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290447 tn?1218056351

How to keep baby awake during feedings and how to produce more milk

I am attempting to breast feed my baby, she's currently 2 1/2 weeks old (born 4/30) at her 1 week dr. appt. she had lost some weight,she was originally 6 lbs 7 oz but at her appt she was 5 lbs 14 oz, not a huge drop but the dr. said I should give her an ounce or 2 of formula, which broke my heart, I really wanted to breast feed her. The dr. also suggested I pump to see how much milk I'm producing which I did and come to find out after I pump both breasts for 10-15 mins. I only produced an ounce of milk.  I felt sad mainly cause I started to feel like I was starving my poor little angel.  She does take my breast but as soon as she does within a min. she falls asleep, I've tickled her foot, brushed a finger against her cheek and just left her in her pamper to see if that would stimulate her enough to keep her awake to feed (and to help w/reproducing the milk supply) but nothing seems to work.  Any suggestions on how to keep her awake during feedings or on how to ensure I produce more then an ounce of milk for her?
4 Responses
Avatar universal
If you want to produce more milk - start pumping in between feedings.  It's all supply and demand and your body does not know if it is the baby or the pump taking the milk out.  So if you pump - you will produce more milk.  
To keep baby awake I did what you have tried - get her in just a diaper, tickle her cheek and pat her back when she falls asleep.  You can also wipe her face with a cool(not cold) washcloth before you feed her.
It is very common for babies to lose weight the first week and it also takes about 3-5 days for your milk to come in.  Mine even took a little longer than that and even longer to get sufficient quantities.  Your baby sounds totally normal to me but if she keeps losing weight then it would be a problem.  Because my daughter lost weight at first, we supplemented her with formula for a week or so at the beginning.  We used a syringe filled with formula with a tube attached - then when I breastfed my daughter we would slip the tube into her mouth and slowly eject the formula.  This way she still gets your milk, learns how to latch correctly but gets the calories she needs from the formula.  We only had to do it for a week so don't be sad if you have to do this.  You can stop once she starts gaining and go back to exclusively breastfeeding.  Best of luck.
172023 tn?1334675884
It is concerning that at over 2 weeks of age, she has not regained her birthweight.  Mlb gave you very good suggestions.

I'd also add that you probably need to see a lactation specialist, if there is one where you live.  You can often find one by contacting the hospital where you gave birth.  A lactation specialist might be able to check for latch issues or other problems.  
Avatar universal
First, it's common for exclusively BF babies to take up to 4wks to regain birthweight. Also, pumping is NOT a good way to estimate how much milk you are making or how much baby is getting. Baby is much more efficient than the pump. The best way to determine your output is to get (rent or go to LC's office) a very sensitive scale and weigh baby before and after feeding. And the best way to make more milk is to nurse more frequently and pump in between feedings like the pp suggested. It can be really tough, but it's so worth it! I would highly suggest trying to cut back on the formula if baby is hydrated b/c supplmenting may just hurt your supply more at this point.

For you, eating oatmeal helps. I find that 2-3 servings of rolled oats a day plus a few extra glasses of water works wondres. There's also mother's milk tea, although I've never used it. Avoid any antihistimane or other medications that "dry you out". Rest and made sure you are eating when hungry.

Don't be discouraged if you only get a tiny bit when you start to pump. I started off getting less than an ounce and within 2 weeks I was getting 3 oz and now can get 5 (and that's after feeding 4m old baby). In general, pediatricians tend to be uneducated about BF so I would definately suggest seeking assistance from an LC or local LLL leader.
Avatar universal
continue to offer your baby the breast as often as she wants and attempt pumping between feedings. Make sure you stay well hydrated, I always kept a drink with me where ever I nursed. Check to see if the hospital in your area has a breastfeeding support group. Mine does, they had a scale to weigh the baby before and after a feeding and plenty of advise.  Good Luck!
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