Nursing while pregnant - OB wants me to me to stop.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-21-2005
Nursing while pregnant - OB wants me to me to stop.
8
Mon, 10-03-2011 - 1:17pm

And I say NO FREAKIN' WAY!! And not just wean off, she wants me to quite cold turkey! ugh.

I told her that many others do it successfully and I plan to as well. I'm average weight, healthy in general, this is my 5th pregnncy and I've no complications or early labor issues with any of my others.

I've contacted my local lactation services but have yet to hear back from them. What I'm most concerned with is making sure I'm supplying my body with as much as I can to support both a pregnancy and my 10 month old. I'm a water drinker and always drink enough but have tried to increase my intake by 16-24 oz at least a day. While pregnant, I have veggie aversions but try to stomach them as I can. I have been taking prenatal vitamins for nearly 20 months now but wondering if I should add additional supplements or calcium.

I'd like to keep nursing Lucas until he's at least a year old if my supply will hang in that long. I have no plans to tandem nurse but if he's still nursing in April when the baby is born, I will consider it though the idea doesn't really excite me.

What advice could you give me?

sig2-sm

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-10-2008
Heidi, good for you for knowing that this didn't seem quite right. Unless you're in some kind of high risk or preterm labor situation, there is no need for you to wean simply because you're pregnant. In a normal healthy pregnancy, breastfeeding poses no danger to the developing fetus or the mother. Did the dr. give you any specific reason why? I'm guessing she tells mothers this across the board? And if so, UGH!

Here's some good reading material about nursing while pregnant: http://www.kellymom.com/nursingtwo/faq/index.html. If you can, I'd also highly recommend picking up a copy of the book "Adventures in Tandem Nursing" by Hilary Flower. It has lots of good information about nursing during pregnancy as well as tandem nursing.

It's certainly possible that your supply may dip because of pregnancy hormones. It dips right away for some women and not until later on for others. Some women notice the supply dip very much and others hardly notice. Because your little one is still quite small, keep a close eye on wet diapers and weight gain to make sure everything is still on track and he's still getting enough.

As long as you're drinking enough and eating a decent varied diet, your body will do just fine producing adequate nutrition for the new baby, the existing baby and you. Good for you listening to your gut to know you didn't need to wean!!
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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-21-2005
My docs only 'reason' was that nursing takes too many calories away from me and the internal baby. I told her I'm willing to wait at least another month and see if my weight gain or the baby's growth or even my son's weight shows any signs that I'm not getting enough and that continued nursing may be effecting things. I just don't understand why she's be so flat out against it without any other reasons.

I do have Crohn's Disease and sometimes my absorption of certain things are in question [after having 2 bowel resections, losing a total of 22 inches of small intestine] but I have had Crohn's since I was 11 years old and have supported all my pregnancies just fine and without any complications.

I do gain very little to no weight until I'm about 16 weeks, she freaked out on me about that with my last pregnancy, saying I needed to eat more and see a nutritionist. I proved her wrong, told her that's how my body is, and still gained 40 pounds by the end. She's not outwardly rude, just very matter of fact. I love her for so many other reasons and am just disappointed that she and I do not stand anywhere close on this issue.

My 10 month old eats plenty of solid foods now so I'm not really concerned about him needing so much nutrition from me to maintain his weight and growth. He still nurses plenty and I just hope my supply keeps up enough to continue awhile longer. It's not tanked yet and I am thankful for that.

Thanks for your kind words and your input, I really appreciate it!
sig2-sm

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-21-2004
Just don't quit, and if your ob asks at your next visit you can either lie or explain to him that you feel it's best to continue. My ob also wanted me to stop BFing my ODS while I was pregnant, because "it's hard to feed 3." Hello!? Women have twins and triplets all the time and somehow they all manage! (I did end up ending the nursing relationship shortly after that because I couldn't stand the nipple pain, but my ODS was 15.5mos and I was 10.5wks along and it was MY choice.) It sounds like you are doing everything you can to make sure both babies get everything they need. Keep up the good work!
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iVillage Member
Registered: 12-21-2009

I doubt there is a clear cut researched answer for breastfeeding through a pregnancy when you have Crohn's. I think it may be worth discussion with your GI doctor and it's never a bad idea to see a nutritionist when you have Crohn's and are pregnant.

However, it's my understanding that Crohn's often settles down during a pregnancy. What do you notice with your own body? Additionally, there are ways to test parts of your nutritional status and ways to supplement your nutrition if necessary. For example you can test for the B and D vitamins and iron in your blood easily enough if the doctor is concerned. Also, working with a nutritionist might help to reassure the doctor that you are infact taking in enough calories to compensate for the pregnancy, breastfeeding and reduced ability to absorb nutrients.

I think each case is likely very individual so probably

Kathy Kuhn IBCLC ivillage lactation consultant Grammy to Brennan, Elias, Elianna, Tahlia, Makenna, Maura, Silas, and Charlotte

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-21-2005
yes, I don't want to have to quit just because my doc seems to think it takes too many calories. And I totally agree about feeding multiples - either internal or nursing after their born. The body just compensates! If there were to be an issue in any of our growths, I would reconsider and make adjustments for sure.

Thanks!
sig2-sm

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-21-2005
My Crohn's isn't currently an issue. I've been in remission for 14 years and med free for 13.5. I haven't even seen my GI in 12 years! My GP, who is also my OB and the doctor who said this to me, manages any GI issues I might have, which is only questions, follow up colonoscopies and general bloodwork. Nothing has been an issue in all these years. And when she told me to stop nursing, she didn't even mention the Crohn's, only the calories needed and that I wouldn't be able to keep up. pfft.

Am I the only weird one who nurses off one breast only? My right one always engorges just fine and maintains a good milk supply for about 3 months and then it dwindles out. There is still milk there, but the size difference in my breasts is astounding. I call them "snack" and "buffet". It has happened with all of my babies, despite always trying to nurse on the right side most often and pumping it to help keep supply up. It just fails. :)

I'm quite certain things will be just fine. I did speak with the lactation lady yesterday and she suggested I speak to the nutritionist just to be extra on top of everything and I will be doing that soon. At least then my doctor can't say I'm not doing all that I can or that I'm just being lazy and wanting to keep nursing. It's what's best for my baby and that's what he gets!

Thanks!
sig2-sm

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-27-2006

Most women have a size and supply discrepancy between breasts.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-21-2005
Thanks Emily!
sig2-sm