Forceful Letdown — The Bump
June 2015 Moms

Forceful Letdown

Hi Ladies,
Is anyone else experiencing forceful letdown? I feel like I'm waterboarding my poor girl everytime she goes to feed. I feel like my whole feeding session is one big continual letdown. She screams and cries and can't stay on the breast more than one or two slurps (but really, I could probably drop a whole feed into her mouth). I'm at the point of wanting to exclusively pump, but am going to try and make it to the three month mark before I do that.

I'm starting to block feed, but this is temporarily making it worse for her. I've been advised to drip out the letdown, but there is just so much, I have to pump out up to 2 ounces before she will consider sticking around.

1. Do you/have you experienced the full feeding session as a letdown?

2. How have you dealt with oversupply? Was this a permanent solution?

3. How do you deal with a fiesta hangry baby while you try to drip out the letdown?
OnWayto3

Re: Forceful Letdown

  • I seen a lactation consultant and her suggestion to help with the letdown is to feed reclining back and baby belly to your belly. This will allow baby to control how much he/she takes in as opposed to it just coming out forceful.
    krystleshelmarinamarina
  • btm013btm013
    Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 500 Comments Name Dropper
    member
    This happened to my sister. Her daughter would end up projectile vomiting. She ended up needing to pump.
  • edited July 2015
    This is me. Fortunately my kid seems to handle it. At first he projectile spit up, but he doesn't do that now if I burp him in the middle of a feed and after a feed; only use one boob per feed; and regulate how often he eats (not more than every 30 minutes). I now just have kind of a feel for when he's actually hungry vs comfort nursing, but he projectile spits up if I let him comfort nurse too long. This has only happened in the mornings though.

    My kid just has gotten used to it (though he's also in the 97th percentile for weight, lol!). I just heard on here to pump some off or to let some squirt into a burp rag, so am going to try that. He will squirm and fuss when he needs to be burped, which happens quick, then he goes back on the boob. I have used the laid back position a lot, but now he seems to prefer traditional cradling, which is what we use 80-90% of the time, and laid back position the rest.

    Good luck! Hope your LO and you find a good rhythm together.

    ETA: On dealing with hangry babe while you let the girls empty a bit... I try to catch LO's super early hungry signs. The first time he starts moving his mouth around or bringing his hands to his mouth. Lately he's been smiling and giggling on the boob for a bit before he starts nursing. If I wait too long to feed him, he won't do that, just snorts and goes at it like a velociraptor
    krystleshelbethanne09Sammy K
  • This is me too. I need to let her start nursing have let down happen pull her off squirt into a rag then put her back on the boob. I find I only have to do this sometimes other times she just chuggs like a champ then I just burp her in the middle of a feeding and after and if that happens then I just feed from one boob to make sure she gets the hindmilk. Sometimes at night I have to hand express some to make the boob softer for her to latch.
  • I'm in the same boat, and it seems the general consensus is to empty a bit before bringing baby to the boob... My LO spends a great deal of time rubbing her face back and forth on my nipple as she tries to catch her breath. We wind up going into sitting position quite frequently because she's choking. Good to know about the suggestion to recline-- I haven't tried that, but will today. 
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    virginiaunicorn11
  • Thank you all! I have tried recline but will start laying to feed more often. Also, the idea to burp midfeed is also something I will try. Just finishing the first day of block feeding... Fingers crossed this is a permanent solution!
  • I have this problem and so did my SIL. Luckily, from what she told me is that it will regulate itself in time. I usually will hold a burp rag to my boob as soon as I let down.
  • mtav22mtav22
    25 Love Its 10 Comments Name Dropper Photogenic
    member
    I've found that it helps to lay down with her while feeding so it doesn't chock her while she drinks.

  • I've been dealing with this for weeks. So frustrating. Poor LO chokes frequently and scares me half to death. I tried reclining but she doesn't like it. She fights my boobs every night around 7. Sometimes the nipple shield will help. I think she can control it better. Or I will clamp my boob right above the nipple to slow the flow. I haven't tried pumping first. I have started mostly keeping her to one boob per feeding.
  • Night time was the worst for us too. I've been giving her a bottle of pumped milk and pumping. Even though it takes more time it's less frustrating for us both. Plus, LO doesn't get as many gas bubbles.
  • My daughter is now 5 weeks and I have had such a forceful let down which would just drown her. I would try to nurse her 1 once or twice a day but I pumped and bottle feed her. no position I did helped or made it easier. I just recently started pumping for shorter times but more spaced out, every 6 hours instead of every 3. I now have a normal supply but my let down is still a little strong but not unbearable for her. good luck with the block! just keep having her nurse once or twice a day still
  • Oh and definitely have her feed on one side . don't switch and you may have to pump the other side to relieve some pressure until the next feeding.
    mlindzz
  • So relieved to hear we're not the only ones struggling with this! Thx OP for starting this thread.

    I haven't pumped at all, I'm concerned that could potentially increase my supply, I'm also concerned LO might never go back to the boob again if he tries a bottle. I'm hoping this thing works itself out as PP mentioned.

    I feed him side laying, which allows him to dribble out the excess milk out the side of his mouth or we nurse while I'm reclined on my back, which works against gravity to slow things down (tricky at first but we finally are getting the hang of it).

    I also just nurse from one boob per feeding, like PP mentioned this ensures babe isn't just getting fore-milk. Baby chokes lots, it's so heartbreaking but the doctor says not to worry and he always seems motivated to eat. He also gets so awful gas pains, likely from all the air he is gulping down. Although he only ever eats for 5-10 minutes then he falls asleep or starts spitting up, but he eats every 1.5-2hrs right now.

    I haven't been able to find a good solution for keeping baby happy while I try to hand express part way through the feeding. It seems to be counter productive so far because he only gets upset and returns to eat with a vengeance.
  • Thank you all for your help. We have finished day one of block feeding and I have been side laying feeding her and that REALLY helps. I think we will have to do that for awhile. I also found this good article : http://attachmentparenting.org/blog/2012/06/12/fighting-the-battle-against-oversupply/

    How long did everyone block feed?
    emaddock
  • My letdown was really strong at 5 weeks and I began feeding off one boob per session and expressing some into a burp rag before feeding. I leaked a lot in between feedings but thankfully my supply adjusted after 1-2 weeks. At 8 weeks now I still block feed and the only time I get engorged is when my LO sleeps 7-8 hours at night. I sometimes pump the boob I'm not feeding from in the AM or PM to relieve a little pressure but I don't usually empty it. It's still trial and error a bit but thankfully my baby has adjusted a lot over the past 3 weeks. Good luck!
  • I still block feed at 7 weeks. I don't pump often (only twice so far) but I will hand express some in the shower occasionally if I get engorged or LO naps longer than normal. Generally, though, I don't have problems with engorgement since we've been block feeding since week 2.

    I am still leaking massively. Yesterday I leaked through a disposable pad, nursing bra, and shirt. I hate being milk sticky. Hoping the leaking will get under control soon.

    So grateful for this thread! So many regulars are dealing with under supply that I didn't want to mention my issues... It's so helpful having the validation that this has its own set of challenges, and hearing how everyone else is dealing with it.
    krystleshelLaurenS119

  • So grateful for this thread! So many regulars are dealing with under supply that I didn't want to mention my issues... It's so helpful having the validation that this has its own set of challenges, and hearing how everyone else is dealing with it.

    I agree - it's a good problem to have, but it's still a problem!

    LO is 6 weeks, and I keep thinking that things are settling down, only for LO to cluster feed and cause production to ramp up again. He fed every 1 1/2 - 2 hours yesterday morning then had longer gaps in the evening and night. Ended up having to pump at 2:30am before he woke up as he wouldn't have been able to latch on otherwise. I could tell the other side was headed the same way, so I left the pump and bottle assembled in the fridge so I wouldn't have to resterilize before using it - which did save time, but bloody hell it was cold!

    I read somewhere that breastmilk sells for $5-6 online. Can't help but think I could make a fortune if I were to switch LO to formula and pump for a living
    krystleshelSammy K

  • So grateful for this thread! So many regulars are dealing with under supply that I didn't want to mention my issues... It's so helpful having the validation that this has its own set of challenges, and hearing how everyone else is dealing with it.

    I agree - it's a good problem to have, but it's still a problem!

    LO is 6 weeks, and I keep thinking that things are settling down, only for LO to cluster feed and cause production to ramp up again. He fed every 1 1/2 - 2 hours yesterday morning then had longer gaps in the evening and night. Ended up having to pump at 2:30am before he woke up as he wouldn't have been able to latch on otherwise. I could tell the other side was headed the same way, so I left the pump and bottle assembled in the fridge so I wouldn't have to resterilize before using it - which did save time, but bloody hell it was cold!

    I read somewhere that breastmilk sells for $5-6 online. Can't help but think I could make a fortune if I were to switch LO to formula and pump for a living
    Haha, this is great. Tempted to google this, lol.
    I have been having some pretty horrific leaky nights as well. Hoping this gets under control soon.
  • btm013btm013
    Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 500 Comments Name Dropper
    member
    Oh this is interesting...I just read my nipple shield packaging and it says it's also used for "overactive let-down". I have no idea if this will help but perhaps it's worth a try! I use the medela one (for flat nips) and love it.
    virginiaunicorn11
  • Mostly have his problem at night when my little one sleeps six hours poor thing last night threw up because of it I felt so bad for him I am gonna try the side laying feeding tonight
  • @shabanil good article. Did you try their recommendations?

    For those who didn't read it, it suggests that completely emptying both breast with a pump on one occasion, perhaps like resetting things. It recommends this along with continued block feeding.
    virginiaunicorn11
  • @btm013 sometimes the shield helps me!
  • My LC just told me to block feed twice per breast, cut out dairy, and lay back while feeding. I'm nervous to block feed, because I'm worried about bringing my supply down too far. I also want to keep pumping for my stash. I suppose I should wait until things regulate. Plus... I think I have thrush. So I shouldn't pump anyway. Asking at my 6 week appt tomorrow. Ugh.
  • Yes. I didn't get a medical grade pump but I did empty both breasts as much as possible. We are on day three of block feeding in three hour increments. I feel she eats for a shorter length of time, but more frequently. The block feeding has helped with the gas TREMENDOUSLY! But we are still working with flow issues and I haven't seen too much of a difference. She's been fine during the day but by the end of the afternoon she can't handle it (too much build up?). I'm going to a support group tomorrow and will ask the IBCLC if I should do longer blocks.
  • pearlv88pearlv88
    25 Love Its 10 Comments First Anniversary First Answer
    member
    edited July 2015
    Anyone still dealing with this? How long did you ladies find things regulated with the different strategies?

    It has seemed to come out of nowhere for us at 5.5 weeks this week. LO gets fussy at the breast, clamps down on nipple, pulls away etc. But only on one side... Is that normal?

    And I want to make sure I understand correctly... Do I feed on one breast only per feed, and switch to the other breast for the next feed? Or do I offer the same breast for a couple of feeds in a row? Does it depend on timing? I'm so confused. I've read a number of articles online but I think my exhaustion is impeding my comprehension

    ETA:
    Did you find block feeding increased or decreased how frequently LO fed?
  • I block fed for 4 or 5 days then went to switching breast at each feed. I think it's helped a little bit but I want to give it a few days before I say so definitively. Also, LO spent the night at her grandparents last night so she obviously are less from me (but I still pumped around the times she would have eaten so as not to diminish supply too much). I went to a BF support group and the IBCLC was a bit concerned that I was doing 3 hour blocks. Maybe try 2 to start?
  • Block feeding also decreased the time she ate, but she ate more frequently
  • edited August 2015
    I block fed ... and now I swear I've lost most of my milk from my right side. It's like a freakin pancake. I'm going to try and pump that side after my night feedings to get my supply back up I guess. Formula has been sounding so enticing. Except for the price.
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