Reply Hey Mom! Learn more about the Gerber Life Insurance Grow-Up Plan!
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 06-30-2010, 08:35 AM   #1
nightdreamer
Registered Users
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 16
My Mood:
low milk supply..thinking of quitting

Mamas,

I need some advice. I am desperate. I have a 12 day old beautiful baby girl named Finley. I started off breast feeding her in the Hospital, and after 2 days, the pediatrician asked that we supplement because she was jaundiced. After 2 days on the bottle, Fin thrived, and gained back the 6 ounces she had lost in the Hospital.

At first, Fin would not latch on, but after seeing several lactation consultants, and a lot of repitition....she got it! We started BF'ing last Wednesday, and by that evening, she was frantic, and crying...waving her hands at her face, and rooting. I held out and did not give her a bottle. By the second day, she was beside herself. I felt awful, and was appalled at the once beautiful calm baby turned to crazed, frantic, angry baby.

This quickly took a toll on my husband and I, and I watched him drift from me and the baby. He is extremely supportive, but felt that because I was now breast feeding her, that there was no way for him to soothe her. She did not take comfort in either of us holding her, and only wanted to feed.

By Friday, we were back to see the lactation consultant. She had lost 4 ounces since Wednesday, and after a half hour of feeding her at my left breast, we weighed Fin and saw that she only got 1/2 an ounce of milk. The right breast did not even register any milk (her weight on the scale after feeding). I was discouraged and frustrated by the advice I received...."feed her all day, whenever she wanted, and let her sleep all night on my chest."

Now please don't think I am an awful Mama, because I adore my baby, and will do anything to protect her and keep her happy, healthy and safe. But Mamas, my nipples felt like they were being cut by razor blades with each feeding (I was very engorged) so the thought of letting her feed all day made me want to cry, and I am absolutely paranoid about rolling over her while sleeping with her!

I breast fed her every two to three hours over the weekend, and supplemented (after breast feeding) toward the evening (by the night, she seemed to be frantic again for more food). My breasts were literally flat by the eve. and seemed to be shrinking with each day! On Monday, we took her in to see the pediatrician, who was very sweet and advised me to give it the week, and pump to see what I was producing.

I decided yesterday to not breast feed, as all I did when I was breast feeding, was cry, thinking of how little milk I had and how I probably would not be able to continue in good conscious (I know that I should not cry and feed her, but I am so torn up about this). I did not want the baby to feel my anxiety, so I have been giving her to Dad for a lot of her feedings, as it is very hard for me to hold her and give her a bottle.

This is a very long post, sorry. I guess I am seeking advice at this point, because I have a beautiful thriving, happy baby on formula. And I selfishly want to breast feed her, and after pumping, I know that I can barely get an ounce of milk total off of both breasts. What should I do? I have been drinking Yogi Mother's Milk Tea, and drinking lots of fluids. Any tips? Thanks Mamas for not judging me, I am feeling pretty down right now, and just need a boost.

-Mama in need of

Advertisement

nightdreamer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2010, 08:41 AM   #2
VeryChicBaby's Avatar
VeryChicBaby
Registered Users
Formerly: jenny342
seller
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: The Lone Star State
Posts: 5,270
My Mood:
Re: low milk supply..thinking of quitting

Oh honey! ((HUGS)) I know there will be tons of advice on here for you! My 1st 2 kids were FF only & have turned out to be healthy & smart teens. My other 2 were BF & are just as smart & healthy! My 4th had a harder time with latching on & it was a little tougher, I ate loads of oatmeal which helped out with my milk. He also had a milk allergy & I could not have any dairy which was a killer because I LOVE dairy..

I know when I pumped I got next to nothing but the babe was growing so he was getting more from suckling than I was from pumping. Don't let that in itself discourage you!
__________________

Jenny, Mama to many, 16, 14, 11, & 3 & & 10 mth baby girl!!

