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Mostly BF newborn given formula top-ups and vomiting *update post 40*
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#26 Delillah1

Posted 05 March 2012 - 01:50 AM

QUOTE (Lokum @ 04/03/2012, 11:26 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hey Pookems, glad you're hanging in there.

In the mix with everyone else's ideas and suggestions:

1. Is it possible that what looks like an OK latch with the shield is really not getting enough nipple, deep enough down his mouth? (This was our problem, and cause DS to look like a lazy feeder. Really he would latch, but when he tried to suck he'd lose the nipple, so he'd stop. Feeding took forever, and he wasn't actually feeding/sucking enough, so I wasn't getting enough stimulation to keep up supply. Two different LCs looked, checked, and said we had a good latch - but you can't really tell from the outside with flat nipples how much they're being drawn down the shield.)

1 a) When you're using the shield, and he pulls off, is your nipple sucked down into the teat part of the shield, like a beanie pulled down over your ears? Or is it just perched on your nipple like a beret or a straw hat? If the shield just slides off, I'd say he's not really latching well, despite appearances. A good latch using a shield should mean you get a certain amount of suction like well-fitting goggles on your face, so you can wave your boob around a bit and the shield won't fall off easily.



This is a really good point. You should feel sucking when he i attached correctly and there should be suction.

#27 Ella'n'alex

Posted 05 March 2012 - 06:25 AM

Agree with pp's to think about reflux - www.reflux.org.au

Maybe something to discuss with the LC when you see her again?

He might just be a very 'sucky' baby, and want the extra comfort (the sucking action helps them if it is reflux). Have  you thought about using a dummy after a feed to help him settle?




#28 runlikethewind

Posted 05 March 2012 - 06:32 AM

OUR EXPERIENCE was that we did the same with DS, his vomiting got worse and eventually he had an ana reaction. Turns out he is severely allergic to cows milk protein. In the end I perservered with the BF ( cut out dairy)  but topped up with a soy formula ( ok with soy). That is our experience though and was detected with the help of our GP then specialist/ allergist, so may not be the case for your child at all.

OUR EXPERIENCE was that we did the same with DS, his vomiting got worse and eventually he had an ana reaction. Turns out he is severely allergic to cows milk protein. In the end I perservered with the BF ( cut out dairy)  but topped up with a soy formula ( ok with soy). That is our experience though and was detected with the help of our GP then specialist/ allergist, so may not be the case for your child at all.

#29 Lokum

Posted 05 March 2012 - 07:53 AM

A niece of mine had the same experience as runlikethewind. However their baby failed to thrive from coming home, and the vomiting was extreme compared to nb posseting.

Has anyone else seen when the baby does projectiles? It's SO hard to say, because ours was a big happy chucker and it was not unusual for milk to stream back out of his nose and mouth together - and he was fine. But my  niece's vomiting was really awful and seemed to cause her pain. She was also a big screamer and had multiple protein intolerances. It took ages to dx and she ended up on neocate. Hopefully the MCHN and/or LC will see a big chuck (or even better, they'll stop) and be able to set your mind at ease.

#30 muminmelb

Posted 05 March 2012 - 08:08 AM

It could be as simple as the brand of formula you are using. I have read (and been told) that all formula is the same, but I can guarantee you that they are not! My 3 month old has been on about 4 different brands and his reaction has varied with each one.  We have finally found one that seems to suit him the best.  He will often bring up a little after some feeds, but certainly nothing alarming.
Good luck.

#31 Pooks Combusted

Posted 05 March 2012 - 11:52 AM

Wow, thank you for all of the help! I'm very moved by all of the advice and support. Thank you.

Expressing breast milk- that is what I am now going to try. I was expressing for a while, but I stopped because I found that between that and the marathon feeding sessions, I was still having to prepare formula as well as I wasn't able to express much at all, and it was taking all the hours in my day and I was becoming very depressed from lack of sleep.

Supply- I don't think it's directly because of the shield, but basically I think it might be a bit low because he's not getting a great latch with the shield and doesn't have a very co-ordinated suck/ bit of a lazy feeder (this is what the LC told me after checking him over) and I feel that this is over time having some impact on my supply. Also when I express not much seems to come out. I do know that doing the expressing again would help so I really need to dig deep and do it. I feel anxious just thinking about it though.

