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Thread: First time mom questions

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    20

    Default First time mom questions

    Hello all! This is my first time on here and it seems as though everyone is so helpful and supportive! It's great to see that! Anyway, I have some questions for all you mommies out there. First question...My daughter is 8 weeks old and doing well with breastfeeding. She is gaining weight and overall is very happy! Recently, she has started to only eat off of one of my breasts for like 3 minutes, then she just pulls away, comes back, pulls away, comes back...she seems like she is playing, so I switch her to the other breast and she eats for a good 10 - 15 minutes. Am I not producing enough from my one breast and any ideas for how to improve that? Next question...I bought a great breast pump that seems to work very well. My problem is, I can't figure out when to use it so that I can store up some milk for if I need to leave her with someone. I've had to supplement with formula 3 or 4 times and I don't really like to do that if I can avoid it. She is not quite sleeping through the night and everytime I think I should pump, she is getting ready to eat and I'm afraid that if I pump, she won't have enough to eat at the next feeding. Any ideas or suggestions would be very much appreciated!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    18,063

    Default Re: First time mom questions

    welcome to the boards....
    this link might help:
    http://www.llli.org/FAQ/enough.html

    I would be rare for a baby that age to sleep all night long they need to nurse their tummies are about the size of their tiny hand.


    http://www.llli.org/FAQ/frequency.html


    most mothers find they have more milk the morning then in the after noon.
    try pumping when you get up. And then if the baby needs to nurse let her
    the more milk you remove the more you are going to make...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    TX
    Posts
    2,197

    Default Re: First time mom questions

    My son seems to be able to determine whether he is thirsty or hungry and will nurse accordingly. He'll nurse deeply if hungry, but if he's thirsty, he'll just take the letdown and then want to switch sides for that letdown, too. Maybe your daughter is trying to determine what she gets, too?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    1,363

    Default Re: First time mom questions

    Welcome!

    Don't worry about not having enough milk after you pump.

    The baby can still get milk, especially if she is well established breast feeding. In fact, I found that I had an oversupply because of pumping. Some women use pumping to increase their supply. You might find that pumping will increase the milk in the breast that you are concerned makes less milk.

    Good for you for committing to nursing. It's an awesome experience! and so healthy for you and the baby.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    213

    Default Re: First time mom questions

    What led you to supplement three or four times a day with formula? Do you have a documented low supply or did you go by baby cues?

    For the breast that your LO only eats off of for three minutes - it could be that that side has a slower flow after three minutes than the other side and that the LO has figured that out and prefers the faster flow. If you have a true low supply, then it could be that you're only producing milk for three minutes from that side until it has emptied.

    If you want to see if your production is good or low, it would be good to talk to a LC or LLLI leader to do a before & after baby weigh - you weigh the baby before feeding and then again after feeding to see how much the LO is getting. If you have a feeling that your supply is low during a particular time of day, evenings for example, then see if you can schedule your consultation at that time.

    Then, if you need to address a low supply issue, you can. You can start by pumping immediatly after the baby nurses for seven minutes. It's best to use a double electric pump and even better to use a hospital grade pump like a Medela Symphony. There are some supplements that can help with milk production, too. Fenugreek is an herbal supplement that has almost no side effects (although some women may experience diarreah). My LC recommended three capsules three times a day. You can also go the drug prescription route. Reglan is commonly prescribed but has depression as a possible side effect, so it's not recommended for women with post-partum depression or a history of depression issues. Domperidone is preferred by pediatricians for treating low supply, but it's not recognized in the US by the FDA for this purpose and your doctor may not prescribe it for you. It is available online from New Zealand without a prescription. My LC encouraged me to get it, but I was uncomfortable with the idea and went with Reglan instead.

    Also, remember the basics of increasing milk supply: drink plenty of water, eat a healthy diet (and eat enough calories - you're using 500-800 calories per day to produce bm), get enough sleep, and eat oatmeal.

    Keep up the great work. Breastmilk is so healthy for the baby!
    Fran
    Mom to Anna, March 28, 2008

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: First time mom questions

    Thanks so much to all who have responded! I appreciate all the help I can get. In response to fabmom, I don't think I was all that clear...I only supplemented with formula 3 - 4 times total...not daily. I only did so because I did not have any bm stored up and needed to leave her with someone. I've been pumping more regularly and you are right, that breast has a MUCH slower flow. My LO is getting smart! I believe my production is OK because my baby has been gaining weight. Maybe I should just try pumping that one side and feeding her off the other? Will she still get enough if she only eats off of one side? Any suggestions? I'd like to be able to store up some bm in case I have to leave her with someone rather than giving her formula.

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