Any suggestions?

Alysha - posted on 05/17/2010 ( 62 moms have responded )

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I have a 6 week old child and I'm breast feeding, well trying to anyways....
My milk really hasn't come in. I've been getting, on good days, 2 ozs of milk total and on a, what i believe to be a good day, i only get an oz total from both.
Does anyone have any suggestions as to how to produce more milk?
I've taken hot showers then fed. I've taken a hot pad to my breast and fed or pumped. I've rubbed my breast while I'm feeding. And I'm getting a little flustered and I don't want to give up, but at times I do...
So please, does anyone have any suggestions at all. I'm at the point where I'll pretty much try anything to produce more than 2 ozs of milk.

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Emily - posted on 05/19/2010

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Here is my best suggestion: ditch the pump for awhile. It is just messing with your head. Pumps simply cannot get out as much milk as a baby can. You can not judge your supply by the amount you are pumping (though, by the way, 2oz is a GREAT amount!).



I would just nurse, nurse, nurse as much as possible. every hour if you need to. Don't give bottles or supplement with formula unless you have to. Your body makes milk on a supply/demand basis. So, the more your baby sucks, the more milk you'll make. You won't get as much milk with a pump. Every time you give formula your body is not getting that signal to produce milk. Trust in your body, it does know what to do! And it definitely sounds like your milk is "in"!

Angie - posted on 05/23/2010

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Could she perhaps refuse the breast because she simply isn't hungry? Are you offering her the breast based on a schedule or when she actually gives you "hunger cues". It sounds like she is getting bottles too. Another reason she could be refusing the breast is because of nipple confusion.

Honestly if your breast is getting engorged and hard you probably don't have a supply issue at all. I would guess the issue is more with the pump or just the fact that your body doesn't respond well to a pump. For the best output with a pump you need a double electric (or at least a single electric) with the proper size "cones" and the proper amount of suction.

At this point if your breast are getting hard and engorged I would be very careful to do anything to try to increase your supply as that will probably only make the problem worse.

To help regulate your supply you could try a "nursing vacation" with your little one. The two of you can cuddle up in bed, take off your shirt, get cozy and have lots of snacks and water handy and spend 24-48 hours right there. Don't look at the clock, don't pump just let your little one latch on and nurse as often as she wants to. Even if she just wants to take a few sips here and there let her. Let your body know how much milk it needs to make.

If you are truly having supply issues (which again it really doesn't sound like you are) then supplementing is only going to make them worse. That's part of the reason the nursing vacation can really help.

For a true supply issue you can try fenugreek, oatmeal (steel cut works better than instant but both are ok), blessed thistle (blessed thistle and fenugreek is a great combo), a dark beer, lots of massage and lots of stimulation at the breast, there are also a few teas you can drink that can help with production.

If you truly do have a supply issue and all of those things fail to help then there are prescriptions a dr can give you but those should really be an absolute last resort and like I said it sounds more like a possible pump issue than an actual supply issue.

I can tell you for reference I have nursed 2 kids, they have never had a bottle of formula and both were super chunky babies who were obviously getting lots of milk. I could NEVER pump anything. My body just won't respond to a pump. I could do it for days at a time and not a drop.

Stephanie - posted on 05/18/2010

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Hi I found chicken soup and milk shakes to be wonderful for milk production. Frequent pumping or feeding will also help, but be careful as you don’t want to end up will full breasts that will cause other issues for you.

However, am a little confused as to why you are expressing. Is your baby not putting on weight? Don't judge what you are expressing as to what your baby is getting when they feed. It isn't the same and like the other posts have commented make you judgment on number of wet nappies, weight gain etc.

Did you know only 3% of women actually don't produce enough milk. You can be tested for it and if it is the case the Dr can give you tablets to produce extra milk. If that is your concern you may like to talk to your Dr about it.

Also, I am educator for Dunstan Baby Language - understanding your babies cries through their reflexes. Listen out for the "neh" sound this means baby is hungry. Am happy to send you a FREE sample DVD of this "word" it may help you understand when your baby actually wants to be fed. Just email me if you're interested and I’ll post it for you FREE of charge.

