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Dip in Supply
Tips for bringing it back up

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14 replies to this topic

#1 fick

Posted 10 February 2012 - 08:36 AM

Hi All,

My DP has experienced a dip in her milk supply and we are eager to get this back up to par and stop our DD losing any more weight.

So far, DP is pumping as much as she can to stimulate her supply and trying to add brewers yeast and flaxseed meal to her meals/drinks where possible.

Just wondering if you lovely ladies had any extra tips that might help?


#2 lucky 2

Posted 10 February 2012 - 09:18 AM

I think it would depend on the specifics of what is happening. If you baby has lost weight then this would be unusual in a baby that was thriving up to that point and baby would need a health assessment, ie GP, CHN etc. Has the weight loss happened rt illhealth in baby or mother. What has happened? I think this extra information is very relevant to working out how to help the situation reverse itself IYKWIM?
It might be good to call ABA for a chat but if there have been health concerns for mother or baby I'd try and get an appt with a LC ASAP.
Sorry for all the questions but each situation is different so having as much information as possible can help us give feedback that will be the most suited to your particular situation.
All the best

#3 fick

Posted 10 February 2012 - 09:51 AM

Thanks for the reply, lucky 2.

Okay, well, here's the whole story. It's kind of long and involved so I was trying to avoid having to type it all out but bear with me, I'll do my best...

DD was born on 31/08/2011 and it was discovered shortly after birth that she has/had an Imperforate Anus and a single kidney. Due to to the single kidney, our surgeon at SCH (Sydney Children's Hospital) decided the best course of action was to perform a colostomy procedure. This was done when DD was nine days old. We eventually left SCH when DD was 3wks old. During that entire time she was fully breastfed with only one occasion where she was given a small amount of formula as I had insisted on getting DP out of the hospital for dinner as she was going a bit stir crazy, what with not sleeping in her own bed for almost a month and the enormous stress of giving birth, finding out something was wrong, sending our DD off to surgery etc.

Anyways.. Feeding was going very well, DP was managing to express a good amount when needed along with feeding DD the regular way. DD gained weight and was thriving. She had a second surgery on November 28th and we spent another week at SCH for monitoring.

Since that surgery to now, DD has dropped her evening feeds and sleeps through the night. We've been having issues trying to settle her for sleeps during the day but we just figured that was one of her quirks. DP booked in to see the nurses at Tresillian, just to get some guidance/tips, on the 8th of Feb. During this visit, the nurses weighed DD and we discovered she'd lost about 400grms since her last surgery weigh-in in November.

Nurses advised that it appeared that DP's supply was dipping and this was the cause of DD's unsettled day-time sleeps and her generally grizzly demeanor during the day. Basically, the little munchkin was hungry.

Both DD and DP have been completely healthy since DD's birth (with the obvious exception being DD"s surgeries, but she wasn't really 'sick' IYKWIM). Obviously the stress of surgeries, plus the craziness and stress that Christmas was (flying with a 3mo etc) has had an impact on DP and her milk supply. As of right now, in an effort to get DD to gain some weight, we are comp feeding but we don't want this to continue too long. Ideally, we would like to get DP's milk supply back up to a level where she can give DD all the sustenance she needs.

In addition to the things I mentioned in my first post, DP is also taking Fenugreek at meal times.

Any help or tips you could provide would be dearly appreciated.


#4 lucky 2

Posted 10 February 2012 - 10:41 AM


Sorry to have to drag that out of you, I suppose in the back of my mind I had a memory of some sort of history with your baby and I know supply doesn't drop for no reason.
The links above I hope will help.
My thoughts would be (in conjunction with the above)-
Increase bfing if possible, ie ? add dream feed, try feed/play/feed/sleep routine instead of feed/play/sleep, ? at some points in the day. Just finding times to throw in an extra suckle.
Bfing-switch feeding, breast compressions.
Seeing a LC for  specific and expert advice.
Expressing is an option, fenugreek is an option as is Domperidone (from GP).
I hope you get some success at boosting supply, if it was great before it should be great again, ? did it perhaps go down post surgery and never come up again?
All the best.

#5 fick

Posted 10 February 2012 - 11:39 AM

Thanks lucky 2.

The advice is much appreciated. It seems as though supply went down post-Christmas. She has milk (sometimes it'll squirt across the room), it just seems that what she has isn't enough for DD at the moment.

We will keep trying. original.gif

Thanks again.

#6 therebel

Posted 10 February 2012 - 11:56 AM

I'm struggling with a low supply, perhaps caused by a breast reduction many years ago, and DD is underweight.

