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Anyone a BF expert - maintaining supply when expressing for twins.

(4 Posts)
MrsSW Sun 21-Jun-09 19:51:12

Hi All
My gorgeous twin boys are now 11 weeks (5 weeks corrected as they were prem). I BF'd them exclusively until 7 weeks and have been expressing and feeding them EBM so people can help me (I have a 16 month old too so have my hands full!)
I have also been supplementing a couple of feeds later in the day with formula. I just wondered as my twins grow, how will I ensure my milk supply grows to keep up with them? Will this happen while expressing? Is there anything I should do? At the moment, I'm expressing about six ounces every 3.5 hours and this is pretty much what they need.
Any advice would be great. Also any advice on how to build milk supply when expressing I'm already taking fenugreek and I use a double medela pump.
Thanks a lot
Mrs W x

hercules1 Sun 21-Jun-09 19:53:10

No advice. I would have thought though that it would be incredibly difficult to maintain a supply by expressing enough for twins. Are you expressing at night?

Congratulations btw and hats off to you -twins and a 16month old!

tiktok Sun 21-Jun-09 20:35:55

MrsSW, it's not clear how often you are bf direct, and whether the expressing saves time or not....

But exclusively breastfed babies don't increase their volume of breastmilk as they grow, at least not after the first weeks:

www.kellymom.com/bf/pumping/milkcalc.html

This is not the same with formula milk.

doulalc Tue 23-Jun-09 18:27:31

As tiktok said, their over all consumption will remain roughly the same in a 24 hour period. Some days perhaps a bit more, some days a bit less.

What you will likely see is that they will take more at a feed as they start to decrease the number of feeds in a 24 hour period. For example, now they may have 3 ounces at a feed, but in several weeks time they may start to want 4 or 5 ounces, but they will be having fewer feeds in a day with the total for the day remaining about the same.

Are you supplementing to be assured of how much they are taking in or is there a specific reason?

Frequent feeds will be key to production and maintaining supply. As they go through growth spurts that will help, but you can also insure your supply by letting them have their fill at the breast before offering any supplement...or better still, if you feel they need a bit more, just move them to the other breast or back to the first. Pump after a few of the feeds on a regular basis....some women find they will start to produce more at those particular feeds because their body has been programmed through demand. Mornings can sometimes bring an increased amount from pumping as prolactin levels tend to be higher at night. You may want to store some for later when they may want more at a feeding.

In most cases, with continued babies at the breast, you will not have an issue with maintaining supply while also expressing sometimes. If you are expressing only, you may indeed run into some supply issues at some point as generally your babies will move the milk more efficiently than the pump will. Consider the option of doing some of both. You will be better able to maintain your supply, and you can still have the option of letting others help you out now and then.

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