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Depressed...Expressed milk via bottle or feed direct???

  1. #1
    yuukalim0404 is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Tseung Kwan O

    Unhappy Depressed...Expressed milk via bottle or feed direct???

    sorry this is going to be quite lenghty..

    My baby has been fed exclusively on breast since now ( she is just over 4 weeks now) She has been feeding and gaining well so far. But 1-2 week ago, I started to have increasing problems with over active let down with left breast. Sometimes I hear baby gulping down milk and see milk spilling from sides of her mouth and if I don't fed for too long on this breast, eg more than 6 hrs, sometimes she struggles, chokes and coughs. Just few days back, the problem got worse that she even crys when drinking one or 2 times. As a result, I had to pump the mik out and feed it via bottle ( not a good solution but works temporary)
    I have tried lying down, changing positions, buying a nipple shield but it does not seem to work! Also I tried removing the nipple when she chokes, but that just makes her cry harder :(

    Another problem I face is I am never sure how much she drinks each time. She often falls asleep at breast and I suspect she ingests lots of gas but when I tried to burp her, sometimes she does not burp then she will spit up or vomit some milk only 15-30mins later. Also if I persist in burping her > 10mins, she wakes up, crys then refuse to sleep, so sometimes I am really tempted to just leave her to sleep after drinking!!
    I was quite confident I am feeding her well from her weight gain and soiled/wet nappies but due to recent problems.

    My mother in law who is living in is giving extra pressure, saying that baby is always hungry and I am not feeding her enough as she always "seems hungry" and crying when she wakes up.
    She is asking me to pump out and feed from bottle so baby gets fed on regular intervals and she knows indeed how much baby is drinking.
    I know feeding from breast is supposed to be best, but am also tempted/pressurised and stressed by all to just give this moment it does seem easier to just pump and feed her by bottle as I can pump lots from left breast now.
    Also I recently develped thrush/ sore nipples on left breast and prone to blocked ducts so pumping is indeed a easy option out vs baby struggling and pulling at nipple. When I pump I can massage hard and not worried about choking baby whereas when baby is drinking direct, usually if I massage at the lump, the milk comes out too fast and she may choke but if I don't massage, that part remains hard even after she drinks.

    Sorry about the long post, feeling frusterated with sore nipples, lack of sleep, baby crying and feeling a little helpless here.

  2. #2
    Paddles is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Don't have all the answers but in relation to your Mother in law. Mine is exactly the same, everytime i breastfed she said 'she's not getting enough, i don't understand why you don't bottle feed her' etc etc. I constantly felt that I was doing the wrong thing and fighting with her all the time, but I discovered that she bottle fed all 7 of her children and so I decided that her opinion wasn't educated enough and i continued to BF. My girls are 4 months now and although i no longer breastfeed they were doing just fine for the 3 and a half months that i fed them and her assumptions were unjustified. You know in your heart whether your baby is getting enough and also if her weight gain is good then the signs are she's doing just great.

    Regarding flow being too fast, i've heard advice before that if you pump a little before feeding the flow will be less and your baby may have less problem with the intial letdown being too fast. You may also be able to continue with a litte massage here then too before you latch her on.

  3. #3
    pixelelf is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2008
    actually i have the same problem as you - overactive letdown and supply + it's not my mother in law who was turning up the pressure, it was my mother!

    i think i did reply to your last thread about the overactive letdown part Breastfeeding Problems

    i did all the suggestions shared with you, but they were in no way miracle cures. it was a huge struggle for me for months, added my baby had very bad colic. it's very tempting to put the baby back to bed after a feed (i def know - my baby would cry for hours and refuse to sleep if i tried to burp him) but i had to burp, cos the gas in the stomach will be very uncomfortable and this leads to more furious crying or worse, spitting up alot for us!

    the thing about breastfeeding is, i dun ever know exactly how much ml my baby is taking. is there a need to if he is gaining weight, having enough soiled and wet diapers? i am happy not to know how much...i know he has enough :)

    i think it helps to pump out milk when they feel full. 6 hours at a stretch of no feeding is too full for me and my baby definitely will choke. what i'll do is pump out the milk till my breasts feel comfortable (not empty) then store them in the freezer for rainy days. when my baby is hungry, i will offer breasts still. after awhile the supply wll normalise to what your baby needs. it took us 4 - 5 months to get it to "normal happy feeding" no choking.

    most of all, do seek help from lactation consultants. with proper help and support, breastfeeding will be a much happier and tears free experience. i regret really, not seeking help earlier!

    keep trying and trying. now at 7.5 months, he is grabbing my breasts and shaking them in frustration for not flowing fast enough!

