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how do you know when your child emptied a breast?

I'm a new breastfeeding mom and don't know when to switch breasts. I heard you are supposed to let them empty one side before moving to the next but can't tell when I'm empty.

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Asked by Anonymous at 4:52 PM on Aug. 15, 2009 in Babies (0-12 months)

Answers (10)
  • I personally just nurse on one side per feeding. When they are full, they stop or fall asleep. ;) You are never absolutely "empty," but it will not feel heavy and hard when they have gotten most of the milk.

    Answer by LisaPisa at 5:00 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • I can never really tell when I'm empty, I just let her suckle on one side for aroubd 10 minutes and then move her to the other. The breast should feel less firm and much softer and squishy. It really doesn't matter whether or not you have completely emptied the breast before you switch, just make sure you nurse from both breasts at each feeding session to get your milk supply estabilished. We're 7 months in now, and I sometimes feed her from one breast and fall asleep on the couch doing so, and she only eats from that breast, the only matter of concern here is supply issues. Once you have a steady supply you don't have to worry about these petty little things.

    Answer by lillys_mommy09 at 5:01 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • I wait until he falls off the breast himself or if he starts jamming his fingers in there too. Then I offer him the other side. Sometimes he takes it. Sometimes he doesn't.

    Answer by bluelady27 at 5:42 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • you don't get empty....But you can always time how many minutes the child is on each breast. i started with 10 minutes on each because mine were so full. & as time goes on and you stick to breastfeeding and your boobs aren't in pain from not feeding it'll be better to do 20 minutes. then the hild gets both milkks. the first one is thick n vitamin filled and the second milk is more liquidy and filling. :) i miss breastfeeding. I quit at 6 months. I can't wait to have another child!

    Answer by DDTSMommy at 5:46 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • When a baby fully unlatches and refuses that breast if its offered again they are done...timing on the breast will lead to lowered supply, lowered weight gain and baby will not get enough hindmilk.....

    Best bet, leave baby on the same breast as long as baby wants, offer the secodn breast if he unlatches, if not start witht he second breast the next time

    Answer by tabi_cat1023 at 5:47 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • I agree with Taby, that;s what I have always done with my angels and they are perfectly healthy!

    Answer by Wildkitten82 at 6:33 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • your boobs never are empty, they are constantly making more milk. i dont switch my daughter on boobs at every feeding, but if i did, i would give her about 10-15 min on one boob and switch to the other.

    Answer by MomNbabyGirl009 at 8:14 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • one boob at a time that way the baby get all the hind milk that is rich in fat also.

    Answer by laura970 at 8:25 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • Well with my daughter she lets me know when it's time to switch. Sometimes she will be content with just one side but other times she will keep pushing off and fussing and I know that means 'give me the other'
    Just fallow babies cues!

    Answer by BambiF at 9:36 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • I usually wait till he gives me signs that the milk is slowed down and then i switch. He most of the time pops off

    Answer by MummyOf2ooo at 10:38 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

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