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Weaning

Stopping breastfeeding

3 replies

HettyMeg · 25/10/2022 15:00

How can I stop breastfeeding? I've just recovered from a terrible bout of mastitis involving a hospital stay, borderline sepsis and IV antibiotics. I expressed while in hospital and have continued to express every few hours in order to clear the infection but I now want to stop breastfeeding. Is it a case of simply cutting out one expressing session every few days?

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Montague22 · 25/10/2022 15:12

Oh I really feel for you I had this. I did get sepsis but then needed another 3 lots of antibiotics trying to stop. You’ll need to be really careful.

What I tried:
Breast clinic said cold turkey- tried against my better judgement and got mastitis again. I’d even requested prophylactic antibiotics but they didn’t help.
Then it was suggested I pump and gradually express less each day to cut down ounce per ounce- again mastitis.
What worked in the end was to hand express in the bath every 2 hours. Had an abscess by now so needed more antibiotics but it worked.

Other two children I just stopped and made sure not to touch or brush against anything so not to as trigger let down. I think once you have the inflammation and scar tissue it’s not as easy though.

So I would hand express to take the edge off every couple hours in our out the bath.
You’ll need to take annual leave/sick leave.

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HettyMeg · 26/10/2022 12:21

Thanks for your reply @Montague22 , that sounds really hard. The breast clinic suggested I fully stop expressing but I have a feeling that won't work. It's hard because it is a fine balance between expressing to remove milk and be comfortable/prevent mastitis, and not expressing too much so that milk production eventually stops.

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queenofthewild · 26/10/2022 12:39

Hand expressing generally removes milk more gently and stimulates the body less than a pump.

I would recommend hand expressing enough to stay comfortable and not overfull but not enough to try and empty the breasts - breasts are never truly empty so the more you remove the more your body thinks it needs to make even more.

Gentle hand expression, particularly in a bath or shower is the way to go.

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