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questions for the breastfeeding mamas, i need your advice

Posted by on May. 24, 2013 at 12:24 PM
  • 14 Replies

I am pregnant with my 4th child right now.  I really want to breastfeed and get prepared for it and what i need now so I don't have to stress later.  I breastfed with my oldest for 3 1/2 weeks and my supply cut and dropped out of nowwhere and had to switch to formula.  My 2nd child my daughter, we breastfed for the first 2-3 weeks and then started pumping it and giving it in a bottle till she was roughtly 8 weeks old to monitor how much she was eating because she was losing tons of weight before she ended up full time on premature baby formula (she was my preemie). My 3rd we just formula fed and i'm regretting it myself now.  Initally we were going to bottle feed this one, but my husband and I talked about it and both agreed we want to try to breastfeed at least 6 months if not longer.  So I have a few questions to help me prepare

1)  How many nursing bras should I buy?  How do I know what size i need to get or should I buy multiple sizes? (I started prepregnancy at 34d, and now depending on the brand of bra i'm at a 36d to a 36dd)

2)  Same for tanks and nursing tops, what is a good number to get? 

3)  What are some great working breast pumps I could buy at a reasonable price to use to pump milk (before the baby turns 6 months my husband and I will be celebrating our anniversary and originally had plans to go out so I want to have breastmilk pumped instead of formula) Also has anybody tried the hands free pumping bra? Is it really worth the price?

and Lastly any other tips and advice to help me make this last 6 months or longer, I would greatly appriciate it.  I just want this to be the best experience and longest i have been able to breastfeed and could really use the tips to be prepared, thanks in advance

by on May. 24, 2013 at 12:24 PM
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SewingMamaLele
by Bronze Member on May. 24, 2013 at 12:40 PM
1 mom liked this

1. I honestly would only buy one or two to start and then get sized after your supply has regulated.   I don't personally use nursing bras... but I believe one cup size up is what is reccomended.

2. I just use regular clouthes... if nursing tanks work for you, get as many as you want. 

3.  If you will only need it for nights out, etc... a manual pump is fine.  Lansinoh or medela both have good manual pumps.   If you really want electric... lansinoh, ameda, medela or hygiea.


MOST importantly, I think you need a good book on breastfeeding!  :)  Feeling like your supply has dropped out of nowhere at 3 weeks is NORMAL.   That's a growth spurt and feeling like you're not producing enough milk is exactly how you should be feeling.  If you know what is normal, you can identify what isn't and how to fix it.  

Also, join the breastfeeding moms group on here!  

ceciliam
by Cecilia on May. 24, 2013 at 12:57 PM

This pretty much covers it! Good luck! :)

Quoting SewingMamaLele:

1. I honestly would only buy one or two to start and then get sized after your supply has regulated.   I don't personally use nursing bras... but I believe one cup size up is what is reccomended.

2. I just use regular clouthes... if nursing tanks work for you, get as many as you want. 

3.  If you will only need it for nights out, etc... a manual pump is fine.  Lansinoh or medela both have good manual pumps.   If you really want electric... lansinoh, ameda, medela or hygiea.


MOST importantly, I think you need a good book on breastfeeding!  :)  Feeling like your supply has dropped out of nowhere at 3 weeks is NORMAL.   That's a growth spurt and feeling like you're not producing enough milk is exactly how you should be feeling.  If you know what is normal, you can identify what isn't and how to fix it.  

Also, join the breastfeeding moms group on here!  


Randi02
by Platinum Member on May. 24, 2013 at 1:58 PM
3 moms liked this

I don't use nursing bras or tanks. I just use cute cotton bras and regular shirts :)

Tips?

1) Nurse baby on demand. Even if it was 10 minutes since the last feed.

2) Losing weight is normal in the first week or so. Most babies are back to birth weight by 2 weeks, but some take a little longer.

3) Pumping is not an indication of supply. Average output is 0.5-2 ounces per session, from both breasts. Some make more, some can't pump a drop. It literally doesn't mean a thing.

4) Diaper output is the only accurate indication of supply. For the first week, 1 wet diaper per day of life (1 on day 1, 4 on day 4 etc.) and then at least 6-8 wet diapers every 24 hours after day 6 or 7.

5) It's NORMAL for it to take a few days for your milk to come in. All baby needs until then is colostrum.

6) Eating constantly doesn't mean your baby is starving. That is how they build your supply! The more you nurse, the better and stronger your supply will come in.

7) How hard or soft your breasts feel doesn't mean anything. Some women are constantly engorged, some never experience that. Our breasts are factories, not storage facilities. They are never empty!

8) Every bottle you give is stimulation your supply is missing out on, so try and avoid them as much as possible.

isaacsmommy68
by on May. 24, 2013 at 2:08 PM

Post this in the breastfeeding group. they are wonderful and very helpful.

