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Mixed feeding due to BF issues

(25 Posts)
SparkleyC Wed 15-Jul-09 18:06:31

Hello All

This is the first time I've posted on here so hopefully this is okay...

I've come down with a stinking virus which has so worn me down that my milk supply has severely declined. I'm now having to supplement with formula (much to my guilt and disappointment), and I can't find out anywhere how much formula/ breastmilk I should be giving my nearly 6-months old DD.

Can anyone help please, please, please?

Thanks in advance


ObsidianBlackbirdMcNight Wed 15-Jul-09 18:38:22

if you are supplementing bf then you should just offer top ups on demand after bfs, don't worry too much about amounts, just make up 5-6oz bottles and offer it to her. have you tried working on increasing supply?

moondog Wed 15-Jul-09 18:42:23

Kat, that won't help at all.
Less sucking will mean less milk.That's the way it works-supply and demand.

Sparkley, there is no reason your supply should have declined but even if you believe it has, to increase it you just need to feed more from the breast. smile

ObsidianBlackbirdMcNight Wed 15-Jul-09 18:48:13

I was answering her question moondog.

tiktok Wed 15-Jul-09 18:56:03

Sparkley: sorry you've been poorly, and it seems a few women do notice a temp. drop in supply after illness...easily rectified by feeding more often. This might mean an intense period of frequent feeding, going from side to side and back again.

Any supplements will prevent this very normal 'bounce back' from happening.

Kat - 5-6 oz bottles offered after a breastfeed is a very risky game indeed.

SparkleyC Wed 15-Jul-09 18:56:20

Hi Moon & Kat, thanks for the superquick replies.

Kat - If I make up bottles, (I bought some of the pre-made ones), do you know how long they keep before I need to throw them away?

Moondog - I've always had LOADS of milk, enough that if I fed off one boob, over 100mls just leaked out of the other. However, now I'm having to feed from both boobs and that's still not enough for the DD, hence the need to top-up feed.

So thanks for the advice, I reckon I'll keep going with the bf as much as I can and then top up where it's just not enough.

Ta muchly

moondog Wed 15-Jul-09 18:57:39

How do you know it 'isn't enough'? If you feel she needs more, stick her back on!

tiktok Wed 15-Jul-09 19:05:19

Yes - just feed her again on side one, and then again on side two, and then again on side one, if you need to

CoteDAzur Wed 15-Jul-09 19:08:47

To answer question in OP:

On the formula can, it says to give a 6 month old 210 ml bottles, 5 times a day.

SparkleyC Wed 15-Jul-09 19:19:56

Hello Moondog - I know it isn't enough because I have totally depleted boobs and a babe who still wants more food (she's been doing the tongue thing a lot in the past few days).

Hello TikTok - I've tried this too, and again it just isn't filling her up, I'm going from feeding her every 3-4 hours to having to feed every hour or so and my boobs just can't take much more (history of oral thrush gone to boob means bf can be really painful)

Hello Cote - thank you, I'm aware of that, but the question is how much should I give of both formula AND breastmilk

All - any answers re: how long a bottle with formula in can be at room temp for?

Ta muchly


tiktok Wed 15-Jul-09 19:24:11

Sparkley - ok, so feeding every 3-4 hours isn't 'filling her up' and you need to feed every hour....this will not last long, and it is the only way to restore your previous milk supply. It's bad if this is painful, though, I can understand it painful now, or are you concerned that it may get painful?

If you want to give formula, then you need to give it knowing it will make any supply issues worse, sorry

A call to any of the bf lines will give you the chance to discuss your options, and they may be able to get to the bottom of the pain thing, too.

SparkleyC Wed 15-Jul-09 19:27:06

Thanks TikTok


CoteDAzur Wed 15-Jul-09 20:12:42

Sorry Sparkley, it's the sleep deprivation smile

dan39 Wed 15-Jul-09 21:45:37

What 'tongue thing'? (Just out of interest?)

dan39 Wed 15-Jul-09 21:50:44

I am in a similar but different situation so am watching this with interest - if I was you,Sparkley I would boob feed as much as poss and then with the bottle, offer but be really patient re not forcing it, letting dd have what she wants and then stopping. I am moving to bottle feeding now after exclusively bfing and have similar questions about amounts as with bfing of course its impossible to tell how much they need/take each time. Its a tough age too as its getting on for weaning and we will of course get all the 'get her onto solids' comments too just to make things more complicated!!