All the best Steph

Kathy - posted on 05/27/2010

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I agree with most of what everyone else is saying...but just wanted add this one thing that a nurse told me after my first was born...It seemed lke I didnt have enough milk and she told me to look at my baby and imagine the inside of his body. she said 'look at him. think about it. his little tummy can only hold about 1/2 of an ounce when it's full to the max! if you think he needs to drink a glass of milk or a full bottle your kidding yourself :) why do you think so many babies spit up their formula or spit up after they burp?' we tend to think that more must be better and it just isnt the truth. If your baby is having wet diapers and pooping once a day she is getting plenty. If you really truly want ot know what she gets in a feed you can go up the hospital or WIC office and ask to speak with a nursing consultant. They will weigh her before you nurse, you will nurse her and then they'll weigh her again and by weight they'll tell you exactly how much fluid she got.
And I'll just add that like many others have said I produced tons of milk for my 3 babies. With my first I could never get anything with the pump, I could pump with the medela electric pump for an hour and get 1/2 an ounce!! Needless to say, he never stayed with a sitter ;) my second I could get milk with a pump, maybe 3 ounces if I was full on a good day. With my 3rd almost nothing, I dont even leak in the shower! but she was exclusively breastfed for 11 months, NO formula and she was perfectly healthy. I'm still nursing her at 19 months, still dont get anything if I try to pump and she still gets tons of milk.All of mine too a Nuk fromthe time they were born until age 2 and it didnt hurt them nursing. But that's my situation, I've heard of others having problems.....Toss the formula! if you are too full for her to latch on go lean over the sink and splash your breasts with warm water until you start to leak. Once the hard fullness is gone try to nurse her again. You can also take off your bra when you nurse and just put a towel under the breast she isnt nursing on and see if you start leaking. it might encourage you about your milk supply...sometimes if I was really full I would just put a cup under the other breast and got a few ounces of milk, more than I would with a pump! again, trash the bottles until you are both very comfortable nursing :)

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Alysha - posted on 06/10/2010

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These are all great suggestions. But unfortunally, my milk decided to stop one day and i still have milk in my breast, but it's only a swallow. So, she is litterally on only formula now, which in rectrospect, has made my life easier and our bonding experience is a lot better and now we are so close. She is litterally a mommy's girl now. lol

Valerie - posted on 06/08/2010

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Ok I didnt read all the posts so this might be a repeat.... nurse only on one breast per feeding that will insure you are getting all the milk out of it for baby it will also give the other breast a break.

Next is GINGERALE!!!!! It really works to get more milk!
Good luck!

Tillie - posted on 06/08/2010

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If it helps when I had problems breastfeeding I imagined that I was on a desert island and that my baby and I had no choice but to get this right. I love breastfeeding now would not give up for the world. Trust your body and keep trying it is so worth it

Sara - posted on 06/01/2010

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Ask your doctor first, but you can also try Mother's Milk Tea, Fenugreek, or Blessed Thistle. Water is best though. :)

Sara - posted on 06/01/2010

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Trust me, your milk has come. If your son is eating fine, and gaining weight, he's getting milk. If you're talking about pumping.... Even when I went back to work and my breasts were FULL I only got 2.5-3 oz max. Pumping with a machine doesn't do the trick your baby does. You won't get as much with the pump as your child will from your breasts. Please don't let anyone tell you you can't breastfeed. There's a VERY small percentage of women who are physically unable to. Very small. Ask your doctor about it, but I'm positive that if you're having this issue when you pump, it's normal. Happens to me. And I've got plenty. :P

Amanda - posted on 06/01/2010

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I'm sorry I don't really want to sit through all of the replys so I'm sorry it I am repeating anything others have suggested but I wanted to share with you.
Child 1 - I was young and felt such enormous pressure to breast feed. I really wanted to but the stress was so over whelming at times and I felt like such a failure
13 years later (yes I know VERY big gap)
Child 2 - had such wonderful support and I was able to relax and took the pressure off myself.
You are a good and loving mother and don't judge yourself based on this one aspect it isn't easy and you can't expect yourself to "perform".
I found a herbal suppliment was useful and this time I just feed every time he wanted.
Look for some nipple shields to take some of the pressure off your nipples
Just as long as she is gaining weight and your doctor is happy with their progress. Don't beat yourself up. Don't compare or measure yourself against others to much.
Good luck

Jessica - posted on 06/01/2010

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You pump less than what the baby is actually getting. I would feed on one side and once the baby was done i would pump the other side. I pumped none stop. It helped though. I also went to a breastfeeding consultant at our hospital. Try contacting the le leche league. don't give up, it's the best thing for your baby. good luck

Sara - posted on 05/31/2010

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How are things going now?
I can only suggest lots of rest, lots of water, food for you and NO Stress, thats the main point if you think you are not producing enough you won't produce enough. Your baby will always get milk if he's sucking, your body will naturally produce it. Keep offering your breast to him, take him to bed with you for 24 hours and relax rest and let him succle. I've seen where someone said Beer that will only make your baby sleepy and do nothing for your milk. good luck i hope it sorts out for you.