And this is great:

1) Nurse baby on demand. Even if it was 10 minutes since the last feed.

2) Losing weight is normal in the first week or so. Most babies are back to birth weight by 2 weeks, but some take a little longer.

3) Pumping is not an indication of supply. Average output is 0.5-2 ounces per session, from both breasts. Some make more, some can't pump a drop. It literally doesn't mean a thing.

4) Diaper output is the only accurate indication of supply. For the first week, 1 wet diaper per day of life (1 on day 1, 4 on day 4 etc.) and then at least 6-8 wet diapers every 24 hours after day 6 or 7.

5) It's NORMAL for it to take a few days for your milk to come in. All baby needs until then is colostrum.

6) Eating constantly doesn't mean your baby is starving. That is how they build your supply! The more you nurse, the better and stronger your supply will come in.

7) How hard or soft your breasts feel doesn't mean anything. Some women are constantly engorged, some never experience that. Our breasts are factories, not storage facilities. They are never empty!

8) Every bottle you give is stimulation your supply is missing out on, so try and avoid them as much as possible.

 

MentorMom1
by on May. 24, 2013 at 2:19 PM

I applaud your determination, Mama. Remember that mother's milk alone is sufficient for your baby's growth for about the first six months of life, so think about making your goal exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months. Your baby will benefit so much, and so will you.

Another thing to do if you want to succeed is not to take home any formula home from the hospital. You don't need it. Have confidence in your ability to feed your baby yourself, and say, "Thanks, but I won't be needing it."

Remember, not only will your baby's  immune system be stronger, but breastfeeding enhances the maternal-child bond.  

Something else: make sure your baby's pediatrician is 100% on board with your decision to breastfeed. You should not be hearing any negative messages at all. And they shouldn't be pressuring you to supplement, not with juice, water, or cereal. If you want to make more milk, you need to breastfeed more often. It's the law of supply and demand. Especially at the time of a growth spurt.

They will weigh your healthy baby at doctors visits, and that's fine. But you don't need to weigh the baby at home, or worry that he or she is getting enough. Trust that your baby is fine. If  they have at least six wet diapers a day, they are getting enough. (That's one reason I like cloth as opposed to disposables - you can get a better idea of how often the baby pees!) 

I have heard that a doctor's attitude about breastfeeding is influenced by whether his wife successfully breastfed, and how she feels about breastfeeding. I imagine the same may be true of a female doctor and her children. Don't feel bad about switching doctors if you can't get the support you need. LLL used to give out the names of several local doctors that members found to be pro-breastfeeding. 

That brings me to La Leche League. I highly recommend this wonderful organization to pregnant and new moms. These women are there to support you through your breastfeeding journey. And you can start attending meetings right away. You get to meet other breastfeeding moms and become much more relaxed, and informed, about the whole experience. I also recommend owning a copy of their manual.

In addition, to ensure successful breastfeeding, you need to make sure you are getting enough good nutrition. Some books say you only need the equivilent to an extra peanut butter sandwich per day. But I think it amounts to this: Breastfeeding moms should be concerned about the quality, not just the amount, they are eating. Pregancy and childbirth is a good time to make positive changes in your diet. I learned as much as I could about nutrition, to make my baby healthier before and after the birth. My whole family benefitted. 

Personally, I never owned a pump. I just felt better if I took my baby along when we went out.  DH and I had a special dates after the kids were in bed. They were a "night in," instead of a "night out." I would set the table beautifully and light candles for our adult meal. Once in a while we might have someone come over while the kids slept, but that was rare. I always knew when it was time to feed the baby (let-down) and got home in a hurry, usually just as the baby was waking up. Even sneaking out for a cup of coffee and piece of pie was a treat.

I bought a sleep bra for the last month of my pregnancy, because my breasts (normally small) were so much bigger and more uncomfortable when I slept. When your milk comes in, your breasts will be larger still, because of engorgement. So you will need a bra for that stage, too. (I had my husband take me to JC Penney's while a friend stayed with my sleeping baby, so I could get one in the right size.  I wasn't prepared for how large my boobies would be!) 

I would try some bras on beforehand, and play with the fasteners. Make sure you get the ones you like, and that are easy to do with one hand. You might wait until your breast-size normalizes after the first week or so before purchasing very many.

I always used regular tops. I made some tops  that were loose-fitting, because I didn't want anything binding my breasts, other than my bra. But you can do very well with whatever is comfy and easy to nurse discreetly in.

If your husband is behind you, that's the first step to your success. And just stick with supportive people. You can do it. Just relax and enjoy your baby, and nurse on demand - whenever baby is interested in nursing, day or night.  If you don't worry about putting the baby on a schedule, you will be more successful.

KylersMom8-16-7
by Bronze Member on May. 24, 2013 at 2:37 PM
1) I would buy a soft sleep nursing bra or sports bra style to start. Then after your milk regulates around 6 weeks get sized and buy 2-3 more.

