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When did your milk come in? Worried about BF?

(27 Posts)
Steffyjayne23 Mon 03-Feb-14 10:37:00

Just wondering what everyone's experiences with their milk coming through are? I know everyone is different and it doesn't make any difference what size your breasts are but did anyone worry about being able to breast feed?

Ithinkwerealonenow Mon 03-Feb-14 10:42:12

About day four or five I think, which is the late end of normal. A couple of horrendous nights beforehand! Yes, I worried a bit before my first, but read up as much as possible.

Just make time to lie with your baby, keep offering the breast for maximising stimulation, keep on eye on baby for dehydration/jaundice, and make sure positioning is correct to help minimise sore nipples (LOTS of pillows helps, or a 'mybreastfriend' pillow). Keep asking for help until you're happy, unfortunately you might have to fight for it. Good luck.

Steffyjayne23 Mon 03-Feb-14 10:46:39

I wanted to buy formula to take in with me as a back up plan but my midwife very abruptly told me If I was going to do that then I was basically giving up before I started! Just concerned baby will be poorly if I can't breast feed straight away! Will read up some more think it's just first time nerves setting in thanks x

AnythingNotEverything Mon 03-Feb-14 11:00:45

The overwhelming majority of women can breastfeed. We would have died out as a species otherwise.

Be prepared for it to be tricky and for you to have to demand support if you find it hard. The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding is a great book to read during pregnancy.

Boob size makes no difference. Everyone has the same milk making equipment - the difference in size is down to fat. I have huge boobs and positioning has been tricky. My friends with small boobs seem to find this easier, but that's just anecdotal.

LastOneDancing Mon 03-Feb-14 11:05:18

Sorry to hijack but I have an associated question! Does it make a difference if you start seeing colostrum before you give birth?

My friend has been leaking since about 25w but I've seen nothing (now 31w). I'm a bit concerned.

Steffyjayne23 Mon 03-Feb-14 11:10:40

Hijack away I'm the same at 38+6 absolutely nothing lol!

Rockchick1984 Mon 03-Feb-14 11:13:36

I have tiny boobs - actually think it was easier for me to breastfeed as I could pretty much put baby in any position for it grin

My milk came in on day 3 so fairly early, it's just colostrum before that but a newborn's tummy is so tiny that its plenty for them. If you believe that you will be fine then that's half the battle with breastfeeding!

Lastone it makes no difference if you leak during pregnancy or not, don't worry.

bakingtins Mon 03-Feb-14 11:26:12

Boob size makes no difference and I agree with rockchick that in fact smaller boobs can make positioning easier. I'm a 34B normally, and my boobs when my milk came in on day 3 were still bigger than babies head (and only went up one cup size in pregnancy) I have never leaked in pregnancy and had plenty of milk once babies arrived.
Can I recommend The Food of Love as a great beginner's guide to BF, very easy to read and reassuring.

Steffyjayne23 Mon 03-Feb-14 11:31:51

With 8 days till I'm due And unusually nothing to do now I've stopped working (hairdresser) I'll get reading! Thanks

FlipFantasia Mon 03-Feb-14 11:37:38

Leaky breasts during pregnancy make no difference so don't let it worry you.

Op, your midwife is right. Having formula right to hand will undermine your confidence (and your supply if you use it). Save your money! Or spend the money on your favourite chocolate to have after birth (or before birth!).

My DS didn't latch on for 24 hours after birth (emcs) and was fine once he started - bf him until he was 20 months. Dd latched on in the delivery room (vbac) - she still loves her mummy milk at 22 months!

My advice would be try to normalise it in your head - do you have any friends or family who are nursing? Or can you stop by a bfing support group? Just seeing women nursing their babies while also doing normal things like chatting or eating cake helps!

Word of warning about some bf groups: it's often women who are struggling who attend so you may find women who've just given birth in floods of tears/pain etc. This doesn't mean you'll struggle but shows support is there if you do...

Can you take a class in bfing - either NHS or private? Do you have a la leche league near you? Or Breastfeeding support network? Make sure you have helpline numbers to hand (eg Nct). Check out the feeding section on here.

