Happy Mothers Breastfed Babies
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 11

Thread: Block Feeding Question

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    7

    Default Block Feeding Question

    I wanted to try block feeding my 4-week-old DS in 2-hour intervals as I have an oversupply with my breasts almost always feeling engorged. So, I understand the basic concept of how to do it, but still am a little confused.

    To start with a "clean slate," I pumped at around 9:30 p.m. last night for 20 minutes, after DS was down. He then woke up and nursed at 2:00 a.m. on the left, so 2am-4am was for left side only. (However, he only nursed very briefly on the left at the 2 a.m. feeding b/c he was so sleepy.).

    Then he was down until 5:00 a.m. So, does the right side's block go from 4am-6am (starting when the last block ended), or from 5:00 a.m. (the time he was ready to nurse) until 7:00 a.m.?

    In the first scenario, since he woke up at 5:00, there is only 1 hour left in the 4:00-6:00 block for me to nurse on the right side.

    In the second scenario, there is a full 2 hours for the right side, but then the left side won't get nursed again until at least 7:00 (and possibly later), which is then 5 hours (or more) since I nursed on it last. And because the 2:00 a.m. feeding was very short, I'm already feeling uncomfortably full and leaking on the left. I know I can pump a little to relieve discomfort, but then that stimulates more milk to be produced. I'm also using ice packs to help relieve some of the swelling.

    Thanks for any advice on this!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Sunny Arizona
    Posts
    3,190

    Default Re: Block Feeding Question

    I never worried about the clock when I was block feeding, since like you it confused me. Instead I did side A for two feedings no matter how long inbetween, then side B for two feedings. My supply regulated in about 2 weeks.

    Amy married to my bestfriend since 10/30/04

    Proud SAHM to DS born 2/17/07 and DD born 9/11/08 Both weaned together 11/2011
    Currently milk, peach, peanut and tree nut free. DD has outgrown her wheat, cheese, egg, garlic, and citrus allergies

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
    Posts
    17,605

    Default Re: Block Feeding Question

    And I only did two feeding on one side when I was actually trying to even out the SIZE of my boobs. Other than that, to ME block feeding meant I simply didn't flip the baby at each feed. Block feeding just meant that at each feed, he only ate from one breast until he was full. But when his favored breast started to look comically larger than the other, THEN I would feed from the smaller side twice in a row a couple of times a day so that my breast were producing more evenly.HTH!

    Way too lazy for formula

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Block Feeding Question

    That's a good idea, amymarie, and eliminates the clock confusion.

    But it brings up my next question - what I'm dealing with now...engorgement/pain in the breast that hasn't been nursed for a while (at this point since 2 a.m. (it's 7 a.m. now) and it wasn't even a good feeding at 2 a.m.).

    Should I pump just a little to take the edge off? (But if I do, then I'm stimulating more milk to be produced, right?) I'm really hurting. And then with being so engorged, what happens when my DS goes to nurse on that side? Won't it be just overly full and also primarily foremilk?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Block Feeding Question

    DJ's mom, that's what I was originally thinking of doing with block feeding....just nursing on one side per feeding. And since DS typically goes 2 hours between feedings (or longer), I guess it would make things easy b/c then I wouldn't be worried about the clock.

    Does just nursing on one side per feeding reduce oversupply eventually, or does it depend on the mom and how big the oversupply is?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
    Posts
    17,605

    Default Re: Block Feeding Question

    Quote Originally Posted by tulip219 View Post
    DJ's mom, that's what I was originally thinking of doing with block feeding. And since DS typically goes 2 hours between feedings (or longer), I guess it would make things easy.

    Does just nursing on one side/feeding reduce oversupply eventually, or does it depend on the mom and how big the oversupply is?
    Well, I just did what came naturally to us. I always had so much milk that I just couldn't imagine holding onto it for 2-4hour blocks of time. But at the same time, it was CLEAR he was getting enough from one side feedings. (when I would pump I could get between 4&8oz on under 15minutes) so I just did that and I would be a little uncomfortable but it was no biggie. And my personal experience is that babies that are fed in this manner tend to gain more quickly because they have longer access to the hind milk. It has to do with your milk production as well...but for example if I would pump off of just one breast, the amount of cream would be like an inch thick. But when I would pump from both breasts evenly it would be less than a quarter of an inch thick. So DJ gained like 20z a day until he was about 4.5months old.
    Sorry that was long. Did I help?

    Way too lazy for formula

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Block Feeding Question

    It does help, DJ's Mom. I'm just still trying to figure out what "comes naturally" to me/us.