Amount of formula- I'm offering him bottles of 60mls, he usually takes about 20-40mls. I stop feeding every now  and then to see whether he has had enough, often he will not take the bottle if I offer it again so I stop, he vomits however remains very peaceful and gets a good sleep. Completely different baby...

Allergy & reflux- I'll discuss those possibilities too, thank you.

Dummies- I wasn't sure whether to offer a dummy, I'll look into this, thank you.

QUOTE (doctorseuss @ 04/03/2012, 09:17 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hi Pookems,
I don't know which scenario, but just wanted to reassure you that my DDs have "vomited"/ possetted milk many times, sometimes quite large, distressing amounts. However they always seem happy afterwards and that's the important think. My babies stopped at 6 months. DD3 has done 2 big ones over the last few days.
Good luck.

Yes part of me was wondering if it was just normal but he'd never been full enough before to do it...

QUOTE (katrina24 @ 04/03/2012, 09:18 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Another idea of something to discuss with LC is positioning. Sometimes a different position for bottle feeding can help, maybe she could demonstrate some options for you.

Thank you I hadn't thought of that one.

QUOTE (Delillah1 @ 04/03/2012, 09:29 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
feeding constantly. Every 1.5 hrs around the clock. Have you tried topping up with  the other breast after a few minutes and then switching to the first breast again instead of formula? This can help increase your supply. Feeds would take me over an hour in the first 6 weeks so that is quite common. It is exhausting and never ending but persevere and at around 6-7 weeks you will breathe a sigh of relief and everything will become easier.


Thank you for sharing your experience with me! I do try switching sides, and he sucks quite well for few minutes then seems to just be tired and sucking very slowly, not sure if he's getting anything at all and I can't feel much of a pull. He seems sleepy and I try to wake him. When I pull him away and sit him up or put him on my shoulder for a cuddle before putting him to bed, he screams and roots around for more of a feed. This morning we were feeding from 8am til 10.30 (with short breaks in between) before I gave in and gave him 40 mls formula, he vomited a bit again and has been sleeping since. Most of his feeds I'm able to persevere and he doesn't get top-ups.

QUOTE (--binda-- @ 04/03/2012, 09:58 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I would toss the bottles, and just keep putting him to the breast, that is the only way that it will boost your supply.


I do have him at my breast for hours and hours on end each day, and have done since he was born. I do this so that hopefully his attachment improves and suck gets more co-ordinated, and my supply consequently improves. In the meantime, though, he needs to be fed adequately. This is something the LC and maternal health nurse have insisted on. Most times I give him one or two top ups a day, usually when he is too tired to continue breastfeeding, the rest of the time we persevere and he eventually gets enough on the breast.

QUOTE (Tesseract @ 04/03/2012, 10:09 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I was feeding EBM at the start as I was pumping to up my supply and because she wouldn't latch. The thing I discovered with the bottle feeding was that it was a lot better to offer it in 20-30 ml lots. So I would breastfeed (if I could get her on), then give 20-30 mls, then put her back to the breast. This way it kept her motivated to drink from the breast. Also, it is very difficult for a newborn to regulate the flow of milk from a bottle, so while they may be gulping it down like they're starving, it can actually be that the milk keeps flowing and they have no option but to keep swallowing. So when you bottle feed take the bottle out of the baby's mouth the second you sense they may want a break, or even just every 10 ml or so. This way they have a chance to turn their head away when you offer it again.

Thank you I will try this today!

QUOTE (EBeditor @ 04/03/2012, 10:13 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I found that fenugreek supplements and pumping after each feed helped my supply a bit. Has your  baby also been checked for poor suck reflex? That's what my DS had, which no amount of putting to the breast helped (if you get it diagnosed quickly there are some things that can be done however).

A GP visit might be useful if you have any concerns about your baby's health, including weigh gain, reflux etc.

Thank you I'll ask if anything can be done to improve his sucking, I think the LC wanted to see how he went with the shield and whether he'd improve with practice. Fenugreek is something I've heard of before, I'll look into it original.gif

QUOTE (ms flib @ 04/03/2012, 10:14 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Definitely check that you have newborn teats. They have a slower flow - really important!
Good luck!

Yes I think I'm going to turf the bottles that came with my pump, they are a lot faster flowing than the tomee tippee closer to nature and the pidgeon ones that I have. Ta!

