So, my dc is just 8 months and therefore has 3 smallish solid feeds a day. I am back at work and can therefore bf overnight, morning and evening. I would like to continue as am freelancing and therefore will be home again all day in 3 weeks (have done 5 weeks so far). Dc feeds maybe 3 times overnight. I express at lunchtime and until Wednesday this week expressed 5oz in that time and could do more (and this pretty much kept dc going). Since Wednesday its suddenly dropped to 1oz, 2 if I'm lucky. My question is, why has my supply dropped so much? I do express in a stressful atmosphere and also dc has started cutting down a bit, but I am now scared that's the beginning of the end and once I finish work in 3 weeks there'll be nothing left. Any advice gratefully received.
I suspect it will be fine and your supply will pick back up. It has been quite hot in the last few days - are you drinking enough? Not too sure it really matters but I always feel I have a better supply if not dehydrated.
Just keep feeding as and when you can, you will be able to maintain that level no problems at 8m.
First of all expressing isn't that effective in terms of getting the milk out - your baby will always get more out directly than you will be able to express. But it's normal for milk supply to drop as his demands drop.
I do wonder though whether you are pumping in the afternoon (when he wouldn't normally be feeding) and early evening (when your supply would be most plentiful)? Adding a pumping session at these times should help a bit.
Thank you - am just worried its suddently dropped so quickly - this happened with dc1 - and I ended up switching to formula with dc1 by 8mos as I just expressed for hours and got so little out and gave up. He obviously gets enough at night at the moment- will this keep going?
Are you using an electric pump or a hand one? It might be worth hiring one from your local maternity unit - it costs about £30 a month plus about £20 for the initial bits and bobs that are personal to you - that can make a difference. But quite honestly, unless he's actually upset that he's not got enough, chances are you are doing fine and that's just as much as he needs right now.
Do keep your fluids and nutrition up - going back to work is physically hard as well as mentally hard - and you need to stay strong to make milk
You might get on better with a bigger version - but it just sounds about normal to me - you don't need as much, you don't make as much. I'm tandem feeding a baby and a toddler and I have a surfeit of milk - my cups literally runneth over . We're donating it to the SCBU but it just goes to show lactation really does work on a supply and demand basis. The more the baby suckles, or indeed, you express, the more you get. But it may be that you are just feeling knackered because you are back at work and that's limiting your supply. Try and take it easy a bit and relax when you are expressing - hard I know when we are all in such a rush - but it should resolve itself in a week or so
Don't worry Slashtrophe - once it is as established as you have it your supply will keep up with dc. Expressing is rarely indicative of the level they will get. I have not been able to express a drop for over a year but dd still having occasional feed - even when I was away for a couple of days with work she still carried on when I got back!