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Breastfeeding Support

Katy L.
KATY L.
Lactation Consultant
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Join our live Q&A with Katy Linda, IBCLC, ask a question and get expert advice on pumping, weaning, supply issues and more.

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KATY ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
How to clear plugged duct
ROSANNA, PARENT OF 3 YEAR OLD

I have a massive plugged duct in my left breast and my 10mo old is refusing to nurse that side (he's spent all afternoon biting and getting frustrated). I'm applying heat, massage and now pumping, but it doesn't seem to be shifting. Should I just keep pumping continuously or do it in spurts? There also looks like a milk bleb forming. Should I try and open it up and hope that helps clear it? Thanks!

Katy
KATY

Hi Rosanna, Massage and emptying the breast are the most helpful. Do you have access to a women's health physical therapist? Sometimes they can use special massage and ultrasound to clear the plug. If you want to message me your zipcode I'd be happy to help you find resources. Good luck!

Our Q&A is now over.
TINYHOOD, PARENT OF 4 YEAR OLD

Thank you, Katy! Katy offers a variety of in-person breastfeeding services in the Baltimore, MD area and virtual consultations for those living in other areas. Check out her profile for more info.

KATY ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Weaning
ALLIE, PARENT OF 3 YEAR OLD

Hey Katy
Quick question, I'm currently weaning from mostly pumping and bottle feeding. I've done this progressively over the last 2 weeks by extending the time in between pumps. One thing I'd like to keep the early morning nursing session, if I continue nursing her in the morning at her first feed will my body adjust to only producing milk for that one feed or do I need to pump outside of that nursing session? Please let me know your thoughts!

Katy
KATY

Hi Allie, As you slow down the pumping, your body should adjust. You shouldn't need to worry about pumping other times.

KATY ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Weaning a daughter who's allergic to milk?
AMBER, PARENT OF 6 YEAR OLD, 4 YEAR OLD

I have been nursing my daughter exclusively she is 14 months old. She is starting to wean a little but I'm afraid she won't get enough nutrition because I can't give her milk or most other milks? She's allergic to milk and almond milk and throws up coconut milk. She is still nursing good but I'm afraid with going to work soon she wont get enough nutrition. Is there any tips to kee my supply up when I'm away and pump or maybe what I could give her to help wean her slowly on to something else?

Thank you
Amber

Katy
KATY

Hi Amber,

Toddlers nurse differently than babies, so don't worry if she seems less interested at the moment, that may change. As long as she is breastfeeding and eating a variety of foods you don't need to worry much about other milk. Kellymom has some great info here: http://kellymom.com/nutrition/starting-solids/toddler-foods/

Good luck!!

KATY ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Increasing Supply
KATRINA, PARENT OF 2 YEAR OLD

Hello Katy, I have a 1 month old who originally started on breast milk. I started pumping because I wasn't sure how much she was getting. I was pumping 4-5 oz bottles maybe 2-3 bottles. But now I can barely get a 4 oz bottle between both breasts. I've been taking the Fenugreek Pills an she'll still latch an nurse but I know she isn't getting 4-6 oz in a feeding. What can I do to increase my supply for bottles and nursing?

Katy
KATY

Hi Katrina,

Congrats on your little one!! The best thing to do to increase supply is to demand more supply, pumping more regularly, breastfeed more, etc. Fenugreek can be helpful for some moms, but not all, you can check out www.lowmilksupply.org for some other options as well. If you have a physical reason why you're body isn't making enough milk, you may find some of the info on my low milk supply pinterest board helpful - https://www.pinterest.com/katylinda/low-milk-supply/

Good luck! :)

KATY ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Improve breastfeeding with Second Child
ALEXIS, PARENT OF 4 YEAR OLD

Hello Katy,

Thank you for taking my question. I am expecting my second child and had such a hard time with baby number one, and I don't want to repeat it. I had toe curling pain with the first when she would latch from the start. (Breastfeeding was worse than labor.) I had seen 3 Lactation consultants in the hospital, and another at home twice. At 14 days, I hired another and was told my baby had a high pallet and possible tongue tie (the other LC at the hospital said baby did not have these.) I got the tie revised a few days later and was told to pump for a week to allow everything to heal. We did well combo nursing (it still hurt but not nearly as bad) and bottle feeding (because it hurt to bad to nurse every time), but then she stopped nursing at 6 weeks and I was heart broken. (I went to EP till 11 months.) (Even after the tongue tie revision baby was still very gassy and made a clicking noise when feeding.) So my question is, how do I get to a good start in breastfeeding so I don't end up in so much pain and fail again? Are there techniques we should try (we tired different holds, the sandwich, LC visit in my home, etc.)? What about a nipple shield? Or a way to get the baby evaluated ASAP for any tongue tie problems (from family history it seems to be genetic)? I just really want to breast feed my child. Please help. My heart still hurts that I couldn't with my first and really want this. Thank you.

