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Thread: Questions About Block Feeding

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Default Questions About Block Feeding

    Hi Ladies,

    I thought my 5-week-old DD was just a screamer and a spitter, but after reading up on OALD, I think this may be our problem. Over the past few days, she has been clearly coming off the breast and screaming at letdown and then refusing to feed. When she comes off, there is a strong, steady stream of milk spraying out.

    So, I have started block feeding as of last night, and she already seems much more content. A few questions:

    1. In the morning, I am engorged in both breasts (if DD sleeps well). If I feed her from one side, can I pump the other (just once in the morning and then block feed for the rest of the day), or will this add to the problem? Even before I started block feeding, I have been very full and leaky, so now I am engorged and noticeably lopsided!

    2. If the block feeding seems to help our problem, how long should I continue with it? Should I continue to always feed from only one side? If not, how will I know when to offer the second side?

    Thanks so much--this is a great resource!
    Laury

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    16

    Default Re: Questions About Block Feeding

    One more question. I had been waking DD every two hours during the day to feed (she was sleeping during the day and waking frequently at night to feed, so I was trying to turn her internal clock around). I don't know if it is the block feeding working already, but she now seems less eager to eat every two hours. Should I continue with this, or should I feed her every three hours or only when she shows signs of hunger? She is 5 weeks old. I forget when it is OK to start letting the baby set her feeding schedule. Thanks!

  3. #3
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    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Questions About Block Feeding

    Hi Laury,
    Glad to hear things are turning around for you and dd!

    To answer your questions:

    In the morning when you wake up full and engorged and you nurse dd on one side only you can express just enough milk for comfort. If you pump a full feeding amount this will tell the breast to step up production, something you don't want to do. A full breast sends the message "enough already!" and things slow down. An empty breast says "more needed" and things begin again. Does this make sense? You may wish to see you it feels to just take a little off. If this helps you get through til the next feeding, then it would be ok to go with it.

    If dd is gaining and growing she is old enough to set her own schedule.

    Some moms find they need to block feed for just a week or two before things slow down. Others it takes longer. One thing to consider is that dd will also be able to handle your milk flow/supply better as she grows. So you can try this for at least a week and then see how things are going. But you won't need to do it forever!

    HTH!

  4. #4
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    Jun 2006
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    Default Re: Questions About Block Feeding

    But you can do it for as long as it makes her happy. My DS has always block fed. He's six months old. He would always falls asleep while eating when younger and I could never see any reason to wake a sleeping baby so I didn't. He weighs 20lbs. and I've been letting him set his own shcedule since he got here. He was always a great sleeper. After one experience in the hospital where the nurse tried to wake him and put him on the breast because it had been 5hrs.(Didn't work just very tramatic for me) I just let him do his thing. If he ever slept more than five hours I pumped but I sure didn't want to ever wake him up especially when I got that five hour stretch to be at night. Which happened at about 5 weeks. It sounds like it's working for you! Good luck!

  5. #5
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    May 2006
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    16

    Default Re: Questions About Block Feeding

    Quote Originally Posted by LLLKate
    In the morning when you wake up full and engorged and you nurse dd on one side only you can express just enough milk for comfort. If you pump a full feeding amount this will tell the breast to step up production, something you don't want to do. A full breast sends the message "enough already!" and things slow down. An empty breast says "more needed" and things begin again. Does this make sense?
    Yes, this makes sense. I ended up dealing with the engorgement yesterday, and it is already much better today. Thank you!

    I do want to start pumping milk to freeze eventually. When will it be OK to do this--once I think the block feeding is working, DD is happy nursing, and my supply is evening out?

    Thanks--after nursing my first DD for 14 months, I thought I had this BF thing figured out--not so!

    Laury

  6. #6
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    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Questions About Block Feeding

    Quote Originally Posted by LAN623

    I do want to start pumping milk to freeze eventually. When will it be OK to do this--once I think the block feeding is working, DD is happy nursing, and my supply is evening out?


    Laury
    Yes, I think you are on the money with this. May I ask if you are pumping to go back to work or for occasional separations?

    I didn't mean to imply that you should stop block feeding anytime soon. I just wanted you to understand that it can only be a temporary thing, or it can go on for quite a while, depending on you and your baby. (I wasn't sure if this was clear!)

    You are quite welcome! Glad to be of some assistance!

  7. #7
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: Questions About Block Feeding

    Quote Originally Posted by LLLKate
    May I ask if you are pumping to go back to work or for occasional separations?

    I didn't mean to imply that you should stop block feeding anytime soon. I just wanted you to understand that it can only be a temporary thing, or it can go on for quite a while, depending on you and your baby. (I wasn't sure if this was clear!)
    I am a SAHM for now, so I would like to pump for occasional separations. So, there is no rush to start pumping.

    So, I take it that it can't hurt to block feed for as long as we like even once the problems subside, correct?

  8. #8
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    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Questions About Block Feeding

    That is correct.

    If you are only pumping for occassional separations I would suggest you wait a bit longer, as you said, til supply levels out a bit. (And if you were going back to work I would still suggest the same thing! Most moms think if they are going back to work they need to stock-pile milk. But if you are able to pump while separated then there is no need.)

    After things level out you may be able to nurse on one side and pump on the other to have a little milk to give to dd while you are out.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    8

    Default Re: Questions About Block Feeding

    Kate, I am having the same issues as Laurey it sounds like with one difference. I was pumping close to daily, so my husband could give a bottle at least four times a week. Last night, my husband gave a bottle twice because I had had to stay up all night Thursday because of Meagan having gas problems. If the engorgement is from my breasts missing a feeding, is it alright to pump a whole feeding? Also, did I understand correctly that I no longer have to worry about multiple 5-6 hour stretches and that her eating off just one breast and/or block feeding will keep the milk supply where it needs to be? I don't exactly know when I am supposed to go back to the 15-20 min on one side and 5-10 on the other or is there no need to do that? thanks, kendrah

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    16

    Default Re: Questions About Block Feeding

    Well, now I am confused.

    I thought block feeding was helping us, but baby has once again begun fussing on the breast (only sometimes) and is becoming more irritable again (although not as much as before). She has intermittent green stools and often strains to get them out. She is still very hard to burp. However, she is now sleeping much better (thanks to the Miracle Blanket, I think).

    She has begun having blood in her stools, and we will take stool samples in to the doctor tomorrow. The doctor had me eliminate dairy from my diet. Now, I wonder whether I have too much milk, she has a lactose intolerance/milk allergy, or both? I am continuing with block feeding.

    Just wondering if anyone had any thoughts. I'm not sure if I should continue with block feeding or how strict my dairy elimination should be. Should I avoid straight dairy products (milk, cheese, yogurt, etc.), or should I avoid anything containing milk derivatives? I want to be sure the correct diagnosis is made, but I'd rather not cut out dairy if I don't absolutely have to.

    Also, does anyone know what steps are taken once blood is confirmed in a baby's stool?

    Thanks for your help with all these questions!
    Laury

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