Cassandra - posted on 05/30/2010

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oh yea, dark beer too, but obviously you have to check for alcohol in your milk if you try that.

Cassandra - posted on 05/30/2010

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Are you drinking enough water. Lots of water. Finugreek (sp) is supposed to help improve your milk supply. It'll make everything smell like maple syrup though. There's also a Rx you can take that'll help. But, they don't recommend if you've had history of depression. That kept me from being able to use it.
Just remember to relax, drink plenty of water, and there's nothing wrong with having to give supplemental feeding.
I had a lot of trouble with my milk. Had to give a bottle after every nursing session. I would get so upset, feeling like I was failing my son some how. Eventually, I realized that no matter how small an amount of breast milk he received, he was still getting some, and a little is better than none. However, if it's not an enjoyable experience for the two of you, don't let anyone make you feel bad for not doing it.

Swatara - posted on 05/29/2010

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I hate to be negative in a when every one else is being so positive but I had the same problem with breast feeding. I was so stressed because my milk didn't come in. My son was dehydrated and had jundice and almost didn't leave the hospital with me because I wanted to breast feed and I wasn't producing anything. He would suck and get nothing or very little, get frustated and push away. Then 15 minutes later he was still hungry so wanted more but I didn't have anymore. This cycle would go on for an hour or more and I didn't know what to do. I thought I was doing it wrong. Finally the lactation consaltant put me on the pump and in 15 mintues of pumping I had 2 drops in the bottle. When I left the hospital I was suplementing but determined to nurse! So I spent the first 5-6 wks of my baby's life stressed frustrated and not bonding with him because I couldn't give him the most natural thing a mother can give her child, breast milk. Finally after trying everything the lacation consultant wanted to put on my a medication that had a side effect of depression. That is when I decided it was too much. My son was thriving on the formula and I realized that was all that mattered. So I gave up breast feeding, feed him bottles and my depression and stress went away and I could enjoy and bond with my son. This is all a very long way of saying make sure the stess and frustration you are putting yourself through is worth losing this time with your child. If the child is gaining weight and developing normally than that is whay maters. You wont get this time back.

Krista - posted on 05/29/2010

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I had a breast reduction, and was only able to produce a little. Fenugreek made a big difference. I still wasn't able to nurse exclusively, but it did noticeably increase my supply. If I recall correctly, I took 6 capsules 3 times a day before meals.

Just note: you and the baby will smell like a pancake house. Fenugreek is what they use to make artificial maple flavouring. :)

Daniela - posted on 05/29/2010

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I breastfed for almost 14 months. I remember pumping and saying to myself, 'how is this child getting enough milk with the little I get out of pumping?'
My dr told me that babes get more than double that amount when they suckle, because your let down comes naturally. When you're pumping, you're stressed, uncomfortable and often in pain, that is why your let down is much lower. The only answer I can think of is breastfeeding directly as much as possible, and if you can't because of work or other reasons, try and freeze your 2 oz at a time to put them all together.
I also pumped first thing in the morning, when breasts are fulll, of course leaving one breast full for babe!
Also, Iused an electric pump and felt it more efficient than the manual ones.
Hope this helps!

Lynda - posted on 05/29/2010

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You can get blessed thistle or fenugreek from a health food store or see a lactation consultant about using motilium it helped me and I breast feed my first till she was 7 1/2 months now my second is 20 months and wont give it up. Also the more you feed the more you make. You also have to make sure you are drinking plenty of water because without fluid your body can't produce fluid it is recommended that you drink 1 litre of water for every 25kgs you weigh so if your 75kgs you need to drink 3 litres to have sufficient water intake. I also actually feed my daughter in the shower she was always more relaxed and the whole experience was better for both of us as she attached easier and would feed longer. Be blessed and keep trying as they say breast is best.

Brittney - posted on 05/29/2010

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Depending on the kind of pump you are using will affect how much you express. If you are doing it after a feeding then 2oz is fine. 2 oz are fine anyways if your baby is happy and content and gaining weight. I before a Preemie so I know what its like to worry. But you have to remember you baby should e your guide. I felt really achy when my milk came in and tire. It normally comes in 3-5 days after delivery. Your Brest should feel empty when done I use to pump 20 mins with a double pump Because it increase lactation

