I had my baby girl at week 37 Day 2. She was 2.29 kilos(5.1 pounds) at birth. I had a c-section operation and so she was started off on formula bottle for the first 2 days at the hospital. The lactation consultants at the hospital tried to get me started on breastfeeding her but I have flat nipples. We tried using a nipple shield but did not meet with much success. Day 3 was spent manually extracting the colostrum and feeding it through the nipple shield. From Day 4 I started producing more colostrum. We were discharged from the hospital that day. We spent Day 5 and 6 struggling with nipple shields and manually squeezing my breasts and fed her as we could. The doctor had advised 2 hourly feeds which seemed impossible as each session lasted almost an hour. Finally on Day 6 we went to the doctor for a follow up visit and he suggested expressed milk. Today is Day 11 and for the last five days I have been consistently pumping and providing expressed milk to my baby. Ocassionally, about three times or so everyday I get her to suckle at my breast for a few minutes, mostly using the nipple shield. She doesnt always drink milk, but I dribble milk on her lips, and keep up the efforts. Sometimes the milk collects in the shield and I pour it into her mouth. I am able to pump close to 275 ml of breastmilk within a 24 hour window and am feeding her about 10 times in every 24 hour window.
My questions are:
1. Since she's feeding off bottles all day, 10 times a day, will she ever take to my breast, either directly or with the help of a shield?
2. What can I do to improve chances of her taking to my breast in the long run?
3. Do I need to worry about diminishing supply of breastmilk as I've heard that the breast produces more only on direct feeding as opposed to expressed through a pump?
4. I find that my right breast is producing more milk so I pump it a little more than the left. Does this cause any problems in the long run?
Any help is greatly appreciated!
An anxious mom of a newborn!