Help? Babe was born 5 days ago, my milk still isn't in. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 02:17 AM - Thread Starter
 
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This is really really frustrating... Orion was born tuesday, and my milk isn't even close to coming in yet (my breasts are still very soft). I'm hoping for some suggestions and also to ask if this could be related to all the medications I had during labor (mag sulfate, pitocin) which is what one of the IBCLC's I've seen at the hospital is thinking.

*Please* help if you can, I'm so upset about this... I couldn't have my homebirth, so a part of me feels like I "failed" there (I know, I know, we had a reason to be at the hospital, but I can't deny my feelings), and now I can't even make milk for my baby

DS is a *great* nurser. He latches on wonderfully, so our problems do not lie there (but if you know why he sometimes <1-2 times a day> wants to obviously nurse but then won't latch when the breast is right there and just gets more and more mad please let me know). We have seen a IBCLC who verified his latch is great.

Here's what we're doing right now: DS lost more than 10% of his birth weight as well as was nursing 90% of the time (and screaming if he wasn't nursing... obviously hungry). So I'm using a SNS to feed him. Gets him some food, and still keeps him nursing.

I'm pumping my breasts after most feedings. I must admit after the 3, 4 and 5 am ones (he likes to cluster feed then) I'm not doing it every time then. But I do pump every 2-4 hours (usually 2). I'm using a medela lactina if that matters. I massage my breasts when I pump (I try when he's feeding, but its difficult with my hands full). I *know* that what I pump is not what I'm really producing, but I've been pumping for 2 days and the bottom of the storage bottles is barely covered.

I don't let DS wait more than 2-3 hours between feedings.

I called another IBCLC to get more help, hopefully I'll get a call back tommorow.

Any suggestions? Is my milk ever going to come in?

Thanks for any help...

Lisa, mama to Orion (7) , Fiona Star (born sleeping @ 38wks 12/6/08) , our bitty (m/c 7/27/09) , and Charlotte Athena (11/5/10)
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#2 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 03:01 AM
 
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Lisa, I had no idea he was even born! I haven't been around enough lately. Can I please come over and help you? I will come make you some nursing tea and some other milk unducing treats. I'll even wash your diapers. I'll call you tomorrow.

Lauren
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#3 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 03:52 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you Lauren! Yes you can certainly come over and help, thank you!! I don't need my dipes washed yet, we're using up the disposibles that I was given for gifts first... with all the stuff I have to deal with to try to get nursing to work I just can't manage diapers yet. Matt's last day off is tommorow, and I really want to enjoy that last day (wish he would take more time off) with him alone, but anytime after that would be wonderful! I'll talk to you tommorow and we can find a time that works. Thank you so much!!

I hope the move has gone well for you!

Lisa, mama to Orion (7) , Fiona Star (born sleeping @ 38wks 12/6/08) , our bitty (m/c 7/27/09) , and Charlotte Athena (11/5/10)
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#4 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 05:40 AM
 
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Congratulations on his birth, Lisa, and I hope you get this figured out soon! Be sure to update us. I was wondering if he was here yet and how you were doing.
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#5 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 07:17 AM
 
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Just wanted to jump in with support. My milk didn't come in until my son was six days old. I am almost positive it was because I was overhydrated with IV's, but I don't have any "proof". Had a c-section, pain killers, and antibiotics.

Andrew lost 13% of his weight but on the 7th day turned around and stopped losing. On the 8th day he had started gaining again. So from someone who's been in your (terrified) shoes, hugs!
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#6 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 11:42 AM
 
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My best advice would be to get in bed and stay there, if you're not already. I see from the previous posts that you're accepting help, so that's a great sign. You need lots of energy to make milk, so laying in bed will help you save yours. It will also help you smell that baby all the time, which gets those mama hormones going.

Good luck! I've never had that problem, but I'm sure it must be incredibly frustrating.
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#7 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 11:56 AM
 
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Lisa, you say you aren't "letting" ds go longer than 2 or 3 hours between nursing. But you also say he is nursing all the time. It is quite common for a newborn to nurse literally non-stop for hours at a time. Going 3 hours between feeds is not "all the time?"

My ds nursed for 3 hours straight his first night out of me. 1/2 hour, up, burp, other side. 1/2 hour, up, burp, other side. Milk came in in 24 hours. But that was after an easy homebirth.

My suggestion is to let O nurse at will, for 45 mins if necc, then 15 min break (whe you run to bathroom, eat and have big drink, and a stretch), then another long session. If he is nursing all the time like this, there would be no need to pump, IF he is really latched on correctly.
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#8 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 12:30 PM
 
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(((((( Lisa )))))))) Hugs to you! I'm sure things will work out quickly and you two will settle in to a great nursing relationship in time. I know it's frustrating. I remember crying *a lot* from worry!