Also newborns need to nurse a lot - you may be surprised how often (I was!). Anyone around you who formula fed may be surprised too as they're used to babies who can go for longer between feeds - bmilk is more digestible than formula and baby tummies are tiny, so makes sense they need to eat every hour and a half or two hours (can feel like you're doing nothing but Bfing!). So don't let anyone stress you out with comments like 'that baby is too hungry, you should top up'. Breast feeding is supply & demand, the more the baby suckles the more milk is produced. Top ups interfere with supply by replacing time spent suckling/stimulating supply with a bottle. So keeping the baby close (skin to skin ideally) and offering the breast often is the way to go...actually, a midwife once gave me great advice - 'if in doubt, boob in baby's mouth' her logic being there's almost nothing that can't be solved by a feed! Two kids later I'm inclined to agree grin

Sorry for the ramble. I think bfing is great mainly as it's free and you don't need any kit (you never forget your boobs! And I speak as someone who regularly forgot nappies when first a new mum...cue explosive leaking newborn poos and nothing to change the baby into!!). There's a tonne of support if you know where to look and it gets easier over time (like everything with babies!). The first few days will be a shock, milk coming in makes you an emotional mess, growth spurts can make you think you're losing your mind (baby is hungry again?! Wtf?!) but nature is clever and your baby knows what it needs! Just keep on til the next feed and then the next and see where you find yourself (I never thought I'd bf past 6 months!).

GlitzAndGiggles Mon 03-Feb-14 11:43:31

I had absolutely no leaking or anything during pg. I breastfed about an hour after giving birth and milk was fine coming out. After a few days I was squirting milk everywhere after a feed. Not deliberately btw!

PenguinsDontEatKale Mon 03-Feb-14 12:53:30

I have never leaked during pregnancy and fed both my children to 2.

My milk came in pretty fast- think about day 3/4 with my first and day 2 with my second. They are fine on the colostrum until it does.

I would agree with not taking formula to hospital if you want to breastfeed but your confidence is already low. Whilst they probably don't provide it for routine formula feeding, hospitals do have formula where medically required (i.e. where a mother planned to bf and there is a problem, premmies, etc). So the back up is already there.

Tomkat79 Mon 03-Feb-14 13:35:49

Awesome post flip...you can do it OP x

TwoThreeFourSix Mon 03-Feb-14 13:44:15

Mine came in on day 3. Very little leaking beforehand and DS latched on really easily.

Word of warning - I'd read up on it loads but still wasn't prepared for the pain of the milk coming in! I even went wandering around the hospital at night desperately trying to find someone to reassure me the pain would go! And it did smile 24 hours later my boobs weren't quite so rock-hard and had stopped hurting all the time.

BF is fab.

redcaryellowcar Mon 03-Feb-14 13:49:21

my milk came in on day 5, i had a couple of mars bars on day 4, not sure if this helped but was a pleasant distraction!! as pp said milk coming in is very emotional, i cried a lot that day, so have breast pads and tissues at the ready!
ds was in special care for six days, and his blood sugar was being monitored carefully so i know that he was getting enough calories from coloustrum alone before my milk came in, so don't worry. its difficult believing in things you can't see, but bit like Santa, its magical!!
as others have said, take time to just chill out and feed, if you have a dh or other friends and family over let them bring you drinks and snacks, enjoy catching up on books or box sets/ films and in just a few weeks it will seem like a distant memory that you were worried your milk would never arrive.
lastly have to say i agree with your midwife, you are highly unlikely to need formula, so don't get any in, if things really aren't working late night supermarkets etc stock all you need.

AnythingNotEverything Mon 03-Feb-14 17:03:28

I agree - great post Flip. There's a real tendency for people to worry they don't have enough milk. Trust your baby to stimulate your supply by feeding them whenever they want milk, even if you've been stuck on the sofa for hours.

It can be tough in the early weeks, but once you've cracked it, it can be so easy. I was only going to do three months and now at 15 weeks I'm intending to carry on until 7-8 months.

It's also awesome to be able to eat biscuits by the packet smile

gamerchick Mon 03-Feb-14 17:15:26

your baby won't get milk for a few days.. something like 5ml per feed and that's all they need. and they may feed quite a bit. When your milk comes in you will know about it.. the letdown smarts a bit and afterpains can bite a fair bit as the sucking makes your uterus contract (funny how they never tell you about afterpains) some woman are fine with them however.

Your baby has a stomach something like the size of a large marble. They don't need ounces and ounces of milk straight off.

When the stomach expands after a few days (ping pong ball sized) it's ready for milk.

by day 10 its maybe big egg sized and can do a couple or 3 ounces maybe. then more unsettled days as baby hits a growth spurt and feeds LOADS.

babies really don't need milk for the first few days after birth.

