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Thread: Help Too Much Milk & Frequent Engorgement

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Help Too Much Milk & Frequent Engorgement


    I have a 11 week old little girl. When she was a few days old we went to see a LC at the hospital because of latching problems. The LC told me to use a nipple shild which helped a lot and we are still using it. The LC also told me to feed her for 15 minutes on each side. And if she didn't eat those 15 minutes on each side to pump for the remaining time (ex. she eats only 10 minutes on right side - I pump the other 5 minutes then 15 minutes on the left side). I have been doing this for the last 10 weeks. Last week I called my local LLL and asked if this was still necessary and she said no, that all that pumping at first was to increase my initial milk supply and now I could slow down and let my daughter comand my supply. Well, I tried pumping less like 10 minutes each side (ex. if she eats 7 minutes I'll pump 3 minutes on that side then 10 on the other). Also pumping only every other session, but my breast still frequently get engorged. My little girl eats every 1.5 - 5 hours - (usually like 3 hours during the day - up to 5 hours at night and 1.5 hours in the evening).

    So what can I do to help the engorgement? I think she is getting to much formilk and not enough hind milk because she has frequent water poops that are sometimes greenish and she spits-up frequently.

    Can anyone help with ideas to lessen my milk production - I have a huge freezer stash already!!!


  2. #2

    Default Re: Help Too Much Milk & Frequent Engorgement

    Hi MindyJo!

    Are you planning to return to work? If not, then you should probably stop pumping altogether. It seems to be leading to some serious oversupply issues for you!

    You can use cabbage leaves to relieve engorgement and even to reduce your supply a bit. Rinse the leaves, remove the hard vein, cut a hole for the nipple and place them inside your bra. They will wilt within 2 to 4 hours and you can reapply between feedings. Don't use them for more than 8 hours at a time.

    You may not be able to stop pumping immediately--this will lead to serious engorgment, and could lead to breast infections. Nurse your daugher on cue. When you do become overly full, offer her the breast. If she doesn't wish to nurse or doesn't relieve your discomfort, go ahead and pump just until you aren't uncomfortable anymore (don't empty the breast). It may take several days, but you should be able to gradually stop pumping.

    You also mentioned that you think she's getting too much foremilk, and based on your description, that sounds likely. Some mothers find that nursing on just one breast for 2 or more feedings in a row can help with this issue. Some mothers will nurse one the same side for all the feedings within a 6 or 12 hour block and then switch to the other side (and again, if you must pump the other side to relieve engorgement, don't overdo it!). It may take a little experimentation to figure out what works for the two of you.

    Hope that helps!
    "Mothers are designed to be available to their babies--to help them make the transition into this big, wide world. To teach them to trust, and love, and feel good about being alive."
    --Elizabeth N. Baldwin, Esq., So I Nursed Him Every 45 Minutes

    Click here to find your local LLL Group
    How to tell if your breastfed baby is getting enough milk!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Re: Help Too Much Milk & Frequent Engorgement

    that helps me! i will get some cabbage later today! i have started soaking the sheets from both sides now. and i don't work and hardly pump much at all! my ds won't take a bottle, the little bugger, so his father is getting off scot-free and with a lot more sleep!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Smile Re: Help Too Much Milk & Frequent Engorgement

    Thank you Jen!!

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