Sorry if this is obvious, but are you confident that your fluid intake and nutrition are all that they should be? I only ask because I know it is so overwhleming when caring for a newborn to care for yourself too. It's like there isn't enough time for everything.

Just this week I talked to my friend who just gave birth to a babe prematurely and was nursing/pumping in the NICU all day every day... and she mentioned while on the phone "All I can do is grab donuts in the vending machine in between visiting him!" Poor thing. I'm not suggesting that's you at all, lol, but I know it's hard to prepare nutrious foods, avoid those things that don't help breastmilk production (like caffeine) and drink more fluids that you ever think you need. But it is important. Let Lauren come bring you that nursing tea, lol!

Hang in there! Good luck,

mamabutterfly

Mama to my sweet girls: (2/02) and (2/08) and 3/11 and new baby (5/14)
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#9 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 01:53 PM
 
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Hi Lisa,

It's hard when it takes awhle for milk to come in. I was 4 days with dd1, and it was hard going.

With the other two, I was just two days - but that was a lot of nrusing. As Darryl says, I woke them to nurse very often - every hour or so at least. And that brought the milk in more quickly.

As for sometimes not taking the breast when it is right there and Orion is hungry - my ds will do this at times. Very strange. Not srue what the cause is, but it usually just takes 4-5 minutes of patience (and sitting him up - sometimes he just has a burp to get up) and then he'll latch on.

Hugs to you,
Carolyn
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#10 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 02:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone! Sorry to be confusing w/ the 'nursing all the time' and 'not letting him go more than 2-3 hours'. Let me explain:

I should have said pre-supplementing he was nursing all the time. One night from 11pm to 6am he WASN'T nursing maybe an hour total. He was just horribly upset if he wasn't latched on (and not too happy even on). I could tell he was just starving. He also wasn't wetting more than 2 dipes on day 3... so I know he wasn't getting enough.

Since I started supplementing I have to sometimes wake him to nurse. I wake him every 2 hours in the day, and 3 at night. Then we are nursing for about an hour (with the SNS) until he falls back to sleep. Then I pump for oh, 15 minutes (skipping pumping when he eats at 3am though). If he wants to nurse I let him regardless of when he last ate, and I let him go as long as he wants. No schedule or anything, the formula just fills him up so well he'd sleep longer if I let him.

Angie676 thank you SO much for telling me your story. To hear about it taking this long from others is really helpful and gives me hope!

Dh has been taking care of me, feeding me, bringing me water, ect. So no problems there.. And some friends have come w/ dinner, and my MIL is actually being wonderful, bringing food, cleaning, not staying too long after that, ect. Dh does go back to work tommorow though, I am concerned about that...

Lisa, mama to Orion (7) , Fiona Star (born sleeping @ 38wks 12/6/08) , our bitty (m/c 7/27/09) , and Charlotte Athena (11/5/10)
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#11 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 02:20 PM
 
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My milk came in when each of my babies was 4 days old. I thought that was normal, and feel surprised to hear some mamas saying 24 hours! Wow!

I think the idea of going to bed with your baby and staying there is a great idea! Like a little baby-honeymoon. I know that my milk supply was always best when I was well-rested -- in the morning or right after a nap.

Also, drink tons more water than you think you need. You should have a water bottle at hand constantly. Get Dh to refill it for you when he can, or try to coordinate getting up to refill with going pee, so you are not up and down too much.

And nurse as much as possible for as long as he is willing.

Good luck -- I know you are anxious, but I feel confident that your milk *will* come in!
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#12 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 02:34 PM
 
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A few other thoughts from a mom whose milk didn't really, truly come in until around 2 weeks (I had a breast reduction, so...).

Rest.

Fluids.

Mother's Milk Tea. Lots of it. It's soothing and it's a good routine to get into in case supply is an issue when your milk does come in.

Keep him sucking! Be careful you're not supplementing too much. You want to give him enough to be healthy and grow, but not so much that he isn't motivated to nurse as often as he'd nurse if he were getting enough of your milk.

Pump after nursing sessions. Get extra attachment pieces for the pump (I had four horns and pieces for my PIS and it wasn't enough!) so that you always have a clean attachment, so pumping isn't hampered by the exhaustion of thinking "oh, man, I have to clean the pump with the baby asleep on my arm and I think I'm going to cry and the universe will swallow me whole and where oh where is my milk!?!"

