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Thread: Supply and recently returning to work.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    15

    Default Supply and recently returning to work.

    I have an almost 5 month old girl and returned to work last week. I have been exclusively breastfeeding her since day one, however, added in one meal of cereal in the evenings. I have never had an issue with supply with her, nor with her brother before her. Although, with him, I only had to pump three days a week while at work, and made it to 11 months (after AF returned at 11 months PP, my milk seriously diminished).

    I have started pumping at work, about ebery 2.5 to 3 hours. I know that pumping doesn't output as much milk, so even if she was eating every 4 or 5 hours, I still pump every 2 or 3. I get about 2 ounces from each breast at each pumping session.

    I am worried about my supply. She seems to eat more than what I pump, and I am trying not to cut into my "stash" in the freezer (which is currently around 180 ounces of frozen EBM).

    I nurse her in the AM before work, and then as soon as I get home. I also nurse her all weekend, and even tried nursing every two hours this weekend so far. I have also started setting my alarm and getting up around midnight to pump (she's been sleeping through the night for a while now). I started taking the Motherlove Herbs - More Milk Plus, and drinking the Mother's Milk Tea. I plan to add to oatmeal back into my diet tomorrow morning.

    What else can I do? I cannot leave work to visit her at day care, as I am an hour away. When you begin to try and rebuild supply, how long does it typically take to see results? I am going to pump again tonight before I go to bed, then get up around midnight again.

    I am also VERY depressed about my milk issues. For many, many reasons. I tried talking to a local LC today, but she called when I was out, and she's not back in the office until Tuesday. Not sure I can wait that long, LOL.

    Thanks, and any information would be great.

    Julie

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    1,368

    Default Re: Supply and recently returning to work.

    Hi Julie,
    It sounds like you are very worried that you won't be able to keep up with dd's needs while you are separated.

    LLL has lots of great articles relating to your concerns. You can check them out here:

    http://www.lalecheleague.org/NB/NBmilksupplyissues.html
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/NB/NBworking.html

    Many moms see an increase after several days when increasing number of times pumping/nursing or increasing length of pumping.

    Is all ok with your pump? What type are you using. New or used?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Supply and recently returning to work.

    I have had my pump (Medela PIS) since 2002 when I had my son. I didn't really start using it until 2003 when I returned to work with him. I was able to pump without issues at that time.

    I have been pumping every 2 hours at work, and then nursing as much as possible at home, sometimes twice in the AM before work, and usually 2 times at home.

    I ahve also started taking the More Milk Plus and Goat's Rue from Motherlove herbs.

    I will check out those articles! Thank you!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    222

    Default Re: Supply and recently returning to work.

    Getting 4oz at each session is great. My MIL watches my 4 1/2 mo old son and was saying that he still seemed hungary after feeding him my 3 oz of milk. I told her that it takes 20min for the brain to register the fact that you are full. So I said that when feeding him, burp him often, switch him between arms and make it a very social experience, just like we do when we are breast feeding our babies. This advice really helped and all is well. Also be sure the bottle is very slow flow so he doesn't gobble it up too fast.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    869

    Default Re: Supply and recently returning to work.

    Hi Julie,

    It sounds like you are doing great being able to get 4 ounces from each pumping session. I can only get 2-3 ounces.

    One suggestion is perhaps your little one is being overfed? Here's a link with more info:

    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/pumping/milkcalc.html

    Another suggestion is to pump one breast while your little one nurses on the other first thing in the morning. Your milk is the most plentiful in the morning. I have to use the football hold to make this work.

    Jennifer

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Supply and recently returning to work.

    Jennifer, I did think that was happening as well.

    Since she's at day care, I asked hubby to make sure that they know that she has a pacifier. I know that it's a little stressful for her being there, and her need to suck might be greater. I also know that she's a great eater, and if you put it in front of her face, she will eat.

    I think that getting things like this ironed out will help. It's been an adjustment for ALL of us...this is the 2nd baby, I just reutrned to work last week, the two kiddo's are going to two different places...ACK! It's a lot to take in in a week!!!

    Thanks for the replies, everyone, I appreciate it.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    1,368

    Default Re: Supply and recently returning to work.

    Just one more thing...you may wish to get your pump checked out. Or at least call Medela and ask about it. They can tell you if it should be operating still at full strength, and also let you know what to check for.

    Good luck!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Supply and recently returning to work.

    Quote Originally Posted by LLLKate
    Just one more thing...you may wish to get your pump checked out. Or at least call Medela and ask about it. They can tell you if it should be operating still at full strength, and also let you know what to check for.

    Good luck!
    I sent them an email, and I think that I have the Pump In Style Traveler, which on their site is discontinued...I don't think that anyone nearby would be able to check it out. It seems to be working ok.

    I think that adding my midnight pumping session and pumping every 2 hours (or 2.5 hours) is going okay. I wish that I didn't have to pump at midnight, but I think that it's helping a little.

    I am being sure to keep hydrated, eating right, etc, too. Starting this week, I will no longer be pumping at my desk at work, I will have a small, quiet, private room to go to, so that might help with relaxing, too.

    Thanks again, everyone! I appreciate it.

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