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Breastfeeding problems at 8 months :(

(11 Posts)
Countryside14 Sat 13-Dec-14 08:52:30

My baby girl is 8 months and so far fully breastfed. Up until now she's been great at feeding and Ive had a great supply. I've always pumped a bit just so I've got some in the freezer and always been able to get a decent amount with a good let down. If anything it felt very strong. I'd feel tingles and in the side I wasn't feeding off I'd leak lots. Suddenly last night at the bed time feed I couldn't get one. She got a few sips of foremilk and fell asleep. I put her in bed with me for the night to encourage more feeding and she fed a few times but still no let down. This morning nothing again! Her nappy was dryer than normal too.

What might be happening? I've not done anything different and I'm not ready to stop yet. It's upsetting me so much. Do you have any advice?

BertieBotts Sat 13-Dec-14 09:07:26

Sounds like your supply might have regulated. Did you have oversupply in the beginning? It's normal for it to regulate later (Around now) if so. Otherwise it tends to happen around 3-4 months. The other signs of this are that your boobs used to feel heavy and full between feeds, but now they feel soft and floppy all of the time. Does that sound like what's happened? If so don't worry, it doesn't mean you're not making enough, it just means you're no longer making too much. It's regulated to what she needs.

If it's not that, it's possible she's reduced her demand a bit due to solids. Keep feeding her as usual and it should come back up to as much as she needs. Don't panic; at eight months she'll be able to make up any shortfall with food. But keep an eye on her nappies over the next couple of days, count the number of wet ones. Being dryer overnight might mean absolutely nothing on its own - as a pattern of generally producing less, then it would be something to take note of.

Could she be coming down with something? It might be that if she's not feeling well, she's not been stimulating your letdown reflex as she normally would - she might be gearing up to drop the bedtime/night feeds, it might have been a total one off, she might have a new tooth coming through which is affecting her latch (which will be temporary).

Other than that, I can't remember now, so perhaps someone else can advise, but I wonder if it's just a part of breastfeeding an older baby, that the letdown doesn't feel quite so strong any more. Certainly, I remember feeling more of a "gush" in the early days/months of breastfeeding which wasn't there any more when DS was older, he'd feed and get milk but if he came off it wouldn't squirt around, I couldn't express much by 8 months and never managed to express more than a drop after that (though I breastfed for four years, and he didn't eat much in the way of solids until he was nearly two yet he was growing, so there was definitely milk there).

Does she seem distressed at the lack of milk, is she coming off sooner than normal? I wonder if she's getting it but the method of delivery has changed slightly. Have you started your periods yet? It could be that you're about to. Any chance you might be pregnant, too? I don't think that would affect it early on, but any hormonal change could have a possibility to suddenly change things.

BertieBotts Sat 13-Dec-14 09:08:11

Would add 9 months seems quite typical for nursing mothers to start menstruating again so you could be gearing up to ovulate.

Countryside14 Sat 13-Dec-14 09:29:39

Well I'm not sure but I guess maybe I did.

Usually they're full in the mornings and they still felt like that this morning.

She seemed a bit annoyed towards the end of the first feeding but I offered again after and she didn't want it so I guess she's not hungry?

I haven't had a period yet so maybe it's that but I still feed around 8 times a day.

I wanted to feed for a year at least and let her lead the way after that bit worried if the milk isn't bring removed it won't be made and dry up xx

BertieBotts Sat 13-Dec-14 09:36:50

After supply regulation they will still feel full if you've had a longer gap than usual but other than that they shouldn't.

This is a very very good description and summary of what happens. kellymom.com/bf/got-milk/supply-worries/pumping_decrease/

And this page talks about oversupply (which you might not have realised wasn't normal)
kellymom.com/bf/got-milk/supply-worries/fast-letdown/

Supply at this stage really isn't that fragile. She could not feed at all for a week or two and you'd still have milk, so don't worry smile Just keep offering it to her as normal and follow her cues.

BertieBotts Sat 13-Dec-14 09:37:24

More about oversupply to see if you maybe had it: dianaibclc.com/2012/06/15/understanding-oversupply/

BertieBotts Sat 13-Dec-14 09:38:45

OK ignore that last link. I should have read it before posting.

Countryside14 Sat 13-Dec-14 09:49:28

Thanks so much!! I had a hard time getting her to latch at the start but kept on with it and we got there. Breastfeeding is so much more than giving her food to me. It's such a huge bond it's amazing and to loose that would be devastating to me xx

BertieBotts Sat 13-Dec-14 16:38:16

Bumping for you in case anyone else has anything to add.

tinkerbellvspredator Sat 13-Dec-14 19:27:04

I'm only 3 months in but just wanted to add, I had a very strong tingle/painful letdown for the first 4 weeks or so and would feel it a few times during a feed. Then it stopped. It was about the same time I stopped leaking much. I occasionally feel a letdown if I'm really full and need to feed him but it's not as strong, so for me it disappeared when the initial oversupply regulated.

mrsmugoo Sat 13-Dec-14 22:16:19

This exact thing happened to me a month ago and a few days later I got my (first) period. It's happening again now so guessing I'm about to come on again soon.

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