2)I use regular stretchy camisoles. You can put them under any top and just lift the top shirt and pull down the cami.

3) Medela, Ameda, Hygiea are the top rated pumps. Kellymom.com has a wonderful article on amount to give baby:-) The hands free bra is nice but if you aren't pumping much its a waste.

Trust your body! Chances are you thought your supply dropped because baby was always hungry but really baby was just trying to increase your supply. You can expect baby to nurse constantly for 6-8 weeks. Growth spurts occur at irst few days at home and around 7-10 days, 2-3 weeks, 4-6 weeks, 3 months, 4 months, 6 months, 9 months, 12 months...
They can last 2-3 days to over a week.


Quoting MinnickMama:

I am pregnant with my 4th child right now.  I really want to breastfeed and get prepared for it and what i need now so I don't have to stress later.  I breastfed with my oldest for 3 1/2 weeks and my supply cut and dropped out of nowwhere and had to switch to formula.  My 2nd child my daughter, we breastfed for the first 2-3 weeks and then started pumping it and giving it in a bottle till she was roughtly 8 weeks old to monitor how much she was eating because she was losing tons of weight before she ended up full time on premature baby formula (she was my preemie). My 3rd we just formula fed and i'm regretting it myself now.  Initally we were going to bottle feed this one, but my husband and I talked about it and both agreed we want to try to breastfeed at least 6 months if not longer.  So I have a few questions to help me prepare


1)  How many nursing bras should I buy?  How do I know what size i need to get or should I buy multiple sizes? (I started prepregnancy at 34d, and now depending on the brand of bra i'm at a 36d to a 36dd)


2)  Same for tanks and nursing tops, what is a good number to get? 


3)  What are some great working breast pumps I could buy at a reasonable price to use to pump milk (before the baby turns 6 months my husband and I will be celebrating our anniversary and originally had plans to go out so I want to have breastmilk pumped instead of formula) Also has anybody tried the hands free pumping bra? Is it really worth the price?


and Lastly any other tips and advice to help me make this last 6 months or longer, I would greatly appriciate it.  I just want this to be the best experience and longest i have been able to breastfeed and could really use the tips to be prepared, thanks in advance


Mom2Just1
by Mom2boys on May. 24, 2013 at 7:04 PM

This!  Diaper count is all that matters with supply.  


Quoting SewingMamaLele:

1. I honestly would only buy one or two to start and then get sized after your supply has regulated.   I don't personally use nursing bras... but I believe one cup size up is what is reccomended.

2. I just use regular clouthes... if nursing tanks work for you, get as many as you want. 

3.  If you will only need it for nights out, etc... a manual pump is fine.  Lansinoh or medela both have good manual pumps.   If you really want electric... lansinoh, ameda, medela or hygiea.


MOST importantly, I think you need a good book on breastfeeding!  :)  Feeling like your supply has dropped out of nowhere at 3 weeks is NORMAL.   That's a growth spurt and feeling like you're not producing enough milk is exactly how you should be feeling.  If you know what is normal, you can identify what isn't and how to fix it.  

Also, join the breastfeeding moms group on here!  



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kclarsh
by Member on May. 25, 2013 at 12:32 PM

Great answers The first 3 to 6 weeks for me was awful but I just kept going and after that it is so easy :)

If you feel like you are having trouble, see a lactation consultant, After 3 weeks of my youngest eating every 20 minutes, the LC came in looked at her and said she was tongue tied, She helped with position and was really helpful.  We got my dd's tongue clipped and she slept for 2 hours after nursing!

I wear tank tops under shirts, I pull the tank down and my shirt up,

I have bigger than DDD boobies so someone told me about Anitas,,, I found them on barenecessities.com  If you need a G or H ;)

newwifenmom
by Member on May. 26, 2013 at 11:36 PM

1.I did not use nursing bras

2.I used regular clothing

3. I had a great experience with myfirstyears pump though I have heard many do not like it.


My tips are to take it day by day, be patient with baby and yourself. Goals are good but do not beat yourself up if you try your best and are still unsuccessful, ANY time spent breastfeeding is beneficial. Oh and the BFing group on here is fantastic.

kzuehlk
by Member on May. 26, 2013 at 11:43 PM
I waited until after my baby was born to buy nursing bras and tanks. I bought 5 bras and I probably have about 10 tanks (my son is 2month old and I live in those!)

There are two different natural supplements you can take -vitanica nursing blend and fenugreek. The vitanica worked alright for my supply, but I think the fenugreek is best. I take 3 pills 3 times a day (the only side effect it has is that it makes your sweat and urine smell like pancakes. Fenugreek is used to flavor artificial maple syrup.) I had problems with my supply for both of my sons until I started taking it.

I forget the name of the pump I bought, but it was only $45 at Walmart. I could never get much milk with a manual pump, but this one works great.
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