Katy
KATY

Oh Alexis, I am so sorry that you struggled so much with your first child. Having a good support system will be key to navigating this next journey. The good news is that you know so much more going into it this time and you won't settle for poor information. A nipple shield can be a great tool for pain, but if you do have another baby with a tie you'll want to get that taken care of and be sure you have the right support to help you with any breastfeeding struggles. If you want to PM me your zipcode I will find you some resources in your area so that you are prepared. Good luck!

KATY ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Returning to work at 7 months
SHEFALI, PARENT OF 3 YEAR OLD

Hi,

I will be returning to work after my son is 7 months old. At that point is it necessary to give him pumped milk in a bottle or is it appropriate to try a different type of cup? Also if I am only working part time approx 4-5 hours a day would it be realistic to pump only once if i nurse before and after work?

Thanks!

Katy
KATY

Hi Shefali! At 7 months old you can absolutely introduce a sippy cup instead of a bottle, some older babies do well with small open glasses as well. Pumping once should work if you are feeding before and after, you're really only missing 1 feeding. As long as you have enough milk, you'll be fine. Good luck!!

KATY ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Weaning one year old
MEG, PARENT OF 3 YEAR OLD

Hi Katy! I am attempting to wean my one year old, but she is not having it at all. I'm still doing the morning and night feedings plus one during the day. She is having a hard time when she wakes up from her other nap and doesn't get to nurse. There are a lot of tears and screaming. I'm offering her milk and a snack, but she wants nothing to do with it and pushes her face into my chest. I held out yesterday but it's breaking my heart. Do you have any suggestions on how to make the weaning process less painful? Which feeding should I cut out next? How long should I wait to cut out another feeding? Thank you for your help!

Katy
KATY

Hi Meg,

That is such a hard position to be in! Is there a feeding she is less attached to than the after nap feeding? If you don't need to wean right now and she doesn't seem to be ready, you could also try again in a month or two when she may be more developmentally ready. Offering substitutions, changing routines, and going slowly are your best bets for weaning. If you do need to do this now, figure out which feeding she is least attatched to and start there. Good luck!

KATRINA

Hi meg, just wanted to
Offer hugs. I will begin weaning next month and i am dreading it. My daughter loves to nurse and it is going to break my heart

KATY ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Weaning after 1
KATRINA, PARENT OF 5 YEAR OLD, 3 YEAR OLD

How do I handle weaning after age 1? I nurse 4x a day now and know the morning and before bed are last to go. So the other two, do I just offer whole milk in her straw cup and when she refuses, just snuggle and try and distract? I do not pump so there is no bm to offer. Very emotional about this journey but proud i made it a year.

Katy
KATY

Hi Katrina, Congratulations on making it a year! That's a huge accomplishment. Weaning is best done slowly and gently for both of you. Distraction is a great tool. Choose the feeding your little one is least attached to and offer her a cup of milk, a different food, snuggles or a toy. Once you have eliminated that feeding you can work on the next one. Weaning slowly will help her adjust and it will help your body regulate. Good luck!

KATRINA

Thank you!
I am beyond nervous

Katy
KATY

No need to be nervous! You don't have to wean at all if it doesn't feel right to you. Just follow your mama gut. You know what is best.

KATY ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
EBF my newborn
RACHEL

I am exclusively breastfeeding my 5 week old daughter, and she is gaining weight more slowly than the pediatrician would like. She is gaining about half an ounce a day on average, and the pediatrician would like to see an ounce of gain. The dr wants to see her eating 24-30 oz per day. I easily produce that much milk each day (I have been pumping and weighing my baby before and after breastfeeding to measure my output and her intake), but my baby only wants to eat 18-20 oz per day. She is now 7 lbs 6 oz (she was born 6 lbs 10 oz and was 6 lbs 1 oz when she left the hospital 4 days later; I suspect her birth weight was artificially inflated by all the IV fluids I had in labor). She is otherwise very healthy and seems happy and doing great. She seems to know when she's done and doesn't want any more milk. Since the dr said we need her to eat more volume, we've been trying to force her to eat more by pushing bottles of pumped milk after feedings and trying to make her eat every 2 hours. Since we've been doing that, she just spits up a lot more. I've tried nursing her upright and holding her upright after feedings to reduce reflux, but it seems like the more we push her to eat, the more she spits up. Any advice? Is it important to push her intake, or is the 18-20 oz she likes per day OK for an infant of her size and age? I already have a freezer full of pumped milk because the amount I produce in a day exceeds her daily demands. She always has tons of wet and poopy diapers btw, so she is digesting everything and seems well hydrated.

Katy
KATY

Hi Rachel -

According to this chart (http://www.best-breastpumps.com/Milk_Intake.htm) your little one is right on track. Have you seen an IBCLC to rule out other possible causes for the slow gain? I'd be happy to help you find someone in your area who can really assess your baby's feeding.