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breastfeeding and engorgement help!

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Old 12-30-2007, 08:55 PM   #1
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besafe20 HB User
breastfeeding and engorgement help!

I had my son 10 days ago. From day one he has been an excellent nurser. So he is not the problem. My breasts produce so much milk and seem to be unwilling to slow down. As soon as my milk came in I was mildly engorged which turned into severe engorgement this week. The lactation consultant said to pump a little so he can latch on and then pump the other side for relief afterwards. She said 3-5 minutes of pumping won't tell my body to produce more. My pediatrician recomended the same thing except she said it would be better to to aviod using the pump completely and just pump enough out for him to latch if my nipples are hard. well all of this was only supposed to last for a couple days but I have been dealing with it for 6. Usually the engorgement is pretty moderate during the day and I had a couple nights of severe engorgement because my son slept 5 hours at night. The rest of the time he is always on a consistant 3 hour schedule. He is gaining weight great, has lots of dirty/wet diapers, and stays on the breast for a good amount of time. So I don't see why my breasts are making so much milk. I after the two nights of terrible pain and swollen lumpy breasts I have been making sure he wakes up to eat every 3 hours. It is unfortunate because I could use the extra sleep. So basically the past 24 hours my breasts are big and hard but I am not in pain or feeling rocks in my breasts like I am when I am severly engorged. Does anyone know when this will end and I can just nurse like a normal person without needing to touch my pump?

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Old 12-30-2007, 10:15 PM   #2
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: houston, tx, usa
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mcr285 HB Usermcr285 HB User
Re: breastfeeding and engorgement help!

unfortunately you might be one of those lucky few who could solve all the world's starvation problems with just one of your breasts! i'm the same way.... i was pumping anywhere from 16-20 ounces at a time when i was nursing! and it wasn't the pumping causing the problem, it just happens that i have very over zealous milk glands! so i had a freezer full of breast milk that i never ended up using because i was still breastfeeding too....

anyway..... that's my story.... it's possible that your body is still getting used to what your baby is eating and perhaps will adjust? if you don't want to pump yet, ice packs and cabbage leaves in the bra are pretty effective at relieving the pain of engorgement. also, you might hand squeeze a bit out just enough to relieve the pain you're feeling.

i feel for ya! hope it eases up soon!

Last edited by mcr285; 12-30-2007 at 10:17 PM.

Old 12-31-2007, 11:38 AM   #3
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 439
meechieny HB User
Re: breastfeeding and engorgement help!

Ohhhh, we sound alike!!!! Eveyone calls me "Mother Earth." I am a freak when it comes to milk production. Some things to add: Try wearing a tighter bra...never go without one, EVER!!!!Cut down on your fluid intake a little and see if that helps. Cold cabbage leaves are a good one. Cabbage has estrogen and will help you dry up a little. you may want to look into the "Mini Pill." If it continues. BCP will also dry you up a little.
And the thing that helped me the best......Breast Shells. They are usually used for sore nipples or inverted nipples. They are a hard plastic disk that has a hole for your nipple. It has a cone shape that fits over that piece. What it does is let your nipple stay out by putting pressure on the areola. That little pressure actually relieves engorgement. The nipple is allowed to drip better and the milk is collected in the shell (cone part) They make you look like you are Madonna, but well worth it. I had a softer silicon pair, but I actually liked some older ones that I had that were a little harder plastic.
You have to be cafeful because at times the shells fill up quick and before you know it, you bend over and they dump out all over you!!!
I would taper off after 5-6 weeks. Your body will start to understand the "supply and demand" and regulate more. Good luck. It's tough but try to stick to it if you can.

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