Good luck with it all anyway - and I hope someone answeres soon about how long you can leave formula out before chucking away!!smile

GreenMonkies Wed 15-Jul-09 22:03:25

Hi Sparkley,

There is a growth spurt between 5 and 6 months which may also be making her feed more. I have to agree with everyone else, continuing with top-ups will stop your milk supply from catching up again, my advice would be to go to bed with her for about 36 hours and just rest and feed and cuddle and eat and drink and your supply will match her needs in a couple of days.

And yes, what is the "tongue thing"??

ObsidianBlackbirdMcNight Thu 16-Jul-09 07:58:16

I'm sorry if my advice was misunderstood - I wasn't meaning to suggest that Sparkley gives 5-6oz bottles after every feed. What I meant was that if she feels she needs to top up she shouldn't worry about how much she's giving but to offer a bottle and let the baby decide.

Obviously I should have pointed out that the way to increase supply is more BF but I was simply answering her qu.

Re formula - can keep for up to one hour out of the fridge, longer in a coolbag.

SparkleyC Fri 17-Jul-09 17:41:04

Hello All

Cote: no problem, I totally understand!

Dan: tongue thing - she pokes her tongue in and out when she's hungry, kind of looks like
she's licking her lips.

GreenMonkies: a spurt could be the answer too, she is a bit of a chunk, (but in a good way of course!)

Kat: thanks re: formula - is there a way to tell if it's gone off, like with the breastmilk? I've tasted it but it just tastes minging now matter what!

So far I've been feeding and pumping as usual but supply is still low, I'm going to take to my bed tomorrow and try to sleep off the bug and I'll let the DH take care of the babe so I can sleep. When I'm not sleeping I'll either pump or bfand hope that sorts it out.

Thanks All


SparkleyC Fri 17-Jul-09 17:44:33

PS Dan - it's a shame we can't discuss this directly as I'd be interested to find out what you're experience has been thus far.


jimbobsmummy Fri 17-Jul-09 21:05:35

saying that in someone who has been feeding for 6 months that giving top ups for a couple of days - after a good bout of breatfeeding - is going to dramatically reduce the supply?

I just don't believe it.

And especially if she is ill, saying 'just feed more/all the time' may not be possible and saying that doing anything else is wrong is likely to just add to the guilt that is already there.

Sometimes a bit of common sense is needed on these forums.

dan39 Fri 17-Jul-09 21:55:04

Sparkley - we could I guess but I am a bit technically incompetent blush so not sure how direct messages work? How about we start a thread specifically about this and 'talk' there? Let me know here if you think that's a good plan and I will start one - or you start one but tell me on here what it's called - I will keep checking in here initially!

SparkleyC Fri 17-Jul-09 22:09:20

Hey Dan, good thinking, will start a thread called "boobs and breastfeeding and formula".

Hey Jimbob - thanks for sticking up for me - some people seem to take life a bit too seriously I think!


idontbelieveit Fri 17-Jul-09 22:23:13

SparkleyC, it might be worth bearing in mind that boobs tend to feel less full around the 6th month mark because they've got more efficient at producing the right ammount. My dd2 is almost 6 months and I leaked from the nonfeeding boob like mad in the early days but now i only leak if she's gone 6+ hours at night without a feed. How your boobs feel or how much you can pump is not the best indicator of supply and it may be that you've confused your body being more efficient and getting used to breastfeeding with a drop in supply. If your dd needs to feed more then offer her the first boob again, in a couple of days you'll have caught up{smile]

SparkleyC Fri 17-Jul-09 22:29:09

Hi Idont - excellent point, that mirrors my own experiences too.

idontbelieveit Fri 17-Jul-09 22:32:58

sorry about the typosblush

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