AJ - posted on 05/29/2010

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Hi Alysha, i can truely sympathise, i had a very similar experience. I had alot of trouble establishing breast feeling with my son, so i would express and bottle feed, (although he had trouble with the bottle also) i found that over time i was expressing less and less, after being prescribed medication to assist with milk production, hiring an electric pump and using a hand pump untill my breasts ached, i finally realised that the issue was that i was not getting a let down whilst pumping. In the end i went back to breast feeding full time, my son did not have the coordination to breast feed efficiently due to a high palet but we pushed on (it would take about an hour to feed him each feed), but in doing this my milk came back in with a vengence and i actually ended up with too much and had to use one side for 2-3 feeds! Im not sure if this helps you but my advice would be to stop expressing if you can and breast feed exclusively and as often as you can to encourage milk production, it would also be worth checking with a lactation consultant to find out if your baby is feeding efficiently - as was the case with my bubs - if not it may just mean you have to try for longer (my son would fall asleep or rest for a bit as he did not have alot of stamina then he would suckle again, which is why it took so long) or feed more frequently to keep your supply up. If you do need to express, try things like having a picture of your bubs with you or better yet have him/her with you at the time to encourage let down, the breast pump does not really immitate the suckling of your baby so it can sometimes be difficult to get a let down to occur - as it was in my case. At the end of the day, as some of the other ladies have stated, if your bubs is gaining weight and is satisfied and has wet nappies, then you needed worry too much, but i really do understand your concern, it is a very stressful time when you feel like you cant feed your baby, but you are doing everything you can and that makes you a great mum! :o)

Crystal - posted on 05/28/2010

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ur ob can give u meds to help u produce more milk the same thing happen to me

Cheryl - posted on 05/28/2010

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Hi, I know how hard it is for you. Are you expressing milk? I used to express milk and it over-produced my breastmilk. Maybe you should try it too. I usually cook fish soup (snapper or any white meat fish), and I find it really effective drinking a lot of fish soup. If still dosen't work for you, try giving your baby a little formula milk so that you won't get too tired and frustrated. Getting tired also lessen your breastmilk. You need to take care of yourself. I admire your patience.

Amanda - posted on 05/28/2010

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I totally agree with both of Lisa's posts! The LLL recommends using fenugreek and I know lots of moms have used the tea. Just remember to relax. When you feed, make sure you're comfortable, and if you have a rocking chair, even better. I haven't read this anywhere, at least not yet or remember if I had, but my theory is a racking chair mimics the movement of pregnancy. Just a gentle sloshing. I don't have a better way of putting it. Anyway, make sure you're comfortable, play some white noise if you think it'll help, it can make the baby calm. Just relax in the chair with natural light coming in or make it dimly lit. When you're comfortable, you're body will do what it needs to and your baby knows what to do. Remember, in those first few days, a baby only needs so much sustenance every hour or two. Have you read into cue feeding? See what you think and that may even help your supply if there really is an issue there. Good luck!

Lisa - posted on 05/28/2010

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I thought of something else for you. If your baby is having trouble latching on, you could try a nipple shield. They look like little silicone sombreros. They const about $7 at Target and are made by medela. I had to use these for a while with both of my children. I didn't get to read the other moms' comments before I put my post on, but it kind of sounds like everybody is one the same track. The biggest favor you can do yourself is to try to relax. When you are nursing your baby, just try to enjoy the time with him or her, and not think about how much they are getting.

Lisa - posted on 05/28/2010

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I can totally relate! Are you by chance a 1st time mom? First of all, don't panic! babies go through a growth spurt at about this age (a little tidbit they don't tell you in the hospital). Your little one is probably crying a lot right now and wanting to nurse all the time? Just park yourself in a comfy chair and let the baby go to it. This is the best way to get your body to produce more milk. Try to relax. If you want a little extra boost, try taking fenugreek, it is an herbal suppliment available at GNC stores and most health food stores, and there is also a tea you can buy at these places called "mother's milk" it is a lactation tea with a bit of a licorice flavor. This truly did help me. I had never heard of it until the county health nurse told me about it, and in asking around, lots of my co-workers have used it with great success also. I had a very difficult time producing enough milk for both of my children. If these ideas (collectively from me and the other moms) don't help you and you wind up formula feeding your baby, don't feel bad. Just be glad that there is formula for cases like this when mom just can't meet the demand. Good luck to you.

Jenna - posted on 05/28/2010

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There is a drug called Reglan your doctor can perscribed that can help. I only had one working breast so my doctor perscribed it, and I was able to feed my son from one breast for 6mths before I had to start supplementing with formula.

