Tuesday, 19 March 2013
Got milk?.......Got too much milk!?
A lot of women worry about not producing enough milk but what happens if you make too much milk? An over supply of milk can be make breastfeeding difficult to manage and your baby gassy and well as leaving you prone to engorgement and blocked ducts. Not to mention leaking and messy feeds making feeding in public unbearable
I began to realise I might have an over supply quite soon into breastfeeding. The general guide is to offer your baby one breast, until drained, then offer the other breast. Well Poppy would only need to feed from one breast. As a newborn she seems quite gassy and unconfortable at times. This was due to her having lots of high lactose foremilk. Foremilk you say? Well breastmilk is so clever it changes throughout a feed, when a baby starts a feed it is more watery and higher in lactose, this is called fore milk. Throughout a feed the milk becomes fattier, this is the rich, filling, hindmilk. Breastmilk fulfils all of a baby's needs, food and drink. I found that because I had so much milk, Poppy would become full on foremilk before getting to the hindmilk. This meant she wanted frequent feeds, seemed fussy and was gassy.
My midwife advised me to allow Poppy to feed from the same breast twice and then if she wanted more, to offer the other breast. Dinner, pudding and a drink. This worked well for me. It's also important not to express when you have an over supply, this will make you body produce even more. If you are engorged, just express a little.
A fast let down can also contribute to a newborns fussiness. All mums have a different let down and all babies take milk differently. Poppy would choke, pull on and off and want frequent feeds. My let down was too fast. Your baby will get used to your let down but in the mean time, when your baby pulls away try letting the gush of milk spill into a muslin, then let your baby latch again. This avoids the fast let down and gets rid of a little foremilk.
As for feeding in public, wear breast pads fro leaking, tuck a muslin under your baby so that any leaking is caught as doesn't leave you with embarrassing wet patches! Take a spare top and a sense of humour.... Any questions on breastfeeding, leave a comment or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.