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will breastfeeding only at night cause me to dry up?

i want to switch over to nursing only at night (and giving my son formula during the day), but i'm afraid that my milk will dry up. i heard that your body can be "trained" to produce milk at certain times, but will this be true if i go the entire day without nursing/pumping and only nurse at night? or will that cause my milk to dry up completely?

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Asked by momma_gig at 7:54 PM on Nov. 23, 2009 in Babies (0-12 months)

Level 6 (125 Credits)
Answers (10)
  • If you're like me, you'll dry up. Maybe not too quickly, but you likely won't have enough of a supply to sustain him all night. You'll be full-full by his first bf session, and depending how often he nurses, you might not produce enough to keep him going by the end of the night. Once I started supplementing just a couple feedings a day, I barely made enough to nurse mine once every 12 hours. I'd honestly do just the opposite - formula at night and breast during the day.

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:58 PM on Nov. 23, 2009

  • If you make the change gradually, and make sure to offer the breast as often as possible during the evenings/nights, it should work out fine. A lot of working moms find that their babies don't like to take bottles and will start to space out feedings during the day more and nurse much more at night instead. This happened to me somewhat with my first daughter. She took bottles fine from a sitter, but never really finished the amount of milk I left for her. When I got home from work, we nursed several times between dinner and bedtime, then a couple times during the night, and again right before I left again in the morning. It worked out fine for me, but I never did formula during the day. I don't know if that would be different, but you can probably call a la leche league person for some more tips.

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:59 PM on Nov. 23, 2009

  • It can work the way you want it to, or it can cause you to dry up. I think everyone is different.

    Answer by Krysta622 at 8:04 PM on Nov. 23, 2009

  • I only nursed at night for a while b/c of work, but I still pumped every few hours during the day...I did dry up within a few months, but i was ready anyway. Sometimes, your body will start producing milk when you "want it to"...but everyone is different. good luck

    Answer by calliesmommie at 8:07 PM on Nov. 23, 2009

  • Supply always follows demand. Always.

    Answer by gdiamante at 8:37 PM on Nov. 23, 2009

  • The bigger question is, why do you want to switch to formula during the day? Maybe we can help address that issue and see if there is another option, or if dayweaning will even help you.

    Answer by LeanneC at 9:01 PM on Nov. 23, 2009

  • the reason is that my son wants to nurse CONSTANTLY and i have a toddler to run after and clean up after all day. i can't be tied down for the amount of time he wants to nurse.

    Answer by momma_gig at 1:16 PM on Nov. 24, 2009

  • Get a sling! It's required equipment for anyone with more than one chidl.

    See, the thing is if you switch him to formula you still need to sit and feed him and he wants to be held.

    A sling will work FAR better for what you're trying to accomplish. You can stick him in there and "forget" him.

    Answer by gdiamante at 3:53 PM on Nov. 24, 2009

  • A sling is a great idea. Bottle or breast, you should feed your baby yourself. You can't put off one child for the other. You can make this work =) Breast is best. It just takes some work.

    Answer by jus1jess at 9:37 PM on Dec. 3, 2009

  • I saw on your profile that your baby is only 2 month old so I'd say yes it is very possible that you will dry up. I wouldn't do it. if you bottlefeed your baby you will still have to sit down and take the time to feed her/him, so what's the difference? Unless of course you plan to prop the bottle. I'd get a sling or I'd would find something to keep my toddler busy with while nursing. Breastmilk is so important I would not risk it to lose it just because you feel tied down. As the baby gets older they quicker they finish and the less often they usually nurse, at 4 month my dd was only nursing about every 2 to 3 hours unless she was teething or had a growth spurt. You can do it , just hang in there.

    Answer by stpalmsgirl at 12:17 PM on Dec. 4, 2009

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