Amanda - posted on 05/28/2010

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As long as you are getting, I believe this amount is correct, between 8-10 wet diapers a day than she is getting adequate nutrition. Are you on meds for your depression? It is possible they can harm your milk supply. Your baby might also be having a problem with nipple confusion. If you are supplementing then going back and forth between bottle and breast, your baby may be getting confused. You should look up lactation cookies. http://www.recipezaar.com/recipe/Oatmeal... They don't work for everyone, but it's worth a shot. If you feel you really have a low milk supply you need to talk this over with your doctors in accordance with your meds, and if they don't know, they need to contact Dr. Hale, unfortunately he won't be available again until next month. You can read his forum here: http://neonatal.ttuhsc.edu/cgi-bin/discu...

Jodie - posted on 05/27/2010

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You will keep getting conflicting advice no matter where you look. You need to do whats comfortable for you. I was told...do what works!!! No matter what that is. There is a prescription tablet you can take that will bring your milk supply up to what it was when it first came in. Its callem Motilium. You will probably take it for three weeks with the aim to reestablish your milk supply. After this time, you can stay on it in small amount...and believe me it does help, especially if your wanting to keep breastfeeding. If not there are some great formulas nowdays, so don't be afraid to use these jsut becasue everyone says breast is best!!! Breastfeeding is not for everyone...and contrary to popular belief, many people cannot do it no matter how much you try. The other alternative is to breastfeed and then top your baby up with a small amount of formula after each feed. This works well if you want to continue to breastfeed but can't quite produce enough. Really, the only way to tell is if your baby is putting on enough weight each week and is settled. Hope this helps!

Sara - posted on 05/27/2010

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I agree with the other ladies that what you are pumping has NOTHING to do with what the baby is getting... so totally ignore that for right now. I agree: don't supplement, and if your baby is hungry, put her to the breast. Use a nipple shield if it helps! I know my child generally only nursed for about 7-10 minutes and she was done. Every kid is different, so take your cues from your baby!
I wanted to second the fact that Oatmeal can work well to increase supply (and is easy to incorporate into your day!).
When you DO go back to pumping, it's really surprising, but if you don't have the right size breast shield (larger/smaller breasts and/or nipples), you won't pump nearly as much. I'm larger chested, and the difference between a "medium" and "XL" breast shield for me could be 3-4 oz a pumping session, once BFing was well established (i.e., 3 months in).
ALSO: at 6 weeks, your child COULD be going through a growth spurt (they seem to happen at intervals of 3 weeks/months).. in which case she may want to nurse more! Go for it! She's helping your body do what it needs to do.

Roxanne - posted on 05/27/2010

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I had the same problem & when I stopped nursing at 11 months I was still only pumping 2oz from both. Don't give up, I would feed him every hr at 6 weeks, then I slowing move it to 1.5 hr, then 2, and at 5 months 2.5hr, at which pnt you can probably move it up more since your giving them solids. Dont give up, and as long as your child is gaining wgt, I wouldn't worry too much about it.

Ariel - posted on 05/27/2010

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go to the store and get this stuff they call natures milk or natual mother milk. its supposed too help u get ur milk in. i have heard it does amazing things.

[deleted account]

Find yourself a classical homeopath and don't give up. A homeopath will look at your entire history and pregnancy and they will respond to your whole body and symptoms in total. The remedy they prescribe will be specific to you and your story so it is really important for you to describe YOU. But please don't give up, they can fix and heal this for you. I have been seeing and studying homeopathics now for quite some time and truelly believe in it's healing capacity. Treat like with like....Dont go for a Naturopath/homeopath as they have quite diff philosophies, you need a Classical homeopath....Good :Luck... ;-} Vanessa

Angela - posted on 05/27/2010

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As long as your baby isn't loosing weight then it should be o.k. the milk will come on a supply/demand basis, the more the baby eats, the more milk will come in so nurse nurse nurse, and then nurse some more... Only 2% of women actually don't produce enough milk, but you hear so many women say they "didn't produce enough milk", when it was actually that they just weren't given the right advice... you can give a little formula if you worry your baby needs more food, but then make sure to feed just before and/or after so your breasts are being stimulated to produce milk... I never used a pump or measured how much milk I produced, I think that if I measures how much then I would have worried a lot more if baby was getting enough, but rather I just fed all the time and now my baby is 6 months and breast-feeding is going great... only worry if baby begins loosing weight, and then supplement with formula (while BF still), otherwise, I wouldn't measure anymore and just know that your body produces what your baby needs... Also, if you're using a breast pump I heard that they don't get your milk as efficiently or effectively as the baby, so maybe no breast pumping because it may not be stimulating your breasts enough, hence less milk?! Last bit of advice, don't feed baby on a schedule like every 2 or 4 hours you're feeding him, rather feed him all the time (yes it's a full time job for sure!) whenever baby is fussing about anything just feed him, it's usually ALL my baby wanted and then all was good, though you do need a good couple hours here and there to let the breasts fill back up with milk, sometimes when I feed SO much I feel like they're constantly empty, so my hubby will hold baby for a while, give me a break to take care of myself, take a shower, nap, eat, whatever, and that little bit of rest does the body good and seems to let my milk supply recharge! When I'm stressed, sleep deprived, hungry, thirsty etc.. then I notice that my milk seems a little less, so DEFINITELY nap when baby naps so that your body can refuel itself... VERY important! And don't give your baby any water or juice, your want him hungry for milk only at this point so that he'll be stimulating your milk supply as much as possible, if he's full on water he won't be getting the calories he needs or stimulating the milk glands. Good luck!

