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I am not producing as much milk as I use too? Am I drying up?

In the beginning I was producing colostrum, but then my milk came in and I could produce 2 to 3 ounces each time pumping and he would spend 30 minutes to an hour on my breast, the right one particular, but now I am only producing about and ounce to an ounce and a half when I pump and now he spends less time on my breast what should I do? Should I pump more and more often. SHould I pump every few hours or more space in between pumps? SHould I just let him breast feed? He eats about every 3 to 4 hours. What should I do?

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Asked by beginnermom77 at 10:42 AM on Jan. 24, 2009 in Babies (0-12 months)

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Answers (8)
  • Is he eating anything else that would cut down on his need for breast milk? The more you pump or the more he nurses, the more milk you should be producing. Good luck with this.

    Answer by Bmat at 10:45 AM on Jan. 24, 2009

  • Be sure you are getting plenty of fluids, too.

    Answer by Bmat at 10:46 AM on Jan. 24, 2009

  • I would say more nursing at the breast. He might be nursing less because the fat content & supply have leveled out to just what he needs. Are you going back and forth between breasts? You shouldn't need to pump at all unless you're freezing it to stock up. Supply & demand, the more he nurses the more you'll make. If you do want/need to pump, I would pump after the baby eats & again inbetween feedings. Make sure you're hydrated, eat oatmeal & stay relaxed while pumping. The pump should be at max when you start, then turn it down to a more comfortable level after letdown. A pump is not a good indicator of supply, if your baby is happy & you're changing diapers it would seem your supply is fine.

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:47 AM on Jan. 24, 2009

  • I have always produced less with a pump than DS can get himself. I guess its because my breasts are build for DS and not a pump. Perhaps this is what you are experiencing. Also there are days I can produce more and days on end were I get hardly anything. This is usually due to dehydrate, so drink that water.
    As for your son, maybe he is spending less time on the breast because he has become a more efficient feeder. Like other people said keep an eye on his diapers (dirty is good!). If your really worried about it that him, call the baby doc and as for your son to be weighed. If he is gaining you are producing enough.

    Answer by FuzNet at 11:30 AM on Jan. 24, 2009

  • #1 Pumping is not an indicator of supply.

    #2 He is likely spending less time at the breast because he has become more efficient at nursing, and gets more in less time.

    Do nothing as long as he is having 4-6 wet diapers a day and is not losing weight. This is normal and fine.

    Answer by Krysta622 at 12:30 PM on Jan. 24, 2009

  • Drink, drink, drink.
    Nurse as often as he will. He's much more efficient than a pump.
    When I had to pump, I'd keep a picture of my baby there, and is sounds weird, but that would help my milk letdown so I could pump 5 or more ounces.
    My middle DD refused to take any formula - so I had to pump for about 6 months at work. If I was stressed out and worried about making enough milk, I could only get an ounce or two. If I relaxed, had plenty of fluids, and imagined my baby, I could get a whole bottle.
    Also, a good pump (Medula) is worth the money. The cheap ones hurt and that doesn't help your letdown.
    Talk to your local LaLeche League rep if you are still having difficulty.

    Answer by 3gymnastsmom at 12:31 PM on Jan. 24, 2009

  • Okay first off, pumping is NO indication of your milk supply. It is COMPLETELY normal to only be able to pump 1/2 -2 ounces per pumping session. That does not mean that's how much you make. At some point you may not even be able to get a half an ounce, but still have plenty of milk for your baby. So please, please dont quit BFing because you dont pump very much.

    Secondly, NURSE ON DEMAND!!! Do not schedule baby's feedings. I did this for the first six months and was starving my baby as well as killing my milk supply. I would feed her every 3 hours on the dot, she stopped gaining weight, she was scrawny, and I was lucky to be able to save my milk supply. Our babies and our bodies were meant to nurse on demand. Nurse as often as she wants, and for as long as she wants. She really, honestly, wont always nurse as much as she wants to right now.

    Answer by kate_jocelyn at 2:08 AM on Jan. 25, 2009

  • continued...

    Thirdly, there's no need to pump right now. In fact, it's best to wait until your milk supply is well established, so around six weeks post-partum. After that, pump as much as you want, but be careful with it, the more you stimulate your nipples, whether milk is coming out or not, the more milk your body is telling your breasts to produce.

    Lastly, if you find your having a hard time, talk to a certified lactation consultant BEFORE your doctor. Doctors usually dont know jack about breastfeeding :)

    Your doing amazing. Keep up the good work, and trust your body :)

    Answer by kate_jocelyn at 2:13 AM on Jan. 25, 2009

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