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Thread: Engorgement w/ pumping for preemie

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Grand Rapids, MI

    Default Engorgement w/ pumping for preemie

    Hi - I'm 34 and mommy to DS born 12/18/08 at 31 weeks, 3 lb 10 oz. He's doing great in the NICU with no major problems. Tried breastfeeding for the first time yesterday! He fell asleep. Oh, well, it was great.

    I have been pumping now 8-9x day every 2-3 hours since he was born, and being totally new at this am wondering when the engorgement will go down. I still wake up for nighttime pumpings with hard, tender breasts, sometimes lumpy. I am producing 5-6oz per session. I don't want to risk losing my supply, but I wouldn't mind being a bit more comfortable. Is it the breast pump doing this?

    Also, any thoughts on the HMF supplement? My doctor told me when he goes home he'll still need 2-3 feedings/day supplemented with the HMF - which obviously means - bottle feedings. It was hard to hear that b/c I really wanted to go exclusively to breast as soon as possible. I'm afraid he'll end up rejecting me for the bottle...

    Thanks so much!
    Last edited by @llli*finally-a-mommy; December 31st, 2008 at 08:02 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    SW Ohio

    Default Re: Engorgement w/ pumping for preemie

    Hi and Congratulations on the birth of your new LO! It sounds like you are doing really well with pumping... I'm sure there will be other mamas along to offer some advice too... Since your LO is only about 1.5 weeks old, your supply still has not evened out yet. It is normal to still be engorged at times because your body is still trying to figure out just how much milk to be making. Personally, if it were me, I would just try and give it more time to let your supply even out before you go changing up your pumping routine because once you can get your baby to your breast on a more regular basis and hopefully eventually full-time breastfeeding, your baby will probably be nursing every 2-3 hours.

    I am not sure what HMF is, but I can tell you there are a number of other ways to feed your baby besides from a bottle. Check out THIS link for some additional information about alternate feeding methods, but there is a cup, dropper, spoon, finger feeding, Supplemental Nursing System (SNS), etc.

    Good luck, mama... and congrats again on the birth of your LO!!

    IRL all my friends call me Buff, Wife to CB since 10/11/2003

    Mom to DD - "MJ" born 9/2007 @ 8lbs 10oz, 21.5" She's 6 years old!
    My journey nursing MJ started HERE, but we got through it and she breastfed 19.5 months, self-weaned on 5/17/09

    Mom to my current nursling, DS - "ME" born 10/2009 @ 10lbs 1oz, 22.25" He's 4 years old! And yup, he's still nursing.

    Ask me about my successful VBAC! Click here for my birth story.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008

    Default Re: Engorgement w/ pumping for preemie

    Hi mama! Congrats on your LO! Great to hear how well he is doing!

    I can't remember how long I was engorged...but it seemed like forever. I pumped every three hours because with the LO in the NICU, that's all you CAN do. It will go down, I promise!

    Great to hear you got to try BF! My LO was super sleepy all the time too...we just kept trying every time. They are just like that for a while. Be prepared for it to take a while...a lot of times preemies don't get the BF down until around their due date (ours was just a little after).

    We never had any HMF...our neonatologist said that as long as I was pumping and/or BF him he didn't need it. I know the moms that were formula feeding were doing it. From my experience I would say that if you LO is gaining well and is healthy, you might want to talk to his doc about whether or not he really needs it. If he does, then like Buff said, there are other methods of feeding him other than the bottle.

    Good luck mama! Sounds like everything is going well. Hope he gets to go home soon!
    I'm Hillary
    Wife to Gualberto
    Mom to Nolan
    Born at 32 weeks-3lbs/10oz
    Our precious early angel

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008

    Default Re: Engorgement w/ pumping for preemie

    Hi, I had a problem with engorgement. At our well baby check up, the nurse asked if she could massage my breasts to help with it, I said sure, not knowing what she meant really. So while I nursed the baby, she massaged my breasts in I guess you could call it Little circles, and it didnt seem like a massage to me, because man she was doing it really hard, but after a few minutes I felt much better. Afterwards, I did this myself for a while, but had to remember to use pressure, doing it gently definately didnt help me.Hope you feel better soon

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008

    Default Re: Engorgement w/ pumping for preemie

    congrats on your LO!!!

    the engorgement can last for a few weeks.. its painful i know..

    i agree with PP about the massaging while you pump or nurse, it helped me a lot.. also you could do an icepack

    or a heat pack or warm shower before you pump to help with the flow of milk and getting it all out.
    Student aspiring to be a Chiropractor and mother to Noah who will be 3 in July and Olivia who will be 2 in Aug.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2007

    Default Re: Engorgement w/ pumping for preemie

    Hey mama congratulations on the birth of oyur lo.... How is everything going? Is the engorgement still strong? it will go down once your body understand how much milk your baby needs per day.... your body will adjust...

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