Breastfeeding

Determined To Breast Feed With Child Number 3 (Breast Feeding Question)

23 Comments 29 December 2011

Jenn is eight weeks away from having child number 3, and determined to breastfeed. She has a few questions that you can probably help with. Read this short post and comment below.

When she had her older daughter, she had no support. Her younger daughter was SEVERELY tongue tied (and pumps didn’t work for her at ALL).

This time around, she’s going to do everything she can to breastfeed.

Jenn has some questions, and I’m asking the BBH community to give her some feedback.

Here are her questions:

  • When should Jenn start taking the lactation tincture/drinking the mother’s milk tea, etc?
  • She wants to make sure she can produce enough and such. Should she start before her baby is even born?
  • What advice do you have for Jenn?

Please leave your comments below.

Your Comments

23 Comments so far

  1. KateN says:

    Here are my 4 pieces of advice–take what you like and leave the rest:
    1. Be sure that now and after the baby is born you are eating nutritionally and drinking LOTS of water.
    2. While I know with 2 older children this is hard–get as much rest now and when the baby is born as you can–rest, sleep, meditate, relax.
    3. Nurse on demand once the baby is born–my first nursed just about constantly. If I listened to the nurses who advised 15 min each side, I think I may have failed at it.
    4. Develop a strategy for laughter–laughter relaxes you a lot, and you need to relax about this issue. Get the laughter endorphins going–read or watch something that really cracks you up. Use it liberally.

    Others will give you advice about herbs, etc.–but this is what worked for me. Best of wishes !

  2. Liz Belden Handler says:

    Please, please, find a La Leche League group and start going to meetings NOW. They are the experts, and being around other successfully nursing moms helps more than you can even imagine. I sucessfully nursed 2 tongue tied babies, but it wasn’t as easy or comfortable as my other 3. I would suggest having your pediatrician check your babe early on. If this one is tied, also, have it snipped. Good luck!

  3. Jess says:

    1. Mothers milk tea has fenugreek in it and it is bad for pregnant women to take. Wait and see what your supply is like. There is such a thing as over supply and it’s not pleasant.
    2. Find a local lactation consultant. Make sure you take a class before you deliver. Try to find someone who you can call after hours.
    3. Relax. I panicked when my supply dipped a little and stayed down , but I really don’t need more than a few days stash.

  4. magreen says:

    Start thinking positively. Encapsulate your placenta and pay attention to what might be effecting supply… With my 1st. I retained placenta and hemorrhaged for weeks… #2 I thought I was under nourished and began exercising too quick. It was child #3 that I watched everything so closely that I just knew I hadn’t done anything wrong to mess up supply. When y supply diminished (after I ran out of placenta pills) I knew something wasn’t right. Turns out I have most menopausal levels of progesterone. Validation – that if nursing isn’t working it’s for good reason. Just nurse often, stress free – drink plenty, eat well and bond and nurture that baby and it will work. Lean on your support and let go of the stress of schedules and counting pee and poop and watching the clock. Just connect with your baby. you’ll know if it’s working right – and if you connect well…you’ll know if everything is working well!! Really.<3 congratulations!

  5. Marlene says:

    Spend as much time skin to skin. That means baby only in a diaper and you with no shirt or bra (or an open button up shirt that you can cover up with when needed. Spend as much time in bed with baby, skin to skin as you can. Eat oatmeal. If you truly think you have an issue with supply (talk to a LLL leader to confirm supply issue), then add some brewers yeast and/or fenugreek to it. I add blackstrap molasses for iron and to cover the brewers yeast taste. Eat a healthy diet. Don’t skimp on natural fats like butter, whole milk, and unrefined vegetable sourced fats. Don’t use herbal supplements for increasing milk unless there is a real need. Over production can cause problems as well, plus if your body is used to the herbs it might not produce as much on its own if you stop.
    Relax, don’t let people put negative thoughts about breast feeding into your head. Let your phone go to voice mail. Leave a message saying that you and baby need to spend some time getting to know each other. You will post pictures and have visitors later.
    Good luck, I know you will do a great job.

  6. Marlene says:

    Oh, avoid disposable breast pads, especially any with absorbent gel. Opt for fabric ones when you need to wear them. A small, soft, folded wash cloth in your bra works well.

