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Am I producing enough?

(17 Posts)
scrivette Wed 03-Aug-11 21:46:26

Many Friends and family have been quite negative about me breast feeding my 5 week old DS, the most common phrase is 'you don't know if he is getting enough.' I always reply that as long as he is putting on weight and producing wet and dirty nappies he is getting enough.

However, I am starting to doubt myself!

I have been taking Domperidone to increase my supply for 6 days. Yesterday and again today DS has been doing very short feeds, between 10 and 30 minutes (total) and appears to be emptying each breast. Could my supply have dwindled after taking these tables or is there another reason? He seems to be doing lots of wet nappies still, although possibly not so many dirty ones.

Snackalot Wed 03-Aug-11 21:48:56

It could be that he's just getting more efficient at feeding! Don't let others put you off with their preconceived notions. I was amazed to discover how much milk my breasts could hold, when I tried expressing recently - sometimes as much as 200mls (for both sides, not each!)
Good luck!

thisisyesterday Wed 03-Aug-11 21:53:37

why have you been taking the domperidone? if he is putting on weight etc etc there is no reason to need drugs to stimulate supply.

personally i wouldn't add any medication into the mix if you are already breastfeeding successfully. if you are artificially increasing your milk supply you're overriding the natural supply and demand process, and you will find that when you stop taking it you may not be making enough, do you see what I mean?

domperidone has its place. but not in a normal breastfeeding relationship imo

cowboylover Wed 03-Aug-11 22:06:44

This sticky hot weather the last few days may not have helped your supply so make sure you are looking after yourself keeping properly hydrated ect.

Also for the typical question of you don't know now much they are having the answer is that you don't really need to as they will let you know if they are hungry and all the signs of weight gain, nappie ect are fine.

midori1999 Wed 03-Aug-11 22:14:59

I don't know if this helps, but my baby was 6 weeks on Monday and for a week or so I have felt that my breasts aren't as full as they have been. (I did have over-supply at first though) I know that around now milk supply can regulate to be more in tune with what baby needs and for that reason I wouldn't feel as full, but even so, I have to keep reminding myself that that is what is happening and I am still producing enough milk.

ShowOfHands Wed 03-Aug-11 22:21:19

You will get better at the supply/demand and your baby more efficient. Plus you never empty a breast, they make milk as the baby feeds or as you pump. It's a bit like a river, not a pond with a limited supply. If your baby is alert, happy, gaining weight, weeing and pooing (though pooing can decrease significantly in bf babies) then that should tell you all you need to know.

The hot weather/your hydration levels won't affect bfing but you will feel crappy if you don't stay hydrated.

I'm not sure why you're taking domperidone either?

TruthSweet Wed 03-Aug-11 23:01:04

The silly thing is even if you know how much you are giving a baby, how do you know that that amount is enough. After all you could know your baby is having 6 x 6oz of milk a day but they might need 8 x 5oz.

At least with bfing, you have to trust baby to take what they need, not rely on the gauge on a bottle or the side of a packet to tell you what your baby needs.

It's so sad that you have had your confidence so undermined by the very people who should be supporting and encouraging you. Have you got any other avenues of support available (bfing group, supportive HV or MW)? Aside from MN of course!

SouthGoingZax Wed 03-Aug-11 23:03:44

Almost certainly yes. Feed him whenever he wants, don't forget he might want more in the warm weather, and don't take this as a sign he isn't getting enough at each feed. Your breasts will up supply to meet demand as long as you don't undermine the process by topping up.

(I exclusively bf my twins and I managed to make enough for them - breasts are amazing things! wink)

scrivette Thu 04-Aug-11 02:06:44

Thank you for your replies, I feel much better after reading them.

I agree, breasts are amazing things!

I was prescribed Domperidon by the hospital. I went to have his Tongue Tie looked at (very mild so not snipped) and there they weighed him before and after a feed and decided that I wasn't producing enough milk. It did seem a bit strange that it was given after observing just one feed though.

shinydiscoball Thu 04-Aug-11 02:34:51

It is very odd that they would give you that prescription based on one Fred, do you have a BFing support worker you could talk to to get a second opinion?

FWIW my DD is 5 and a half weeks and has been following a similar feeding pattern for the last few days, much more often but for shorter periods than usual. My HV put it down to a possible growth spurt and due to the heat, DD needing to drink more rather than feed IYSWIM, taking more of the watery foremilk to stay hydrated. Just a theory.

Keep going - you're doing a great job!

shinydiscoball Thu 04-Aug-11 02:37:38

Based on one feed smile

Snackalot Thu 04-Aug-11 09:06:55

Well, good luck scrivette, keep on bf, sounds like you're doing a great job. Keep bringing DS to your breast to stimulate supply/demand cycle.
It does sound odd, but on the other hand - whatever helps!

dutchyoriginal Thu 04-Aug-11 09:33:17

Hi Scrivette, yep, breasts are amazing, but sometimes it would be handy if they were see through with measuring units. :-) However, as someone else upthread has said, even then you wouldn't know whether that would be enough for your baby. Think of yourself, the exact same amount of food and drink is more than enough one day, but leaves you hungry and thirsty the next. It all depends on your level of activity, the weather and many more factors. The same goes for your baby.

Therefore, the best measurement is your baby. Observe him, does he exhibit feeding signals, then feed him. Does he pee regularly during the day? That gives you some day to day feedback. Does he gain weight? That gives a longer term perspective. If you're a bit worried that it might be not enough, e.g. on a really hot day, you could try letting him nurse some extra by offering him the breast before or afther his naps, e.g. if you normally nurse before the nap, also offer afterwards or vice versa. If he's not that interested then, but interested enough at other points, that also tells you something.

Also, at some point your breasts will feel a lot emptier between feeds and baby will feed for a much shorter period. In the first weeks, it would cost us about 45 minutes, nowadays ("baby" is 16 months) it's about 5 minutes and it has been like that for months now. Your baby's getting stronger and more efficient at it, and so are your breasts. :-)

thisisyesterday Thu 04-Aug-11 10:17:33

hmmm, weighing before/after a feed went out with the dark ages i thought? it's not really a good way of telling if a baby has taken much. if he did a poo/wee after the feed that would affect it!

did they also tell you of the risks of domperidone? or give any natural ways of boosting supply, like feeding more frequently?

I would not want to tell you to go against what a doctor has advised, but if it were me i would ditch the domperidone and let your body produce milk naturally. has there been any worry over his weight apart from that one time?

scrivette Thu 04-Aug-11 21:39:21

The baby does lots of dirty nappies so he must be getting enough. I wasn't told of any side affects for the tablets, so I might just give them up as I haven't noticed a huge difference and I don't like taking tablets.
Thank you for all the support, I don't know how Mum's would cope without Mumsnet!

thisisyesterday Fri 05-Aug-11 14:20:27

that's shocking! did they ask if you have ever had heart problems? irregular heartbeat/palpitations? because domperidone can cause those itself and aggravate existing conditions. and that's just ONE side effect

i am aghast at the awful advice they have given you, and if you feel up to it right now then you should consider complaining.

scrivette Fri 05-Aug-11 20:54:26

Oh my goodness, no they didn't mention that at all. It sounds as if her advice was terrible. She seemed annoyed as I had gone there and not had the tongue tie snipped and seemed to want to wash her hands of me a bit.

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