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Thread: Rough day! Pavlov- Let-down: What works for you?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    Unhappy Rough day! Pavlov- Let-down: What works for you?

    I'm having a really rough day - so bad that I couldnt stop crying during our last nursing session, which I know makes my issue even worse.
    The problem I'm having is my let-downs are not frequent. Used to only be a problem in the evenings but now its happening during the day sometimes. I know I have plenty of milk because I pump 2-3x a day and get 2-4 extra oz. I have a bit of OALD (not too bad though) and my 6 week old loves it and gobbles it all up. Once the let-down is done, she gets really upset when its not fast anymore. I try switching sides frequently which sometimes helps, but sometimes I cant get another let down for like 10-20mins. Certain times of the day I get a let-down every few minutes so I'm not sure whats up really. I've tried deep breathing, music, visulization, talking to her, etc - it doesnt always work.
    I was reading on the kellymom site about this issue and she brought up Pavlov's experiment (check it out below). Has this worked for any of you? Do any of you have, or have had this issue? If so, what helps and how long with this issue continue?
    When it takes a really long time I will give in and give her a bottle of EBM, but I really dont like doing this. I'd really prefer to BFE until I go back to work next month. I'm only pumping to get some extra supply, and to help with this let-down issue.
    Any advice would really help!! TIA!

    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/letdown.html

    In Pavlov's terms:

    •the food (nursing) is an unconditioned stimulus
    •the salivation (let-down) in response to the food (nursing) is an unconditioned reflex
    •the sound of the bell (let-down cue) is the conditioned stimulus
    •the salivation (let-down) to the stimulus of the bell (let-down cue) alone is the conditioned reflex.
    I'm a proud first time mommy , born 10/19/2010 and a wife to an amazing husband

    Birth 10/19/2010: 7lbs 3oz
    3 days old 10/22: 6lbs 6oz
    2 1/2 weeks old 11/05: 6lbs 14oz
    4 weeks old 11/17: 7lbs 15oz
    8 weeks old 12/15: 10lbs
    4 months old 2/28: 14lbs

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Default Re: Rough day! Pavlov- Let-down: What works for you?

    Hi Jen--you're okay! You've been so resourceful already finding that Pavlovian link. I've never tried it so I can't say.

    Is it possible that you're having letdowns but not feeling them? I'm confused on how you know you're not having any let-downs--is it a lack of feeling them, or that baby fusses on the breast?

    I think breast compressions are advised for helping with let-downs. http://www.nbci.ca/index.php?option=...tion&Itemid=17

    At this stage LO's job is to condition your breasts to make milk in the quantity she desires, so she is doing her job. Don't we all stamp our feet and mutter unmentionables every once in a while on the job?

    Also LO is in the classic age when she is at the height of her grizzle-fest. Try not to take it personally. She will grow out of it.
    Katharine
    Be the change you want to see in the world--Mahatma Gandhi
    mid-August DD (2010) & DS (2011 VBAC)
    Ouch! Is it thrush or Raynaud's phenomenon?

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Rough day! Pavlov- Let-down: What works for you?

    At least right now, I can feel it when I have a let down, and I leak out of my other breast - so I can tell when I have them.

    I do the breast compressions which sometimes help, but only for a couple of minutes.

    Thanks for the support - she must be having a bad work day!
    I'm a proud first time mommy , born 10/19/2010 and a wife to an amazing husband

    Birth 10/19/2010: 7lbs 3oz
    3 days old 10/22: 6lbs 6oz
    2 1/2 weeks old 11/05: 6lbs 14oz
    4 weeks old 11/17: 7lbs 15oz
    8 weeks old 12/15: 10lbs
    4 months old 2/28: 14lbs

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    20,638

    Default Re: Rough day! Pavlov- Let-down: What works for you?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*jenblueeyes81 View Post
    At least right now, I can feel it when I have a let down, and I leak out of my other breast - so I can tell when I have them.
    If you notice your LO swallowing rapidly, it's quite possible that you're having a letdown (or letdowns) but not feeling them. Often the sensation of letdown diminishes when the breast is not so full- so if your oversupply is tapering off a bit maybe you're just not feeling the letdowns as strongly as you're used to.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Northern Cal.
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    Default Re: Rough day! Pavlov- Let-down: What works for you?

    Yeah, sounds more like the six week growth spurt than a loss of supply or decrease in let-downs. When they are having a growth spurt, they will nurse "dry" all the time - you won't get a let-down then, but this signals your body to make more milk, so the next day there will be more, and the day after that, etc.

    Try to nurse, and avoid giving a bottle, which COULD actually cause lower supply during these growth spurt times, because then your body is not getting that stimulus to kick up production.

    Hang in there. Growth spurts SUUUUUCK. (Ba dum dum. )

    I may be alone in this, but I think the stress/letdown connection is exaggerated. Women have breastfed their babies through stressful conditions since the dawn of time. And we have all sobbed through a nursing or two! What keeps your supply high is NURSING. What triggers let down is your baby's sucking patterns. Of course, stress does affect your body, but if you had to be happy and zen to breastfeed, very few women would be able to pull it off! Hang in there!


    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

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