I am having issues with my son's needs with breastmilk. He is 4 months & is taking up to 6oz every 2-3 hrs. I only produce 5-6 oz every 4 hours by pumping. I am trying the fenugreek herbal stuff but its not helping much. I want to try to give him breastmilk up to 6mo to 1yr but I can't keep up with his needs. I have even tried drinking lots of fluids. Is there anything else I can do???

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Janine - posted on 01/17/2009

38

27

4

I am currently nursing 8 month old twins.  These are baby #4 & #5 for me.  I nursed all of my babies untill 12 months, and I have nursed the twins from the start.  My twins won't even take a bottle.  Speaking form experience, your body will produce what your baby needs.  Pumping and having the baby nurse are two different stimulants for your body and will produce different amounts of milk.  I suggest that you stop pumping for a while and just nurse so your body will start to produce what your baby needs.  At 4 months your baby should not need anything but breast milk.  Keep drinking lots and remember to increase your calorie intake by almost 1000 a day to keep up the milk supply.  Be relaxed about it, stressing out will only make it harder for your body to produce milk.  Enjoy your new baby!

Carla - posted on 01/17/2009

3

42

0

Are you only pumping? If so, it's not the same as nursing. Your body should adjust to his needs if you nurse him regularly and then maybe pump afterward. Babies suck with a let down effect that brings in more milk than pumping does. A lot of women find that they dry up with just pumping or pumping more than nursing.

Chelsey - posted on 01/17/2009

167

29

22

Hi My son is about 4 months also. First  I would like to ask what is the "fenugreek greek herbal stuff"?  Is it supposed to help milk production? Anyway my son Alex was doing well and sleeping 8-9 hours through the night until about 3 weeks ago and like you I just was not keeping up breastfeeding. I was even giving him 4-6 ounces of formula on top of breast feeding at night before putting him to sleep. So when I was talking to my mother she mentioned that one of my cousins was started on solids at a very early age (2 months).  About a week ago I went out and got the rice pablum and mixed 2 tsp with my breastmilk and he slept 8 1\2 hours that night. He is now up to 1 tbsp at night and 2tsp in the morning. He just loves it and he is not so hungry. If you feel more comfortable you could talk to your doctor about that. And you can still continue to breastfeed him as long as you want, at least the pablum will stick with him a little longer.  I just want to add that you know your son best and I knew that mine was ready I also read about feeding solids in the book 'What to Expect the First Year' it's a great resource.



I hope this helped good luck with that. 

Tara - posted on 01/17/2009

4

3

0

Hello i have just joined this site and see your need for help , I am breast feeding my 12 week old baby he loves to be on me all the time like your baby with you as a mum of 3 i new it was time to introduce him to baby rice that was 2 weeks ago now. He is now feeding from me less and sleeps better of the night two i put him down at 9.00pm and he gets up at 6.00am. If you do not feel happy about weaning him dont be concerned that he is not getting anoth mik he is even though you cant express more than 6oz  you do have breast milk all the time the baby can get it from you all the time a brest pump cant. I hope this has been helpful to you feel free to contact back.

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

78 Comments

View replies by

Lezlie - posted on 01/19/2009

2

14

0

Something that worked for me was using the prescription called "Domperidone", you take it a couple times a day and it increases your milk supply. Maybe ask you doctor if that is something that you would wanna try!

Jill - posted on 01/19/2009

4

5

0

if you're looking to ONLY breastfeed, i suggest leaving him on each breast as long as possible. Nipple stimulation increases your milk supply.

Jill - posted on 01/19/2009

4

5

0

if you're looking to ONLY breastfeed, i suggest leaving him on each breast as long as possible. Nipple stimulation increases your milk supply.

Bronnie - posted on 01/19/2009

7

19

0

i had the same problem with my son @ 1 wk old , i gave him formula evey second feed .    it doesnt hurt bub at all and it helped me so much, as i went from a upset baby boy up every hr, hungry to  a happy baby boy who slept for hrs



 

User - posted on 01/19/2009

1

18

0

You could always contact your OBGYN about putting you on Reglan. It's usually used for heartburn but has a side effect of increased milk production. I tried this, there are two side effects, fatigue and moodiness. But I have to say it does work, at least for me it did.

