Breast feeding after c section(15 Posts)
Hi, I had an emergency c-section on Monday. My baby and I were kept in hospital all week and I was told my baby needed to gain weight before she could leave. My breasts are producing milk but not enough, so I have been both breast and bottle feeding - roughly every 3 hrs I give her 65 ml of formula and I also breast feed her.
When I squeeze my nipples, milk comes out but it isn;t gushing out, my breasts aren't heavy or painful or any bigger and they don't leak.
I saw a midwife today who said that due to feeding her formula I won't be breast feeding as much and as a result I may have missed the window of opportunity for my breast milk to properly come in. I am so upset over this. She also said that the amount of blood I lost during the c-section could have affected my milk supply.
What I'd like to know is is there still a chance for me to get a full milk supply and how can I do this if I am having to bottle feed her so much? I would love to exclusively breast feed my baby but not if this means she doesn't get enough milk.
It took me about six weeks to build my supply after my first child which I partly blame on a pretty horrific birth but we also had a tongue tie which wasn't cut until 1 week. No way is it too late it is definitely possible to increase your supply. You need to start bf her on demand and reducing the top-ups. bF babies of this age are usually cluster feeding lots. I am not impressed by the mws advice, is there a breast feeding support worker? I had an amazing health visitor who helped me loads.
When you get baby home get your breastfeeding established by spending lots of time together doing as much skin to skin as possible. You may need to banish visitors for a while as you will be topless a lot!!!
You can do it. Always breast feed first. Both breasts. As long as it takes (newborns take ages to feed!). Personally I would cut right back on formula feeds. Reduce the mls and number of ff. then keep your little one on the breast as much as you can.
I really think bf support post-section can be horrific!
I had an emcs, lost a lot of blood and DS had ff top ups in hospital but we were able to exclusively breastfeed to 12mo and continued to mix feed after.
Don't give up hope, but you will have to persevere.
Is there a bf clinic or the like near that you can visit?
MW is talking crap. The actual 'window' for optimal milk supply ('activating' all ducts) is about 2 weeks-but even then people relactate and even some women who adopt can get a milk supply to feed their baby.
You need to wean off formula and let baby stimulate breasts to make more milk. Lots if skin to skin.
Your MW should be making a plan with you and not fobbing you off. Can you see a bf support worker or lactation consultant? Your baby will need to feed a lot to increase milk supply (night feeds are good for this) as bf is supply and demand.
You can do it.
Good luck x x
What about expressing in-between feeds? All stimulation will increase supply x
I was in almost this exact situation. Milk slow to come in due to CS and blood loss. DS lost 15% and doctor ordered formula top ups.
DS is now 3 weeks and almost exclusively breast fed. I used a Supplemental nursing system (SNS), which is basically a tube attached to nipple that allows baby to drink formula while stimulating the breast. This allowed my milk supply to develop. I won't lie, it was a total pain to use, but it seems to have worked and we slowly dropped to using the sns every other feed and every 3 feeds etc and he is doing well now with one bottle of formula per day and no longer using the sns. I also pumped, but not loads, but I think that has less affect than the baby sucking.
I'm in the USA and had a lactation consultant, but I assume they have this device available in UK. My milk didn't come in until about day 8 and we started the weaning off it from then. I think the key is keeping up the breast stimulation and obviously the formula is needed to keep baby fed. Good luck!
You can do it OP. I was very ill both before and after my CS (ICU very ill) and my baby was almost 12 weeks early. I didn't see her for three days.
I pumped as often as I could, tried for every three hours but was frankly too ill in the first 10 days. Dd was tube and later bottle fed emb and it took five months to get to the bf only stage (she was in the NICU for more than 3 months).
We made up for our dodgy start by continuing for 2 years and 10 months.
If I managed it you will. Ask for help and keep asking.
Thank you all so much for your great advice. My milk supply still isn't enough, but I'm perservering with breast feeding and using a manual breast pump. I haven't really reduced the formula feeds yet, I'm just worried my milk isn't adequate for her, but I guess the more I breast feed the more milk I will produce. I'm seeing a different midwife today so will ask her to put a plan together. Will also do more skin to skin. I'm really glad to hear that it may not be too late to get my milk going. xxx
It may be snake oil, but I took 3 fenugreek tablets 3 times a day (from holland and barrat). That's supposed to help boost milk supply. I feel it did work for me, although obviously it's hard to say for sure.
Hope all works out for you.
I was in a very similar situation, with a baby with a late diagnosed tongue tie and what turns out to be silent reflux. I just did what I could - def recommend a double hands free pump - I used 2 medela swings as had one already- and tried to pump for every time I fed formula. 12 weeks in and I am still mix feeding (breast first most feeds then bottle, a couple a day exclusively one or the other), which is actually working ok for me. Yes I have to sterilise and wear nursing bras so in some ways the worst of both, but I get the ease and weight gain of bottle feeding (very slow milk supply) with the bonding of breast feeding. So don't give up - even during 6 day nursing strike I offered breast every feed and eventually he came round to it again. And I didn't pump after 4 weeks unless I miss a whole night or something, milk still seems to be there in varying amounts! Well done so far - it's so tough x x
Brilliant advice here op. Just wanted to add keep hydrated and look after yourself. Breastfeeding if thirsty work and gives you a ravenous appetite
Are you in a position to laze in bed all day with the baby and let her suckle whenever she wants? This gives your body a chance to recover, and DD feeding will really help boost your supply.
In hindsight I realise now that DS was permanently on the boob for 10 days because I didn't really have much milk - but because I was in hospital still I could just keep him on for as long as necessary. As soon as I felt better and my milk came in he was dribbling it out!
I hope you've had a good day today and your This MW is helping your confidence a bit more
If you could get your hands on an SNS then that could help as she would take the formula whilst suckling at your breast so would be telling your body to make more milk.
You absolutely do it, I know a lady who managed to relactated in order to feed adopted twins so don't get too down, it is possible! We also topped up in the early days after an emcs and by about a month old (at the latest) he was only breastfeeding.
Lots of skin to skin cuddles and putting baby to the breast as often as possible. Also, some people never get full breasts, it isn't necessarily an indicator of supply.
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