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Thread: dwindling freezer supplies

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    Unhappy dwindling freezer supplies

    Well, I have just about used all of my frozen liquid gold. I only have about enough for one week. I pump when I get home from work and only get the one side to give me about 5 oz while I nurse from the other side. I don't have any free time to pump the rest of the night or am too bleery eyed to pump in the morning.

    My question is this: do I need to introduce formula a little at a time or can we just make the switch? - my ds did receive formula supplements per dr's orders for a while (until I wisened up and snuggled w/ my guy and let him nurse all night and cured the no-weight gain issue), but that was only for about three weeks about four months ago. Ds is 6 1/2 months old and doing well w/ oatmeal, avacado, pureed spinach and pureed green beans as well as a little of pureed chicken w/ carrots (just a little - careful of the nitrates & too much protein too soon). He is a great eater w/ a hearty appetite. I will still nurse in the evenings and all night as he requests, as well as before work.

    What to do?

  2. #2
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    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: dwindling freezer supplies

    How many hours do you work? Why are you unable to pump at work? How many oz does he drink during the day while you are appart? What bottle nipple are you using?

    What kind of pump are you using?
    When you wake up in the morning, couldn't you pump one side while he feeds on the other? That would yeild the most milk, since morning is the best time to pump and tandem pumping would help with the let down.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: dwindling freezer supplies

    Diana, there's an interesting article down in the refreshment table section. The thread is labeled "A LONG but interesting article" by Jillybean. If you are worried about nitrates and too much protein too soon, you might really want to rethink formula. LLL and The American Pediatric society both reccommend breastmilk through the 1st year of life. Now it sound like you hit the 6month mark and congratulations on that!! Seroiusly no small task as it sounds like you are already back to work. And are still breastfeeding through the night Whew! I can't imagine what getting up and going to work after that even feels like.
    I agree with the PP on the morning pumping. If you are already sitting down to feed, why not pump then? If your still getting 5 oz from an evening feed, you'll likely get MORE than 5oz in the am! And perhaps the 10 to 12 oz a day will be enough for the eight hrs a day you'll need to be gone? Or then you'd only need to supplement one feeding a day?
    I'm glad your baby is doing so well with solids! And it sounds like you aren't pumping during the day and your body has adapted to that. What about the weekends? Could you pump a little more than? Your right it is liquid gold and any amount of breast milk is a gift! I hope you can find a way to stretch your out for longer than a week more!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    Default Re: dwindling freezer supplies

    Hi, I have been lurking here for the past four months since my first baby (daughter) was born.
    I have had an ambivalent approach to BF from the beginning, when I feared getting mastitis and worried about pumping at work when I returned (for financial reasons) on her 8 week birthday. Suffice to say, after two bouts of mastitis and a rather embarassing introduction to pumping at the office, I am still at it and very much convinced of breastfeedings health benefits.

    That all being said, I really can identify with Diana's post. I had created a frozen supply of about 92 oz. before returning to work, and after first going back, I pumped about what my baby drank during the day at home with her Dad. When my husband started summer classes two weeks later, my mother in law came to stay with us and my daughter's daytime intake jumped significantly, and my freezer supply started dwindling because I couldn't keep up (the second round of mastitis significantly lowered my production for a week, making a bad situation worse).

    If we didn't supplement with formula, I don't know how I could extend breastfeeding for the next 2-6 months (I would like to make it to a year). I take out as much frozen breastmilk each day as I could pump the day before at work, period. Anything after that, my daughter gets formula until I get home at the end of the day. We are leaving for a weekend in Mid-July and I want there to be enough frozen milk to get her through the two days I am gone.

    There was no magic involved in supplementing with formula-- we started before I left for work one feeding a day to see if she could tolerate it, and to give me time to pump and create a frozen supply.