User - posted on 01/19/2009

1

0

0

I've been there! I ended up having to get a prescription of Domperidone to meet my son's nursing needs but here are strong herbs you could try first (in combination with pumping more often, 6-7 times a day). Mother's Love has several remedies I've heard good things about. Google Jack Newman -- he has several suggestions for increasing milk supply -- including helpful videos.

Lysa - posted on 01/19/2009

8

19

1

I had both of mine on solids at 3 months.  Try baby rice to start with then puree fruit like bananas.  It will go down really well.

Lysa - posted on 01/19/2009

8

19

1

I had both of mine on solids at 3 months.  Try baby rice to start with then puree fruit like bananas.  It will go down really well.

Lysa - posted on 01/19/2009

8

19

1

I had both of mine on solids at 3 months.  Try baby rice to start with then puree fruit like bananas.  It will go down really well.

Janelle - posted on 01/19/2009

11

80

0

I have heard and find it to be true that your supply is ready to go again in an hour.. I would increase your pumping. If you are getting 5-6 oz every 4 hours, try every 2 hours and see what you can get...I have to pump throughout the day (work) and I can still get at least 4 oz if i go every hour...not sure if you are pumping exclusively or not... I have also heard that you are actually producing any where from 2-5 more oz. then you pump.. if that helps at all>\?

Ashley - posted on 01/19/2009

1

4

0

I had the same problem; I lost 35 pounds in a matter of 4 weeks with my daughter. The fenugreek helped a little, but I just couldn't eat enough to keep up with her needs. It was a big letdown for me, but after we started bottle feeding, I felt a ton of relief. Try eating something every 2 hours or so, and if it comes down to formula feeding, don't feel like a failure. Not all of us are cows, and while breastmilk is definitely best, you've done everything you know how to do the best for your baby. Either way, I promise it will be okay, and so will he.

Lidia - posted on 01/19/2009

45

25

4

Remember, as mentioned in my post above, if you supplement with formula, you will actually make the problem worse, as your milk production will decrease the more you supplement. If you truly want your baby to take only breastmilk and not wean, then make sure your baby nurses often and from both breasts, and don't supplement. This will cause your milk supply to increase. Of course, if you are pregnant, then it is possible that you won't be able to increase your supply, in which case you will need to talk to your baby's doctor for more information. Remember- the first time you give your baby anything but breastmilk, you have begun the weaning process. Please be sure you are comfortable with this before you do it, since it can be much harder to go back once you have started supplementing.

Angela - posted on 01/19/2009

25

15

2

How much Fenugreek are you taking? You need like 6000 mg a day. I also used something called MuMa Milkstream from New Roots Herbal. It contains Fennel seed, Blessed Thistle herb, Raspberry leaf, Burdock root, and Red Clover blossom with grain alcohol. The max dosage is 60 drops 3X/day. I used the max. I also had something from the doc called Domperidone. It's for stomach problems (which I don't and didn't have), but it has the wonderful side effect of breast milk production. I found the herbs more helpful than the pharmaceutical means, but I used all of them at the same time. I drank tonnes of water too. I still couldn't keep up with my daughter, so I topped up with formula. Babies process breastmilk easier than formula, so they need more volume to stay full. Try to put him on the breast whenever you can. The more he demands, the more you'll produce. If he's still hungry when he's finished with the breast top up with a couple oz of formula. I just made my formula on demand. That way I didn't waste formula. You'll find that getting some sleep whenever he goes down will help our body to recover from the stresses of being exhausted (tired), and will help with breastmilk production. I found the more tired I was, the less milk I produced no matter how much water I drank, and supplements that I took that day. I managed to hang in there until 8 mos when she learned how to shake ner head, "no, no, no", and refused it outright everytime I offered her the breast. Good luck!

