply should build back up fairly quickly. In the meantime, do your best to pump frequently. Because your baby is so young, aim for 10-12 times every 24 hours. Many moms find it helpful to pump for several minutes beyond when they "empty" the breast. This tells your breasts to increase the amount you are making.

    There are other mothers around here who have been in similar situations. Hopefully they will share their wisdom and experiences.

    Hang in there,

    Tiana

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    221

    Default Re: Can't nurse effectively to keep up "demand"

    I know it will vary from baby to baby, but how much does a 7 week old 13 pound (5.8ish kg) infant normally eat in a day? Is there a rule of thumb for calculating such a thing?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    1,437

    Default Re: Can't nurse effectively to keep up "demand"

    This link might help: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/pumping/milkcalc.html

    Kellymom is not an LLLI site.

    Tiana

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