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Thread: Night Shift

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2007

    Default Night Shift

    I just recently was placed on night shift for three months. My lo is 11 months old and is a constant night nurser. I brought this up to my boss and I was told that I had no choice but to stick to my schedule. Now unfortunately I don't have the option to quit because I am in the military so I have to go with the flow. The past few days I have had a decrease in my milk supply i have went from 6-8 oz to 3 oz. My son is having a hard time dealing with me being gone all night. He only gets to spend 4 hours with me before i have to leave for work. My husband hasn't been sleeping much bc he is having to try and comfort our son through the night. We have been cosleeping since we brought him home from the hospital. He now wakes up looking for me and wanting to nurse and then he gets mad bc i am not home. I want to continue nursing beyond one but right now it looks like getting to his first birthday will be a struggle. I've started taking fenugreek again and i haven't notice a change in my supply. Does anyone know what else I can take to help boost my supply? Also has anyone else had this same problem with work?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008

    Default Re: Night Shift

    oh honey,
    that sounds tough.
    way to go making it 11 months!

    the first thought i had when i read your post was that
    it would take some time but it would be possible for your lo to adjust to a new schedule
    and still take in close to the same amount of milk.

    is there any way you could adjust his sleeping times a bit so that you two can spend more time together awake and nursing?

    maybe you could travel home during the night during your longest break and nurse him to give your husband a break.

    it is so hard when you have to change your whole schedule,
    we are going through a similar thing in my household,
    but i keep trying to remind myself that it will feel more and more familiar with time.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2008

    Default Re: Night Shift

    I also work night shift, but luckily we've gotten accustomed to a schedule now.
    DH feeds baby bottles of expressed milk while I'm gone, and while at work, I pump every four hours. Is it possible for you to pump? I'm pretty sure your work has to let you pump. Take baby to bed when you get home and let him nurse with you while you sleep. Set a time with your DH when you get home say, I'm going to lay down with baby, come get him in 2 hours. Then when he gets hungry again, just have DH bring baby back up to you. Baby will then learn to nurse/nap with you during the day and get used to a bottle at night. This will get easier. I promise. Keep up the good work

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Re: Night Shift

    maybe reverse cycling would work for you guys?


    If you prefer to pump less milk while you're away from baby, you may choose to encourage baby to reverse cycle.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2008

    Default Re: Night Shift

    I am a nurse and returned to work part time when DD was 8 weeks. During that time, I was working per diem, 4 hr or 8 hr shifts twice / week. I had a stash of EBM in the freezer and was able to pump once or twice. Well, that stash is gone, she is 14 weeks old and I'm struggling to maintain our nursing relationship. Last night I started a full time schedule, which will be 36-40 hrs (12hr shifts) I will be away from DD from 6:15pm- approx 8:15am and I am freaking out!!!

    First, I am usually a day shift nurse, so I am already confused and disoriented by the time change. Secondly, I work at a busy inner-city hospital on a transplant floor, so we are busy 24 hrs a day. Thank goodness we are in a lull right now and I have a few mins to peruse this forum and post!Sometimes, I can pump every four hours and other days, I'm lucky to pump twice in 12 hours - OUCH!!!! Furthermore, I have to quickly shove food in mouth while trying to provide nourishment for my baby and sometimes I'm charting on the computer while pumping. As you can imagine, thinking / writing about infected surgical wounds does not inspire let down. I'm so stressed that my pumping output is not so hot ( 3-4 oz). I have been having panic attacks at home and am really depressed by the thought of early weaning. My goal was to nurse for at least 1 year. My husband thinks that I should begin weaning b/c he is concerned that I won't be able to sleep well when I get home in the AM. He works from home while I'm sleeping and brings DD for BF as needed and gives bottles of EBM.

    My question is : Is it possible to pump over night @ work (my goal is 9pm-MN-3am-6am), nap/ nurse in AM and leave bottles of EBM for late morning and afternoon and nurse / play/ read / eat from 3pm-6pm AND THEN go to work at 6:15pm and start it all over again... THREE DAYS PER WEEK and then switch back to a more HUMAN SCHEDULE the OTHER FOUR DAYS ??? Will I need to pump overnight even on my days off? DD usually sleeps from 11pm-4am and then 4:30am - 8:30am. Should I justmake life a little easier and combo feed/ partial wean?? Help me, please

    Are there any night shift workers out there who have dealt with this?
    Last edited by @llli*crystalc; November 10th, 2008 at 02:02 AM.
    Mama to Jaena Sage born 8-3-08, naturally with a midwife. She was a peanut, 6 lbs. 2 oz., but now she is already 11lbs. 8oz

    with Jaena Sage and best friend and husband,Randy. as often as she likes and wherever... while at work and as much as possible

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Pullman, WA

    Default Re: Night Shift

    I work night shift, too. My son is 12 months old. He is doing pretty well with the nights, but he started a lot younger. It may just take time for your LO to get used to the change. What happens when you get home? My son does get to nap with me some days, but not all (DH has to go to school and DS to babysitter's). It does work well to nap together, but I use a baby monitor not a set time. Give DH the handset from the monitor so he can come get baby as soon as he wakes. Otherwise, you have a crazy baby on the loose in your bed and you're too sleepy to deal with it!!

    As far as supply, when mine has waned, I've had success with adding another pumping session (3 instead of 2), eating lots of oatmeal and pumping on my days off a little if necessary.

    Stephanie, mom to Jaime Hoban 11/04/07 and Annika Jayne 12/21/09

    We . . . no room in the bed for more!

    We love our cloth diapers!

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