Be very very gentle with yourself. I think all the drugs do crazy things to our milk supplies--a friend had a c/s and her milk took 6 or 7 days to come in and then BOOM--there it was, copious oceans of milk! So may you be blessed with as much milk as you wish for.

It WILL come in. Just keep the nursing/pumping going.

One more thought: are you eating anything that might inhibit milk supply? Taking decongestants, drinking Peppermint tea, eating sage, etc. Do a careful check of foods/pills/supplements that can inhibit milk and eliminate them.

Best of luck, and welcome to the world Orion!

Mel
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#13 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 03:21 PM
 
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I just wanted to say that I was in pretty much your exact same situation w/ my ds. I was on mag. sulfate and pitocin, but they cancelled each other out for me, and I ended up having to be put under for an emergency c-section.

Anyways, after doing some reading and such I'm almost positive that the mag. sulfate was responsible for delaying my milk. I worked w/ a LC doing the exact same things you are doing now. Just keeping my ds on for as long as he wanted, nursing as much as he wanted, waking him if needed, using the SNS, and pumping for 15min. after every feeding. I rented a pump from the hospital, and for me it worked great. I was lucky in that I only had to do the pumping and SNS for about 2 days and my milk came in fully! By days 5-6 my ds and I were doing great w/ milk supply and nursing.

I sure hope that it works just as well for you! I just wanted to let you know that you are doing awesome! Hang in there!

Sarah : , mama to Lucas (8) , Ryan (5) : , Andrew (1yr) , and someone new : due early Dec.
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#14 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 05:12 PM
 
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Calling and still ringing... guess you're on the phone. Call my MIL's house if you still have the #, k?
Otherwise I will call back.

Lauren
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#15 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 07:04 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Sorry was on the phone there... I don't have your MIL's number, so give me a ring when you can Thanks so much!

Lisa, mama to Orion (7) , Fiona Star (born sleeping @ 38wks 12/6/08) , our bitty (m/c 7/27/09) , and Charlotte Athena (11/5/10)
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#16 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 07:56 PM
 
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my milk was very slow to come in. I attribute it to stress, anyway it was about 8 days. I was really scared, my problem was that my baby would not nurse, we saw several lc's, even a speech language person bc of problems with her suck, anyway, I was exclusively pumping, using the lactina like you say you are, every 2 hours, I also was barely covering the bottom of the bottles. I started taking fenugreek which you can buy at gnc, or even walmart, and within 24 hrs I noticed a huge difference. It really dramatically increased my milk production. I am still exclusively pumping, sophia is now 5 months, and I have a ton of milk. You are so blessed in that your babe has no problems nursing, please take comfort in that. Consider the fenugreek, it may jumpstart things for you. I know this is a trying time, hang tight, it will get better! I know I was so sure my milk would never come in, but it did, yours will too!
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#17 of 178 Old 09-22-2003, 10:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you everyone for sharing your stories and well wishes and confidence. I truly appreciate knowing that others have gone through this. I am VERY appreciative that Orion is such a good nurser, I think I would be out of my mind if I had to deal with that as well.

I have noticed now that Orion does wake up more in the daytime and wants to nurse for comfort, so I'm happy he's getting on the breast more frequently. I'm also able to hand express a couple of drops which I wasn't able to do a day ago (and wow is everyone right, breastmilk is super soothing on sore nipples... I was using lanolin before because I couldn't even get a drop out).

I spoke to a IBCLC on the phone today and she agreed that yes the meds I was on most likely is what is doing this. She said that my milk should come in at the latest in 10-12 days unless I had retained part of my placenta. She said that if my milk didn't come in by then it wasn't likely to come in at all (again unless I've retained part of my placenta). That worries me a bit, but everyone here, and the LC said that things should work out just fine and I'm doing everything I should right now...

Lisa, mama to Orion (7) , Fiona Star (born sleeping @ 38wks 12/6/08) , our bitty (m/c 7/27/09) , and Charlotte Athena (11/5/10)
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#18 of 178 Old 09-23-2003, 01:03 PM
 
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Lisa Lynn, I just wanted to say how much I admire your tenacity and perserverence here. So many women would have just given up and said, "oh, I guess I just don't have any milk." A friend of mine just gave up on day 2 because her milk wasn't in, and the baby "seemed too hungry." So, you are an inspiration for your patience and committment.
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#19 of 178 Old 09-23-2003, 01:14 PM
 
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(((Lisa)))
I second the Mother's Milk tea! Brew up a lot and refridgerate it, then drink it constantly. My MW recommended at least a quart a day until your milk comes it. It really does help.
Hope the milk shows up soon
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#20 of 178 Old 09-23-2003, 06:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you Raven! I'm NOT giving this up. Breastfeeding is sooooooo important to me. The SNS is a big pain in the butt, I have to make poor little Orion latch on like 5 times to get him latched on right *with* a little tube in his mouth, and the tops of my breasts are getting rashy from the medical tape to hold the tube in place but nooooooooo way will I give up!

