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I just had my daughter 2 wks ago. I am so in love!! I could not have ever imagined the kind of love I feel towards this tiny life. So far I am really enjoying mommy-hood. I am breastfeeding and really enjoying the closeness I feel with my daughter when I'm feeding her. I am blessed because I produce A LOT of milk. I am very grateful for this but at the same time a bit discouraged because I seem to have an over abundance of milk. My daughter isn't able to empty a breast at a single feeding. My breasts get so engorged that when she latches on she starts choking because the flow is so forceful (it will litterally squirt her in her face). I have tried pumping off a little before feedings as well as hand expression and it doesn't seem to be helping. Not only is it frustrating for her but also for me because my breasts are very sore when they are engorged. Some people have told me to pump for relief which helps but I'm beginning to wonder if it is also telling my body to produce more milk. So my question is, should I not pump before a feeding or in between feedings and just tough out the discomfort with the hope that my body will catch on to making only what my daughter nurses? I would love some suggestions or advice. I'm a first time mom and am eager to learn. I just want my supply to decrease a bit for my comfort and my daughters breastfeeding experience.

Thank you!!

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Asked by hljones at 6:03 PM on Dec. 9, 2010 in Babies (0-12 months)

Level 6 (122 Credits)
Answers (10)
  • first of all, congrats! so happy for you! as for your question, I am going to agree with those that told you that pumping for relief is actually not the right answer. your body is going to think you need more and it will just keep increasing. i had a similar problem with my first so what I would do is when my milk started choking my dh i would just pull off and let it squirt into a nursing pad or cloth and then wait for it to slow a bit before letting him latch back on. best of luck to you!

    Answer by MommyH2 at 6:06 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • Don't worry, it'd hard in the beginning, it will all even out very soon. I pumped to relieve engorgement, but only for the first few weeks.

    Answer by mompam at 6:18 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • @MommyH2-Do you have any advice as to what I should do about the engorgement especially when it gets painful? Usually my breasts get really hard when they are engorged. Should I just wait it out? Thank you for the advice I really appreciate it.

    Comment by hljones (original poster) at 6:22 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • Pump ONLY a little when you're that engorged. ONLY A LITTLE! A minute, if that. Your body will take up to six weeks to figure out how many babies are being fed. That's normal.

    Cabbage leaves in your bra can relieve engorgement. Leave them in for a few minutes only.... they can also dry you out.

    Answer by gdiamante at 6:46 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • Hand express JUST enough for relief. Try nursing in a reclined position with the baby on top of your breast instead of under. Read this link for more tips


    Answer by aehanrahan at 6:57 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • A hot shower will relived the pressure. You will probably leak a lot of milk in the shower. That's fine.

    Nurse as much as possible. Every time your baby is alert, offer up the breast. Your baby is much more efficient than a pump. Also, a new born cant over eat at the breast. This is good for your future supply and your baby.

    This will go away. One day you will feel empty. Your supply is NORMAL. Don't think you suddenly ran out of milk.

    For the squirting and drowning in milk: nurse "up hill" by putting the baby on top of the breast, leaning back, and letting the baby suck against gravity. This will help a lot! is a great site for info on over supply and forceful let down. You can do this! You will love breast feeding!

    Answer by ecodani at 7:03 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • You can use cold compresses after you nurse, it helps to lessen the inflammatory response that happens when you're engorged (ibuprofen can help with this as well and it is safe to take while nursing). The cold will also help to slow your production a little. At 2 weeks pp, it's completely normal to have an abundant supply as your body doesn't know how much your dd needs yet, and it will be a little while before it regulates. The nursing uphill suggestion sabove is a great one, and should help with the overactive letdown a lot. If you want to continue pumping for a back up supply, you can use this time of over abundance to your advantage.

    Answer by rhianna1708 at 9:19 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • If the baby is having trouble latching when you're engorged, hand express a little to make it easier for her.

    Answer by aehanrahan at 10:20 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • I agree with the shower it will feel good on the nipples along with releveing some milk but if its squirting your baby in the face make sure she is totaly latched on the right way make sure all milk ducts are n her mouth and then put her in an up right position if shes getting to much at one time that way she can always spit milk out if its to much and not choke on it

    Answer by kimmy77 at 10:34 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • I agree with the hot shower when you are engorged- I remember being in the shower one day and looking down and one nipple was like a fountain of milk just shooting out on it's own. I also remember my daughter getting squirted in the eye a few times in those first few weeks, lol, but in a couple more weeks my supply really evened out. Then I barely felt like my breasts were full of milk at feeding times but as soon as she latched on my milk let down and she nursed fine, and it was so much nicer than having hard breasts and leaking so much, etc, once my supply evened out. Another thing I did for engorgement was to take a warm, wet towel and wrap it around a heating pad which I laid over my breasts. Good luck, trust that your body will work this all out in a few more weeks. And many congratulations on your new baby! Those early days nursing and bonding with my daughter are such special memories to me.

    Answer by MaryMW at 10:36 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

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