Weaning help!

Kimberly - posted on 06/04/2009 ( 7 moms have responded )

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So my twin boys will be 1 year in just over a week (!) and I am in the process of weaning them. I have been exclusively pumping. I started the weaning process 5 weeks ago and have been very gradually ramping down, dropping one pump a week, then shortening the duration and pumped for what I hoped to be the last time on Tuesday.



But now my breasts are incredibly sore and swollen. I have been using cabbage leaves and supportive bras and taking advil. Is there anything else I should be doing? Do I just have to wait it out? Or would it be better to pump just a little bit to relieve the pressure? Does it eventually just go away??



I have a 4 year old and I have no memory at all about weaning him, i.e, what happened with "the girls". I don't think I got engorged, so this is different. But I was nursing with him, and I have been EPing for the twins (at the high point, getting 70+ ounces a day).



The complicating factor is that I am leaving the country on Sunday and was really hoping to be over any complications by then.



All advice appreciated!



Thanks,

Kim

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Suzanne - posted on 06/04/2009

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Hi Kim!



First of all, congratulations to you and your twins! I also breastfed my now 20-month old son until he was a year old, but two of them! Wow.. that is truly awesome.



Okay, so now for the weaning process. I also went about it very gradually, but I never experienced the soreness and swelling that you are going through right now. I suppose the major difference is the sheer amount of milk yours were producing as opposed to mine! However, I did go through severe engorgement early on in the breastfeeding process as well as two bouts of mastitis. So I do understand what you are going through! The cabbage leaves, supportive bra, and Advil are all great.. are you also applying ice packs? I would continue to avoid pumping.. for me, it seems that even when I pump just a little bit, the breast seems to instantly respond by producing more milk. Instead, try expressing milk by hand in the shower or bath.. that really worked wonders for me. Plus, the breasts do not get stimulated to produce more milk when you express by hand. That plus ice packs or cold compresses should really help the swelling go down. Good luck!

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Kimberly - posted on 06/04/2009

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Thanks, everyone. I am inclined to avoid the pump and try expressing in the shower. My body just responds too well to the pump and I'm afraid I will end up just prolonging everything! The odd thing is that when I nursed my son, I would leak regularly, especially if I was overly full. But since I've been only pumping with the twins, I don't leak at all. I have a drawer full of breast pads that I never used! I'm not even sure if I will be able to hand express much, but I am willing to give it a try! If only I weren't at work right now....Ugh! And ice, too. I have not tried that yet. Thanks.

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hi Suzanne, I think shower expressing is a wonderful idea! i had completely forgot about that. but i was a little different, as soon and hot water hit me they would just go on their own.. lol but every drop made me feel better.

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hi there. i think you have a wonderful idea about weaning. when i had began to wean i was the same way. very engorged and it was so painful. i began to take hot showers and use heating pads to help and made my hubby massage my breast..
Would you by chance consider pumping as needed and storing the milk in the freezer? i had done that for a while, so in the morning my daughter would get breast milk and then formula/milk as needed.. just a suggestion? good luck. :o)

Kayleigh - posted on 06/04/2009

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i had that at the beginning, i used breast pads and very tight fitting bras. it seemed to help and at night i had a hot bath which released some milk and the ache. within 2 weeks i'd stopped producing any and my boobs went back to how they were before. i hope this helps.

Kandace - posted on 06/04/2009

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When I weaned my son I had similar problem, I would put cold packs on them, and taking a hot shower helps. I had to keep pumping and cut 1 pumping then 2 pumpings then 3, and so, until you don't get engorged anymore, and the rest will dry up. Thats what I did.

Nikita - posted on 06/04/2009

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ok i had that happened to me before all u can do is keep on pumping. it all depends on weather it is swollen with milk, now if it then yes u have to keep on pumping even if u r weaning them off the body don't know it yet i mean u can keep breast feeding them until they are five.but ice seem to help me out alot. hope this info will help u out some.

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