Switching formulas- I am giving him S26 gold as this is what he was given at hospital. I'll ask whether I should switch formulas, thanks!

QUOTE (twoformee @ 04/03/2012, 10:38 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
rolleyes.gif  helpful! The OP explained why he is on top ups, plus a hungry newborn that isn't being satisfied is not a pleasant little person to have in your house.

OP my DS was what my MCHN called a 'happy chucker' after every feed something would come back up, either a little or a lot it ranged. He was on the slowest teat and also on their recommendation we gave thickner to help keep it down too original.gif

ETA: I wouldn't give thickner unless advised, just giving you my story on how we helped with the chucking up

Thanks, this might be something to look into if the chucking continues!

QUOTE (Lokum @ 04/03/2012, 11:26 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hey Pookems, glad you're hanging in there.

In the mix with everyone else's ideas and suggestions:

1. Is it possible that what looks like an OK latch with the shield is really not getting enough nipple, deep enough down his mouth? (This was our problem, and cause DS to look like a lazy feeder. Really he would latch, but when he tried to suck he'd lose the nipple, so he'd stop. Feeding took forever, and he wasn't actually feeding/sucking enough, so I wasn't getting enough stimulation to keep up supply. Two different LCs looked, checked, and said we had a good latch - but you can't really tell from the outside with flat nipples how much they're being drawn down the shield.)

1 a) When you're using the shield, and he pulls off, is your nipple sucked down into the teat part of the shield, like a beanie pulled down over your ears? Or is it just perched on your nipple like a beret or a straw hat? If the shield just slides off, I'd say he's not really latching well, despite appearances. A good latch using a shield should mean you get a certain amount of suction like well-fitting goggles on your face, so you can wave your boob around a bit and the shield won't fall off easily.

2. I would agree that it's not likely to be the shield which is affecting supply, but rather that he's not doing strong, consistent sucking. Same as I suggested before, I'd work on pumping a lot and trying to give him as much EBM as you can. See if he chucks after a bottle of say 120ml of EBM (in 30 ml lots with little breaks in between.)

3. Rooting and squawking and screaming could be tiredness from the ordeal of another unsatisfying BF experience. He's not necessarily hungry for the formula... You could build up enough for a decent feed (120-150ml) of EBM, and then when he's hungry, start the feed. He'll take it easily because bottles are easy. He won't be tired out. Then see if he chucks (in which case he might just be a chucker), or is still not satisfied, or goes to sleep happily. It could be that the BF itself makes him tired, hungry and cranky (which is probably what it's doing to you!!). Of course, building up 150ml of EBM is easier said than done.

4. Reflux. The screaming and mad sucking, followed by chucking, screaming, sucking etc does sound a bit like pain. But I think everyone jumps to that a bit fast - I'd consider other things first.

5. In our experience, it was important for DS to have 6 or 7 short practices at BF every day. After 3 weeks he did get the hang of latching with the shield, despite flat nipples. However, it was also very important for him to get 8 full, proper feeds per day, so after a few minutes BF practice at each feed, I focussed more on pumping, keeping up supply, and getting EBM into him. We were lucky, and it did work out despite ultra flat nipples, small sleepy baby, poor sucker, etc.

GOOD LUCK! You're doing really well! Mostly BF is excellent too.


Lokum, you continue to offer me so much advice and support, I can't describe my gratitude.
I think there is an issue with him attaching to the shield, especially when he's tired. I think he's not sucking properly and is just exhausted by the end of a feeding session. Sometimes the shield seems to be falling off. My maternal health nurse actually told me it's not good to have him getting so exhausted and distressed all the time, and that after an hour of feeding I should offer a bottle. In reality sometimes I let it go a little longer to see if we can go without the bottle that feed. I'm going to explore with the LC the possibility of doing short breastfeeds followed by offering EBM in a bottle, I think the time I'm not spending with marathon feeds accomplishing little, might be better spent expressing? Thank you.

bbighug.gif to everyone who replied.

#32 Overtherainbow

Posted 05 March 2012 - 12:00 PM

I had to use shields when dd had thrush and also poor attachment due to tongue issues.

I found expressing once she finished feeding helped increase my supply.  My health nurse told me to add formula to the expressed milk but this was a long time ago so check with a professional before considering it.

If you burp your baby between BF and formula do you still have the issue?  I wonder if there is a bit of wind on bub and with the milk on top when they release the wind the milk will come up.  I always liked the agent bottles best.

