Continue in App Continue in App

continue to mobile site

Breastfeeding Support

Dana C.
DANA C.
Lactation Consultant
Fill 1 Created with Sketch. Fill 1 Created with Sketch. Fill 1 Created with Sketch. Fill 1 Created with Sketch. Fill 1 Created with Sketch.

Join Dana Czuczka, International Board Certified Lactation Consultant, for a Q&A all about breastfeeding. Dana is here to answer your questions about supply issues, pumping, weaning, and more.

Show more
Dana C. photo Group 2 Created with Sketch.
Have your own question?

Ask Dana, our Lactation Consultant!

Message Dana
DANA ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
EBF baby won't take a bottle!
STACEY, PARENT OF 5 YEAR OLD, 3 YEAR OLD

My baby is 13 weeks EBF. Though I've been trying since 6 weeks, she won't take a bottle. Or a sippy. (Or a paci). I've tried EVERYTHING! Letting her chew on/play with the nipples, hard and soft nipples, hi and lo flow nipples, flat, small, big, bottle nipples. I've tried silicone and plastic sippies. Milk hot and cold. I've had the most success with a cup (doidy) but that is very slow going. My husband will be home with me daughter for July, and I go back to work on July 10th. Help!! She's a good sleeper and I do not want to end up reverse cycling!!

Dana
DANA

Hi, Stacey -- I've been there...I know how stressful this can be. But, it really is important to stay calm and keep telling yourself "this too shall pass." It may take some time, but we'll work through it!

A few tips that I have found to be very helpful to transition our exclusively breastfed baby to a bottle:

- try and offer when baby is not too hungry (it's hard to learn anything new when we are starving). sometimes we have success with sleepy babies!

- offer freshly pumped milk (but in small quantities in case baby refuses we don't waste too much)

- use a slow flow nipple and think about "paced bottle feeding" (bottle is more parallel to floor then straight up and down but always be sure there is milk in nipple, take breaks, follow baby's lead). let baby root for the nipple versus sticking in baby's mouth. drip a little milk on baby's lips.

- change up the environment/positioning. if you always nurse in a glider then don't sit there for the bottle. or, if you use a nursing pillow...skip it! hold baby in a completely different way...maybe even try when baby is distracted in bouncer or you are swaying, etc. movement is good.

- don't force it. if either of you are getting frustrated take a break and try again later.

- leave the room (or house!) and let someone else try.

- try the bait and switch :) start with breastfeeding and when baby is relaxed try to offer the bottle.

- take deep breaths! and remember, "this too shall pass."

STACEY

Thank you! I've tried feeding her at night and bait and switch with little success. Fresh BM is something I have not tried -- I'm curious, what's the reasoning behind this recommendation?

Dana
DANA

Milk straight from mamma is what your baby is most used to. Therefore, offering the milk as close to that as we can get, can be helpful when we are trying to teach a (wary) exclusively breastfed baby how to bottlefeed. I find that using freshly pumped milk eliminates any questions about the milk being too cold or too hot. Plus, breastmilk can taste a little different after storing/freezing. This is normal, but since we are trying to minimize any factor that will deter baby from taking the bottle, I usually suggest trying fresh milk. If it seems logistically impossible or stressful, then skip this suggestion! But, remember, freshly pumped milk can safely stay out at room temp for 3+ hours (research shows up to 8 hours under very clean conditions).

Good luck!

STACEY

Thank you!! I'll definitely try that tomorrow!! I appreciate the explanation!

DANA ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Bottle and breast feeding
ANGELA, PARENT OF 5 YEAR OLD

I exclusively breastfed my 7 month old baby for 6 months. About 1 week ago, I started pumping. I am still breastfeeding for most of her feedings. She gets one bottle per day. She is not too excited about the bottle. She will either drink only 2 ounces or not take the bottle at all. What can I do to get her adjusted to taking a bottle?

Dana
DANA

Hi, Angela - great job on the breastfeeding! My guess is she'll get the hang of it once she has a few more experiences with it. Try and pace the feeding like baby does at the breast. Let baby root for bottle nipple versus just sticking it in baby's mouth. Sit baby up more (versus holding her in a reclined position) and hold bottle parallel to floor (horizontal) versus straight up and down so baby can control the milk flow a bit easier. It may be more successful to start with freshly pumped milk versus cold/defrosted milk.

The other thing to consider is skipping the bottle all together and introducing a sippy cup?

DANA ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Nursing bra issues
CAITLIN, PARENT OF 6 YEAR OLD

Hi Dana,

I have a five week old and find that I get pretty engorged whenever I try to wear a real nursing bra (vs. a sports/sleep nursing bra). I would love to get out of nursing tanks/sleep bras and into more normal clothes, but I don't want to risk getting clogged ducts. Will the engorgement ever go away? Or is it maybe something about my nursing bras that is causing issues. I also note that I am on the verge of having an oversupply.

Thanks!
CJ

Dana
DANA

Hi, CJ. Congratulations on your new baby!

I wonder if maybe your nursing bras are not sized correctly? Anything that is too tight (or has underwire) can cause discomfort and clogged ducts. Maybe pop into a maternity store right before you are about to feed (when you are fullest) so they can assist with getting the proper fit?

Do any of our breastfeeding moms have some favorite bras they can recommend?

Re the oversupply -- are you pumping on top of the nursing? If so, we may want to back off that for now. Also, try and make sure you drain one side at each feeding and then offer the second side.

Hope that helps! Good luck!

DANA ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Weaning
DEVON, PARENT OF 3 YEAR OLD, 2 YEAR OLD

Thank you for answering questions! My baby is almost 10 months old and I am working on weaning. I am exclusively pumping now, and have gotten down to 2 8-10 minute sessions per day (night and morning), getting about 6-8 oz each time. How would you recommend that I complete the weaning process? Should I try just pumping once a day? Reduce the amount of time for each session? At what point can I simply stop pumping without risking engorgement/a clogged duct/mastitis?

Dana
DANA

Great question! My best advice on weaning from the pumping would be to continue to reduce the time you pump at each session a bit more. You are still producing a lot of milk in a short period of time (amazing!), so let's go slow and give your body time to adjust. Perhaps try only pumping for 5 minutes the next few days. If you are feeling ok (no discomfort, clogged ducts, etc) then drop the evening pump and just hand express for relief/comfort. After your body feels ok, then drop the last one. You can take ibruprofen for any discomfort. Some moms feel great relief using ice packs (other moms hate it! go with what feels right). Green cabbage leaf compresses help relieve engorgement too.

Bottomline: there's no exact answer on when you can just stop. My recommendation would be to go slow and follow the way your body feels.

Great job on breastfeeding for 10 months! Good luck! Let us know if you run into any challenges.

DEVON

Thanks very much for the information and encouragement!

Our Q&A starts now!
TINYHOOD, PARENT OF 4 YEAR OLD

Welcome Tinyhood lactation consultant, Dana Czuczka, IBCLC! Dana is joining us to answer your breastfeeding questions about milk supply, pumping, weaning, and more, until 12pm ET.