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Thread: re-lactating questions and nipple shield

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    20

    Default re-lactating questions and nipple shield

    Hi, I'm in the process of re-lactating(on day 2) my right breast. I had to stop bf/pumping for over 5 weeks while I healed from breast abscess surgery.(Dr's orders) I am still bf/pumping on the left side and that is going well. In 24 hrs I was able to get a total of 2 oz from my right breast using a Medela pump in style(7 yrs old) I plan on renting a hospital grade pump on Sunday to help move things along. I'd rather not take any medication/herbal supplements if it can be avoided. I've heard that oatmeal can help increase supply. Are there any other foods to help? I read somewhere that artificial maple syrup works. Any truth to that? I tried latching my son on yesterday to the right breast and he stayed comfort nursing for about 5 minutes but the pain was excruciating for me. My nipple felt like it did that 1st week of nursing when we did so much damage and it is slightly raw. It's also extremely painful while I pump. We're being treated for thrush right now so that's probably contributing to the pain. I've heard never to use nipple shields but do you think in this case it would be helpful? I've had to supplement with formula while recovering so my son is able to go from the bottle to the breast easily. Has anyone used a shield successfully? Will he be able to get milk that way once I build up a supply? Thanks in advance for any advice

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: re-lactating questions and nipple shield

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*sixyearplan View Post
    Well you can nurse on one side only if you don't want to relactate on the other one.

    As for the artificial maple syrup. Artificial maple syrup is flavored by the herb fenugreek a that is a galactagogue. Taking the seeds in a capsule would be better. But you mentioned not wanting to take herbs.
    Ahhh, that must be why I've read to take Fenugreek until you smell like maple syrup. Makes sense now! Thanks! I'm hoping to get the right side going because relying on just the left is taking its toll. I want to get him off the formula when I know that I have more than enough to fill his belly. I wish the Fenugreek capsules had a Level 1 for safety. I would have no concerns about taking it then. I figure I'll try the oatmeal and syrup and hope it's enough to do the job. Thanks for responding.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: re-lactating questions and nipple shield

    Using just the left side was making me quite sore. I was afraid of ending up in the same condition that I was that 1st week which sent us down a very difficult bf'ing path. He gets about 8 oz of formula a day so I'm hoping it won't take long to wean him from it. I put him on the right breast again last night and it wasn't as painful. I'm hoping it will get better as time goes on. The incision is about 1.5" above the nipple and under it, the tissue is still hard/swollen. I think that may be why it's hard to get a comfortable latch/pumping session. I used the hospital grade pump today and was able to get 1 oz from that side after 20 minutes. I also bought some Organic Mother's Milk tea. The LC at the hospital store said it was completely safe. I'll try this and then move on to the pills if needed. Thank you so much for your help/answers. I'll be so glad when I can stop the bottles!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: re-lactating questions and nipple shield

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*sixyearplan View Post
    Wow, it sounds like you aren't really going to need herbs to get your milk supply up. An ounce in 20 minutes after five weeks off is great! And it's great that you don't have resistance to nursing. I'm glad to hear it's going better. Have you seen the Medela soft breast shields? Those might be better to pump with. Also, maybe to fast track the relactation ( if it's not too painful) try nursing on that side first when the suckling is more vigorous.
    I spoke too soon about the milk amount. Since the initial 1st ounce, I've only been able to get half an ounce at each pumping. I'm trying not to get too discouraged since this is only my second day with the hospital grade pump, but it's hard. I was hoping to be full of milk by next week when we go on vacation but it looks like I'll have to bring the pump and formula/bottles with us. I bought oatmeal and will be eating that twice a day. I'm so torn about the herbs. Several websites I've gone to say to use with caution and it's best to try other methods first. They mentioned trying "safer" herbs like alfalfa and dill. I suppose I'll give it a little more time before I decide. Are the soft breast shields as effective? I think the hard one is definitely making it more difficult because I can see where it's pressing into my nipple and leaving an indention. They always fit well before so it must be the swollen tissue interfering. I'm going to try your suggestion of putting him on that breast first. He was actually very cute last night when he nursed. He had these wide eyes like "what the heck is going on here?" He had already eaten on the left side so he was content with sucking and only getting a little milk. I tend to have OALD(I think) so it was probably a welcomed change for him!

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