    She's doing great and I am not freaking out trying to pump every free minute (which is good, because working full time, I have no free minutes, I am feeding her 2x a night still, bleary at work already, and the stress & physical exhaustion of trying to pump more than 2x a day was exactly what brought on the 2d bout of mastitis to begin with).

    With lowered stress, and a few more minutes to "catch up" on sleep, I pump more milk, and can hopefully stretch out the weeks and months of my baby's mostly-breastfed diet much longer than I could otherwise.

    The American Academy of Pediatrics committee on nutrition contradicts the commitee on breastfeeding-- the nutrition committee recommends introducing solids between 4-6 months, not waiting until 6 months. There was also an article in last week's New York Times suggesting that allergies can be prevented by starting solids earlier than 6 mos.

    So, given my daughter's appetite, her interest in watching us eat and my personal hope she will eventually gain enough weight or be full enough to sleep through the night, we are going to introduce solids with our Pediatrians' okay after her four-month appt.

    I have zero regrets about supplementing with formula-- my daughter has been doing beautifully so far and I know I am giving her everything I can produce while still keeping an eye toward breastfeeding in the future.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    284

    Default Re: dwindling freezer supplies

    My question is this: do I need to introduce formula a little at a time or can we just make the switch?
    Here's a link about weaning...

    http://www.caringforkids.cps.ca/babies/Weaning.htm

    From what I've read and my own experiences it's best to do it gradually. For my first son it took about a month to fully wean him at 7 months. They say the formula may cause constipation because of the iron but since you're still nursing at night and the morning I read that the breastmilk counteracts the binding qualities of the formula. It sounds like your going about it perfectly. You could probably start by replacing one or two feedings for the next week and if all goes well do the same the following week. Which will probaby stretch your supply for two weeks or more for day feedings.

  6. #6
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    Jun 2006
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    Default Re: dwindling freezer supplies

    I was running out of my supply quickly and not pumping enough to even come close to keeping up, so one day I just tried straight formula to see what would happen. DS didn't even bat an eyelash! I gave him one brand on that trial day and then switched to another when we went away for the weekend. He refused to drink the brand that I brought so I went out and bought the original. He downed it in no time. Now we are home and doing 3 cups of formula/day and one cup of EBM at bedtime until the supply is gone (only 5 days left.)

    I know that I was lucky making the cold-turkey switch and that some, like a pp, have better success with the slow transition. Either way, keep in mind that you may have to try out different formulas to find one that your baby likes.

    Good luck.
    Sarah

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    51

    Default Re: dwindling freezer supplies

    Well thanks all,
    To answeer a few questions - I am aware and only wish I could provide only bm for my ds; however I have to work. I am a bartender who barely gets a chance to get a drink of water or go to the restroom, let alone get a break or pump. I have no option but to give him formula. Well, I guess we could buy someones milk, but we'll just go w/ formula. I am gone for about nine hours a day and he usually has two or three bottles of four to five ounces. I know pumping in the morning is the best, but I guess I am being a bit selfish. I am so tired because he still nurses about three (or more) times a night, doesn't sleep well w/ a wet diaper, and has begun teething (nursing a lot more at night) that I don't get much sleep, so we co-sleep and he nurses in bed while I steal a bit more shuteye.

    I try to pump w/ my Medela double/electric/hospital grade pump on my days off the few times I get a chance, but two things happen: 1. When I am home Nicholas just wants to nurse so frequently, he taps me out & I only get an ounce or so, and 2. We end up using the little bit I get mixing in w/ his food.

    It was/is still very painful getting my body adjusted to going so long w/o any relief,(blocked ducts so many times, I think I know where every single duct is located) but people here said it can/could be done, so I here I am working like someone in AA, "one day at a time!"

    I have heard of adding a scoop of formula to his bottle of ebm. Has anyone else heard of or done that?

    I guess I might have waited too long to ask for suggestions, but I guess I was just in denial that my supply, that I worked sooooooo hard to get pumping every free chance & even waking in the middle of the night just to pump for the first three months, will soon be gone. I knew I wouldn't be able to pump at work, and I wanted so badly for him to make it at least six months w/ just bm.

