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How to do better with DC2?

3 replies

hopsalong · 07/04/2017 11:15

I did manage in the end to breastfeed DS1 for more than 12 months but we had a very rocky start, mostly because of supply issues. Ended up having c-section, lost a lot of blood, was quite poorly, and milk didn't come in until late. And I think I didn't realise how often /much he needed to feed, so didn't do enough to stimulate supply. He lost a lot of weight (just under 10% so not admitted) but was told to supplement with formula from two weeks (eventually reduced this), and also put myself on an arduous pumping schedule with a hospital grade pump (which did eventually give me a normal supply by 2 months or so but was really gruelling, and which I can't repeat). Although I didn't have gestational diabetes he was a big overdue baby (9 1/2 lbs) and I think things might have gone better if I had supplemented for first few days with small amounts of formula while waiting for my milk.

DC2 is predicted to be an even bigger baby (over 10lbs by term) and I am likely to end up with another c-section (am trying for a VBAC before 40 weeks but hospital won't let me go past that date for various reasons). What can I do either now or during hospital stay to improve things this time? Would pumping with a hand pump from the beginning get things going? Should I ask for his blood sugars to be checked? Again I passed my gestational diabetes test but I "feel" as if something is off with my blood sugar and don't know why babies are growing so big otherwise, because I am slim (BMI under 20) normal weight gain in pregnancy, no family history of big babies. Also wondered about buying some scales so I can be more alert to any weight loss? Felt I really let DS down by not feeding enough in early days and want to do better this time! Any advice would be great.

OP posts:
AssassinatedBeauty · 07/04/2017 11:33

I wouldn't buy scales as I think weighing too often just causes anxiety, as you see fluctuations that wouldn't otherwise be an issue.

I think you've identified the main thing which is just to feed frequently and on demand in the early days. I wouldn't assume you'd need to use formula initially as that would interfere with the supply/demand process. The same with expressing, I don't think it's necessary unless you can't feed directly for some reason.

A planned c-section should be different to a c section after labouring, so you might find that your milk comes in easier. This is exactly what happened to me second time round, and my milk came in much quicker than first time round when I was very unwell after delivery.

MilkRunningOutAgain · 07/04/2017 21:46

I had difficulty feeding DS: lost a lot of blood, milk came in very late, and he was very sleepy and didn't wake to feed - similar scenario really. I gave up breastfeeding at 10 weeks. Second time around it seemed much easier, DD was keener to feed and I think my supply was better too. I did give her several bottles as she was hungry for the first 5 days until my milk came in, I also put her to the breast BEFORE offering the bottle so she got the colostrum. Once my milk was in I stopped the bottles and persevered with regular breast feeds. And she breast fed til she was 1, I didn't give her another bottle ( I did try a few times when she was about 8 months but she was having none of it!).

hopsalong · 08/04/2017 10:21

Thank you -- this advice is both useful and comforting. I'm definitely hoping that being more clued up and feeding more / switch-nursing in early days will help my supply to be better. And of course it would be a bonus if it's better anyway!

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