Jarah - posted on 01/19/2009

3

20

0

Start rice cereal to fill him up more. I have a 5 month daughter and around 4 mos she seemed hungrier and wanted more. Which they say is common when they go through growth spurts.

Jill - posted on 01/19/2009

73

20

3

I understand your frustration. I hated breastfeeding - it didn't hurt and I understood the whole supply and demand thing - I hated it because it caused me stress. If I didn't feel like I was producing enough then I stressed. I was getting advice every which way and trying everything and I couldn't increase my supply ->due to the stress I put on myself. There are things that may help you like the fenugreek and blessed thistle, but remember, it is a natural thing so if you really want to stick with it, then do the natural thing and feed more. Give yourself some time and you'll notice your milk supply increasing. When that happens, your body will stress less and it'll be okay. But if it doesn't happen, it is not a terrible thing. Your baby has gotten 4 months of breastmilk and that is fantastic!

Gina - posted on 01/19/2009

15

20

3

I took something called Reglan (not sure if this is how it's spelled) but I got it from the doctor and it worked like a charm. My sister also used it. It's used for something else too (don't remember what) but it increases your milk supply. I was able to breast feed for 8.5 months (suppl;emented with cereal as well). Good luck!!

Shannon - posted on 01/18/2009

7

16

0

I use the tea that they sell at Babies R Us.  You have to follow the directions, but it works pretty good if you do.  I would also suggest offering formula after your feeding to supplement.  If he is 4 months and still hungry maybe you should start rice cereal if you havent already.

Ann - posted on 01/18/2009

15

7

0

Don't understand Kristina G's comment about not producing milk due to having a C-section. Who says that has any impact on milk production? Has anyone else heard of this? Of my 3 children, the C-section child had the most milk. He was my first and I was able to rest more not running around after the others.

[deleted account]

You've got lots of good advice here, but I wanted to add my 2 cents.



Nurse often. After nursing, pump (if your baby will let you). This sends a message to your breasts that you need to provide more milk. The best way to make more milk is to empty your breasts as much as you can and as often as you can. Don't rely on what you express as a measure for what your baby takes in (unless you are exclusively pumping).



I also wasn't providing enough for my son in the early days because I had a c-section. There is a prescription you can take called Motillium (pharmaceutical name is domperidone). It's normally for people with stomach upsets after eating, but it's been found to increase milk supply in lactating women. It's harmless and doesn't pass into breastmilk.You can get it by prescription in Canada, though you may have trouble getting it in the US or UK. If you can find any of the breastfeeding books by Jack Newman, MD, you will find info on Motillium and great tips on producing more milk.



Good luck! And stay well hydrated and sleep as much as possible. And take warm showers before feeding if possible. Okay... that's all from me ;)



 

Lidia - posted on 01/18/2009

45

25

4

It has been said by others, but here it is again: nurse, nurse, nurse! The more you nurse, the more your body will produce. Remember that the amount your baby will suckle at the breast is not the same as the amount you can get with a pump, regardless of how good the pump is. To help with milk production, have lots of skin to skin contact with your baby. Supplementing with formula could be a downward cycle, as the more formula your baby drinks, the less he/she will breastfeed, and the less you will produce, causing you to supplement even more with formula. If you decide to do this, you should come to terms first with the very real possibility that your baby might wean earlier than you would have liked.



Some have advised starting a bit of rice cereal. My advice to you would be please don't give your baby any solids (including rice cereal) until 6 months. Their tiny tummies are not equipped to effectively digest anything but breastmilk until that age, and any additional food you give them takes away from the breastmilk they should receive. (There are several signs you should look for when deciding whether your baby is ready to eat solid foods. Check out this website from LLL International, the recognized authority on breastfeeding: http://www.llli.org/FAQ/solids.html )



Another page on the LLL site deals with milk supply: http://www.llli.org/NB/NBmilksupplyissue...



I recommend you contact your local La Leche League leader (who answers calls from any breastfeeding mom in your community) for some expert advice.



