Almost 5 months old, milk still not enough, is it too late to increase my supply?

Lauren - posted on 09/22/2010 ( 7 moms have responded )

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Hi girlies *waves*
For the first few weeks when my little boy was born feeding him was horrifically sore so after 6 weeks I made the worst decision & gave him a bottle of formula and pumped for a few days, combined with formula as i wasn't pumping enough for him.
I only did this for about a week, but since then my milk supply has never been what it used to be so have to feed him both breast milk with a top up of formula after.
I really want to just get him back onto breast milk, I've been trying to feed him every hour or so. But often no or little milk comes out and he gets restless when theres no milk.
Also i think i have a slow let down and have to fight with him for ages to stay on my breast before any milk comes out.

Sorry for the essay, hope i made some sort of sense. x

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Melanie - posted on 09/22/2010

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Yes, continue pumping for about 5 minutes, os so, after the milk stops. Otherwise, you are telling your breasts that they are making enough for your baby. Do you do combination feeding? With breast and bottle or just pump for the bottle? I don't know if an electric pump would make a difference. I breastfeed directly from the source most of the time, so I only pump for back-up resources. I was told to try Breastflow bottles if I wanted to do combined breast/bottle feedings, though. I haven't tried them, yet, though. I have Avent bottles, and some really cheap Target brand ones, but they do the trick. If my daughter is at the babysitter's--which is a rare occasion--and she gets hungry enough, she will take one. I don't know anything about fenugreek, as I do not put anything other than food and fluids into my body on a regular basis. I try to avoid any herbs or medicines, as they can have adverse side effects that don't show up right away. I would try pumping after you stop seeing milk, for about 5 minutes, first. See if it works before you try the fenugreek. I would also advise talking to a lactation consultant with La Leche League, or another lactation advisor. Here is the phone number for La Leche League... 847-519-7730 That is the US number. If you need another, look on the website www.llli.org for more.

Lauren - posted on 09/22/2010

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Thanks :) I defs don't drink enough water.
I had been pumping after feeds but was finding i wasn't getting any milk so stopped, should i pump even though i get no milk? I use the tommee tippee manual pump and the Avent 1. I was thinking of buying a medela mini electric breast pump. anyone know if its any good? Would an electric breast pump help make a difference?
Whats the 2nd or 3rd let down? Sorry i know absolutelly nothing about this, my health visitor i rarely see and all my mum can say is '' none of this ever happened to me!!''
I use tommee tippee c2n bottles as i was told they are best for combined feeding?
Where can i get fenugreek from? I'm willing to try anything!

Melanie - posted on 09/22/2010

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If you are still pumping, make sure to pump for AT LEAST 5 minutes after the milk stops. This will create the supply and demand change that should increase your milk supply. How much does your son eat on a regular basis, anyway? A woman is supposed to make just enough milk to feed her baby. If you pump alot though, you are more likely to have problems, I heard. I guess, I don't really know. I have a 3 month old who doesn't stop eating... I have plenty of milk, and then some! I have a very strong letdown, too, so she pulls off and I let it drain into a towel or something... I wish you the best and I hope you can find some assistance with it... You should also try looking on La Leche League's website...

http://www.llli.org/FAQ/increase.html


Good luck!

Tiffany - posted on 09/22/2010

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Lauren,
I agree with Leah. Definitely have to make sure you're drinking enough water, limiting your caffeine intake, and eating enough meals/snacks. Nursing more and pumping more will help increase your supply. Are you still pumping now, along with nursing? If so, what kind of pump do you use? Also, don't forget about the 2nd or 3rd let-down, so stopping nursing or pumping and then resuming within a few minutes after massaging and squeezing has helped me. I also massage & squeeze when I'm pumping.

Also, what kind of bottles are you using for the formula or pumped milk?

My supply dropped when I had the flu, but I got it back up within a few days. I have actually taken and am still taking Fenugreek capsules 610mg. A lactation consultant recommended taking 2-3 capsules 3x/day (preferably with a meal) and it has definitely helped me. I've heard some people recommend the tea, but I had read that the tea didn't contain enough Fenugreek, so right now, the capsules are easiest to take. Do be aware though that there is a potential for Fenugreek to lower your blood sugar levels, so if you already have low blood sugar, please be careful if you decide to take this.

I understand how what you did was necessary when you did it, as my left side was super sore and I nursed less on this side. Still to this day (my daughter is 10 mos old), I make 1-2 oz less on my left side.

Good luck! Just keep working at it!

Leah - posted on 09/22/2010

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Be sure to drink LOTS of water and you might also consider having soups for lunch. (

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