[deleted account]

Hi Alysha,

Sounds like you have tons of advice! I had problems getting my son to latch or drink much, and it turned out he had silent reflux. He didn't want to drink much (but instead frequently) because it caused him so much discomfort and he was a very irregular and fussy feeder - leaving me often engorged (which I found a pump invaluable for). Sometimes they like to suck (dummies/pacifiers) to help settle the acid in their tummies too. This did improve slowly over several months and in some cases medication helps.

With regards to the expressing - having talked to some of my friends, they never seemed able to express much at all and worried about their supply, yet their baby gained weight and had wet nappies. I think perhaps some people do not get let-down easily with a pump. So I agree with others who have said that measuring from a pump is not accurate. Good luck!

Christal - posted on 05/27/2010

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I also breastfeed my two month old. When I try to pump I'm lucky if I get two oz. The doctor said some people can fill a whole bottle while others have trouble getting anything. As long as the baby is gaining weight and wetting diapers, the baby is getting fed.

Kealy - posted on 05/27/2010

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I was also worried I wasn't making enough when my daughter was born. She would cry a lot, especially at night, even after I nursed her, and I finally started offereing her a bottle of breastmilk to fill her up.
What I did was pump after every nursing, so that I was completely draining each breast, which tells your body you need to make more. I only did that for maybe a month or so, and then I was making more as much as she needed as well as had a supply in the freezer for when I couldn't be there to nurse her, which was only if I left her with a sitter. I never had to give formula and she nursed until she was 13 months old.
I never produced so much that I leaked. i never had that issue, but it was plenty for her and that's all that mattered.
The pumping can be very tiring and is a lot of work, but it is worth it in the end, cause I never had to consider using formula.

Nara - posted on 05/27/2010

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Check out the Ultimate Breastfeeding Guide (a book published by Lamaze), in it the author describes taking Blessed Thistle (not Milk Thistle) and Fenugreek. They help increase milk. I didn't have much luck with Fenugreek, but the Blessed Thistle helped me immensely with my first son.

Rebecca - posted on 05/26/2010

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hi, can i just say that i agree with the other ladies, if your baby is happy and not crying than you are doing fine.
how often are you feeding bubs? if 4 hourly than for a couple of days try 2 hourly feeds, apparently the more they feed the more you produce.
good luck, and i think its great that you are trying your best.

Amber - posted on 05/26/2010

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I had low milk production with my baby and tried EVERYTHING!!!! The best thing for me was taking Fenugreek WITH Blessed Thistle. I noticed a major improvement within about a day to a day and a half. I also drank Mother's Milk Tea which was recommended by my mother-in-law and that helped a tiny bit. I am not a big vitamen/supplement person, but I was desperate to try anything and the combination of the fenugreek and blessed thistle was the best method. Your sweat and urine will start to have a maple syrup smell to it from the fenugreek.



This was a major issue for me on top of all the hormones that go along with motherhood. Not every woman's body is the same and not all respond to the supply and demand theory.

Angelica - posted on 05/26/2010

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By 6 weeks your milk should definitely be in. Mine came in within 5 days. I breastfed my son exclusively though, we used no bottle or formula until I had to wean him at 9 months when he had 6 teeth that he could use very well. Keep in mind that you have to eat a lot more calories to produce breastmilk and if you keep getting flustered and giving your baby a bottle your milk production will decrease and remain low. Even if your not feeding from the breast you should try to pump atleast every two hours so your body learns to make milk that often. however, some women have issues producing milk and if thats the case you need to see a doctor. My sister and mother had the same problem and took presciption pills to produce milk.