Lauren (Veganmamma) brought me mother's milk tea, and feenugreek and a homopathic remedy to help bring milk in to me today so hopefully that helps. Thank you SOOOOO much Lauren!!!! You're the best!

Now I just have to make myself drink enough of the tea... I don't care for the taste to much! :LOL But I will drink it!

I just had to come here to do a happy dance Orion just had a lunch of only my Mama's milk! It took me THREE days to pump an ounce, but I did it! And today when I just pumped I got a couple of little steams for a few seconds instead of just a drip drip here and a drip drip there. Progress! Woo!

Lisa, mama to Orion (7) , Fiona Star (born sleeping @ 38wks 12/6/08) , our bitty (m/c 7/27/09) , and Charlotte Athena (11/5/10)
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#21 of 178 Old 09-23-2003, 08:57 PM
 
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Lisa - I admire your strength and tenacity, you have one lucky baby.

May I ask about this:

Quote:
She said that if my milk didn't come in by then it wasn't likely to come in at all
What do you think she meant by not come in at all? Has she had experience with women, for whom milk didn't come in at all?
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#22 of 178 Old 09-23-2003, 09:09 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lisa_Lynn

Since I started supplementing
That could be your problem. That's what destroyed nursing for me with my first and second. My milk takes a while to come in too, but with my last two I didn't give any bottles and it did eventually come in and I nursed both until they self weaned.

Also, don't think that pumping will show how much milk you have. I never could pump and get anything really, but I obviously was making enough milk.
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#23 of 178 Old 09-23-2003, 09:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm not sure, bananasmom...I'll ask when we speak again...

AnnMarie, I really feel that supplementing was neccisary in my case. At 3 days old, ds wasn't having enough wet/dirty diapers, he was horribly upset all the time from little to eat, had lost 13% of his body weight, and had jaundace almost bad enough to be admitted in for treatment.

How long did it take for your milk to come in with your last? And how did you manage until it did? Neither I, nor the baby slept for a few days because he was SO hungry he just nursed and nursed, screaming every 10 minutes or so.

I'm just trying to do my best to get my milk to come in while not starving my son or having him end up in the hospital because the jaudace won't go away.... I *HATE* that I'm feeding him something besides my milk...

Lisa, mama to Orion (7) , Fiona Star (born sleeping @ 38wks 12/6/08) , our bitty (m/c 7/27/09) , and Charlotte Athena (11/5/10)
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#24 of 178 Old 09-23-2003, 09:40 PM
 
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Being a little bit on the inside of the situation, I can say that from all I have heard from Lisa, they supplementing isn't the problem. She is using an SNS with a tiny flow so that Orion would be stimulating her nipples each time he nursed.

I am convinced that the drugs that the hospital used to augment Lisa's labor are directly affecting her milk supply. Obviously, it's improving as the drugs leave her system and her nipples are stimulated with her ds's suck.

I am the LAST person to encourage supplementing, and I know that Lisa doesn't want any formula in her son's body. She is not naive, she has been here since before she was TTC. I trust her judgement.
Lauren
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#25 of 178 Old 09-23-2003, 09:44 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lisa_Lynn

AnnMarie, I really feel that supplementing was neccisary in my case. At 3 days old, ds wasn't having enough wet/dirty diapers, he was horribly upset all the time from little to eat, had lost 13% of his body weight, and had jaundace almost bad enough to be admitted in for treatment.

How long did it take for your milk to come in with your last? And how did you manage until it did? Neither I, nor the baby slept for a few days because he was SO hungry he just nursed and nursed, screaming every 10 minutes or so.

I'm just trying to do my best to get my milk to come in while not starving my son or having him end up in the hospital because the jaudace won't go away.... I *HATE* that I'm feeding him something besides my milk...
How many wet diapers were you getting a day? I don't remember exactly how many days, but I know it was around a week till my milk was going strong. Both my son's were having dark colored urine, and I was worrying about dehydration. They were fine though. They did lose weight, but they added it quickly once my milk was in. I didn't supplement at all, I just nursed as often as possible. They were fussy, but I knew if I started giving bottles it would be over because then I would never make enough milk. That's how it works.... supply and demand. If you are supplementing then he's not nursing as much as he should be and you won't make enough milk........ that's how it was for me anyway.

