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Old 05-25-2006, 04:59 PM   #1
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Breast milk leaking? What should I expect? eek.

Hey,
So I have been reading all the breastfeeding posts trying to get set to breast feed come August.

What is with the breast leaking? Do they just drip on and off constantly or is it every once and a while milk just gushes out? Does this happen the entire time you breast feed? Can I ask anymore questions in one thread?

Any tips, suggestions would be great.

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Old 05-25-2006, 05:03 PM   #2
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Re: Breast milk leaking? What should I expect? eek.

It happens with let downs at first. I make a lot of milk and if I'm not wearing a bra the milk dribbles. For most people the leaking stops by 6 months. I take it as a good sign that I'm making enough milk.

So, for instance, when your milk comes in and the baby's nursing on one side, the milk might drip from the other side. Or if you miss a feeding you might leak, or if you hear baby cry or act hungry.

During engorgement, leaking is desirable in my opinion. I let both sides of my bra down, feed baby on one side and put a flat diaper on the other so I'm not quite so full.

Each person is different, I wouldn't worry too much about it.

HTH!

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Old 05-25-2006, 05:21 PM   #3
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Re: Breast milk leaking? What should I expect? eek.

I never 'gush' but sometimes I have same pretty fast dripping -- usually if i an nursing the other side, or he stops to take a break. The other problem I have had was falling asleep without a bra on and I leaked all over the bed... that wasn't fun. Only did that once...
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Old 05-25-2006, 06:29 PM   #4
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Re: Breast milk leaking? What should I expect? eek.

When I was bf'ing my first, he ate ALL the time and for very long periods of time...and I had tons of milk...when I'd feed him on one side, the other side would just gush....so I would usually put a bottle at the end of my boob and catch the milk, LOL. Funny sounding..and dh did make fun of me...but it worked! If we left the house, I'd have to take lots of breast pads because I could soak 1 QUICK. It wasn't like a constant leak...but it'd happen close to food time...it's like i'd get so full - it had nowhere to go but out...and it might've started as a drip, but would turn into a stream. And I 2nd the pp with falling asleep w/o a bra...woke up soaked!
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Old 05-25-2006, 06:35 PM   #5
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Re: Breast milk leaking? What should I expect? eek.

The most important thing to remember is that every woman is different! I've had friends who have a constant drip for the duration of nursing (though I don't think she made it to a year with any of her kids..) and others who don't notice any leaking at all. You never know what your breasts will do. For most, it just happens when you let down or when you've gone a long time between feedings, or if you're engorged.
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Old 05-25-2006, 07:12 PM   #6
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Re: Breast milk leaking? What should I expect? eek.

For the first 6 months, I leaked everytime the milk let down while nursing, and if I went too long without nursing, and when I heard the baby cry.

Now, a year and a half later, I only leak when it's time to switch sides. It's like a way of telling me that the other side is very full.

You can stop leaking by pressing on it with your rist, but it's best to wait until after the first 2 weeks to let everything get flowing properly and to prevent clogged ducts.

Leaking too much milk is better than not having enough, so if you do, consider yourself lucky!
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Old 05-25-2006, 07:48 PM   #7
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Re: Breast milk leaking? What should I expect? eek.

you haven't had the baby yet, right? i think a little colostrum leaking in late pg is fairly normal. i didn't really have that and i wasn't a huge leaker pp once my supply leveled off (around 2-3 months pp).

early on mine the waistband/top of my pants would always be constantly wet (b/c i frequently either didn't have a bra on or had both sides undone while nursing). it would just sort of dribble. now i do remember a few times molly popping off and while i'm trying to figure out what's wrong with her realizing that she has a pool of milk on her face and then taking another couple seconds to realize that I'M spraying her like a firehose. or giving a test squeeze to my bb to make sure we're ready to go & having milk squirt across the room. it really helps if you can just laugh about it.

cloth breast pads are great and there are some WAHMs out there who make super-comfy looking ones w/ OV or cashmere. i had some of the lansinoh cloth kind that you can get at the drug store - those weren't anything special, but they worked fine.

good luck!
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Old 05-25-2006, 08:23 PM   #8
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Re: Breast milk leaking? What should I expect? eek.