Sarah - posted on 05/26/2010

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also I never bothered with the pump, it didnt help me. but if it works for you the keep doing it. If she wants to suck and suck even when theres not milk left its because she wants comfort. some babies have short bursts of feeding then a break then back to feeding while at other times they seem to be constantly on it!! I had that and it really stressed me out because I felt inadequate and useless, so when she had fed and still wanted more I would go for a walk with her in the pushchair or just cuddle with her. Walking was the best because it put her to sleep and gave me a breather to produce more milk and a little peace. :D

Sarah - posted on 05/26/2010

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have you tried breast compressions. here a link to a good sight that was brilliant for me and also there's the Le Leche League which was brilliant. The woman I spoke to gave me the confidence not to give up or get disheartened, they also said if baby is producing at least 5 wet nappies/diapers then they are getting enough. Is baby settled and content? The more you put baby to breast the more you will produce. do you do skin to skin contact because that helps flow too. Don't give up and talk to your health visitor. my daughter is 6months and after combi feeding for 1st 2months she is now all breast and has been for 4months, we are starting to wean which is loads of fun!!



try this site http://www.drjacknewman.com/

Kari - posted on 05/26/2010

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I'm so sorry to hear you are having this issue. I read all the posts and they all have good ideas. I have the same problem as you. I want nothing more than to be able to nurse my sweet daughter for so many reasons. I have tried everything that everyone has posted and still have not been able to produce. I made a promise to my daughter that I would give her everything that I have until it is gone. She is almost 5 months old and I am probably only producing 1 oz. I've never produced more than 4 oz at a time. Anything you have is good them. The more people I talk to the more I realize a lot of people have the same problem.
You also mentioned that you are having problems with her latching on sometimes. For almost 2 months I used a nipple shield and it really seemed to work. She learned how to latch very well and have not had to use it in about 2 months.
I hope that you are able to find peace in knowing that you have tried everything that you can. I know that I am finally OK with it. Good luck.

Gina - posted on 05/25/2010

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Around six weeks I worried about the same thing. My baby was fussy and it seemed like he was not getting enough to eat. I was stressed out. It turns out that my baby was getting more than enough to eat. He was just fussy for a while. I made sure to drink enough water and eat enough food just in case. He could have just had a stomach ache... that is what the pediatrician said it could have been. Anyway, I also found the information in "The Happiest Baby on the Block" (there is a book and a dvd that my pediatrician recommended... you only need one of them) helped out a lot. Shushing, swaddling, swinging, side hold, and sucking (sometimes one sometimes all) made a big difference. I don't know if any of this information is helpful. I just thought I would share it in case you need it because it sounded like from the discussion that maybe it is not the amount of milk produced that is stressful. Good luck!

Lisa - posted on 05/25/2010

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Instead of the beer try the malt ovaltine. It has more malt in it than beer anyways and that is what supposedly helps with milk production. I've had a very similar problem and I now make almost enough milk to keep my baby happy. I only really need to supplement with formula at a couple of feedings each day.

Michelle - posted on 05/25/2010

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Alicia,
I've now been reading your responses and I have a couple of questions for you--when you try to feed her, is she already crying and fussing? If this is the case, you missed the feeding cues (smacking her lips together, rooting). When she starts rooting, this is the ideal time to try to get her latched on because she's relaxed and calm enough to try eating. It could also be that if you are engorged, your milk might be flowing too fast for her so she's clamping down to slow the flow; it could also be that if she's bottling, she's getting that nipple confusion because the milk flows faster from a bottle than it does from you. Giving her a pacifier for non-nutritive sucking is okay as long as you aren't missing those feeding cues. Now, if you are getting engorged, it could also mean that you are pumping too much and she's not emptying you out, which means that you need to stop pumping for a little while so she can regulate you and your production. I've been through this and know what you are going through. You might just need to nurse her more often.

Another question I have is about her birth--was she vaginal or c-section? If she was vaginal, did they use forceps or a vacuum extraction? Sometimes babies born with these methods have issues with their jaws and can have very tight jaws. Is she gaining weight? Digesting with a bit of spit up or is she puking after feedings? Is she congested? I'm asking because these are symptoms of reflux and quite often babies with this want to nurse more often because they are uncomfortable and want to be soothed. I've been through this with all 3 of my children and my 2nd born has GERD still. I've nursed all 3 of my kids--the older 2 until they were 15-16 months old, and I am still nursing my youngest who is 6 months old.

The most important thing you can remember about feeding your baby is that he/she is fed. It doesn't matter if it is breastmilk or formula. If you are able to nurse, wonderful, if not don't get down on yourself because it isn't easy for everyone. I have been very fortunate to have had a good production factory, but it takes a lot of patience, time, and practice. You'll get it. Use the resources available--your pediatrician, a lactation consultant, la leche league, friends, family, and us! Best of luck and I hope we have been of some help to you.

