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Will a ff at 10am affect my supply?

(13 Posts)
Chocolateporridge Sat 03-Jan-15 11:44:40

I have a 5 week old ds and I've found breastfeeding incredibly stressful through various problems (low supply, re-admission due to low weight, reflux, thrush etc), nearly every day I've considered switching to formula. I especially find the evenings hard as I'm exhausted (I have a 4yo dd too) and he never seems to be getting enough milk from me in the evenings so he feeds and cries, feeds and cries. A few nights ago in desperation, we gave him a 4oz formula top up around 10am, he went out like a light and slept until 4am, so we've done this every night since, but I'm a bit worried that, after persevering this long, I'm setting myself up for problems. Will this top up affect my supply at all, especially as it means I'm only having to then do one night feed? My HV said it was fine, but she's also advised me to switch entirely to formula if I'm finding it top stressful, so I'd like some other opinions!

Chocolateporridge Sat 03-Jan-15 11:45:35

Sorry, should say 10pm, not 10am!

squizita Sat 03-Jan-15 14:01:03

If you're worried is there a window in your day you could express a top up? It might be hard of course but at least then your body is being alert to making enough milk per day iyswim.

Mrscog Sat 03-Jan-15 14:05:40

Yes that will affect your supply, you'll need to express around 1am (prolactin at its highest then) to maintain it unless you want to switch to mix feeding. Has he been checked for tongue tie?

squizita Sat 03-Jan-15 14:44:37

Mrscog is that the case even if the op breastfeeds at 10pm and tops up? Just asking becausr my dd never had a 1am feed (she was not topped up, a feed at 8 pm has always seen her good till 3am! After which she feeds at 5 am then 7.30 am) And neither have I had supply issues. When I asked about waking her/pumping at 1am (due to the prolactin) I was told don't bother.

PrincessPotsie Sat 03-Jan-15 14:49:09

I honestly wouldn't worry unless you intend to stop this formula feed and replace with a breast feed. As you'll prob remember from your first child as a baby, most babies are really unsettled in the evening and will often 'cluster feed' which I know is exhausting and massively time consuming but luckily not forever. It sounds like you're doing a great job!

Mrscog Sat 03-Jan-15 15:13:12

Squizita, you know what you're right, I should have moderated what I said, DS was clambering and I was extra concise as a result. Sorry everyone. It maybe that it doesn't affect your supply, but generally for a lot of women a feed between 1-3am (ish) is really quite crucial for supply. But as Princess says, if you're going to carry on with an evening top up and it doesn't affect the next feed or your supply in the day then it's probably not something to worry too much over.

NickyEds Sat 03-Jan-15 15:27:48

I know of several Mums who bf most of the time but give a f feed once a day (usually bedtime). Not sure I'd specifically set an alarm to pump at 1am though! I think that if you're feeding at 10 then again when you're baby wakes at 4 it will be fine.

TwoKidsAndCounting Sat 03-Jan-15 15:28:48

In short yes it will

Chocolateporridge Sat 03-Jan-15 15:51:55

Thanks, it seems everyone feels slightly differently!

Mrscog, I exclusively bf my dd but she slept through the night from week two, no idea how that happened, my ds is very different, so at what point can you safely stop bf between 1 and 3am?

Mrscog Sat 03-Jan-15 16:04:21

I am not sure - it's not really an exact science and I'd be guided by the baby - so by adding 4oz of formula (which is fine) that's 4oz that your DS clearly needs but you are not producing IySwim? I remember my DS started doing 1am-5am around 10 weeks. I think the guideline for establishing a supply s between 4-8weeks but it depends on how many problems you've had, I tend to think of cluster feeding as a sign they're still letting your body know how much milk to produce. We had loads of problems - 1 week of no latching and expressing, 5 weeks of nipple shields etc etc, and I didn't feel my supply was established until 8 weeks - when all the cluster feeding stopped.

Mrscog Sat 03-Jan-15 16:05:45

Presumably though, you are feeding him at 10 then just topping up? It might be that a 6hour break is fine for you at this stage. I just remember
learning at peer supporter training that a middle of the night feed is very important in establishing supply.

Chocolateporridge Sat 03-Jan-15 16:45:27

Thanks so much, that's really helpful. I might just sit and feed for the next few nights and see how I get on, and if it gets too much I'll top him up again. I'd really hate to see my supply for other feeds diminishing, but it is nice to have that big stretch of sleep!

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