#33 Nobody Cool

Posted 05 March 2012 - 12:15 PM

QUOTE (pookems85 @ 05/03/2012, 12:52 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Supply- I don't think it's directly because of the shield, but basically I think it might be a bit low because he's not getting a great latch with the shield and doesn't have a very co-ordinated suck/ bit of a lazy feeder (this is what the LC told me after checking him over) and I feel that this is over time having some impact on my supply. Also when I express not much seems to come out. I do know that doing the expressing again would help so I really need to dig deep and do it. I feel anxious just thinking about it though.


Just wanted to add - it's a common misconception but the amount you are able to express is not an accurate indicator of supply so please don't think that because you aren't able to express much that you aren't producing much. The two are not directly related  original.gif

I had a great supply and was never able to express much. The only time I could ever really get anything out was first thing in the morning before DS had even had his first feed of the day and I was dry as a bone trying to pump at the end of the day, but DS was able to be fed and satisfied just fine for his afternoon and night feeds. Plenty of milk in there, I just wasn't any good at extracting it with a pump.

It can be hard - if not impossible - to get a decent let down when you are exhausted, stressed, distracted, apprehensive, self-conscious, feel under pressure to pump a certain volume and are trying to look after a newborn baby all at the same time.

Edited by Shady Lane, 05 March 2012 - 12:17 PM.


#34 Mose

Posted 05 March 2012 - 12:19 PM

Hi Pookems,

Just wanted to add my support.  Trying to feed a baby who persistently won't get enough from the breast is an absolute nightmare, so well done for persevering.

I just wanted to say you should be kind to yourself.  You say that you are dreading the thought of expressing...just wanted to give you an alternative view.  It sounds like you are putting bubs to the breast HEAPS.  I have read some limited research that suggests that there is nothing to demonstrate that expressing is a good way of building supply, and that you may in fact do just as much for your supply to spend the same time with feet up and a big glass of water and no breast pump.  Unfortunately I can't quote it, as I read it in the starving newborn struggling to BF sleep-deprived phase of my life and didn't save any links.  I HATED expressing, and so first-up my LC told me to only do it a couple of times a day, and definitely not at night (sleep way better for supply than over-night expressing), and then I dropped it altogether.  The logic made sense to me and the reduction in stress from trying to make time and energy to express to get tiny volumes was very helpful.

That said, I have read a lot of stories on here from women for whom expressing really did help supply.  I guess I just want to say to try what is right for you.  It's a stressful time, and you are doing an amazing job.

Hopefully you will find it encouraging that for us, we had to top up with formula for a couple of weeks while my supply established (milk never "came in" the way most women describe), we did get to full BF eventually and it was totally worth it.  You are absolutely doing the right thing trying to get your baby onto the breast AND offering the formula bubs needs to be well-nourished.  it's important for baby to stay hydrated and well, however that happens.  Advice to ditch the bottle is often given on these forums and is sometimes unhelpful.  If you have more than one independent, pro-BF medical professional telling you to keep offering the formula for the moment, then I think you are doing the right thing.  This is different from women who go to formula because they perceive they MAY have a supply problem (soft breasts, quicker feeding etc....), if bubs has been assessed by both MCHN and LC as needing the extra, then please don't feel bad about offering it, while you are doing everything you can to sort out your BF issues.  You sound really determined, so hopefully it comes together for you soon.

Good luck with it all!

#35 Lokum

Posted 05 March 2012 - 12:36 PM

QUOTE (Mose @ 05/03/2012, 01:19 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
if bubs has been assessed by both MCHN and LC as needing the extra, then please don't feel bad about offering it, while you are doing everything you can to sort out your BF issues.  You sound really determined, so hopefully it comes together for you soon.


Totally agree!

If it only comes down to determination, they'll definitely make it!

#36 Seven of Nine

Posted 05 March 2012 - 12:56 PM

QUOTE (lucky 2 @ 04/03/2012, 10:20 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Another thing to consider is a Supply line,


This is what I was going to suggest if you're worried about supply.

With the teats I was told to make sure I used a Y cut teat. It really slowed things down, but my baby also threw up more after bottles than after the breast. I was using EBM only, so it was not a formula problem for my bub.

Good luck OP! You're doing a tremendous job, it sounds so tough!