~Custom Recycled Wool Shoes ~ & Leather, OBV & Fabric Soft Soles

VeryChicBaby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2010, 08:50 AM   #3
dairyfarmermama's Avatar
dairyfarmermama
Registered Users
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 365
My Mood:
Re: low milk supply..thinking of quitting

I can totally understand that you want to breastfeed. It is a natural and wonderful way of bonding with your baby. It is also very emotionally upsetting to not be able to nourish your baby the way you want to. Some mothers just cannot keep up their production and need to supplement though, and you don't need to feel bad about that. It will ware on you more if your baby keeps up the fussiness from not getting enough milk. It is hard to improve milk production, but make sure keep drinking enough fluids-the more the better, and eating enough food-not foods that create gas. I wish you luck!
__________________
Wife to my hardworking husband since 2006 , and cloth diapering , breastfeeding mother to two beautiful boys, born 3/08 and 9/09 .
dairyfarmermama is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2010, 08:54 AM   #4
THBVsMama's Avatar
THBVsMama
Registered Users
seller
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 21,472
My Mood:
Re: low milk supply..thinking of quitting

Pumping is not indicative of how much milk you truly have. A baby is much more efficient at the breast than a pump is. I'm never able to pump much, but have no supply issues at all.

Every time that your baby is given a bottle, is time that she would have been at your breast suckling. Her constant suckling is what stimulates your breasts and lets your body know how much milk your baby needs. The less she is suckling in these first few weeks, the less you will make.

Are you willing to take supplements? If so, I highly recommend Fenugreek (I took 10 tablets a day when my supply felt really low), More Milk Plus. I also eat 2 bowls of slow-cooked oatmeal a day, as it is a galactagogue (sp?).

__________________
DS (9) DD1 (5) DD2 (03/15)

THBVsMama is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2010, 09:24 AM   #5
VeganCupcake
Registered Users
seller
seller
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 2,708
Re: low milk supply..thinking of quitting

I have a niece named Finley who is now 3. It's a very cute name!

Mama, breastfeeding can be very difficult in the beginning. Your concerns are very normal. There is plenty of hope for your breastfeeding relationship!

Please don't feel bad that you or your husband can't just hold her to give her comfort. That's not really how newborns are designed to feel comforted. When she is older, that will work. But not now. Sucking for comfort is a very strong instinct in babies. It builds mama's milk supply and ensures that baby gets plenty of nutrition and hydration.

Babies often want to cluster feed in the evening, no matter how much they've nursed during the day. It's not at all an indication that you don't have enough milk.

Also, deflated breasts are not an indication that you don't have enough milk, either. Engorgement is not the norm--engorgement means you really need to empty your breasts and baby is not nursing as much as she should, or as much as she usually does. Even a deflated breast is constantly producing milk. They are never really "empty".

I know that sore nipples are miserable. Try exposing your nipples to air as much as possible to help them heal. Those Soothies gel nipple pads are also really soothing--do you have some of those? And nipple cream after every feeding is essential.

You are still so early in your breastfeeding relationship--you are still building a supply and getting things going. What is happening now is not an indication of what it will be like even a week from now.
__________________
Catherine, mama to Preschooler Girl 9/08, Toddler Boy 3/11, and Twin Girls 2/14!
VeganCupcake is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2010, 10:31 AM   #6
nicole999's Avatar
nicole999
Registered Users
seller
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 422
My Mood:
Re: low milk supply..thinking of quitting


I hope things get better for you soon!
I agree with the pp, most newborns are fussy in the evening and cluster feed. I too had flat breasts by the evening but didn't have any supply issues. My LO was very calm and hardly ever cried the first two weeks (I remember thinking how easy everything seemed at the time!) and then he "woke up" and we went trough about a four week phase of crying for at least a couple hours every evening.
Try the oatmeal and maybe some blessed thistle and fenugreek to stimulate your supply. It's important to let her suck as much as possible for the stimulation. I wish you good luck and remember your a good mamma no matter what your feeding relationship may turn out to be!!
__________________
Wife and best friend to loving DH , and mama to DS #1(4yrs) and expecting DS#2 (19/9/14
nicole999 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2010, 11:14 AM   #7
mandyhoward's Avatar
mandyhoward
Registered Users
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 438
Re: low milk supply..thinking of quitting

There is also a growth spurt at the 2 week point, which could contribute to the tons of nursing.

I, honestly, don't feel like the LC's advice to you was bad. In these early days, the best way to increase your supply is to nurse like crazy! Get some nipple shields and soothies, those may help with the pain. I had huge cracks in my nipples (I called them the grand canyons) and wanted to scream every time I nursed, but I just had to grit my teeth and keep going (and apply lanolin and soothies between sessions).