  4. #4
    noc is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    You can try this website for info -

    I also had blocked ducts and if I didn’t clear this milk, it just got worse and worse. So I had to pump to clear off milk by baby didn’t finish. I think this made me have an oversupply… I wonder if it is the same in your case?

    To deal with my oversupply, I just kept on pumping and feeding. This is not really recommended, since it won't help your problem with oversupply. It is also tiring. But, like Pixelelf I just saved up all the extra milk I pumped and used it for extra feeds, e.g. even months later, when you may not have enough milk. You can also show your mother in law that you are producing a lot of milk!

    Anyhow, the first weeks are the worst for pain and supply issues, please don’t give up!

  5. #5
    cyberfish88's Avatar
    cyberfish88 is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Lantau Island
    Hang in there yuukalom0404,

    I don't have any great answers either but just wanted to say hang in there, you are not alone! I went through a lot of issues in the first 4 months that were frustrating and had me depressed quite a lot but I can now say that everything passes! Things that seem like a big deal one week will eventually pass. My daughter is now 6 months and now feeding like a champ. I never had oversupply issues but dealt with everything else you mentioned. You have to trust your own instinct. It used to drive me crazy everytime someone would come near my baby and say "oh she must be hungry". (mother in law, helper) It just made me second guess my ability to feed her, even if I had just fed her!! You are the best one to read her signs. I found also that pumping really made me question the amount of milk I was producing...if I pumped a lot I worried that meant my baby hadn't been drinking enough yet if I could only pump a little I was paranoid that meant I wasn't producing enough for her! It was a constant battle. Again, you have to just trust your instincts and if all the signs are good (wet nappies, happy baby etc) then don't stress and focus on clearing up your blocked ducts.

    I also highly recommend seeing a lactation consultant...they can be invaluable in helping you get through the tough parts, especially if you have sore nipples, blocked ducts, etc.

  6. #6
    joannek is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Hong Kong
    your experience seemed similar to mine. sometimes, we thought we can handle it by ourselves, but with our limited knowledge of breastfeeding & minimal emotional support, we do have to call in the pros. we don't live in the days when a whole village help raise a little kid, and they had their mothers & in-laws & aunts who've all breastfed. Most of the people around us, from the previous generation are like your in-laws (my mom & my MIL, for 2). It actually remind them how they didn't breastfed your husband (or you!) when you are bfing your child.....

    i finally seek help with Mrs Chee, a very nice lactation consultant. Boy, was i glad. besides helping me with my breast problems, she also gave lots of emotional support. I had a real person to vent to & she totally stands on our side.

    I heard Yvonne Heavyside is very helpful, too.

    Do seek help asap.

    good luck!

  7. #7
    snagito is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Yes - a lactation consultant would be a great source of support for you at this time - i would recommend seeing Crystal Bedard at Matilda - she is excellent and so warm and supportive. Take care.

  8. #8
    mjw is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    HK island
    do you actually have to burp the baby at all? i never did with my bf baby. if their latch is good they shouldn't take in much air and if they get dozy and relaxed they usually take in less gas rather than more. all that tapping and bouncing after a nice big meal, no wonder they get a bit sick.

    also remember that women have been exclusively breatfeeding babies for centurys and if it only worked when you pump and then measure exactly how much they are getting, we wouldn't get very far. unless there is a real problem, babies are perfectly capable of regulating their own milk intake, just as all small mammals are. trust that all is fine, relax, ignore the demon mother-in-law, who will always think she knows best, do a bit of experimentation and i am sure these problems will pass.

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