After 9 weeks of a terrible latch and mostly exclusive pumping, Baby is finally taking milk "off the cow" (yay!! ) but now we're dealing with issues of OALD / OS. I was pumping more than 40 oz when she was bottle-feeding.. always more than double what she ate, even at only 4 pumpings daily. I think most LC's deal with low supply, so their concern was to make sure I maintained. Yeah, no worries there.
Now I'm trying to transition off the pump. On the first day that she started nursing well, I tried to quit the pump cold-turkey and gave myself a nice case of mastitis. Not eager to repeat that one. So I'm down to 2 pumpings per day (early morning and just before bed). Trying to slowly reduce the amt I pump, as initially it was in the range of 12-15 oz both times -- just to relieve the engorgement!
So my questions are:
* Block feeding ... I understand the principle, but with such a HUGE supply, how does it work? I tried it for 4-hr blocks yesterday (only two feedings) and I thought the other breast was going to explode: hot, full, plugged-feeling ducts that were very sore and achey even after being emptied. And that doesn't include the times where we give her a bottle and both breasts feel that way! Just grit my teeth and bear it and it will get better? How long will that take, and is there a way to prevent mastitis in the meantime?
* Letting the breast drip for a while before letting LO on. She's still not quite latching right... I'm afraid if I take her off and make her wait after a good latch / let-down she's going to get frustrated and give up. Also, because of her latching issues, she latches best on a firm breast / nipple and doesn't suck well ... if I eliminate the OS by hand expression, she won't latch and may not get enough milk (she's on the edge weight-wise already). Help! Is there some comfy middle ground?
Thanks in advance...