Steffyjayne23 Mon 03-Feb-14 19:13:38

Love mumsnet this has made me feel so much better thanks everyone x

Montemouse Mon 03-Feb-14 21:55:30

Day 4 for me. Had a supportive midwife who was very encouraging and I just kept and eye on number of wet/dirty nappies per day. Lots of feeding so baby had colostrum and also this stimulated milk coming in. I suspect my milk was on the late side as I was quite anaemic.

Baby was unsettled at night but so were some of exclusively formula fed babies on the ward so I didn't take this to mean much. Some newborns are just quite unsettled.

Baby was weighed every couple if days an although lost some weight (?) at some stage in the first week (can't remember the details sorry) but midwife wasn't concerned and just said to continue with regular feeding and responding to baby's cues.

Had no problems and fed exclusively till I started weaning, so no formula necessary.

I also had no colostrum while pregnant, not that I was aware of anyway.

Daytona79 Mon 03-Feb-14 22:10:07

Right 1st time mum to be here

So you don't have milk straight away when baby born and mike coming through hurts a lot

Am I picking that up correctly..?

Oh no now I'm scared :-(

AnythingNotEverything Mon 03-Feb-14 22:32:10

You don't have proper milk straight away, just colostrum which is more sugary and fatty and helps baby in the first few days. They only need drops of this. Having baby at the breast a lot stimulates your milk production. Having baby at the breast a lot can make your nipples sore - use Lansinoh and get your latch checked by anyone and everyone.

Your milk comes in around day 3-5. You look like you have boulders strapped to your chest. Your boobs will be tender!

The "let down" can smart a bit. It's sort of like turning the engine on in your car - when baby latched (or you hear them cry!) your body starts to release milk from deep inside. I wouldn't describe it as painful but you definitely notice it. I don't have it all the time.

KellyMom is a very well respected source of info: kellymom.com

There are also lots of experienced mums and some breastfeeding counsellers on the boards here. Don't be shy. There is great support available here, often in the middle of the night!

Rockchick1984 Mon 03-Feb-14 22:33:39

Daytona you have colostrum straight away. Even if you formula feed your milk will still come in - your boobs go massive and solid, breastfeeding is the quickest way to ease them, you can also hand express in a warm shower which helps a lot. Doesn't hurt for long, your boobs settle down within a day or 2.

birdbrain21 Mon 03-Feb-14 22:43:27

I had no signs of milk at all when I was I pregnant and I had dd a week and a half overdue. The first feed when she was born she sucked for about an hour and after I was settled on the postnatal ward she kept on wanting to feed every hour (still has a big appetite now at 9 months wink) by about 11pm I was in tears from tiredness as unable to settle her and I was feeling rubbish from the birth (very anemic so felt sick and dizzy!) one of the midwives found me sitting in the corridor as I felt bad dd was crying disturbing the other people in my ward and said sounds like your baby is hungry I told her I had been trying for hours to feed and settle her but I couldn't so she said no problem went off got a bottle of formula and a beaker and came back took the baby off me fed her formula settled her to sleep then helped me back to my bed smile so don't worry if you want to bf give it a go and if there's an 'emergency' like mine the hospitals do have formula they just don't tell you because they don't want people who are planning of ff to not bring any with them!

also just a quick note to say I found bf very difficult at first, my nipples cracked, it made me feel sick and dizzy I found it very difficult to cope with never sleeping more then a couple of hours before it was time for another feed but with encouragment of my DH I stuck it out and now 9 months am still doing it and my dd loves it, it's a lovely feeling when she pulls at my top and smiles when she's finished! having said that if for whatever reason you can't manage don't feel bad to ff the most important thing for your baby is that s/he has happy calm parents! good luck!

Daytona79 Mon 03-Feb-14 22:50:35

Thanks guys

Also I will check out that link

To be honest this whole child idea scares the crap outta me

Eek I hope I cope

slightlyinsane Tue 04-Feb-14 12:54:52

It was about days 3/4 for all of mine, size makes no difference. Dd2 and ds were fed solely from one breast aswel. The freaking out is completely normal too, I'm freaking and I've done it all before. If you want to take milk in then do. Do not see it as giving up before you start your just being prepared. Dd1 had to have some formula while we were in hospital. I ended up in theater after the birth and couldn't feed her or express well enough. It didn't make any difference in the long run to successful bf but removed my fear at the beginning because her blood sugars were all over the place and I couldn't feed her.

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