Feeding frustrations - help! suggestions anyone?!

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-11-2009
Feeding frustrations - help! suggestions anyone?!
20
Fri, 07-15-2011 - 6:49pm

The AFM Update on the feeding situation... if anyone has any thoughts, suggestions, encouragement etc. I'd love to hear!

Where we're at:

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-01-2005
Tue, 07-19-2011 - 7:53pm
I just want to suggest that you not limit their time at the breast...one of the biggest booby traps is the idea that you only need to nurse 20 minutes (10 minutes each side) and then not nurse again for 1-3 hours. Nurse often and on demand and dont limit them. Following the 20 minute rule will likely lead to supply problems and it sounds like it is frustrating for you when you have to pump right after. Also if they are refusing a top up or are sleepy after a feed, maybe just let them sleep or not do the top up. Remember too, wet and dirty diapers are the best indicator of how the baby is doing, not weight gain.

The Breastfeeding/Lactation consultant board here on IV Is fantastic and I would suggest posting over there for more ideas. They have a IBCLC that posts on a regular basis as well as other LLL moms and nursing moms. Good luck!!

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iVillage Member
Registered: 08-20-2009
Tue, 07-19-2011 - 9:49pm

Lilypie Maternity tickers


May Baby

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iVillage Member
Registered: 09-12-2008
Tue, 07-19-2011 - 10:22pm
timetotry1 wrote:

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-29-2008
Tue, 07-19-2011 - 10:27pm
I just remembered another thing I used to do for reassurance with Evan when I was unsure if he was getting enough breastmilk--I bought a baby scale and weighed him before and after each feeding (and then topped him off if he hadn't eaten enough). Many LCs have scales so you could weigh each girl before and after to get an idea of what they're getting and go from there (or buy your own scale the way I did).
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-16-2008
Wed, 07-20-2011 - 9:39am
Andi--

I second what Andrea said; you have to forget what the LC told you. I had one tell me right after Peter was born that I would always have to pump one side because the nipple was too big. I wound up exclusively pumping for a month because it freaked me out. I found another LC to help me get him back on the breast, and that worked.

So, to build supply...this is what helped me when we had the two month period when Peter quit gaining:
1. Nurse as much as he wanted when we were together (I hang out topless as long as we don't have/aren't expecting company). If he wants even just a quick drink, he has easy access this way. I've continued this for the last six months.
2. Pump more often. It's different since I'm at work, but I was pumping every two hours. This is more realistic to how a breastfed baby eats. Going four hours will hurt your supply. I know it's tough to pump this much with two babies, so even changing up the schedule and nursing every two hours would help.
3. Offer bottles one oz at a time, and pace the bottles. This means holding them more upright and letting them suckle a few moments, then removing the nipple for a few seconds. And since bottles flow so fast, offering small amounts at a time makes it easier to see when they are full.
4. I take domperidone, 90mg a day. Many OBs won't give an RX for this (mine won't), but I order it from New Zealand. PM me if you want information. It's bought me several oz of pumping output a day, and we went from supplementing with 8-10oz of formula every day to only needing 2oz on daycare days.

I know how hard it is, and how hard it is to reach out. Please PM me if you need to talk/vent. I don't know preemies, and I don't know girls, but I know how hard feeding can be. I spent a lot of time in tears that I was failing my baby, and it's only been recently that I've calmed down and come to terms with doing the best I can do.

:)
by sara photo sigbysara.jpg
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-04-2003
Wed, 07-20-2011 - 10:53am
That's great advice Ruby. When Theodore was small (under 3 months), he would nurse for 40 minutes or longer at a time.
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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-01-2005
Wed, 07-20-2011 - 5:35pm

Oh my gosh, I just remember the marathons...40 minutes to 3 or 4 hours.

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Avatar for berry81
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-27-2008
Wed, 07-20-2011 - 10:44pm
Wow Andi, you are a rockstar mama - seriously, it sounds like you are doing everything right! And to have TWINS who were born early to be great BFers is amazing in itself. So, kudos to you :) You have gotten so much great advice already, so I won't add much, but I would definitely agree that confidence and belief in your body is one of the most important things in the BFing relationship. So many women doubt their milk supply, their ability to "keep up", wondering how much baby is getting... it can turn into a vicious cycle (and stranger's/family member's/society's comments do not help!!). Forget what that mean old LC said. Oh, and I think the baby scale was a great buy to help you feel better about how much they are gaining. KUP!!

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-17-2007
Sat, 07-23-2011 - 11:26am

It sounds like you've gotten great advice and are doing a great job, so I won't give you any more except to say trust your milk supply (easier said than done, I know) and IGNORE whoever talked about your boob shape. I hate when people say things like that--it's only discouraging to new moms. I had a NICU nurse tell me that it was okay if I couldn't breastfeed, she couldn't either, and I could always try with my next child. This was after one of the less-than-successful "nursing a preemie" feeds of the beginning and I wanted to punch her. It only made me more determined, and here I am 11 months later. You can do it! :)

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iVillage Member
Registered: 02-11-2009
Sat, 07-23-2011 - 8:27pm

Thank you all for your encouragement and suggestions! You all are a wealthy of experience and information, it's been so helpful!!

We're still muddling through with a weird mix of BF'ing, pumping and supplementing with formula, but I did buy a baby scale and some supplements, am pumping more frequently and doing little pumping tricks (power pumping, compressions, etc), and trying to nurse them more. I am going to continue to try, but am working on accepting whatever the outcome may be.

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