    I am happy to hear some have made the transition quite easily. Hopefully the same will go for us. My ds is a good eater so maybe that's an indicator of how it might go. - as disheartening as it is Trust me, I have even been applying for different jobs for the last three months to try and get one that would afford me the opportunity to pump at work.

    I hope to hear more ideas!
    Thanks everyone, Dianna

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    447

    Default Re: dwindling freezer supplies

    Quote Originally Posted by Dianna
    I have heard of adding a scoop of formula to his bottle of ebm. Has anyone else heard of or done that?
    I wouldn't. Feed ebm first, and offer formula after if baby still seems hungry. That way, you make sure you never watse any ebm. http://www.lalecheleague.org/FAQ/mixing.html

    Don't beat yourself up about suplmenting. You can only do the best you can, and it sounds like your current work situation is very unsupportive of pumping. Just nurse as much as you can while you're together; baby still recieves huge benifits even if half his feedings are breastmilk and the other half fomrula. All breastmilk is good breastmilk!

  9. #9
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    Default Re: dwindling freezer supplies

    Quote Originally Posted by Jen4

    If we didn't supplement with formula, I don't know how I could extend breastfeeding for the next 2-6 months (I would like to make it to a year). I take out as much frozen breastmilk each day as I could pump the day before at work, period. Anything after that, my daughter gets formula until I get home at the end of the day. We are leaving for a weekend in Mid-July and I want there to be enough frozen milk to get her through the two days I am gone.

    With lowered stress, and a few more minutes to "catch up" on sleep, I pump more milk, and can hopefully stretch out the weeks and months of my baby's mostly-breastfed diet much longer than I could otherwise.

    The American Academy of Pediatrics committee on nutrition contradicts the commitee on breastfeeding-- the nutrition committee recommends introducing solids between 4-6 months, not waiting until 6 months. There was also an article in last week's New York Times suggesting that allergies can be prevented by starting solids earlier than 6 mos.

    So, given my daughter's appetite, her interest in watching us eat and my personal hope she will eventually gain enough weight or be full enough to sleep through the night, we are going to introduce solids with our Pediatrians' okay after her four-month appt.

    I have zero regrets about supplementing with formula-- my daughter has been doing beautifully so far and I know I am giving her everything I can produce while still keeping an eye toward breastfeeding in the future.
    Jen4
    It sounds like you have an amazing game plan worked out and are committed to give your daughter the benefits of breast milk for as long as possible. I was only questioning if it was possible for Dianna to do somethings to stretch out her own supply. I'm glad you have no regrets about the choices you've made. Everyone has to do what's best for thier family.

    Dianna,
    Again, I commend your tremendous accomplishments and completely feel your nightime feeding pain as my co-sleeping 6month old is also teething and feeding much more and I often am exhausted in the morning. The thought of you then getting up and going to work (Bartending no less!!!!) and dealing with clogged ducts all the time, you do whatever you need to! It sounds as if you'll still be BFing half the time and that is better than nothing! I was only trying to suggest ways that I thought would be effective in stretching the supply. And given your concerns about nitrates and too much protein and the fact that it sounds like your baby is already eating solids that with a little extra pumping you may be able to forgo formula.Or supplement less. If it's not possible it's not possible. You've made it past the 6 month point and that's huge! Good luck!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    31

    Default Re: dwindling freezer supplies

    My 1st DD drank her bottles like a champ, never a drop left, so I did 3/4 EBM w/ 1/4 formula to start, then 1/2 and 1/2, then 1/4 and 3/4, then 100% formula. Be sure to not just add a scoop of formula, but the right amount of water, too. You could just start w/ 1/2 and 1/2, too.

    I agree to use EBM first, then formula, if your dc doesn't usualy drink the whole bottle, but if that's not a problem, there's no reason not to mix it.

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