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Thread: Relactating for 3 month old baby

  1. #1

    Default Relactating for 3 month old baby

    Hello,

    I gave birth on October 13th (14.5 weeks ago). I pumped for the first 3 weeks of my son's life. He was never able to latch (he is tongue-tied and I have inverted nipples). The stress of pumping and constantly washing the pump + bottles took ahold of me and I stopped. Needless to say, now that I am more comfortable and confident with motherhood, I want to breastfeed my baby (even if it's only through pumped milk). The pediatrician advised me that my baby would not be likely to take to breastfeeding even if I corrected his tongue-tie.

    I am able to express a few drops of milk. I am pumping as often as possible but nothing is coming out. I am taking 9 pills of 610mg Fenugreek every day. I will bring my son to my breasts and he will mouth them for just a few seconds before crying or getting uncomfortable. Will the mouthing help to stimulate milk? Is there anything else I can do to regain my milk?

    Also... the Medela manual pump was given to me in the hospital. It worked very well. I ended up throwing it away (silly, I know). I bought the Evenflo electric pump and can't help but wonder if the Medela would work better. I can't seem to get my breasts to "let down" before pumping, and the Medela encouraged let down by reverse-pumping the piston. Any advice on where to buy the Medela Harmony for the best price?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    20,952

    Default Re: Relactating for 3 month old baby

    Welcome! How cool that you want to relactate. It can definitely be done. The fact that you're still producing some milk is a great start, since you won't be starting from zero.

    The key to milk production is frequent and intense demand. If your baby won't latch and do the demanding for you, you need to mimic a newborn feeding pattern using the pump. Here's what I recommend:
    1. Get a really good pump. I personally recommend using a hospital-grade rental double electric pump, even though you had such good results with the manual pump in the past. Manual pumps are generally the least effective at maintaining and increasing milk supply.
    2. Pump frequently. I would start by pumping every 2 hours during the day and every 3 at night, for at least 10 minutes/breast.
    3. Explore getting your baby to latch on. Tips here: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/...to-breast.html (Your pediatrician was wrong, BTW. There's no way to know whether or not you'll be successful at getting your baby back to the breast.)
    4. See a lactation consultant, preferably an IBCLC. She can help you with your pump, make sure you have the right size of breast shields, and maybe even get your baby to latch!
    5. Herbs. Fenugreek, Blessed Thistle, and ordinary oatmeal are all good for supply.
    6. Drugs. Reglan and Domperidone are Rx drugs which can increase supply as a side-effect. Both have additional side-effects and are not for every mom, so discuss their use with your midwife or doctor before taking either one.
    7. Reduce your washload. Keep a large basin of soapy water next to the sink and throw used pump parts and bottles in as they are used. That way you can do one big washing-up per day instead of a zillion little ones. Also, instead of washing your pump after every use, leave it screwed onto the bottle and pop the entire assembly into the fridge. When it's time to pump again, you can re-use the setup and pump new milk on top of old. My LC said it was safe to do this once before washing everything again.
    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!"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    860

    Default Re: Relactating for 3 month old baby

    Agree with PP. Relactation is possible and attainable.
    DD#1 July 1986 VB
    DD#2 April 1988 c/sec
    DS#3 April 1990 VBAC
    DS#4 June 1993 VB
    and suprise!
    DD#5 April 2001 c/sec
    BTDT scars and stretchmarks,: wrinkles and grey hair

  4. #4

    Default Re: Relactating for 3 month old baby

    Thank you so much for the suggestions. Soon after I wrote this post I was able to pump a few drops from one breast - yay!

  5. #5

    Default Re: Relactating for 3 month old baby

    6. Drugs. Reglan and Domperidone are Rx drugs which can increase supply as a side-effect. Both have additional side-effects and are not for every mom, so discuss their use with your midwife or doctor before taking either one.
    7. Reduce your washload. Keep a large basin of soapy water next to the sink and throw used pump parts and bottles in as they are used. That way you can do one big washing-up per day instead of a zillion little ones. Also, instead of washing your pump after every use, leave it screwed onto the bottle and pop the entire assembly into the fridge. When it's time to pump again, you can re-use the setup and pump new milk on top of old. My LC said it was safe to do this once before washing everything again.
    I saw my primary care doctor today and she said that there is nothing that can be prescribed. She said she was doubtful I'd be able to regain my supply. After reading through this board I know otherwise...
    Got a referral to a lactation specialist and hoping she can help me. OB/GYN won't see me for lactation issues (it's a military hospital, they are pretty stingy with the services they provide).
    Still can't pump more than a few drops at a time

    Thank you for the tip on washing. I have employed the basin method and am wondering why I never figured that out by myself
    Last edited by @llli*mominsd524; February 1st, 2011 at 02:19 PM.

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