any tips on when to do if I have gotten "behind" in supply?

(7 posts)(5 voices)
  1. I am sure this sounds like a really stupid question but I am confused and bewildered (by both this question and honestly BFing in general ).

    DS I think is in midst of another growth spurt... 60 to 75 minute cycle all night last night, he is much fussier (especially at night), and is sleeping more during the day (wakes to eat every 60-90 minutes but hen back to sleep). I think that all adds up to a growth spurt - if not and this is just a new regular pattern I may kill myself!

    ANYWAY b/c of frequency of feedings last night I did not get much sleep and ended up giving baby to DH at 4am and asked if he could please just give me a small break (there is no way for me to nap during the day) he got a supplemental bottle at 4am (4oz). Since I was sleeping I did not pump which means I am behind one session and 4 oz...

    Add to that, I had to take DS#1 to some appointments from 9am-1pm today and during that time I left 2 bottles each 3oz...he drank both those (9am and 11am) but the baby sitter ended up having also to give a supplement 4 oz at 1pm. I pumped at 8:30 before we left and again at 1 when we got back. but again that means I am behind one more session and another 4 oz.

    I am now "behind" DS in 8 oz of milk and I have no idea how to catch up. He nurses every 2 hours during the day and I am scared to pump after I feed him since I will only get 1-1.5 oz (which is depressing) and add to that DS#2 is fussing and DS#1 is a holy terror (is this just hard for me b/c I know many of you have this much and more on your plate and you all seem to make it work!). At night he is cluster feeding all night so if I try to pump then I would just go from DS to pump back to DS with no breaks all night. I am already living on the edge of sanity and if I do that I am pretty sure I will fall apart.

    Like I said I know many of you do this with older kids in the picture, with twins etc HOW DO YOU DO IT!!! I really feel I am so stupid and incompetent with this stuff that it just depresses me. I really want to BF but does it have to be soo hard!!

    Are there any hints, tips, tricks, to catch up when I am behind on supply or do I just admit defeat and supplement? I have also had a hard time (physically and I admit mentally) finding time and energy to pump in general so I have no built up "stash". Any hints on that also?

    sorry to be such a pest and always need help.

  2. That does sound like a growth spurt so it should end soon. Also remember that it all does get easier (somewhere between 6 weeks and 3 mo for most people) when they become more efficient.

    I always pumped after the first feed of the day because that is when I had the most milk. If you pump every day then your body will know to make more milk at that time. I would not pump in the middle of the night.


  3. Jennifer - that sounds like a good idea - I think I will try pumpling tomorrow am and just see how much a I get. Thanks

  4. I am a bit behind as well. My babies are 3 months old and chunky monkeys but they nurse very often. I work one day a week and can't pump enough to keep up with them. I am a horrible pumper, can't even make a bottle for one baby in one 30 minute session. What I am doing now, this week, is taking a nursing mother's tincture 3x a day and pumping 3x a day and feeding on cue. My stash is growing, I have 17 4 oz bags and I count them 2-3x a day, lol. Like they are going to disapear One baby will cry almost everytime I pump which drives me mad. I usually pump 30-60 minutes after a feeding and then I seem to have enough for the next feeding. My friend was telling me about an article she read about how some women have a low storage capacity in their breasts so their babies need to eat more frequently, that made me feel better about both feeding and pumping.

    It sounds like you are doing an awesome job!! Just keep up and pump like crazy. I eat a huge bowl of oatmeal everyday to help with supply along with the herbs. I use Kerry's herbals if you are interested. You can find it on the web. If you can avoid formula, do so. It will just make you more behind. I bf my son for 3 years and still have alot of quesitons and concerns this time so don't feel bad at all. It's hard and very time consuming but depending on how old dc is, you may be starting solids soon and that will take some of the pressure off. Another great thing to do is have a nurse in. Just plug older ds in with videos or friends/family and sit on the couch and nurse all day, for a couple days. Your supply will increase. good luck and keep up the good work. Don't feel bad or stupid at all....anyone who bfs has been there too.


  5. DOnt stress. Just nurse him tomorrow, without bottles. He will build any lost supply back in a day or so. Dont get into the habit of gigivng bottles when he seems hungry -just let him nurse. As long as he is peeing and poopoing, he is getting enough.

    Next time, take the baby with you - even if you also nbeed to bring the babysitter along. That way you can nurse. I never gave my 4th child a bottle and he went everywhere with me, so I never had to worry about it.

    abies are smart and he will build your supply ashe needs it.

    Twin DDs-6y

  6. I agree that I would just continue nursing throughout the day tomorrow and your body should adjust. I would try not to give any bottles. How old is your baby can I ask?

    When my baby was little (less than 4 months) I was diligent about doing things to increase my supply (oatmeal, lactation cookies, supplements) and pumped after the first morning feed every morning. I eventually stopped that, but anytime I would leave the baby I would pump when he was supposed to feed...and to be honest since my pump wasn't nearly as strong with the car adapter I rarely left without him.

    I know how it is though with the older one. My two are 3.5 and I pretty much don't go anywhere between the hours of 11-2:30 when all three are napping and DH isn't home. I am home for all the feeds except abou one night a week where I miss the last feed (sitter gives him a 6 ounce bottle of formula)...but then I come and nurse him as soon as I get home to make sure my supply doesn't take a dive.

    I'm not sure if this would be your style at all, but I found getting the baby on a flexible feeding schedule in the early days really helped make sure he was getting full feedings, getting enough sleep (but not TOO much during the day), reduced fussiness and in general just made him a more content baby (yes even through GS's...). Obviously I had to just go with the flow when it came to those evening cluster feeding the first 12 weeks, but my rule was that between the hours of 7pm-7am all of his feedings would be in HIS room, darkened with little stimulation. I also did the whole feed-play-sleep routine which really helped.


  7. Brittany
    sorry I wanted to respond for last couple days but never seem to have more than a second and could just not get on and write anything back. I appreciate all your thoughts.

    I have been driking a ton, eating oatmeal in any and all forms and nursing as much as possible. I actually think my supply is decreasing. The only thing I can think is stress and very little sleep are the culprits. My DS nurses SO MUCH at night that I would have thought that would have brought up my supply but like I said even with a constant demand I just can not seem to satisfy him. He is gaining weight and growing so I know he is getting what he needs, maybe I am just not giving him what he wants .

    Anyway...just wanted to respond to a couple of your thoughts and points.
    1. How in the world did you pump after 7am feed?!!! I only have one other DC and the mornings are insane with the 2 of them that there is no way I could pump at that point.
    2. Like you DS mostly goes with me and I nurse wherever (was way to modest with DS#1 to do this in public but have to say in my efforts to make this work I have lost all hang ups with this one !). I have had some things lately where I have to be alone with DS#1 so like you said I always pump if I am going to miss a session.
    3. In the last week (with the blizzard and staying home for a week I was FINALLY able to get him on a 3 hour schedule during the day. That is a huge relief! And yes we have always done the wake-feed-play routine so things are good there. What I have not been good about is the nursing in a quiet area from 7pm to7am. To be honest since he has a tendency to cluster feed from 7pm to 11pm there is no way I could stay in his room alone and nurse every night by myself. I love him to bits but I would go insane. To be very honest and selfish I would also miss the olympics and that would make me sad. BUT your point is a good and valid one and I realized I definitely need to make moreof an effort to get those nursing session to not be stimulating to him in any way shape or form.

    Thanks for all the thoughts and advice. I really have NO IDEA how you do this with 3 and with so little help. I am barely surviving these days so my hats offto you.

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