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How to suddenly stop breastfeeding without exploding!

(30 Posts)
juniper44 Sat 08-Mar-14 19:54:46

My 5 month old DD was diagnosed yesterday as being lactose intolerant. She has one bottle of formula per night, and so yesterday we swapped to soya milk. She slept through the night for the first time! Today, she has had soya milk and has been a lot happier.

I am sad about giving up breast feeding, especially so suddenly, but I know it's in her best interest as it's causing her unnecessary pain.

How do I go about stopping, when it isn't gradual? I breast fed her at lunch time to see if she was ok with the occasional feed, but she was far unhappier afterwards than when she had soya.

My boobs are getting quite full, but not yet hard. I don't want to get mastitis, but I want to get my milk to stop as soon as possible really well, no, I want a magical cure that will allow me to continue breast feeding but without hurting my baby

So... how can I stop quickly but without hurting myself?

Thanks smile

anothernumberone Sat 08-Mar-14 20:01:31

Can I ask who have you the advice? It is very rare and very dangerous for babies to be allergic to BM. I have heard of people having to cut dairy from their own diet while bf even much to their misery chocolate but never BM from babies diet. Anyway I guess you will need to pump for comfort to prevent mastitis.

anothernumberone Sat 08-Mar-14 20:01:58

Who has given even

Stickfamily3 Sat 08-Mar-14 20:02:17

Could you pump and donate to local milk bank, while reducing the number of pumps gradually?

juniper44 Sat 08-Mar-14 20:07:05

We saw a paediatrician at the hospital, following the GP not knowing what to do.

adagio Sat 08-Mar-14 20:15:06

my first thought is to agree with numberone in that stopping boob is most unusual.

My second (more helpful) comment is that there are pro lactin suppressant drugs which will dry up your milk, but are doctors/prescription only.

PurplePidjin Sat 08-Mar-14 20:23:49

You could give up dairy yourself, which would solve the problem? AFAIK it's usually the cows milk protein rather than lactose which is the problem. There's quite a high rate of CMPI babies also being intolerant to soy, so keep an eye out.

I don't know if there's anything specific but has been a fantastic source of information for me

juniper44 Sat 08-Mar-14 20:27:04

The paediatrician recommended going onto just formula. I said I was reluctant to give up breast feeding, and she suggested trying a dairy free diet and seeing its effect, but said it would take a month before my milk would be 'clean'.

DD is 5 and a bit months old, so close to weaning age anyway. If I pumped and dumped / donated for a month, then by the time my milk was ok for her she'd be happily on food.

I know lactose intolerance is rare in babies, but I am lactose intolerant myself. We've both been referred to a dietician but that will take time, perhaps up to 18 weeks.

KippyVonKipperson Sat 08-Mar-14 20:34:01

If you want to carry on bfing you can, just cut dairy from your own diet. And even though it may take a couple of weeks for your milk to be 'clean' in each feed less dairy would be present. Long term your baby may outgrown the intolerance quicker because she'd be having breast milk which is perfectly tailored for her, rather than a breast milk substitute of soya. And even though you will be weaning her soon she'd still be needing milk alongside her food for many months to come.

Obviously it is a big deal cutting it out of your own diet so this may not be the option for you, but if you enjoy breastfeeding and want to continue, it is possible.

adagio Sat 08-Mar-14 20:38:55

If you are lactose intolerant then presumably you are planning to go lactose free anyway yourself?

If I was in your shoes, I would call one of the BF helplines like La Leche for a conversation, my gut feeling is that the paed you saw is not very pro BF perhaps? Kellymom website might also have something useful to say.

That sounds a long time for your milk to get 'clean' and surely if it took that long then it would also take a while to wash out of your DD system too so I would be surprised at immediate improvement with the first soy feed? Or, if the result it that fast, then you switch to soya immediately then in a few days should see an improvement.. Just my non medical opinion.

Good luck x

BertieBotts Sat 08-Mar-14 20:41:17

You can continue breastfeeding after 6 months though, lots of people do. They don't take enough food to stop the milk completely until they're about a year old.

If you want to continue I'd say you can - it doesn't take a month, maybe 2 weeks maximum.

I'm quite alarmed to hear you're using soya formula, as I heard this can be harmful to babies when given over long periods, they only tend to advise using it in extreme cases where they can tolerate nothing else. You'd be better off with an actual lactose free formula - Aptamil and SMA both do one, which you can buy in normal supermarkets (or I think you can get it on prescription).

As for not exploding smile You need to keep expressing off, by hand or by pump, just enough to make yourself comfortable, not an entire feed at once as that will just stimulate more milk to be made. As you don't need the milk you can do this over the sink, in the shower or into a towel.

BertieBotts Sat 08-Mar-14 20:42:25

Did the paediatrician recommend the soya formula or normal formula?

juniper44 Sat 08-Mar-14 20:43:56

I am not very diligent about my own health. I'm vegetarian, so cheese is a large part of my diet as it adds a lot of taste. I can tolerate some dairy, but I have a limit. Normally I just cope with the pain and discomfort, but I'm not willing to inflict that upon my baby.

