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Thread: Breastmilk won't freeze?!?!?!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Default Breastmilk won't freeze?!?!?!

    I've been putting bags of breastmilk in the freezer all week, and when I took them out to organize them and put them in a container, some were not frozen! They had been in there for days, and were in between bags that had frozen solid, so I know it's not a defect of my freezer. What could be in the milk that's keeping it from freezing? The only thing I could think of that doesn't freeze at 0 degrees F is alcohol, which I have not had. I do have an intra-ductal yeast infection, is it possible that the yeast are fermenting the milk? I've never heard of this. The thought of my baby getting drunk off my milk is ludicrous.

    Also, does anyone have any recommendations for thickening breast milk to prevent reflux? My DD's ped recommended this (she actually recommended a thickened formula, which I really don't want to do) for her reflux problems.

    Thanks for your help!
    Nicky

  2. #2
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    Nov 2006
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    Default Re: Breastmilk won't freeze?!?!?!

    bm freezes. It is a temperature problem.

  3. #3
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: Breastmilk won't freeze?!?!?!

    Quote Originally Posted by nickyleey View Post
    The only thing I could think of that doesn't freeze at 0 degrees F is alcohol, which I have not had. I do have an intra-ductal yeast infection, is it possible that the yeast are fermenting the milk? I've never heard of this. The thought of my baby getting drunk off my milk is ludicrous.
    That's a really fascinating theory! I can see how it might happen- and how you could figure out if it has. Taste the milk that didn't freeze. If it tastes like booze, then I guess it's possible that it is booze!

    While I love the idea- I doubt it's likely that your milk would turn into alcohol. If your freezer is at zero (or below zero) degrees, then fermentation should be well-nigh impossible at such a low temperature. If your freezer is malfunctioning, or has warm spots, even so it's going to be quite cold in there and fermentation would be very slow- probably way too slow to produce a high enough quantity of alcohol to inhibit freezing.

    I would definitely check your freezer out, and see if there's a circulation problem. Sometimes the cold air doesn't move around as it should, particularly if the freezer is crowded. Things stored near the front of the freezer, farthest from the vents, are usually the first to go.


    Quote Originally Posted by nickyleey View Post
    Also, does anyone have any recommendations for thickening breast milk to prevent reflux? My DD's ped recommended this (she actually recommended a thickened formula, which I really don't want to do) for her reflux problems.
    There are prescription drugs for reflux- I would look into them before giving anything "thickened" to my baby, which could be a choking hazard.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    246

    Default Re: Breastmilk won't freeze?!?!?!

    I had some bags do that but I don't think it took days. For me it was like putting a gallon jug of liquid in the freezer. The outside will freeze before the center. I try to put my bags single file until they are frozen. Then I stack them in order by date. I hope that helps.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Default Re: Breastmilk won't freeze?!?!?!

    Just another thought. I thought I had the same kind of yeast infection, and upon researching, I found out that you are not supposed to freeze milk containing yeast. Freezing it won't kill the yeast. They said to go ahead and pump, and use the milk right away. I had a ton that I ended up throwing away...only to find out later that yeast was most likely not the problem. Ho hum.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Breastmilk won't freeze?!?!?!

    Ah! I missed that, or it failed to click. No freezing thrush milk as you can reinfect baby and then yourself at a later date. Ok to give by bottle because baby and mama usually clear up at about the same time.

  7. #7
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    Feb 2008
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    Default Re: Breastmilk won't freeze?!?!?!

    Yeah, I'm labeling it all as "thrush milk". She has refused to nurse for the past couple of weeks. She's a rather impatient little girl and once we introduced the bottle and she saw how fast she got her food, she's not too keen on the breast anymore. I think she also associates it with her reflux pain since she was held in the cradle hold. She hates the football hold! Anyway, I figure that if I never get rid of this yeast infection and have to stop pumping (the pain is really bad), which I've had for 3 weeks, I'd rather give her that milk than formula for as long as I can. I'm just so against formula. Her doc said that milk won't give her an infection. I don't even think she ever really had thrush, or at least no obvious signs. Regardless, she's being treated too in the hopes that we can re-establish our breastfeeding relationship! I miss her terribly. I think it's harder on me than it is on her. Of course, if she resumes breastfeeding that milk is getting thrown away. God knows I don't want to go through this again!!

    I tried putting those bags that didn't freeze in a different spot in the freezer, this time one of them actually froze and the other 2 are slushy. I certainly hope my bb's aren't making spiked milk.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Breastmilk won't freeze?!?!?!

    I'm sure that's not the case.

    What have you tried so far to get her interested in nursing? What type of bottles are you using? What were the circumstances around the nursing strike?

  9. #9
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    Feb 2008
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    Default Re: Breastmilk won't freeze?!?!?!

    Between weeks 4 and 6, we were going so good with the nursing, I thought I had gotten all the kinks worked out and we were both happy with nursing. Then at 6 weeks she stopped. There were lots of circumstances around the nursing strike. Thrush, reflux, we had introduced a bottle a couple of weeks before (first Gerber NUK and then playtex nursers). Also, for the first 4 weeks or so, I had OAL and foremilk/hindmilk imbalance, so I was working on trying to slow the flow for her and regulate my supply. So either the thrush or reflux bothers her too much to nurse, she prefers the bottle, or she became accustomed to the fast flow from my breasts and when it slowed down, this made her mad. Maybe a combination of all?

    Now, on the advice of our lactation consultant, we use a standard Gerber 3-hole medium flow nipple. She takes it well and the flow is actually pretty slow.

    To get her back to the breast, I've tried a nipple shield a couple of times, she'll take that into her mouth but won't suck hard enough for my milk to come out. I've tried having milk in the shield to start her off but no success. At first she would cry if I even put her in the cradle hold, now I can put her down to the breast and she kind of licks and seems interested, so that's progress I suppose. She also roots any time her face comes in contact with my skin, like if her head is on my shoulder. To be honest I want her to nurse so bad that I'm afraid to attempt it because it breaks my heart when she starts screaming. I've tried putting her to the breast when she's a little drowsy and not yet hungry and she'll nuzzle and lick. She's the type of kid that's very impatient when it comes to eating. When she first starts rooting and making the little movements with her mouth, you only have a couple of minutes to get some milk in her mouth before she starts crying frantically. Also, I try to give her an hour of skin-to-skin contact with her most days because I know that's good for us. Any suggestions you have on getting her to come back are welcome! It's been about 3 weeks since she's actually nursed so I hope she doesn't forget how. Is that possible?

    Thanks!
    Nicky

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    Default Re: Breastmilk won't freeze?!?!?!

    I don't know anything about the unfrozen breastmilk.
    I had a yeast infection too & although my son didn't have it (we were both treated though), he would scream & cry at the breast. I don't know if the infection made my milk or breast taste funny, or if it was somehow uncomfortable to him or what, but it happened every time he nursed for days. Just wanted to throw that out there because it could be the infection that's causing the crying even if she doesn't have it.
    Be patient & keep trying. I'm sure she hasn't forgotten how & if she has she can relearn!

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