Hope this helps! Good luck! :)

Evamarie - posted on 01/18/2009

15

34

0

hi. i exclusively pumped for 6 months...and my baby was sleeping through the night at 4 weeks! in the morning, try pumping every two hours, then go to every three. the more you pump, the more you produce. because you are pumping more often, you will begin to have more milk to give him.

Jenifer - posted on 01/18/2009

6

10

2

Are you using a double pump? I found with my 3rd child that I was having trouble producing enough for his needs despite all of my efforts. When I had #4, I invested in a really nice double Medela pump and it was well worth the $350, some insurances will even cover some of the cost now. I found that pumping a minute or two beyond the milk coming out helped also. Like the previous posters have said, supply=demand. By pumping an extra minute or so, your body realizes it has more need and will begin to produce more. Also, drink, drink, drink, lots of WATER. You have to keep your self hydrated to continue producing adequate milk. Also, your child is only 4 months, he doesn't require anything more than your breastmilk. You shouldn't really start introducing cereal and things until he can be spoon fed, introducing foods too soon can introduce food allergies. Some doctors believe a baby only needs breastmilk until 9 months. GOOD LUCK and RELAX, that is the best medicine.

[deleted account]

Yes, there is! I was in the same boat when my little guy was a newborn, and tried everything! The only thing that actually worked, and worked perfectly, was a perscription called Dom Peridon. There is some controversy around it, but it's bogus. You can only get it at a compound pharmacy (one that makes their own) but it is SO worth it! Good luck!

[deleted account]

Yes, there is! I was in the same boat when my little guy was a newborn, and tried everything! The only thing that actually worked, and worked perfectly, was a perscription called Dom Peridon. There is some controversy around it, but it's bogus. You can only get it at a compound pharmacy (one that makes their own) but it is SO worth it! Good luck!

Shuron - posted on 01/18/2009

15

14

0

i pumped but didnt breast feed. I had an issue with supply but i found that holding her was a huge help. i also used cereal to keep her full longer as some of the moms have suggested. if all else fails formula really is a not a bad option. many healthy kids have only been formula fed.

Julianna - posted on 01/18/2009

85

11

10

Quoting Affrikka:



Needless to say that I am having this same problem and my son is also 6mths.  He feeds every 2-3 hours and is only getting like 4 oz of breastmilk and he only drinks any where from 4-6oz bottle daily.  I would love to continue to breastfeed also but I can not meet the supply and demand for him.





Again, it is not your unability to meet his demands. Mostly when babies nurse and nurse when there is no more milk they are training your body to produce more milk when they need it which will come soon. But if you don't let them nurse when you are empty your body won't compensate and make more milk. 



Have faith in you bodies ladies, and your babies' instincts! 

Julianna - posted on 01/18/2009

85

11

10

He is simply building up your milk supply. He nurses when there is no milk to trigger your body to learn to make more milk. His body is anticipating a growth spurt and he is getting your body ready for it too. Don't worry about it, just let him nurse.

Affrikka - posted on 01/18/2009

1

0

0

Needless to say that I am having this same problem and my son is also 6mths.  He feeds every 2-3 hours and is only getting like 4 oz of breastmilk and he only drinks any where from 4-6oz bottle daily.  I would love to continue to breastfeed also but I can not meet the supply and demand for him.

[deleted account]

I pumped for a year (pumped only because my ds had sucking issues and he couldn't do it) so I know it can be done. This is obvious, but make sure you are drinking enough. I find myself not drinking alot (I'm pumping again due to a very lazy baby and too big of nipples) and when I don't drink enough, my production is low. Also, barley is supposed to help increase production.

HTH,
alicia

SooMee - posted on 01/18/2009

8

11

2

One thing I would definitely advise is that you would TRY not to stress out about this.

I know I was worried with my little one that I wasn't producing enough. I can tell you though your body will make more than enough to meet the demands. I used to make sure of this by pumping first then letting my little one feed. When i do feed her without pumping first, I didn't feel like all drained of milk. Also, I noticed that feeding her is different from pumping completely. After she feeds, I used to squeeze just a little to make sure there is enough milk still, which thankfully there was.