Amy - posted on 05/25/2010

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I had the same problems and ended up quitting after a month because I nursed, pumped, supplemented and did this every two hours around the clock for weeks and it never got much better.

Anyway, I plan to try it again with my next one but will not beat myself up over it if it doesn't work. Some things that I have learned that will hopefully helped are. Drink 1/2 a beer before pumping, try fenugreeke tea or tablets. Another suggestion was to rent a more high powered pump from the hospital. I did not do this last time as I had a Medula Pump but might try it next time.

Hope this ideas help and remember whatever you do your relationship with the baby is the most important so if nursing is stressing you out to much it is not worth it.

Kristin - posted on 05/25/2010

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You are never going to get out of a pump what a baby can get out of your breast. If I were you I would forget the pump. The baby is the best tool to boost your milk. Keep the baby on your breast whenever he/she is hungry. The baby should have at least 6 wet diapers. If he/she has 6 wet diapers then you are making what you need to make. Avoid giving the baby pacifiers or any supplementation with formula because you could sabotage your efforts with formula. The more the baby sucks, the more milk you will produce. If you are unsure and need assistance, check out your local La Leche League. I know that some people will say that they are psycho breastfeeding fiends, but they are NOT. They are regular moms who want to help others without asking for money. They are a great source and helped me tremendously. I am also a big believer in talking with a lactation consultant. You can also try eating oatmeal which is said to help boost milk production. Fenugreek is an herb that can help, but I would first try with the baby and see what happens. Don't worry so much about the ounces. Worry about the wet diapers and put that pump away unless you are going back to work..... keep in touch!

Michelle - posted on 05/25/2010

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Chances are your baby is getting exactly what the baby needs. They don't eat much in the beginning--2 oz at 6 weeks is right for each feeding. The thing that you need to do is relax, make sure you are getting enough to eat and drink, and rest when you can. Trying to pump and nurse can be tough. Focus on just nursing, and don't supplement because this does diiminish your supply. Think of your body as a factory--the more the baby demands, the greater your supply will be but if you supplement feedings with formula or a bottle of breastmilk, the demand isn't being met and supply starts to diminish. As long as the baby has many wet diapers a day, is pooping (sometimes BF babies don't go daily), is content, then the baby is getting enough milk and your body is doing right. Now, at 6 weeks babies do usually have a growth spurt and usually want to eat more often. It could be every 1-2 hours instead of ever 3-4. This is normal and your body will accommodate as long as you are willing to just go with it. Relax and enjoy the ride. Congrats on the new baby!

Lynda - posted on 05/25/2010

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Hi, it sounds like there has been some great advice given so far, my baby had jaundice and an infection which meant I had to feed him every 3 hours which gave me a good schedule to stick to to be honest, he was so tired sometimes because of the infection when he was first born he wouldnt suck and the nurses advised me feed him formula to bring his sugar levels up it was very nerve racking to be like this, But i was not going to stop breastfeeding as it was my plan to keep going I refused bottlefeed apart from breastmilk bottle feeds, the first time I used the electric pump in the hospital it took forever and really hurt my breast then I bought tommy tippee manual pump and not only did my breast produce milk more quickly it didnt hurt, so I can understand when people say your breast produce differently with a pump than with baby. I can also understand how it can get to your head as I was still nervously feeding him through out the night even when he wouldnt wake up for food because of my experience in the beginning. One day I decided not to worry about how long I was breast feeding for or how much was going out and you know what, breast feeding became enjoyable again. Sometimes the nurses mean the best but they make you hung up about your breast feeding, As long as your baby has wet diapers and is content you will know. My friend said her baby was always a 6 mins feeding baby and he is fit and healthy four year old now. So dont worry too much stress is the biggest killer of breast feeding. Hope you are able to relax and enjoy the process. My baby is nearly 4 months and I still do breast only, if I am away from him I give formula but only one feed as my breast become so full it becomes uncomfortable. All the best Lynda

Tanya - posted on 05/24/2010

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one thing that really helped me increase my supply was to pump for 10 min after every feed. That way, your baby gets some food first, then you tell your body, you need to make more.

Also remember, what you pump is prob not the same amount your baby gets. Your body responds to your baby better than the pump. Some books suggest thinking of your baby or looking at her picture while you pump. You might even try holding her or watching her in her crib sleeping.

Also, make sure you get plenty of protein, water, and fat. That's what's in breastmilk. According to a site I read a while back, your body is pretty good at getting fat from your body, but the protein and water you need to supply.

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