dwindling supply - Mothering Forums
Breastfeeding > dwindling supply
firsttimemommy032's Avatar firsttimemommy032 05:19 AM 12-27-2005
Oh, where do i start... I have a 16 week old. Two months ago I started back to work. At my job I only work an average of six to seven hours a day, so i get no break to pump. I work at night, which i love, and my mother keeps my daughter while I'm there. I was pumping before i went to work and right after i came home. Unfortunately the pumping (manual pump) made my nipples so sore and cracked, my lactation consultant advised me to stop pumping or go buy a new electric pump. I'm a single mom so i didn't h ave the money at the time to get a new pump. Anyway, my mother gives her formula before she goes to bed at night and my daughter is sleeping through the night, so essentually i'm only bfing during the day. I can feed her for an hour and she will still be hungry (i'm guessing lack of). I'm asking for any suggestions on increasing my supply.
P.S. I recently purchased a Medela PIS however i haven't received it yet. (ebayer)

mavery's Avatar mavery 03:04 PM 12-27-2005
Sorry, I didn't read your original post carefully enough so I'm reqriting my reply. The electric pump should help some and might allow you to replace the bottle of formula. But otherwise nurse as often as possible during the day (many small feedings rather than fewer long ones should help your dd get more hindmilk and be more satisfied). I think at that age my ds was nursing approx. every 45 mins during the day, but just for 3-4 minutes most times.
Drink plenty, maybe including mother's milk tea or something similar. And if your dd is growing well and sleeping through the night, don't automatically assume because she's nursing for long periods that your supply has dropped - she may be entering a growth spurt or just sucking for extra long periods for warmth and comfort and to reconnect with you when you've been at work.
LeosMama's Avatar LeosMama 07:03 PM 12-27-2005
many four month olds nurse A LOT and moms will think their supply is low. I'm not saying your supply isn't, it's just something to be aware of.
Eat oatmeal every day.
Drink mother's milk tea,
take fenugreek capsules,
take goat's rue
sleep as much as possible.
take a day a week when you stay in bed with dd and just nurse all day long.
when you are together, nurse her whenever you and she want, offer a lot, don't just let her ask.
can you pump in the car on the way to work? the PIS may let you do this if you get a bra and cut holes in it to hold the horns in place. I've done this when i was short on time.
you don't get a 15 min break at work?
even if you don't collect the milk, maybe you could hand express into the sink (horrible waste, I know, but if you don't have time to pump, it's better than nothing) just to stimulate your breasts.
maddysmama's Avatar maddysmama 06:57 AM 12-28-2005
What is she doing that makes you feel she is still hungry? How many wet/poopy diapers is she having? Is she gaining weight? Supplementing even a little can affect your supply, but she may be nursing for comfort/bonding also. Do you wear her in a wrap/sling? Sometimes that can help if you need a break from nursing or need to get up and do stuff.
firsttimemommy032's Avatar firsttimemommy032 05:34 AM 01-02-2006
She is still crying after I feel like I am empty, this can be as early as ten minutes (on each side) or as much as an hour. It happens usually every other feeding. She starts crying immediately after i take her off. And she will take the bottle after that and drink about five-six ounces. She has about six to seven wet diapers a day, only poos once a day. She hasn't been at the doctor since she was two months and shes now almost four months, but I can definately tell she's growing. We go to the pediatrician next friday. she started off in preemie clothes, that lasted about a month, now she's growing out of her 3-6month clothes! She's a very very lathargic eater.
maddysmama's Avatar maddysmama 02:45 AM 01-03-2006
It sounds like she is doing just fine! Most babes will drink a bottle even if they're full. The AIM basically pours from the bottle, so what else to do but swallow? Will she continue to nurse after you "feel empty"? You are constantly producing milk, even though you feel empty. Allowing her to nurse for as long as she needs to will signal your body to produce more or less milk, according to her needs.
firsttimemommy032's Avatar firsttimemommy032 05:30 AM 01-03-2006
Yes she will continue to nurse. I'll let her nurse as long as she wants to and see what happens. Thanks for the advice. I also have another question now that i think of it, is the common rule to nurse ten minutes on each side and continue from there or nurse only on one side until its empty? My LC told me to let her nurse until one side is empty then switch, but everyone else that I'm talking to says to nurse on one side for ten minutes then on the other and go from there.
maddysmama's Avatar maddysmama 06:30 AM 01-03-2006
You're welcome Your LC is correct. We say to "watch the baby, not the clock." Women were once advised to nurse for a certain amount of time per side, with a so many hrs. between feedings, but it is now known that that causes supply problems. I know there is so much misinformation out there! People gave me so much conflicting information, I didn't know which way was up!

BTW, I'm from PA, also (Butler). I hope you are in a more progressive/BF friendly area!