If push comes to shove, you can always order some domperidone from the internet. Many ladies have had great success at upping their milk supply that way (but I'd try the herbal stuff and oatmeal first).

Just remember, every bottle you give is hurting your supply. So I'd certainly nurse first, then supplement (if you feel the need to do so).

Good luck. You can do it!
__________________
*~*Mandy*~*
Mommy to Spencer (5.23.05), born at 30 weeks, Jack (3.5.09), HBAC, and baby Finn (9.26.10), another HBAC
mandyhoward is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2010, 11:56 AM   #8
kangasox's Avatar
kangasox
Registered Users
seller
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Southeastern US
Posts: 1,407
Re: low milk supply..thinking of quitting

I found putting a tiny bit of expressed breastmilk on the nipples and letting them air dry was way better than lanolin for me. I had much the same issues with the seemingly empty breasts, cranky baby who didn't seem like she was getting enough, couldn't get anything from pumping and I went back and forth about using the formula and cried many times because of all the stress and worry in the first several weeks. The first 6 weeks are the hardest, in my opinion. It was awful at times! I'd try to make it to that point as long as the doctor thinks she's doing ok, and see if it gets easier.

I read somewhere on a BF site also that babies often seem like they are really hungry because they gulp down a bottle, but really bottles are designed to make babies gulp; when they drink, the nipple rebounds differently (or something) than a breast nipple, almost making the baby take another gulp. Not to say she's not hungry for supplementation, but I did read that from a reputable source and my doctor corroborated it.

I know you mentioned she gets frantic and crazy, are you feeding her when she starts to root and get fussy, or is there a way you could start a little earlier when she's totally calm and get you and her settled before she really even knows she's hungry? Hang in there...it seems like it should be a lot easier than it is! And I love her name...my daughter's middle name is Finlay.
kangasox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2010, 12:05 PM   #9
VeganCupcake
Registered Users
seller
seller
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 2,708
Re: low milk supply..thinking of quitting

Another thought--can you supplement at the breast with an SNS? That will get baby additional calories while encouraging your body to make more milk.
__________________
Catherine, mama to Preschooler Girl 9/08, Toddler Boy 3/11, and Twin Girls 2/14!
VeganCupcake is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2010, 12:42 PM   #10
BigSamsMom
Registered Users
seller
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 1,890
Re: low milk supply..thinking of quitting

Momma, I've been in your shoes. My DS weaned at 3.5 months as a result of RSV, making it too hard for him to breathe through his nose and nurse. Up until then, it was a struggle for me to keep my supply up, along with having delayed letdown issues. I nursed round the clock in those early weeks (I think most Moms do whether they have issues or not), and pumped in between, to give him what I had. Your will is still there to see this through though, I can tell by your post. Let your house, and other things go for a few days, and do hole up in bed with Finley.. the point is to nurse, nurse, nurse, to increase your supply. As for sleeping with her, trust your motherly instincts - notice when you are napping with her, that you are usually well aware of where she is, her breathing, etc. It is disconcerting at first, sleeping with your LO, but you relax as time moves on. Keep your nipples coated with lanolin, this will help with the soreness. You've got to relax, as your nerves can work against you. Get some steel cut oats, cook them up, and eat them everyday for breakfast. Also get some Fenugreek, and start taking it daily. Another big booster to my supply was eating thai basil, don't know why, but it worked for me. A good heavy beer once a day, doesn't hurt either, as long as you are staying well hydrated with water. The Fenugreek, can show great results in 24 hours for alot of women, and that held true with me. It will make you and Finley smell like maple syrup once it builds up in your system, but you get used to it. You will know when it's time to quit and go with formula. For me, I just couldn't humanly keep up with pumping while I was caring for a sick child that needed breathing treatments every few hours. I was thankful for the milk that I was able to give him, and just moved forward. It's a big let down when you want to nurse so badly, and your body doesn't cooperate. Just give Finley what you can, for as long as you can, within reason - your sanity must be a top priority. She will thrive either way Momma, I promise!
BigSamsMom is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Copyright 2005 - 2014 Escalate Media. All Rights Reserved.