#37 Sassenach2

Posted 05 March 2012 - 01:11 PM

I haven't read all the posts and maybe someone has already covered this, but could you try and boost your breastmilk supply by trying Switch Feeding, which is going from one side to the other side in the one feed. Ask the LC (and is she an International Board of Lactation Consultants member) about attachment also and whether the nipple shields are constricting your flow of breastmilk. Your baby will eventually be able to suckle your nipples, when he/she gets a bit more strength, but in the meantime, please be careful about nipple confusion with different teats etc. Sometimes ice cubes on the inverted nipple, help to bring it out.

#38 runlikethewind

Posted 05 March 2012 - 01:18 PM

Lokum- our DS would vomit like he was in pain, it wasn't just projectile vomiting or a tiny amount, it was almost as if he was is the most excruciating pain. And it would seem to go on for a while.  I agree that some babies can be happy chuckers. DD2 was one, she would vomit all the time but nothing wrong with her apart from her eyes being bigger than her belly!   biggrin.gif

#39 Tesseract

Posted 06 March 2012 - 12:19 PM

Hi OP, thanks for your update, how are you going now?

Although it might not mean much from a stranger on the internet, it sounds to me like you are doing an amazing job and this is testament to what an awesome mum you are. I remember those first weeks (and the first couple of months!), they are so hard. The anxiety of a hungry, crying baby, the sleep deprivation and trying to learn to breastfeed is so damned awful. But it does get better! He is still so tiny, but if you just stick it out until he gets a little stronger things really start to come together. Despite a similarly rough start I'm still breastfeeding my daughter at 12 months and it is totally worth the effort, it's so easy  now, and it's really wonderful.

Anyway I'm rambling, my other point was that I also hated expressing (really, who doesn't?). The thing that helped was hiring a hospital-grade double pump (can be hired from ABA or many chemists). These babies are strong and effective, and doing both breasts at once really cut down the time and also encouraged lots of let downs.

Hang in there. Tess xx

#40 Pooks Combusted

Posted 06 March 2012 - 04:59 PM

Thank you so much everyone. Well, here's an update.

I just came back from spending three hours with the LC. The upshot of the visit is that she now thinks he has a sensitive gag reflex and short frenulum, but that it's not tongue tie as such and can't be snipped.

This is causing him to have a poor latch and she thinks he is not draining my breasts, nor getting to the fattier part of the BM which is causing my low supply.

Initially the poor latch had been put down to my flat nipples, and this was the reason we thought my supply was being affected. I was then given the shield to use, and his poor sucking was something the LC thought would improve with the use of the shield.

Apparently, this all helps explain the problems he's been having with the bottle too- he's been taking in too much air and his gag reflex. I've been given different teats to try.

He has lost weight over the last week. He was weighed before and after a 45min feed that the LC watched, and was found to have only taken in 60mls. I was also told he is very active and very unsettled, which is no news to me.

I've been encouraged to put him to my breast and pump the other breast, then alternate and repeat, and then feed him the EBM. I'll then top him up with formula, until my supply catches up.

Basically, despite the occasional top up and the non-stop feeding, he's not being adequately nourished. I have been told to stop putting him to the breast as much as I have been as it's just exhausting him. Basically, he physically can't do more than he has been doing.

I feel really horrible right now. Having a LC touch his stomach and comment that it isn't round like it should be makes me feel ill. Seeing that he's lost weight makes me feel ill. Thinking of how much I've resisted topping him up, keeping him at the breast longer, makes me feel guilty.

The idea is that if I persist, hopefully he will mature and his sucking will improve to the point that he will be able to get enough from the breast. Even if that doesn't happen, basically it's the only way I'm going to be able to give him adequate amounts of BM.

I feel like we're facing obstacles at every turn and I'm just feeling rubbish about it all.  

But thanks again for all of your support, the support I get here is the light on the hill for me.

#41 Mel.Bell

Posted 06 March 2012 - 05:11 PM

May I quickly suggest DR BROWN bottles? Google them ... They might be a bit more pricey but worth their weight original.gif

#42 Feral-as-Meggs

Posted 06 March 2012 - 06:21 PM

Please don't feel rubbish. You are doing an amazing job.  I hope you can get a lot of household help from someone so you can get as much rest as possible.  Have you tried fenugreek or Waleda tea?