Andrea - posted on 01/18/2009

2

16

0

I nursed all three of my children until they were a year old and a little beyond.  I only fed by breast unless I was away from them and had to pump, but it sounds like you express and then bottle feed.  I would just suggest upping your pumping to every 2-3 hours and then you will begin to produce more-trust me!  It is all about supply and demand.  Keep drinking lots of fluids too!

Melissa - posted on 01/18/2009

1

0

0

I did a couple of things that seemed to help - Mother's milk is available as a tincture or in capsule form and you can buy it at Whole Foods or online. It's a combo of many herbs, including fenugreen and thistle. However, the thing that produced the best results for me was Reglan. It's a prescription drug used to treat reflux issues, i believe, but it has the side effect of increasing milk production. I asked my ob about it and she had even taken it herself to boost milk production. I can honestly say it helped the most of anything, and found that I got an extra ounce or so when I pumped. Small, but it can make a difference. You have to take it regularly and I want to say it's like 4 tablets a day - a bit of a pain to remember, but if you stay on track you'll see results. We always had to supplement with formula, but found a good happy medium. Good luck - I know it's tough! :)

[deleted account]

Be carefull when introducing formula - that will only make your milk supply decrease. Hopefully, your body will catch up. Pump everytime he eats! Or be sure he eats from the breast. SOmetimes, it takes a couple of days for you to catch up with his needs. It is probably a growth spurt and you will both even out, soon. Good luck!

Ann - posted on 01/18/2009

15

7

0

I had a problem early with all 3 of mine and ended up perservering. I tried the Fenugreek the second time. Didn't really help. I would stop pumping and just feed as often as possible to get your supply up. Are you really active? I always found I had to slow down. Stress is a big factor. We went on a 3 week driving holiday when Ben was 3 months and I'd never had so much milk. This was because I was just sitting and relaxing. It's hard to do at home especially when you have other children. I found it got easier at around 4 and a half months and my babies got fatter. I found feeding enjoyable around this time. They were not fat babies before that. Also, your baby may just be a "sucker" and is not always hungry. Try a dummy. This worked for my first. Good luck. Hang in there.

Elaina - posted on 01/18/2009

16

17

2

Alcohol from beer does get into your milk.  But I have a beer a day and successfully breastfeed my 3 month old.



If you are going the beer route try a low alcohol stout, more malt.  It is the malt in beer that helps your body produce milk.  For and n/a way try Malta drinks, quite yummy too.

[deleted account]

Are you only pumping??  I fed my 3rd child till he was 12 months old but he was always better at getting the milk out than I was - so when I needed him to have a bottle - I had to use formula.  

Kandi - posted on 01/18/2009

1

8

0

Breastmilk is a supply & demand relationship.
I think your first problem is that he's eating every 2-3 hours and you're only pumping every 4. The more you pump, themore milk you're going to have.
While drinking more doesn't make you produce more, it does help replenish the fluids you're losing from producing breastmilk.

You need to (1) pump more often.. (I know this isn't easy... trust me... you feel like you're doing it all the time anyway.. but if you really want to only give him breastmilk you've got to start pumping more so that your body will start to produce more milk. Plus, if you're pumping extra, then you'll have it for storage. After I quit breastfeeding (and I solely pumped and gave him a bottle) then my son was able to still enjoy weeks of breastmilk and I didn't have to do any work. It was nice!
Beware: when my son started taking formula he didn't seem to like it. After I quit pumping. I gave him formula before bed and breastmilk during the day. He had an obvious preference for breastmilk. But, he got past that and he drinks his formula just fine.

But, really, in short..... pump more. trust me. :)

Kelly - posted on 01/18/2009

7

9

0

Don't add cereal to the milk.  The whole point of cereal is to start the baby learning how to eat (open, swallow).  If you feed him cereal, do it during meal time so he starts learning how to eat.   Pump after you nurse him - every time.  It's a headache, but it works.  Pump at least a couple minutes past the point that you're pumping any milk.  (If you supplement with formula, it's that much harder for your body to keep up.)  It'll take a little while for your body to respond, so be patient.  Good luck!!

