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  1. #1
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    Default Considering going to mixed feeding due to lack of supply

    My little boy is always hungry. He's 20 days old. Whenever he is awake, he wants to feed. To go to sleep, he wants to nurse. To stay asleep, he wants to be held. I cannot put him down to sleep without him waking almost immediately. I had an appointment with a lactation consultant and she thinks I have low supply because although he spends a lot of time sucking, but not much time doing the audible swallowing and rhythmic, drawing sucks that indicates he's drawing milk. She thinks he is waking frequently because he is never really full. I have been told that it can take longer for women who have had C-sections to have their milk come in.

    The consultant checked our latch (which is good), and suggested herbs and a day time feeding routine that included breast compression and hand expression. However, with the amount of time he spends feeding, I don't always get time to express. Literally if he's not asleep, he wants to feed. When I do get time to express (during one of his big sleeps if I'm not sleeping too), I only got about 5mls out after trying for 20 minutes.

    I don't want to co-sleep because I don't want to suffocate him and I think it's going to be hard to wean him from that later. I cannot keep holding him as I had a difficult epidural and I think it has exacerbated my back pain.

    I wanted to breastfeed so I wouldn't have to buy formula and also to encourage weight loss.

    I'm pretty sure I'm facing two issues, his need to be close to sleep and lack of supply. If I try a mixed approach to feeding, it would help me rule out hunger at least.

    Is there anything else I should consider or ask the consultant before I try a mixed approach? Asking in this section because maybe there are full-time bf mums who persevered through this...if so, how did you do it?
    Last edited by Azvanna; 17-06-2014 at 10:35.

  2. #2
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    I struggled with poor supply with both my boys. I took fenugreek and blessed thistle. Ate oats, brewers yeast and flaxseed. I also got a script for motillium from the dr - I'd try this before mixed feeding. Google dr Jack Newman for some info on it.

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    Thanks, the consultant did mention medication. I will try that first. I have oats for breakfast, eat 2 lactation cookies a day (yum!) and stay hydrated drinking 2-3L of water + other liquids per day including raspberry leaf tea. I have 3 tablets each meal of fenugreek and blessed thistle. I'm doing all I can for him

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    Did she check him for lip tie or tongue tie?

    Some babies just want to be held. My DS was the same. I couldn't put him down so I spent many hours on the couch just holding him whilst he slept. Have you tried a carrier? It might take a bit of pressure off your back.

    Don't worry about how much you are expressing. It's not often a good indiction of your supply.

  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Teenz View Post
    Did she check him for lip tie or tongue tie?

    Some babies just want to be held. My DS was the same. I couldn't put him down so I spent many hours on the couch just holding him whilst he slept. Have you tried a carrier? It might take a bit of pressure off your back.

    Don't worry about how much you are expressing. It's not often a good indiction of your supply.
    I'll ask today about tongue tie.

    How long did it take for bubba to grow out of being held? I have tried two kinds of carriers but I think I do better without. Anyway if I'm holding him, his feeding instinct kicks in and he starts rooting. Lol . He's a beautiful baby boy I love cuddling him and showering him with kisses. But yea, like you I feel very much stuck to the couch! I guess it's forced recovery.

    I was thinking of buying a breast pump to help increase supply. I'm glad to hear manual expression isn't a true reflection of what's available otherwise no wonder he's always hungry!

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    My baby was the same, always feeding, but it helped to build my supply.. I couldn't express much either, it's really not an indication of supply at all.
    Agree with a PP, motillium was amazing, really helped along with lots of water.. I didn't have oats, cookies or anything though.

    Good luck, hopefully you can keep feeding bub, if not though, formula is there for a reason!

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    Sounds like a perfectly normal newborn bub to me my daughter was also a booby monster.

    Mix feeding is only going to reduce your supply even more, unless you plan on expressing for the feeds you miss. Breast feeding is all about supply and demand, if you want to successfully breast feed, mix feeding is not the answer this early (especially when you are already battling low supply).

    My advice would be too make some lactation cookies, drinking plenty of water, get some breast feeding support tablets and feed feed feed! Good luck!

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  10. #8
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    Is he producing plenty of heavy wet nappies? That's the best indicator of whether or not he's getting enough.

    I had a c-section and never really had the whole "boobs about to explode" feeling. Bub ended up losing too much weight and we went back to hospital for a couple of days. We started formula top ups and she gained again.

    I was expressing, taking motilium for ages, fenugreek, oats, hydrating, feeding bub on a schedule, etc - absolutely everything I was told to increase my supply and it just hasn't happened. My doc said that for some women it just doesn't happen, but any breastmilk you're able to give your baby is beneficial, especially the initial colostrum.

    My bub is now a good weight for her age (12 weeks) and gets mostly formula now. I still offer the breast and she enjoys it for comfort and a small amount of milk she gets (especially first thing in the morning).

    I also use a supplemental nursing system. It's a little fiddly so I only use it at home, but it's lovely to have a good long feed at the breast and know she's definitely getting a full belly.

    At the end of the day, don't beat yourself up if you need to formula feed your baby. You have done your absolute best and you can still have a happy, healthy baby regardless of how they are fed

    Sent from my HTC One X using The Bub Hub mobile app

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  12. #9
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    I had the same issue. My LC put me on Motilium. Worked wonders! At 5-6 weeks I got rid of formula top ups and DD has been feasting on boob exclusively ever since.
    Maybe a chat to your GP and a script for motilium could help?
    Also, lactation cookies, nursing tea and fenugreek. I took it all!

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    Azvanna  (19-06-2014)

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    No real advice but I feel your frustration. It was so tough at the start with constant feeding. I remember huge long feeds lasting over an hour, bub would sleep and be up again in 45 mins crying for more. Throw in a painful shallow latch and 3 mths of recurrent nipple thrush and I wanted to give up so much. It does improve and you feel like you get your life back.

    My now EBF 9 mth old still throws in a 45 minute feed here and there - she even had a good feed at 4.30am this morning, I thought I'd earned some shut-eye but no, up and wanting more at 6.15! I found that not timing things and just demand feeding at the end helped my sanity - I just let her do what she wants and try not to think it through too much. She is only the 7th centile, but has been gaining along that track, so the MCHN wasn't worried about supplementing. I hope you find a solution.

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