#43 Lokum

Posted 06 March 2012 - 06:35 PM

Hi Pookems

Sorry you've had such an exhausting day. But it IS productive. You know some things with certainty now, and these can give you confidence in making right choices for your baby. No need to second guess now.

Don't worry too much about the weight loss. Sometimes they catch a cold and lose weight, or have a rough week, and then they have a spurt and catch up. Of course you want your newborn to gain weight, but now you can make sure he gets enough. This is just one little set back. I'm sure you'll have a better week this week with your focus on ensuring the volume of intake is high enough, and he'll gain weight this week.

Don't know about Dr Brown bottles from experience, but have certainly heard lots of positive reports.

I agree that if you are going to persist with pumping, rent a hospital grade Medela Symphony pump, and consider buying a double kit for efficient pumping. Agree with those who've said best pumping is in the morning, and don't be surprised if you get bugger all in the evening.

Given some nice big bottles of milk (EBM or formula), with the right teats, and he will probably calm down and be a bit more settled as well.

You are doing a wonderful job, so well done. Whatever you decide now, is one of many, many, parenting decisions you will need to make - this is not your one and only chance to get his life right.

You'll do your best, and he will be OK, and so will you.  original.gif

#44 Tesseract

Posted 06 March 2012 - 07:36 PM

Thanks for keeping us updated.

Just wanted to reiterate everything Lokum has said above. It is daunting but it's great that you now have a good idea as to what the issue is and how to address it.

The whole thing really is a marathon. Makes childbirth look easy ha?!

Don't feel rubbish, you have been nothing but a committed mum doing her very best for her baby. You should be proud. People without breastfeeding challenges have no idea the anguish we go through. But they don't understand the joy either - I still cherish every single suck she takes, a whole year later.

Please be kind to yourself as you persist with this. My mum has a saying, it is "breastfeeding mums can do one thing and one thing only - breastfeed!" And this applies doubly when you are pumping and trying to get a baby to latch at all! So no housework, no cooking, no unwelcome visitors (although welcome company is very important, just not the type who expect you to be showered lol). Take any offers of help you can, let the vaccuuming worry about itself. Just make sure you eat and drink! These are my orders!

Thinking of you. Tess xx

#45 lucky 2

Posted 06 March 2012 - 09:19 PM

Thanks for the update, I wish it was easier for you at the moment as you do sound disheartened with the breast feeding issues you are experiencing.
It sounds as if you have someone who understands the particular dynamic of bfing btn you and your little one.
Best wishes for all of your feeding and pumping efforts and I hope they pay off with a nice weight gain at your next check up.
In regards to the short tongue/tight frenulum, I suppose you are already doing it but see if you can get bub's chin really tucked into your breast so his nose if well off the breast (ie head tilted back) as this will get his tongue in closest to the breast and it wont have to stretch so far, important if it is a bit short/tethered.
Breast compressions may also help increase milk intake at the breast feeds.
Let us know if you are not sure what the above means but I suspect you may already be doing these things as you are seeing a LC.
All the best.

#46 nayjay

Posted 08 March 2012 - 01:22 PM

QUOTE
Don't feel rubbish, you have been nothing but a committed mum doing her very best for her baby. You should be proud. People without breastfeeding challenges have no idea the anguish we go through. But they don't understand the joy either - I still cherish every single suck she takes, a whole year later.
   yyes.gif You are doing a great job.

QUOTE
I agree that if you are going to persist with pumping, rent a hospital grade Medela Symphony pump, and consider buying a double kit for efficient pumping.
I rented one through ABA.  I also found that double pumping was great for increasing supply and was so much faster.


FWIW - When I struggled with supply with my DS3 I found that Medela supply lines helped.  Our DS had a high palate and was a very lazy feeder (prem baby).  We struggled for months.  He never tolerated formula top ups as he was found to be dairy milk protein sensitive. He would projectile vomit and have diarrhea  and consequently lose weight.  Long story short...I used donor milk and supply lines to feed him until my supply increased.  The supply lines are a bit tricky to use at first and I needed the LC to show me how to use them but they were the turning point for DS and I.  He was able to feed at the breast and have a top-up while at the breast and it didn't take long for my supply to increase.  He breastfed until 23mth biggrin.gif .