  7. Kelli says:

    Just decide you are going to do it and keep that promise to yourself and baby. It tooks me a couple of months with my twins before it was easy. Suddenly it will work if you just keep trying.

  8. Lindsey says:

    Congrats on your decision to breastfeed! It can be challenging the first few weeks but then it becomes magical! I run a FB group page called Modern Tribal Mamas with over 100 moms, most who exclusively breastfeed. The group also has plenty of La Leche League memebers and leaders, Lactation Consultants and breastfeeding experts. Please request to join if you are interested. When a mom has a question it is usually only minutes until very educated moms answer back :) http://www.facebook.com/groups/278883762123995/

  9. There is some wonderful advice being shared here!
    Jen, please don’t assume that your body does not, or will not work correctly and not be able to produce the adequate supply of milk for your baby. Like others have recommended… wait on taking a tea with such herbs in it, spend as much time skin to skin with your baby as you can (a sling appropriate for wearing a newborn will help with this, since you need some free hands for your other little girls), feed the baby on demand, not limiting the time spent on your breast, drink plenty of water, attend LLL meetings before you give birth (they will be a world of support for you!), find a Lactation consultant and meet/call her before you give birth…. and lastly, trust yourself. Good luck!!

  10. Allison says:

    I would not start trying to enhance milk production until after the baby is here and there are noticeable issues. An oversupply, which could be created by drinking teas and ingesting lactation aides, is painful and can lead to problems such as the baby refusing the breast due to forceful let down, etc.

    My rule of thumb was to wait two(ish) weeks to let my supply regulate. I was lucky where I didn’t have a problem. I couldn’t really pump for a freezer supply (but I had a lipase issue so the small supply I did have had to be tossed) but I had enough to sustain my son whom I am still breastfeeding at 17 months.

    There is really nothing you can do to ‘prepare’ your body to produce milk. (at least not to my knowledge) so don’t stress out about it now. Just find a good LC that will help you in the first few weeks.

    I found that the first two weeks hurt. A lot. My nipples were red, bleeding, raw and my son had a great latch. After a few weeks, the pain subsided.

    There is a lot of good advice here already. The biggest thing is to be kind to yourself and don’t stress. Set small goals. I set my goals in small monthly increments and am still going strong at 17 months.

    Any breast milk you give your baby is great. You will do a great job.

  11. Jenny says:

    I was JUST there! I had my 3rd son in October and I was determined to EBF- I had different issues with my first two and pumped and supplemented with them. I have to say, he was born at home, weighed 10 lbs, 8 oz, and has not had a drop of anything other than my milk! YOU CAN DO THIS!! :) My best piece of advice: relax. I never timed our sessions and I never paid attention to how long he waited between feedings. When he was hungry, he nursed. If I wasn’t sure, I tried nursing. In the hospital I always wondered about a pacifier- at home, it wasn’t an option. I didn’t care if he just wanted to suck- I let him- on me! ;) My milk came in the fastest with my third (it started coming in the night after he was born) and I truly believe it’s because I nursed in the comfort of my own home. No one suggested supplementing, everyone believed I could nurse. And I did too. I also highly recommend following breastfeeding support pages on FB. I am constantly seeing questions, asking questions, and learning so much about BF now and it really does had a lot to the support. Don’t worry about the mother’s milk tea unless you need it. You may just surprise yourself ;)

  12. Jenn, Congratulations on your commitment to breastfeeding with your children and this sweet one on the way! What great suggestions all these women have provided. I agree with all so far! And yes, taking galactogogues during pregnancy is not recommended. Tongue-Tie is genetic, so it is likely it could happen again with this child. It should be clipped to avoid any disruption with breastfeeding, with talking later down the road, and with normal tongue oral health. A great website is http://www.brianpalmerdds.com/ A local DDS, who specialized in frenulums and breastfeeding and does much of the research to date on the topic. there are many providers in the area that will do a frenectomy, and the earlier the better. This link brings you to the American Academy of Pediatrics article on breastfeeding and tongue tie. Bascially, it can’t ever hurt to clip, but it can hurt to not clip. www2.aap.org/breastfeeding/files/pdf/BBM-8-27%20Newsletter.pdf

    Your best friend will be the baby to direct your milk supply. Nurse early and often, unrestricted. Count those poos and pees to stay aware of how much they are getting, surround yourself with women who have been there, LLL is a great place to start! And know when to ask for help. Most situations are quite easy to overcome, and the sooner the better!

    AND with every pregnancy, your breast grow additional ducts and milk cells. So that means, that every time you are pregnant and breasfeed, the next time you will have even more milk. So this being your 3X around, you will have that much more milk than the 1X and the 2X. That can only be advantageous for you and baby. :)

    And remember, this is a new situation. You may not have the same challenges, they may be different. So enjoy the remainder of your pregnancy. Try not to focus on the negative or the fears… trust the baby and your body to do what it needs to do. Our bodies are amazing and work! :D

  13. Joy says:

    Jenn you sound like me! I had a very hard time with my first two daughters and gave up very early on with them. I didn’t even pump them milk (I didn’t know that I COULD! I just went to formula).

    So when pregnant with my third daughter I purposed to not have any formula or bottles in my house. I also knew that nipple shields were out of the question because they were part of my inability to nurse my second daughter.

    The biggest help was making short goals. My first goal was to make it to four weeks and see how things were going. Then 6 weeks, then 3 months, etc. I ended up nursing my third daughter for 17-months. I’m now currently nursing my son who is 3-months-old.

    I nurse on demand and he sleeps in bed with me. I often sleep with him on the breast throughout the night. He had a hard time in the beginning; I would call him a “lazy nurser” and he just didn’t have a lot of interest. But I gave it time, I kept trying and now he’s all about breastmilk and nursing!

    Don’t give up! YOU CAN DO IT!

  14. Ariel says:

    I’ve nursed 10 babies, I’m still nursing my 2 1/2 year old. I’m almost 43.Breast feeding is 99% attitude. The best advice I can offer you is to stop worrying! 1. You will probably produce enough milk. 2. Do not get bottles, that sets you up to fail. 3. Your nipples will hurt, a lot, at first, don’t let this discourage you, it’s just part of it. Dry your nipples and use a nipple cream after EVERY nursing time until your nipple toughen up. 4. Relax. Enjoy this time with your baby, it only comes once! 5. Find mothers who have nursed, do NOT read books! They messed my daughter and my niece up really badly! Do not listen to nurses or doctors, listen to your BABY. You and your baby are going to learn a complicated dance together. You will grow into a team. Remember your baby has never done this before, but will learn quickly. Don’t give up!! You can do this!!

  15. ana says:

    i used a toothbrush to brush my nipples for a while everytime i had a shower… it really worked, my nipples really toughened up and i didn’t have any trouble with breastfeeding. first it felt funny-weird but then i loved it! i still do and so does my 11 months old girl :) you can do it and you’ll love it

  16. Lorna says:

    If your first was TT’d, it is more likely the next baby will be too so I would find a Lactation Consultant you can work with NOW and get comfortable with her, get her to look at your first daughters TT so she can get an idea for the issues it caused and you can make a plan for a fast and early division of the tie asap after bubs is born, talk about positioning etc etc. Knowledge, help and determination are SO powerful and almost all breastfeeding issues can be overcome with those three things combined so GO FOR IT, accept from the outside you might hit bumps in the road and that this could be quite tough in the early days, but planning to birth at home, keeping your oxytocin high and all of the wonderful safety and relaxation which comes with birthing at home will give you the best chance to breastfeed. Good luck. X

  17. Lauren says:

    Putting baby to breast every time baby seems hungry in the first month is the best way to build up a good supply (including overnight).

  18. Jenn says:

    Thank you all SO MUCH!! :) :) :) :)

    I’m bookmarking this so I can re-read everything you’ve all said from time to time (especially after the baby is born!)

    The thing that I’m most upset about is that my 2nd daughter wanted to nurse SO bad! She latched amazingly and everything, i just didn’t have the confidence, plus her tongue was held down at the very tip :( We got it clipped at 2 1/2 months, but by then, i had dried up. My husband is TT’d, and I hope this baby isn’t, but if he/she is, then i’ll know to get it clipped early, and I’ll be going to LLL meetings and talking to someone about this issue ASAP! <3
    thank you all SO SO SO SO SO SO much!!! <3

  19. Mary says:

    A good friend of mine had lots of trouble with her first, mostly due to him being taken away by hospital staff immediately after birth and poor latch and disinterest on baby’s part. However, she just had her 2nd and allowed for baby led nursing in the beginning and this has made a huge difference for her. Basically, immediately after birth, rather than putting baby to breast, you put baby on your tummy or chest and allow baby, on her own, to find the nipple and initiate feeding.

  20. Deborah says:

    Hi Jen, I have clinically diagnosed IGT, so I am in a similar, albeit less hopeful situation. I am due number three in ten weeks and with the help of MOBI, an incredibly supportive homebirth midwife, a wonderful lactation consultant and the Making More Milk book I’ve come up with the following plan for prenatal prep. Keep in mind my situation is completely physiological so that it is highly unlikely that whatever I do I will produce enough milk, but thought some of it may be useful to others out there.

    1) Natural progesterone cream throughout the pregnancy through to 38 weeks. Has been shown to be effective in increasing gland tissue in some women in subsequent.

    2) Hand expressing and freezing colostrum from 34 weeks.

    3) Goats rue supplement in the third trimester.

    4) 1 cup red raspberry leaf tea and 1 cup of nettle/fennel tea per day in third trimester.

    5) Breast massage and dry brushing daily.

    During/after birth-

    1) Drug-free natural water birth at home
    2) Delayed cord clamping
    3) Immediate and constant skin-to-skin contact
    4) Nurse on demand
    5) Begin fennugreek, goats rue, blessed thistle supplementation
    6) Begin taking domperidone
    7) If milk doesn’t come in (it hasn’t in the past) by day five, begin supplementing using an SNS.
    8) Pump after feedings
    9) Eat plenty of oats
    10) Stay hydrated

    Again, this is a protocol for someone who physically cannot produce a full supply, which is an extremely small number of women. I’ve noticed plenty of self-diagnosis out there but without an ultrasound to confirm you actually don’t have enough gland tissue presume the best and that it’s something fixable! Best of luck!

  21. Ilissa says:

    I am also dealing with low milk supply, but due to a breast reduction I had 8 years ago. Here are my answers to your questions:

    When should Jenn start taking the lactation tincture/drinking the mother’s milk tea, etc? Some of the herbs in the tincture and teas can be harmful during pregnancy (e.g. fenugreek). It is best to start taking these teas after birth. There are two schools of thought on this. Either, take the teas and tinctures immediately after birth and then scale back the amount you are taking depending on what you are producing. Or, wait until your milk comes in and see how your baby is gaining. If your baby is gaining fine, your milk is at an adequate level and you shouldn’t need the herbs. Personally, I went with the 2nd option and would do the same the 2nd time around.

    She wants to make sure she can produce enough and such. Should she start before her baby is even born? Some herbs can be taken during pregnancy. For example Goat’s Rue (known to help with breast tissue development) or Alfalfa. Many moms will start taking these herbs in the last month of pregnancy. As other people have mentioned, you can also start taking Red Raspberry Leaf tea. Not only can it help with bringing in your breast milk but it can help tone your uterus – great for your labour!

    I’d also suggest checking out the book The Breastfeeding Mother’s Guide to Making More Milk: Foreword by Martha Sears, RN by Diana West and Lisa Marasco. There are tons of great suggestions about dealing with low milk supply and increasing your milk supply.

    One site that I have found particularly helpful is http://lowmilksupply.org/. They also have a forum that is great for asking questions (lots of really helpful people) and reading about what has worked well for other people in similar situations.

    I wish you all the best in your journey!

  22. Rebecca says:

    Lots of good advice; I especially want to encourage you to take the advice to go to LLL meetings NOW (you should be able to go to at least one more in February even if you’ve missed it in January). Meeting the LLL leaders ahead of time makes it easier to call them for help, and you’ll probably also make some friends who will encourage and support you.

    I also want to mention this topic, though I know it’s controversial, because even if you do everything else suggested, you could still be “booby trapped” if you’re not aware of this issue. I’m talking about routine infant circumcision. Please, please research this topic thoroughly and understand how the pain and trauma of that procedure CAN derail breastfeeding. If for some reason you decide to circumcise your baby (assuming it’s a boy — it’s illegal to alter the genitals of a baby girl in the US), you should wait a couple of weeks to make sure breastfeeding is established. Please feel free to contact me if you would like some more information or resources on this topic.


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