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'Technical' question about breast milk.

(11 Posts)
pie Sun 19-Oct-03 18:28:49

I know a lady who is tandem b/f. Her son is 2 and she had another boy a week ago. She continued to nurse the older boy during her pregnancy, and even got him to latch on during labour to help the contractions along.

Now she is feeding both...but my question is this:

When she had her baby, even though she never stopped b/f does colostrum still come in after the birth, or does the fact that she already had milk prevent this. Also as she is feeding both the new baby and the older son the baby sometimes gets the hindmilk only, do babies need foremilk, or will any breast milk do?

I'm just curious how this works!

mears Sun 19-Oct-03 18:32:52

It is amazing isn't it? From my understanding, new babies should be fed first. Milk is produced for new babies but the colostrum stage doesn't last long. I remember a friend of mine who had twins who was still feeding her toddler. The babies were in special care because they were born at 34 weeks and she was asked to express milk for them. She produced a whopping 100ml just a few hours after birth. Needless to say, her babies did really well How are you Pie? SPD pain any better?

pie Sun 19-Oct-03 19:30:35

Thanks mears!

(SPD is ok, I have my first osteopath appointment in a week so hoping that it will help my recovery along. Still waddle though. Thank you for all the questions and wishes as passed along by pupuce )

Pimpernel Sun 19-Oct-03 19:54:54

I was wondering about that too, pie (congratulations, btw - I was on holiday and missed your announcement). I was wondering if you'd avoid that sore 'getting started' stage if you fed a first child until you had a second child.

Eulalia Sun 19-Oct-03 20:09:47

I tandem fed but my son was older when dd was born (2.9) and not feeding much - maybe only once a day and so in the 2nd trimester my milk dried up. He continued to 'feed' though - just sucking on an empty breast right through and along with the new baby. Afterwards he didn't take enough to make a difference - but yes it porbably did help with the getting started stage. However I've heard it is easier 2nd time round regardless anyway.

Jojo Tue 21-Oct-03 13:42:22

I tandem fed my first two daughters - elder was 26 months when second was born. It was v easy and straightforward - the baby didn't lose any weight and the milk just seemed to flow, certainly I wasn't aware of a lot of thicker colostrum type milk. The best thing about it was that we could all go to bed in the afternoon and I knew I'd get my toddler as well as my baby off to sleep - and so I could sleep too...bliss.

rainbow Tue 21-Oct-03 16:23:13

I didn't tandem feed (ds1 was 6 when ds2 was born and ds2 finished feeding at 8mo bottle flowed quicker.) I have heard from various 'professionals' that if you are going to tandem then baby should feed first, he gets all the goodness and exactly what he needs and the older one gets to comfort feed. It's not as important for his development because of the solid food he eats.

tinyfeet Tue 21-Oct-03 16:26:28

Pie - great question, and fascinating responses! A woman's body is really a miracle machine.

pie Sun 14-Dec-03 13:54:56

Ok...I've been thinking again.

If I were to b/f from only one breast would the non stimulated breast still produce milk?

Also I fed DD2 from both breasts before bed last night same time on either side. When I woke up 4 hours later the right was totally engorged and had soaked the bed, the left was still quite soft. Why? when I feed the same from both sides?

Evita Sun 14-Dec-03 16:15:04

No, the non stimulated one wouldn't produce milk. I found this because my daughter went through a phase when she rejected my right one and the milk supply went right down. I got it back by pumping and she was ok with it in the end. Secondly, usually they drain the breast you put them on first more fully than the second breast even if they're on them for the same length of time. But if you've got one breast that's being much more used in general than the other that might explain why on leaked and one didn't. Hope that's some help?

Oakmaiden Sun 14-Dec-03 16:17:31

Do you always feed the same from both sides? Because if, for example, you normally feed 20mins on one side and the 10 on the other, then breast 1 is used to producing more milk and will become engorged quicker if nopt fully emptied/a long gap between feeds.

If this is something that often happens, despite you feeding about the same from both sides, then it could be that the latch is more effective on one side, and thus that side will produce more milk.

As to if you only feed one side, will the other still lactate - I don't know for sure, but I would guess that it would probably do so but not much. I know that if you just feed one side you end up with one breast bigger than the other (whilst lactating, anyway - it probably sorts itself out when you stop.

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