I think you are doing the best you can and I think it will all work out fine. I would stop supplementing as soon as your milk comes in though. Remember, it will take a few days to get your supply up to where it should be after supplementing, but you can do it. Don't sweat using the formula. You can't change it and you are only looking out for him. You are doing fine.
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#26 of 178 Old 09-23-2003, 10:31 PM
 
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: AnnMarie - It is my understanding from what she has wriiten, that Lisa is not using a bottle to supplement, but is using an SNS. If I'm not mistaken, that allows her DS to get the nutrition and stimulate her breasts. I would think this would be exactly what the SNS was created for. :
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#27 of 178 Old 09-23-2003, 10:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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He had 2 wet dipes on day 3. Day 4 he didn't have any wet dipes until we started the supplement, so I can't say what is from what....

And oh no, no bottles for him! Like Lauren said I'm using an SNS, and ds is nursing as much, or more than the nurses "wanted" him to in the hospital (I had to write down when he nursed)... he's on the breast for about an hour every 2-3 hours, sometimes more for comfort. I do limit how much formula I give him at once, so he nurses for awhile before he gets sleepy and pops off.

Thank you for the trust Lauren! Oooh and I think Dh is ok with me using your milk (and thank you so much for offering it!)! I guess his concern was if it was ok for a babe to get milk from someone other than his/her mom... he came home for lunch and said "well when we drink milk, we don't drink from some *specific* cow..." Ok, ok, we all know that breastmilk and cow's milk is like comparing apples and oranges, but if that thinking makes him ok with it, I'm not gonna argue with him! :LOL We're going to talk some more tonight, but I think he's gonna be alright with it!

And oh yes the minute my milk comes in I'm OFF the supplements! I'm ok with nursing round the clock to get my supply to where it needs to be

Lisa, mama to Orion (7) , Fiona Star (born sleeping @ 38wks 12/6/08) , our bitty (m/c 7/27/09) , and Charlotte Athena (11/5/10)
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#28 of 178 Old 09-23-2003, 10:45 PM
 
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Cool! If you defrost it and swirl it and the fatty part won't mix in well, toss it, I am drinking mother's milk and pumping :LOL and will stop by in the morning with fresh milk for you.
Lauren
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#29 of 178 Old 09-23-2003, 11:02 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by mamahammer
: AnnMarie - It is my understanding from what she has wriiten, that Lisa is not using a bottle to supplement, but is using an SNS. If I'm not mistaken, that allows her DS to get the nutrition and stimulate her breasts. I would think this would be exactly what the SNS was created for. :
When I mentioned bottles I was talking about my own experience. But about the SNS, they are great, but still, formula takes longer to digest than breastmilk so there could still be a supply problem in the beginning. Not to worry though because it doesn't take long to get it where it should be. I know you'll do fine. You are VERY dedicated.

:LOL On the cow comment. I think it's wonderful that someone offered you their milk.
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#30 of 178 Old 09-24-2003, 05:56 PM
 
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Oh, it sounds like you're doing everything right.

I was in exactly the same boat. Emergency c-section, spinal headache, huge amounts of caffeine (to combat headache), spinal blood patch, crying baby and no milk. It was horrendous. I was so worried that after not being able to have a natural birth I also wouldn't be able to nurse my babe.

DD lost more than 10% of her weight and she only started at 6lbs 13 oz. I was sent home with a prescription for domperidone and a breast pump. I filled the prescription, but never took any. I just kept nursing and nursing. My nipples bore the brunt..ending up cracked and bleeding because dd sucked so hard and nothing came out. I tried to pump but only got very, very small amounts.

Sound bad. It was. But, here's the best part. The milk eventually came in and dd is now 8 months old, 19 lbs and nursing like crazy.

I don't know exactly how long it took to get a good milk supply, because I've never felt a letdown and my breasts rarely leaked. I was always concerned I didn't have enough milk, but I just persisted. I weighed dd every week and watched her dipes. Within 2 weeks she was gaining and having enough wet dipes.

My advice is to supplement the least amount possible. At the beginning, your babe doesn't need to eat very much and even if you can't pump and don't feel a letdown, you may still be producing enough milk.

It's really scary to think your baby might be hungry, but try to trust your body and let nature take its course. It sounds like you're doing great and not supplementing too much, but any supplemental milk the baby gets means he will not try to get it from you. As everyone says, it's all about supply matching demand.

Please PM me if you want any more support. I've been there and my story has happy ending. I'm sure yours will too.
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