It's different for everybody...don't let the horror stories get to you...I think most of us are laughing when we tell those horror stories!

Now for your actual questions, with DJ, I didn't notice any changes in my breasts during pregnancy. My milk came in when he was about 5 days old and boy did it come in! He was unable to latch so I was pumping exclusively and nobody had told me how often or how to long to pump...so I was doing it pretty much constantly. Well, by the time my milk came in, I was easily able to pump 12 ounces or more in under 10 minutes...and I had to do that every hour or so...talk about engorgement!! For the first few weeks, I leaked constantly. When I'd have a letdown, the milk would spray out, otherwise it pretty much just dripped. After a few weeks, when I figured out a little better what I should be doing and got my supply to a more reasonable level, I mostly only leaked when I had a letdown. Still, in the beginning, just about ANYTHING would trigger a letdown! I didn't have to hear DJ cry, I could look at the pump, or look at my watch and think that it was time to pump, or wash a bottle, or see a baby on tv, or someone ask me how the baby was, or see a breast pad...you get the picture. I stayed wet! I hate wearing a bra and I got really tired of having to wear one around the clock so I finally just put a waterproof pad over my mattress and resolved to sleep in a puddle at night. I'd usually lay a towel (or two) over my side of the bed so that if it got uncomfortable during the night, I could throw it off and be dry again, but I got used to it pretty fast and it wasn't that big of a deal. By the time DJ was 2-3 months old, he was able to nurse, my supply was regulated to his appetite (we had fixed the oversupply issues), I was a little bit more in control of the letdowns, and the only time I really leaked much was when I let down. We cosleep so by the time DJ was able to latch himself on without waking me, I got a rude awakening in the middle of the night a few times when I felt the opposite breast spraying me! Even at that, I learned to just pull the covers up or keep a towel by the bed to cover the fountain or just apply gentle pressure to the leaky side for a few seconds. I would do those things without ever waking up really. I think it was around 8 months before I really was comfortable even around the house without pads on because I still leaked a good bit during the day, but it really wasn't a big deal. DJ only weaned himself back in January and now I'm 7 months pregnant with #2. This time, I'm already engorged and drip here and there and have even had a couple of letdowns. I'm not sure if that's a good thing at this point or not! Like the others said, at least if you're leaking, you know you're making enough.

Good luck and don't fret about it...but do get some pads to have on hand when the baby is born. DJ was early and I hadn't gotten any yet. For the first couple of days, I was trying to stuff washrags in my bra at home and just having to be wet when we went out. And I hope nobody hates me for this because I wasn't "into" cloth yet at the time, but I always preferred disposable pads for when I was in public and cloth at home when it didn't matter so much if they leaked. This time I'm investing in some better cloth ones but I'll probably still wind up using the disposable ones at times.
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Old 05-26-2006, 01:33 AM   #9
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Re: Breast milk leaking? What should I expect? eek.

I used to just gush every time my milk let down. I could actually fill up a lansinoh nursing pad with one let down sometimes (serious oversupply). Now, I no longer have oversupply issues, but I still leak. Some days more than others, it depends some on how well ds is eating that day. I leak on the side I am not nursing on pretty regularly, and when my milk lets down. But I don't gush anymore, just rapid dripping. Since ds is almost 9 mos old, I think I will probably leak for as long as I am bfing. I hate sleeping with a bra on, but I hate rolling into a cold wet spot even more, so I guess I am stuck with the bra.
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Old 05-26-2006, 02:00 PM   #10
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Re: Breast milk leaking? What should I expect? eek.

When I was pregnant I started leaking a little bit of colostrum around 22 weeks...........

After I had DD I was engorged for almost 2 months straight - I have always had a very abundant milk supply and DD wanted to feed a TON the first several months, so this was awesome for both of us!
My DD is 12 1/2 months and I still leak during the night and on the opposite side when I'm feeding from one side.......... I wear breast pads still, as well.


For the first 8-9 months, I leaked after about an hour around the clock!

Anyway, it's different for everyone!
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