Breastfeeding- Increasing milk supply

Kara - posted on 11/19/2009 ( 15 moms have responded )

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My boys are 5 weeks old (corrected age 5 days old). My mom was helping me at night but now she is going to go help my older sister as a night nurse. Right now I nurse then feed them about 40-50cc formula. I pump any where from 40-70cc per breast. If I pump then feed they take 100cc bottle and down in it in 5-10 min. Since I am losing my mom I want to breastfeed only so I am not up all night nursing and preparing bottles. Any info on how you have increased your milk supply? How much to your twins eat in a feeding? Have you tried funegreed? Mother's milk tea? What worked for you? Can you really produce enought milk to feed both twins? Thank you!!!

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BTW, I was nursing 12 times per day for the first 2 months and pumping for 20 minutes after each time. Basically, I spent two months nursing 24-7, drinking gallons of water, and de-stressing as much as possible to try to get enough milk and guess what -- it didn't work. I STRONGLY disagree that your body will produce enough milk if you just nurse enough -- that may be true for some women, but it's not true for everyone and I know that type of advice just made me feel like I was a failure and my body was failing me when I was doing everything humanly possible to produce enough milk for two. Not everyone can produce enough milk for two. Some women can produce enough milk for 5. That's just reality. Don't feel bad if you can't do it. Not everyone can.

Susan - posted on 12/09/2009

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there was an herbal pill called fenugreek (sp?) and that will help increase your supply.

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Erica - posted on 12/13/2009

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My babies are only three months old but I pumped after a feeding or two ever day as soon as they were born. Partly, to freeze for later use but also to build up my milk supply. I went back to work when they were 8 weeks and I am pumping more than they eat now. :) I hope I can keep it up. I eat a lot and drink as much water as I can. I limit caffeine because it can diminish milk supply. I also pump for 15 minutes each time even if milk has stopped coming out because stimulating the breast can help increase milk supply. I hope these tips helped. Good luck!

April - posted on 12/12/2009

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yes, you have to remember your milk has more nutrition than formula therefor they wont 'eat as much" I feed my twin boys till they were almost 1 year. I think I made it to 11 months and 2 weeks. I was ready to stop! I drank TONS of water and i pumped a little when I could. Though I might have not got a lot out. It is always nice to have some in the freezer. I had a friend that said oat mil helped her a lot! You can do it.... don't get upset.... just breath! lol

Dixie - posted on 12/12/2009

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I am gonna go a little against the grain here. If you should decide to use Reglan I would highly suggest you research it... there are some pretty heavy lawsuits out there against Reglan.
I am probably going to repeat what most of the other moms are advising: oatmeal, staying hydrated ex. soup, water lots and lots of water, make sure you get enough to eat and rest and relaxing is so important for your let downs...
the one other really kewl system is the SNS... here is the website http://www.medelabreastfeedingus.com/pro... you may want to check this out I used it and found it really helpful.
I have heard from some older women that beer really helps but I forget what ingredient it is in beer that helps. I also read this in one of my midwifery books.

Jessica - posted on 12/11/2009

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Fenugreek works. I breast fed for only 3 months, but for reasons beyond my control, however the fenugreek pills work wonders. I took 3 pills 4 times a day. I also ate oatmeal every morning which some say also helps. I saw a wonderful consultant and she had me spend 24 hours in bed with the babies just breast feeding on demad and that is it. Your body will start producing more.

[deleted account]

I tried Fenugreek and it helped a bit, but not enough to 100% feed both of my boys. So then I tried Blessed Thistle, which made no difference. Then my doctor prescribed Reglan, which also made no difference. My brother (who is a doctor) recommended beer, and I told him he was crazy. After three more weeks of misery, I decided to have a glass of beer during my evening feeding. It made a HUGE difference. Apparently, it's the hops, so low-alcohol beer is fine or even just tea made out of hops. However, by then my boys were bigger and needed more milk per feeding, so it still wasn't enough. I know some Mom's who were able to fully nurse twins, but I was never able to -- they always received some formula. I would say they were getting 1/2 a bottle of formula per day up to 2 months, then one full bottle of formula per day between 2 and 5 months, and 2 per day by 6 months. I gave up after 6 months - I just couldn't do it anymore. I was doing what you were doing -- nursing and then giving bottles. I would also pump AFTER nursing to stimulate more milk, which still didn't do the trick. Honestly, my suggestion would be to switch to nursing them fewer times per day (so they are getting more per feed) and then give them a few supplemental bottles in between. So nurse, formula, nurse, formula, nurse, etc. It's just too much to try to do the whole nursing, pumping, bottle feeding routine when you aren't producing enough for two. Some breast milk is better than none. You are doing a GREAT JOB by just trying to nurse them at all! Good luck!!

