Jenn (astridlynn) wrote in breast_milk,

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Sore, Cracked, Bleeding......

Yesterday I wanted to entirely stop breastfeeding........ a few things going on.

On day 4 we had to start supplementing with formula because my son's (Blake's) jaundice was so bad. We've had to continue supplementing ever since because Blake is an "inefficient feeder" and I'm not producing very much milk. I guess the two of them go hand in hand. I had a breast reduction 7 years ago and had quite a bit of tissue taken. I'm assuming that's why I can't make enough for him. I pump after each feeding and am only able to get 1.5-2 oz, depending on how Blake fed on the breast. He's now a month old and taking 3-5 oz per feeding. Our feeding routine consists of: breastfeeding, bottle feeding expressed b-milk, bottle feeding formula, soothing him until I get a chance to pump b-milk for the next feeding. Alone, this entire feeding process can take up to 1.5-2 hours. With my husband doing the bottle feeding it takes about 30-60 minutes. It's very frustrating, especially when Blake doesn't want to latch properly...or moreso falls asleep on the boob and won't eat. (He sucks down the bottle every time, but just doesn't want to work for his milk - or maybe the breast comforts him so much that he just falls asleep. *shrugs*)

I've tried to increase my milk supply by drinking tons of water and pumping every 3 hours religiously, whether or not Blake wants to eat....but nothing seems to work. So question #1 is how do I ever get my milk production to increase adequately?

I've used the nipple shield for about 3 weeks now to help with Blake's latch. It works great and now he's able to latch properly without it. Suddenly he's finally figured out breastfeeding. However, now my nipples are so sore that I can't stand to feed him anymore. Yesterday morning I let him feed on the left, in which I have hardly any pain perception. (I have a large numb area from surgery.) We both fell asleep nursing and he nursed on that side 45-60 minutes. I discovered in the shower yesterday that now I have bleeding cracks on that nipple. Both of my nipples are now so sore that I have to either wear a bra with nursing pads & lanolin (so nothing rubs) or go topless. Even if I go topless at night I can't pull the covers up 'cuz it hurts if they touch me....but then again the cold air hurts too. I can't even put Blake up on my shoulder to burp because his legs hit my breasts. Breastfeeding is excruciating on either side now. I'm taking Tylenol religiously and use lanolin whenever I pump and have turned down the suction on the pump. So question #2 is how to do I get my nipples to heal?

I would like to continue breastfeeding as much as I can, but some days it's so frustrating I want to quit. My goal right now is to get my nipples to heal. Then I feel I may be able to make it through the next month.
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