    My DS was born at 9 lbs. 14 oz and now at 4 weeks, he's already 12 lbs. 2 oz., so he's been gaining weight easily and steadily from the start. So, I guess what I've been doing (which was trying to offer both sides at a feeding) has worked. Like you, when I pump, in about 15 min I can get about 8 oz total from both breasts. However, I have one side that sprays a lot, causes him to choke, etc. and wanted to try to get that down.

    Also, I feel engorged a lot of the time, except for a short 3-day period last week where my breasts felt soft most of the time and I thought that things had somehow regulated themselves (I even started to worry about my milk supply). But now they're back to being full and uncomfortable again, which is why I thought about trying block feeding - or in other words, just nursing on one side per feeding.

    Part of this is due (I think) to us trying to do some pumping/bottle feeding. My DH did a "dream feed" a few nights ago (I pumped at 10:00, DH fed at 11:00, and DS didn't wake up again til nearly 5:00) and that's when the fullness started up again and has continued since then. It's like I can't catch up....

    I don't know why I find this all so confusing. It feels like there's so much strategizing involved in breastfeeding that I didn't expect....

    (P.S. I'm in the Bay Area too - Marin)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
    Posts
    17,605

    Default Re: Block Feeding Question

    AH! Well here's another thing to think about: It's all supply and demand. So it's possible that your breast are only too full because it SOUNDS LIKE.....your baby is starting to "sleep thru the night"? Which is defined as any period of time that is 4hours or longer. And if he was eating every two hours in the evening and now isn't, that will cause some problems, but only for a few days. Your body will get the message that you don't need to feed at night of you just sleep on a towel and let things be.
    Now the other thing you are describing is is actually OALD. Over active let down. Which is it's own problems and let me tell you what I know about that. 1st, babies usually go one of two ways with this situation. They either get very very irritated and reject your breast or they learn to cope. IF your baby rejects, you may want to let the initial spray go into a towel or something so your baby isn't struggling. However, based on your weight gain stats, I'd say your baby is coping. And that is what you want. Because truthfully, if you have OALD, you probably always will and it's best that the baby grows into it. Here are some good indicators that your child is learning to cope:
    The Pop Off. This is where your baby will take a few sucks, pops off and looks at your breast and then tries again. This will happen a couple of times at the beginning of a feed. This shows the baby is ANTICIPATING a strong letdown and doing what they can to stay out of the way. But they understand that thats the only place to get the food, so they keep at it!
    Clicking: Sometimes you will be told that clicking is a sign of a bad latch and for some babies it is. But for a child who lives with OALD it's actually a way that they learn to regulate your milk flow by using their tongue to block and reduce the amount of spray and how quickly they take in milk.
    So hopefully you will see some signs of coping soon. And I would just like to say that I always think that given the choice, too much milk, vs. Not enough.
    Because regardless of the struggles you are having, that kind of weigh gain HAS TO give you the confidence to KNOW that you and your LO WILL get this down!! Good luck finding your groove, and I hope this info helps!

    Way too lazy for formula

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    157

    Default Re: Block Feeding Question

    Wow, DJsmom is so right! We have a small OS problem, but not severe. Everything else described is me & baby to a tee! Great job on answering questions! I found it very helpful!

    To OP, since my baby can't decide whether to sleep thru the night or not I go back and forth between feeding her once or twice at night and waking up BURSTING with her still snoozing. On those nights I just go ahead and get up and pump the side that is about to POP for 5 mins or so to relieve some pressure. If she keeps sleeping thru the night for a few days, then I go back to trying to sleep with 2 rocks attached to me until my body gets the signal that she doesn't want to eat at night. Make up your mind kiddo!!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Block Feeding Question

    Thanks DJ's mom and oklamom - your responses are really helpful.

    Yes, I do have OALD on that one side. I also thought that I have an OS issue just b/c I feel *so* full so often.

    I guess I now understand that I won't be able to really avoid being uncomfortable if DS starts to sleep longer stretches. I'll be engorged until I either pump a little for comfort or until my body gets the message.

    I'm trying the one side per feeding method for a couple days to see how it goes. Part of me isn't sure whether it's best to stick with what we were doing (generally trying to nurse on both sides per feeding) or go with this. One side seems easier in a way, and then I feel I could be assured he's getting enough hindmilk. But then again, with his weight gain (just got back from pediatrician b/c he has a little cold and he's now 12 lbs. 10 oz. at 4 weeks old), I guess I should feel confident that he already is getting enough....

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •