supplementing — The Bump
Breastfeeding

supplementing

So DD was 9lbs 15 oz when she was born.  (Yup, it hurt).  She is 24 days old and at her appointment on Monday, she was only 9lbs.  Which is exactly what she weighed the week before.  Naturally, my doc has recommended supplementing with formula.  This has been an incredibly emotional challenge for me, and now a logistical one as well.  Anyone out there supplementing?  How do you work it in so that it doesn't cut back your milk supply?  Oh, and have a life, too?  My LC suggested BFing 12 times a day and pumping 6 times.  I love DD and I want to BF, but that's not happening. 

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Re: supplementing

  • ::chuckles at irony of using the word "naturally" to describe the doc's recommendation to introduce formula::

    "I am a kind of paranoiac in reverse. I suspect people of plotting to make me happy." J.D. Salinger Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • I'd consider getting a supplemental nursing feeder.... you will need a helper but then baby is still getting all feeds at the breast.  
    5/08- blighted ovum, spont ab; 2/20/09- epi, VAVD, Girl! breastfed 24mo; 10/10- blighted ovum, spon ab; 12/10- no fetal pole, Cytotec; 11/20/11- unmedicated SVD, Girl! breastfed 18mo; 11/7/13- unmedicated SVD, breastfed 18mo; 2/11/16- unmedicated SVD, exclusively pumping to at least a year.

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  • Contact Le Leche League and get a 2nd option if you don't feel comfortable with that. Its a lot (of feeding and pumping) at first but it does get easier. I promise! I would supplement just one feeding a day to take a break. Pumping helped to increase my supply.
  • I don't have any advice, but I was excited to see you post! I'm hardly ever on the boards much any more, and I had been wondering lately when your diamondlet decided to arrive. Best of luck with the BFing! My son eats like a champ and is growing like a weed...he grew 10 oz the first 5 days we were home from the hospital and he's grown almost 2 1/2 lbs since birth! I hope your little babe starts to mimic mine. :)

    ::throws milk supply dust your way::

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  • Hmm... just another idea to toss out there - I have a friend who has a 5 month old and her LO wasn't gaining weight early on.  Pediatrician recommended supplementing, but her lactation consultant told her that'd be the beginning of the end of BFing.  She got a second opinion, and the second doc actually recommended starting baby on rice cereal.  At a month old.  I don't mean they actually gave her rice cereal, they put about 1 teaspoon of cereal per oz (I think) of pumped BM in a bottle.  (She pumped about 6-8 oz/day for two bottles, and to those two bottles, rice cereal was added).

    Anyway, her LO started gaining weight right away!  At her 8 week appt, she was back on track and in the same percentile as she was at birth.

    I think yout LC has the right idea with supplementing... continue pumping so that your supply won't drop too much.

    I'm sorry you're going through this.  I think BF is hard enough on its own, let alone with any additional challenges.

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  • image drcolleen:
    I'd consider getting a supplemental nursing feeder.... you will need a helper but then baby is still getting all feeds at the breast.  

    This. We had to use one in the hospital for the first day & a half. The one we had clipped to my shirt so I didn't need a helper.

    I'd see another LC if you can. Maybe you can supplement using an SNS just until your supply comes up. I've heard pumping for 10 minutes after a feed is helpful for supply issues. I've been letting DS comfort nurse in the evenings to get my evening supply up (as much as I wear out having him attached to the boob for hours on end) & it's helping too.

    BFing is hard. I hated to supplement when we were in the hospital & felt like a failure. It was horrible - I was in tears & thinking how I couldn't even provide milk for DS. It all worked out though. I'd see another LC, but if you have to supplement, don't beat yourself up over it.
     

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  • Ds didn't get to his birthweight for 3.5 weeks-at week 2 I began pumping six times a day and supplementing with ebm.  Needless to day, I didn't have a life until I stopped doing that.  Which was about 8 weeks.  So I didn't formula feed, which means I kept my supply up.  The only way I know to keep your supply up is to make sure enough milk is leaving your body.  Good luck.
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