I'm taking strong dosages of Motilium, Fenugreek, drinking at least 2lt water a day and eating very well. I'm also expressing about 10 times a day, including after every feed (waiting 45 minutes if possible for the supply to rebound) and feeding DD all three PM feeds from a bottle of EBM (no FF). Have only used this complete regime for the last couple of days and have already seen a massive improvement in DD's sleeping frequency and behaviour (yey!).

#7 fick

Posted 10 February 2012 - 12:18 PM

Good luck, therebel. Sounds like you're seeing some good results already. original.gif

DP has been expressing yesterday and today. Yesterday she was only managing 10mls in total, today that's up to 20mls. We're both hoping that it will continue to improve.

#8 lucky 2

Posted 10 February 2012 - 12:26 PM

It should!

therebel, have you seen the website BFAR? All about bfing after breat surgeries.
All the best.

#9 Jenflea

Posted 10 February 2012 - 03:53 PM

I don't normally say this before 6 months, but have you thought about solids if your partner's supply isn't satisfying your daughter?
I don't know about her medical condition, so maybe her paediatrician might say no, but a bit of rice cereal in EBM might help once or twice a day.

#10 Sassenach2

Posted 11 February 2012 - 10:30 AM

You say you are not getting a lot when you express your milk, but remember that babies can get more than a pump can. I would do some Switch Feeding, which is when you go from one side to the other in the one feed So put her on one side and then take her off after a couple of minutes and switch to the other side. Some babies can go up to 8 times backwards and forwards and this is a great way to boost supply. I would also feed your baby more during the day and perhaps wake her for one feed overnight. The more you give her, the more milk you will make. biggrin.gif

#11 therebel

Posted 12 February 2012 - 09:14 AM

QUOTE (lucky 2 @ 10/02/2012, 01:26 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
therebel, have you seen the website BFAR? All about bfing after breat surgeries.
All the best.

Wow, great website Lucky2, thanks! I'm off to the health food shop!

DD's next weigh in is in four days' time, so that should indicate whether the new strategy to increase my supply is working (I'm now waking up briefly to express 4 times overnight + DD's 4amish feed, although I'm ensuring there is a clear hour, express-free gap before and after her feed).

P.S. I'm now under intense pressure from family members to supplement with FF. Usually my stubbornness is a vice but fortunately it's working in my favour now! No FF so far, but again the next weigh in will be critical. Fingers crossed!

#12 fick

Posted 14 February 2012 - 08:08 AM

Just wanted to update... Appears DP's supply is starting to come back up. Still not getting a lot from expressing, but she keeps trying. We are comp feeding, but not forcing DD to take the entire amount (around 100mls) and always after a BF first. we had her weighed yesterday and she had gained a whopping 510grams in five days.

We're going to continue comp feeding for a bit, slowly reducing the amount of formula she's getting and see where things go from there.

Thanks for all your advice ladies. Much appreciated.

#13 therebel

Posted 15 February 2012 - 04:53 PM

Guys, delighted to advise that DD weighed in at +200 grams in a week and my supply appears to be gradually increasing!

I'm now also drinking a 'breastfeeding' tea four times a day (with fennel seeds, nettle, blessed thistle etc) and taking another breastfeeding support supplement containing fenugreek etc. Still expressing at least 10 times a day, on Motilium and the other measures. And still no FF! Not giving up yet!  biggrin.gif

#14 lucky 2

Posted 15 February 2012 - 06:37 PM

That's a fantastic result therebel original.gif , absolutely fantastic following a breast reduction, all the best.

#15 pearlnorma

Posted 18 February 2012 - 01:24 PM

Drink water!!! Lots and lots of water. DO NOT STOP. Tell her to drink when she is breastfeeding, after she has fed, everytime she goes near the kitchen, all day and all night long. You will be amazed by her milk supply after only a little while. She needs the water. If she is dehydrated her body will take all fluid for herself to keep functioning - none goes to bulking up her supply. Get a big drink bottle keep it filled up with good tasting water at a temperature that she likes and she will gulp it down and it will take only a day or two for her milk to reproduce.

I stopped drinking water all together at one stage (did not realise), my supply dropped and I was able to express no  more than ten mls every three hours. My boy was on every half an hour because he was starving and started losing weight. I realised I was thirsty, had a drink and began drinking about three letres in half a day. By the next day my milk was up, baby sleeping soundly, he was good and full and was back to expressing 200mls in under 10 mins!

Hope it helps.

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