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Old 06-22-2013, 08:40 AM   #10
Zoethink's Avatar
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Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Wheaton, MD
Posts: 519
Re: Why isn't there more medical information about BFing?

This is SUCH an important question!! I am struggling with supply for the second time and NO ONE has ever tried to diagnose the problem, other than giving me behavioral things to try (pumping more, taking herbs, hydration, etc.)

First time around every circumstance was against us: traumatic cesarean, blood transfusion (me), separation for the first 24 hours, and then a 2 week NICU stay, and therefore a very late start to BFing, IUGR (small, but otherwise healthy), PPD, possible thyroid issue.

I pumped around the clock for four months and never got more than half an ounce per time. I did breast compressions while nursing until I got carpal tunnel syndrome. I took lots of herbs and ate oatmeal every day. I was so stressed out by the regimen that I had to give up finally because I was missing out on enjoying my baby!

This time everything was perfect: Perfectly healthy mom, wonderful, natural, full term VBAC, baby was a healthy size, immediately put to the breast. I nursed constantly for 3 and a half weeks. I ate and drank and rested well. (I was the happiest I had been in a long time!) and then baby lost weight!?!

We started supplementing and it has gone down hill since then. I chose to take a different tack this time; I concentrated on my nutrition and rest. I nursed baby as often as she would come to the breast and offered to nurse in between those times. I did take herbs and pump sparingly. I know there are other things I could have done, but my goal was to avoid the stress of what I had gone through last time, because I know that impacted my supply. And I can't help thinking, "it can't be this hard! We did not survive as a species if breastfeeding was this difficult and requires this much intervention!"

My mom (who BFed four kiddos, the last until he was four years old) kept telling me, "just keep breastfeeding. You don't need to supplement. You (her first) were tiny! But you were healthy."

Islandymama, it sounds like you took my mom's advice!

I just didn't have the courage because I didn't want to get in trouble with my very proactive and overseeing pediatrician who I ran to at the first sign of trouble. I will totally do things differently if there is a next time, but I just wish I knew what is going on! And it isn't exactly clear who to ask.
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