#47 Sassenach2

Posted 08 March 2012 - 01:39 PM

I have just returned from a Seminar, where Dr Jack Newman, who knows more about breastfeeding then anyone on the planet, recommends that exclusively breastfed babies never be given a bottle or a sippy cup, but if you need to give expressed breastmilk - do it with an open cup, a syringe or a nursing supplementary system, where your baby is suckling the breast with a little tube inserted with the milk. He said that babies need "the flow" of the milk or they will come off the breast before they have finished draining your first breast, and if you use compressions to get the milk to your baby much quicker, then that may suffice or go to the other breast, where the let-down will be coming and baby will be happy with "the flow". The formula companies and the bottle companies have a great marketing team, who know all these things that babies do and they try to cash in on it, buy selling you stuff that is going to eventually impede your milk supply. Can you contact a lactation consultant who is a IBCLC, as she has been trained more thoroughly. Don't give up and think that bottles and formula are the answer, because not only does breastfeeding enhance your health and you are a lower risk of contracting breast cancer at a later date, but your baby enhances her jaw development by breastfeeding, not to mention the nutrients, antibodies and probiotics in breastmilk.

#48 Guest_bottle~rocket_*

Posted 08 March 2012 - 02:11 PM

I am sorry you are having such a rough time OP.

I haven't experience with nipple shields myself, but a friend from MG used one to successfully BF, although each feed used to take about an hour (her baby fed less often).

If you can wean from the shield that will speed up the flow of milk, perhaps you could talk to your LC about this.  Here is some info about shields from the RWH website:

http://www.thewomens.org.au/Nippleshields

The ABA hotline is also great if you just need to chat about how things are going.

#49 PopperPenguin

Posted 08 March 2012 - 05:31 PM

Pookems, I don't have much to add that the rest haven't already but I just wanted to say don't feel bad for his weight loss or him being hungry. It's not your fault, you've been doing everything you can think of and quite frankly I think you're really going well with your persistance. My DS spent his first week in NICU and I struggled to build a supply due to stress, lack of contact with DS, and I was lucky to pump 5 mls. He was getting regularly fed formula because I couldn't express enough for him or breastfeed him to satiation. By the time he was home with me, he was on the breast every 1.5-2 hours and sucking and sucking and not getting satisfied at all. After many tears and conversations with DF, we decided to formula feed exclusively. It broke my heart because I'd wanted to breastfeed him for as long as he wanted, but nothing at all prepared me for how difficult and stressful I would find it - not knowing how much he was consuming was causing me so much stress that I couldn't eat or drink, which affected my supply as well. Basically what I'm saying is I just think it's fantastic that you are trying so hard to keep breastfeeding. I wish I had the same perserverance as you.

All the best. <3

#50 Pooks Combusted

Posted 10 March 2012 - 01:11 AM

Thank you to everyone for your support. It means an awful lot to me.

At the moment I am pumping throughout the day and feeding him this by bottle, after having him on the breast, and then if he is still interested I finish the feed on the breast (with the nipple shield- I can't wean him from the shield as there is 'nothing' for him to attach to on my end).

I am not able to pump enough milk to also use at night, and I can't get enough sleep if I pump at night, so we are formula feeding at night for now. I know it's not ideal but I have to draw the line somewhere and I need some sleep or I'll lose the plot.

Lokum I gave him a full bottle of EBM and he chucked a bit of that too, so for now I'm putting it down to 'chucking because of an overly full stomach'. I think he was also taking in quite a bit of air with the bottles but it getting better with them.

I do feel a bit of sadness that we're not having the breastfeeding experience that I was hoping for, but on the other hand I honestly feel that I really am doing the best I can within my reality and within the limits of the support I have available.

DP took the day off work today as I had a migraine last night and this morning, and actually last night I just needed him to take over care of DS for a few hours as I could barely keep my eyes open. I think I've been overly stressed and sleep deprived and this was really my body sending me a message to STOP. DP was able to do everything else today so I could just focus on feeding (I even got a nap in) and it was so lovely to be able to do that. I felt more relaxed. He is also going to do the next night feed so I can sleep through til the morning and hopefully shake the migraine completely.

I am considering taking fenugreek as suggested, to try and boost my supply while we get all of this sorted.

I hope that by next week's maternal health nurse appointment he will have gained a bit of weight, and I am considering asking for some kind of referral to have someone take a good look at the tongue tie and whether it might affect his speech in future, and whether anything can be done about it.

I just want to thank everyone again. You've been very kind to share your advice and experiences with me.




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