Beckie - posted on 12/08/2009

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I nursed my twin girls for 14 months (no bottles or formula). I recommend drinking LOTS of water, increase your calories and TRY not to stress (that's tricky I know), nurse them together and snack when they eat.

Melissa - posted on 11/29/2009

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Hi! Congratulations on your twins!

Yes, you really can produce enough milk to breastfeed your twins. My twins are thirteen months old and were exclusively breastfed! they are still breastfeeding, and I never needed to supplement with formula.

My first advice to you is to stop supplementing after a feeding, if possible. Already your supply is going to be low because they are eating more than you are producing. Your body works on supply/demand. If your babies are eating from a bottle after you nurse them, your body doesn't know they needed the extra milk, so it doesn't know to make more at the next feeding. When you first start doing this, it may seem like you have to feed more, but it will work out.

As for increasing your supply, I contacted my lactation consultant when I returned to work. My babies were two months old when I went back to teaching full time, and my supply diminished very quickly when I started pumping twice a day. She recommended Reglan, which you can get from your OB/GYN. In her opinion, becuase I was breastfeeding twins, Fenugreek wouldn't be enough.

My boys would breastfeed for about 30-40 minutes each time (if you're not already tandem feeding, I HIGHLY recommend it!). It would measure out to about 2 oz at that age, not a whole lot more.

You can do it! It is overwhelming, and exhausting, but if you are able to, breastfeeding is so worth it. Good luck to you!

Ronise - posted on 11/28/2009

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I successfully nursed my boys for 30 months and also took Domperidone for a while. I agree with the others that you need to drink mass quantities of water, eat well and rest as much as you can. I highly recommend the EZ 2 Nurse pillow; it was a lifesaver!

Alda - posted on 11/25/2009

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I could never breastfeed as my girls were born at 28 weeks, but I expressed for 6 months and had a frozen supply. I never had a huge amount (it took 30 minutes to express 100ml), but my one DD couldn't tolerate breast milk anyway as she had a stoma. My milk suddenly reduced drastically and my doctor prescribed Domperidone. They are motion sickness tablets with a side effect of increasing lactation. That helped a lot and I was able to express for a further month before I stopped. But I agree with the others - the best way to increase your supply is to breastfeed more often.

[deleted account]

Mother's Milk helped a little bit. I ate oatmeal for breakfast as often as I could stomach it. I would also eat oatmeal cookies because that we easier to go down. :o) I would have half of a Smirnoff Ice every other day and that would help also. I think the biggest thing really was getting rest and drinking a lot of water. I know it's so hard to get rest but try and do what you can. I was able to exclusively breast feed till the twins were 14 months. I also went back to work when the twins were 6 weeks old. It can be done.

Erika - posted on 11/20/2009

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First I would say great job for breastfeeding your twins. I breastfed my twin girls and son for 15 months. You CAN do it. I agree with Rena's post in that you really should try to exclusively bring them to breast to feed right now. That should get your milk supply adjusted. To cut down on time I ALWAYS breastfed them both at the same time. When one would wake I woke the other to feed. This really cut down on the time I spent on feedings.



Every baby is different at how much milk they need so I can't say for sure how much they ate at a feeding. Also they all take in different amounts because of how they nurse. One of my girls was always done before the other and then I would burp her while the other was still latched on. The EZ2Nurse pillow from double blessings website made this MUCH easier.



Tea worked for me at times when my supply was low. Make sure you are taking in enough calories. Don't give up...you can do it!

Victoria - posted on 11/20/2009

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Hi, I never had enough milk for two, no matter how much I pumped. In the begining I felt like my life was all about my breasts and how much milk came from them. I tried fenugreek tea too. It helped some. Also, Earth Mama, Angel Baby makes a good Mother's Milk organic tea. I can't tell you what to do, but for me the stress wasn't worth it. I began supplimenting breast with formula. I did that for 1 year. So they did get breast milk for one solid year. Not every feeding, but accumulatively, I think it made a difference. They never had ear infections, etc. Good luck!

Rena - posted on 11/20/2009

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your twins will not take as much of the milk from your breast nearly as fast as they will from a bottle. try to feed them exclusively at the breast, and then only offer formula if they are really wanting. This will automatically increase your milk production. I personally cannot pump out as much milk as the babies can stimulate at the breast. It will only take a few days to catch up (like a growth spurt would). You definitely can produce enough (more than enough) for both of your babies. I am currently breastfeeding my 9 week old twins and can supplement here and there with no effects to my supply. You will probably have to nurse them more often for a few days until your supply increases. Make sure you are drinking TONS of water and eating frequently! Good luck to you

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