Kelly - posted on 01/18/2009

7

9

0

Don't add cereal to the milk.  The whole point of cereal is to start the baby learning how to eat (open, swallow).  If you feed him cereal, do it during meal time so he starts learning how to eat.   Pump after you nurse him - every time.  It's a headache, but it works.  Pump at least a couple minutes past the point that you're pumping any milk.  (If you supplement with formula, it's that much harder for your body to keep up.)  It'll take a little while for your body to respond, so be patient.  Good luck!!

Kelly - posted on 01/18/2009

7

9

0

Don't add cereal to the milk.  The whole point of cereal is to start the baby learning how to eat (open, swallow).  If you feed him cereal, do it during meal time so he starts learning how to eat.   Pump after you nurse him - every time.  It's a headache, but it works.  Pump at least a couple minutes past the point that you're pumping any milk.  (If you supplement with formula, it's that much harder for your body to keep up.)  It'll take a little while for your body to respond, so be patient.  Good luck!!

Michelle - posted on 01/18/2009

1

30

0

my son was wanting more than i could produce when i was brestfeading him and he ran me dry one time and i never got the brest milk back so i would suggest supplementing him on some formula if u want to give him ur brest milk too...

Kate - posted on 01/18/2009

1

13

0

Sometimes your body can't keep up, especially when your baby is eating so much in a sitting. This happened to me. My daughter never did the 2 oz thing. If you ahve a pump sometimes it helps to pump in between. Then your bosy will think you need more and make more.

Amanda - posted on 01/18/2009

2,559

3

365

Skipping a feeding or adding cereal will only decrease your supply in the long run.



Demand = Supply. Remove the demand and there will be no supply. Eat well, keep hydrated, reduce stress, use an herbal or prescriped medication, try the beer,  pump more or feed more, and your supply will surely go up.

Tara - posted on 01/18/2009

4

3

0

o and a large glass of cold full fat milk when i get up and before i go to bed. My little man is so content he has baby rice twice a day and 4 feds on me lasting around 30mins a time some times less so i have to express to release the presure on me and that is what i make his rice up with.

Tara - posted on 01/18/2009

4

3

0

i personally would try weaning the baby on some baby rice skip a breast fed feed then express 2 hours later you will find you will express more as the baby has skiped a fed and should find that he is more contended in himself. Also your eating pattern depends on your milk to i find that eating 3 meals a day is good but i do fed my baby better if dont do the 3 meals and eat as little but more oftern ie snack bars and fruit not so much junk food and good size dinner

Toni - posted on 01/17/2009

1

8

0

My doctor recently prescribed metachlopromide to help me increase my supply , it definately helps. Also you could try nursing him on onre side while you pump the other nursing will help stimulate you more than the pump. Good luck

Jen - posted on 01/17/2009

2

22

0

Are you taking blessed thistle with the fenugreek? My lactation specialist told me I need to take the two together three times a day. I believe the blessed thistle helps the fenugreek work or something like that. Pumping after every feeding will also help build up your supply.

[deleted account]

Hi! I had the same problem with my son when he was 4 months old. The one big mistake I made with him was trying to supplement with formula. My supply never caught up. The only way to meet his demand is to keep pumping, possibly more frequently, to stay with his demand. You might want to contact a lactation consultant at your local hospital or maybe La Leche League to see if they can give you advice. It's so worth the effort to keep your son on breastmilk. Good luck to you - I hope you find the solution you need!

Amanda - posted on 01/17/2009

9

10

0

I had the same problem and when I talked to the lactation consultant at our hospital she said to nurse and then pump right after my baby was done nursing. This gives your body the feeling that it needs to make more milk. I managed to nurse till ten months and my baby was a preemie. I did this often especially when we knew she was or should be hitting agrowth spurt because they tend to eat a lot more at those times. She said to drink lots of fluids, eat good foods, and then pump after he eats. Hopefully this will help. It helped us.

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms