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Thread: Left Boob

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    23

    Default Left Boob

    Hi there! I am starting out with nursing again as my son was born almost 3 weeks ago. Things are going well, but I am having problems yet again with my left breast. I have either one of two probelms(I think!):

    1) My left breast just does not produce as much as my right.

    2) My right breast has overactive letdown, while my left doesn't. This means DS has to "work" to get the milk out of my left and doesn't on my right. He gets lazy and refuses to work for it which causes my supply on my left to decrease.

    I'm leaning toward the second one as the issue. With either of the issues, the main issue is that my left side ends up not producing as much and therefore DS needs to eat on left and then right to get full. Then the next time I nurse he only needs right to get full, so my right gets twice as much "action" and therefore ends up producing more milk. In between feedings my right side is noticeably more full then my left. This wouldn't be such an issue except with DD she eventually gave up on leftie all together and it dried up leaving poor rightie to do all the work which was NOT fun. I don't want this to happen. How do I get my breasts to be more equal so that my son does not give up on leftie??

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    1,363

    Default Re: Left Boob

    Hi there!

    Congratulations on the birth of your son! Glad to hear you are nursing well.

    I have a similar issue - my right breast produces twice as much as my left

    Also, I have a friend that bf her lo for 9 mo. on one boob! It can be done, even if it's not fun. And I think it's pretty normal for one boob to overproduce.

    Anyway, it sounds like in your case it causes some issues.

    Here's what I've tried.

    1. I always start on the left - every time! I let my lo eat some on the left until she gets frustrated, then I switch to the right, and spray my overactive let down into a towel and switch her back to the left while the milk is letting down. If I get her onto the left during let down, then she's not so mad.

    2. If you are brave (and a gymnast!) you can feed your lo on the right and pump at the same time on the left. That will increase your supply.

    3. You can pump or hand express the left extra after feedings or between feedings.

    See if any of these things work for you - good luck!

    Let us know how it goes!

    I'm Erica

    Mommy to "C" - currently 3 and half years old
    - nursed for one year

    and mommy to "M" - currently 2 years old
    - nursed for 23 months

    Wife to my handsome DH for 5 and a half years!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Left Boob

    Thanks for the advice! Pumping the left every time I feed and while I feed is not something I want to do, but starting on the left every time is definitely something I can do. I just wasn't sure if I was "suppose to". Are there any issues with doing this? I don't think there is any worry about rightie drying up as when I do start on the left I always have to feed on the right too, but does this mean that he will never get the hind milk from rightie?? How does that work? I will try to pump my left at least sometimes to try and get production up, but I loathe the pump...don't we all?? Thanks again for all the great advice and support.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Orange County, CA
    Posts
    3,092

    Default Re: Left Boob

    There were some great suggestions above but here is a link with more information that might help: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/mom/lopsided.html

    Lopsidedness is very common! I actually stopped nursing on the left side altogether around 7 months because it just became pointless.
    Karen

    Proud mama to
    Kaitlyn Ann 12/23/07 - 7 lbs., 15 oz.
    11/09
    Jackson Thomas 1/16/11 - 9 lbs., 3 oz.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    1,363

    Default Re: Left Boob

    I don't blame you for not wanting to pump while nursing - or pump at all!

    I definitely have struggled with lopsidedness - and again, just remember it's totally normal!

    My lo has had some trouble getting the hind milk - but I never worried too much about that as long as she was getting some from time to time.

    The major issue I found with always starting on the left was that my right boobie would get engorged. It never ran dry.

    I would hand express my right boob until I felt comfortable and just kept an eye on it (so to speak) so that I didn't get a plugged duct.

    Also, I always favor my left side while night nursing. My lo LOVES to nurse during the night (we mostly co-sleep) and I will feed her while she's sleeping. That way, she's not so crankly about the lower supply on the left. Then I pump or hand express the right as it fills up. Does that make sense??

    Let me know if you have more questions... or pm me if you'd like.

    I'm Erica

    Mommy to "C" - currently 3 and half years old
    - nursed for one year

    and mommy to "M" - currently 2 years old
    - nursed for 23 months

    Wife to my handsome DH for 5 and a half years!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    1,363

    Default Re: Left Boob

    One more thought: If you hate the pump, I've found that after some practice, I got pretty good at hand expressing. I couldn't do it with my first, but I like it SOOO much better than the pump, especially if I only need 1 -2 oz. out just to make myself comfortable.

    You can hand express your left boob after feeding to empty it out completely and hand express your right if you start to feel engorged. HTH

    I'm Erica

    Mommy to "C" - currently 3 and half years old
    - nursed for one year

    and mommy to "M" - currently 2 years old
    - nursed for 23 months

    Wife to my handsome DH for 5 and a half years!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Left Boob

    I'll have to pump 3+ times a day when I return to work in April which is why I don't want to pump and pump now. Also I have a colicky baby so finding time when he isn't screaming to pump is difficult. I've never tried to hand express. I'll have to look into how to do that. Thanks for all the advice! It is good to know I'm not alone.

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