I guess that, as my baby is nearly 23 weeks, the paediatrician didn't really see the point of continuing breast feeding until the 6 month mark.

I might try one of the breast feeding helplines. I hadn't thought of that, so thanks. I'm also meeting up with a paediatrician socially tomorrow. It's meant to be a fun catch up, but I suspect I may be quizzing her!

ScarletStar Sat 08-Mar-14 20:44:41

I stopped bf suddenly, using cabbage leaves in my bra and changing them about every 2 hours which helped enormously. 2 days of scream-tastic painful boobs though!

anothernumberone Sat 08-Mar-14 20:45:40

The very fact that you say the paediatrician was anxious that you go on to formula makes me suggest that you email the Canadian paed Dr Jack Newman. Just google the name.He will email you back quickly too he is superb. He is not a charlatan he is just a paed who is committed to giving bf solutions to bf problems. He was over in Ireland last weekend and he is fantastic.

Of course if you do not want to continue bf then completely ignore everything except the fact you need to express to comfort of you will get blocked ducts.

juniper44 Sat 08-Mar-14 20:47:21

Paediatrician recommended non-lactose, but our local supermarket only has soya and we went yesterday evening, so too late to go elsewhere. It was more of a 'anything is better than milk' sort of purchase.

I will ask for a prescription from the GP, but I suspect they'll need confirmation from the hospital first and that will take time. This box of formula should last a week, in which time I will buy a lactose free, rather than soya.

BertieBotts Sat 08-Mar-14 20:47:51

Well yes, to be fair, if you only wanted to breastfeed until 6 months then no it does not make sense to carry on for another 3 weeks just because.

But if you want(ed) to breastfeed for longer, then of course it would make sense. 6 months is so little, you don't have to stop just because they start solids.

BertieBotts Sat 08-Mar-14 20:48:18

Ah OK, fair enough smile

Munxx Sat 08-Mar-14 20:49:14

I'm not sure that soya milk is meant to be given until a year old? Unless you mean soya formula like WySoy?

Munxx Sat 08-Mar-14 20:50:27

Apologies I see it is formula. My mistake.

I have every sympathy. My daughter has CMPI and diagnosis was long and arduous. The allergies board is very helpful, may be worth taking a look.

juniper44 Sat 08-Mar-14 20:50:31

I hadn't really decided on when I was going to stop. I return to work when she's 8 months old, so I had thought of doing a morning and night feed until we were both ready to stop.

It's weird. When DD was 6 weeks old, I was counting down the days until I could stop. Now that it's a reality, I feel really sad about it.

herethereandeverywhere Sat 08-Mar-14 21:00:00

I really struggled to stop at 6 months after my first, I couldn't even drop one feed without recurrent blocked ducts leading to mastitis. I think this was because I let my boobs get overfull without doing anything (ie expressing off) until it'd already caused problems.

Sooo, second time round I quite methodically expressed whenever I felt full (usual feed times) but noted the amount I pumped (so started with say, 7oz for a couple of feeds, then 6oz for a couple etc etc.) I never let myself get to the painful stage but I recognised it might take longer for the milk to go. I have to say I pumped and dumped for convenience but you could potentially donate if that worked for you.

I tried to get the 'dry the milk up' medication with the catalogue of issues I had stopping after my first but they really don't like prescribing it I even paid for a private consultant who referred me back to an NHS bf counsellor rather than prescribe it.

TheScience Sat 08-Mar-14 21:04:50

Did the paed think it was lactose intolerance or dairy intolerance? If she suggested a dairy free diet could work then that suggests it is cow's milk protein not lactose that is the issue - maybe clarify what the paed's diagnosis is?

KippyVonKipperson Sat 08-Mar-14 21:12:31

I guess it's made more sad by the fact that you could feel its being taken away from you, rather than it feeling like your choice. I had a similar dilemma when my child was 6months, in fact, it made me so sad and pissed off at the stupid allergy I decided to cut egg and dairy out of my diet too (and I'm a veggie so I know what you mean about the taste) and am now still feeding my toddler who is just over a year old now.

It was hard at first, cutting out all the foods I liked, but seeing him thrive and still being able to breastfeed him was and is worth it. We are now on morning and evening feeds and am getting him tested again soon so will review it then, I'm thinking he'll cut down himself soon with a nudge or two from me. I know cutting stuff from your own diet isn't for everyone, and being a veggie makes it harder as you need to find stuff you like to eat and make sure you take calcium tablets, so I'm not saying you should do it, but I guess just wanted to share my own experience so you know you do have a choice of you do want to continue breastfeeding.

adagio Sat 08-Mar-14 22:32:44

Oh and one other thing - before you totally stop BF and your milk goes - check your DD actually accepts the lactose free formulas as both from the boards here and a friend whose DS was on it I understand the taste is pretty rough and some babies refuse it, or need to add milkshake cordial and all sorts of nonsense to make it palatable - and you still have another 7 months or so where most calories will still be from milk not food.

Hope it all works out for you xx

(I never expected to BF beyond 6m, then I saw the price of formula and it all got easier so here I am at 14 months trying to cut it down and wean)

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