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should i substitute my breast milk for formula?

(15 Posts)
happyfirsttimemummy Sun 14-Apr-13 10:27:32

I have been breastfeeding my LO for 6 months now, and my milk seems to be drying up! I no longer have enough milk to satisfy my little boy which means that he is getting hungry very quickly after feeding and wants to have more breastmilk about 30 mins later. I have stopped getting that 'filling up' feeling in my breasts and I have tried expressing, but only get about 1 oz when expressing from both breasts.

I have started him on solids, and he has taken to them very well...so muchso that he isn't even interested in the breast anymore and just gets distracted when feeding. He still wants milk though and I feel like I'm constantly feeding to try and satisfy his needs! I really wanted to breast feed until 1year, but I just don't think I will have any milk left soon sad

Otherwise, he is a very happy and healthy boy, and I am really enjoying being a mummy. Should I try and get him to take formula? Please help!

Wheresmycaffeinedrip Sun 14-Apr-13 10:30:54

First of all whatever happens, six months is great!!!!!

And there is nothing wrong with formula!!!!

Can u speak to a health visitor and see if you can speak to so Rome who can advise you on ways to boost your supply and enable you to continue? There are lots of things you can do. smile

Wheresmycaffeinedrip Sun 14-Apr-13 10:31:26

Rome? Someone- autocorrect fail

noblegiraffe Sun 14-Apr-13 10:41:03

Why do you think your milk is drying up? If he is getting distracted while feeding then he probably wants feeding again soon after because he hadn't fed properly the first time. It's annoying when they get too interested in the world around them to feed, feeding in a quiet dark room can help.

noblegiraffe Sun 14-Apr-13 10:43:12

Meant to say that not having the full feeling in your breasts is normal once your supply is established and how much you can express is no indication of supply. I fed till 17 months but never manages to express a drop of milk. Ability to express can decrease as time goes on too.

happyfirsttimemummy Sun 14-Apr-13 11:01:01

Thank you so much for your replies.

@wheresmycaffeinedrip Thank you, I feel ike I'm a cow being milked at the moment, and felt like a bit of a failure for not being able to breast feed him enough milk! It's nice to have a lovely comment back. I feel better about maybe having to stop breastfeeding now. I will talk to a health adviser about my supply smile hopefully they can do something to help my supply and if not, I will give formula a try.

@noblegiraffe I'm glad that you say the full feeling going away is normal...that makes me feel a little better. Up until now, I was always getting that feeling before he was due a feed. The reason I thought my milk is drying up is because he seems to just suck and suck, and not swallowing, and nothing seem to be coming out after a while. Have tried feeding in a room with no distractions etc, but he just has a bit of milk and just sits there. I have always been able to express a lot of milk until this point. I hope you are right about my supply just being established. smile

Wheresmycaffeinedrip Sun 14-Apr-13 11:13:41

Do whatever you feel you want to do!!! You have a happy healthy baby and your enjoying him. There really is no point in ruining that with stressing out over what milk he has now! He will be crawling around soon and putting all sorts in his mouth like dead spiders really, the milk will be least of your worries wink .

You will be just fine whatever you choose!!! smile x

IsThatTrue Sun 14-Apr-13 11:17:30

I wouldn't bother with a hv tbh, do you have a breastfeeding cafe near you? Or try phoning la leche league and speaking to them, they will have more specialist knowledge.

But 6 months is great, don't beat yourself up! smile

noblegiraffe Sun 14-Apr-13 11:20:15

Is he having plenty of wet nappies? If he is, then he is getting enough milk. If not, then having a chat to the health visitor about increasing supply might help. I've heard that oats help with supply, which is always a good excuse for a flapjack smile

The Kellymom website says that there is a growth spurt at around 6 months which could explain why he seems more hungry and is feeding more often, without your supply being a problem at all.

happyfirsttimemummy Sun 14-Apr-13 11:26:10

Thank you smile you've really helped to put my mind at ease. x

aufaniae Sun 14-Apr-13 11:54:54

I'd be surprised if your milk is drying up. Like noblegiraffe says if he's getting wet nappies, he's getting milk. The way it feels does change. I don't feel like I have any milk at all now, but I know I do as DS is still feeding. It's so different from those early days when my boobs felt heavy and it was very obvious that there was milk there.

These may be useful:

My breasts feel empty! Has my milk supply decreased?

The Distractible Baby

Is my older baby getting enough milk?

Low supply?

If you want to continue feeding till 1, I'd advise staying away from formula as it could well dry up your milk.

I would also advise speaking to a proper BFing counsellor, not a HV. HVs are not breastfeeding specialists, and their info can be out of date and misleading IME. The experts are people like La Leche League, who have a helpline number (you can call in the evening, and weekends, it doesn't need to be office hours).

Yes 6 months is great, and if stopping BFing is right for your family then you'll know it. But if you want to continue, you will be doing something great which continues to give significant health benefits to both your baby and you. If you're interested, here's some info on the benefits of continuing to BF.

Formula's not evil! But it does tend to disrupt BFing so best to keep away from it if you can IMO, to give yourself the best chance of continuing BFing if that's what you want to do ultimately.

Good luck, whatever you choose to do smile

tiktok Sun 14-Apr-13 12:41:36

OP, nothing you have said makes me think you are drying up - everything you have said is consistent with a healthy, developing and growing baby and a supply that responds to his needs smile

A call to any of the bf helplines would help you feel better I think - these are normal and common experiences with well-established bf.

WouldBeHarrietVane Sun 14-Apr-13 17:59:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WouldBeHarrietVane Sun 14-Apr-13 18:00:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WouldBeHarrietVane Sun 14-Apr-13 18:01:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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