Relactation – An Update
Relactation an update – It’s around six weeks now since we restarted breastfeeding and I was hoping that it was going to be positive news but we haven’t got any further forward than we were when we started.
I started off pumping and feeding with formula as well and it was going well. I felt like my breasts could cope with breastfeeding three times a day as well as pumping and I was looking forward to the breast pain/discomfort to stop at some point.
I should confess that the pumping became very intermittent and there were times when I missed it out completely. This was because Freddie only wants to sleep in my arms during the day which rules out pumping during those times. He also breastfeeds for around 40 minutes at a time and then topping him up with formula takes another 20 minutes. I know babies are time consuming but fitting this in around getting dressed, eating, having a wee, the school run etc etc has really been taking its toll.
I’m not going to lie, this is hard. I feel slightly trapped at home with very little support. Leaving the house is getting harder not easier since the time between feeds is so small it doesn’t really give me time to do very much. It feels like all I do is feed Freddie.
I had my arranged phone consultation with the Lactation Consultant on Wednesday last week and explained everything from the time it takes to feed and also the lack of milk produced when pumping. I’ve also been getting sharp pains through the whole breast during and after feeding/pumping which is also a factor in reducing the pumping so that I feel recovered enough to feed him the next time.
I was asked to make an appointment with my GP to be tested for thrush of the breast and also to get a prescription for Domperidone which is used to increase your milk supply.
I don’t like to take tablets but Freddie wants Breastmilk and is refusing formula more and more. I was told to print off the information for both the treatment of thrush and also the guidelines for Domperidone for the GP who aren’t always prescribing the correct dosage.
In an ideal world I would either be exclusively breastfeeding or at least feeding and pumping enough to replace the formula. I think there is also an element of him using me as a comforter rather than just hunger which we need to knock on the head.
I managed to get an appointment at the doctors on Friday, taking along the info. The GP which wasn’t my usual GP dismissed oral thrush in Freddie with barely a glance in his mouth so was reluctant to treat either of us but I insisted that a swab and sample was taken on the advice of the Lactation Consultant.
I asked regarding the Domperidone and she initially said she would give me a few days worth to take a couple of times a day. The Breastfeeding Network advice is to take 10mg three times a day for seven days, and then a reduced dose under the management of a trained Breastfeeding Advisor.
I felt a bit like ‘teaching your Granny to suck eggs’ when I offered the information I’d been given, but the GP was happy for the information as she said she would have needed to look this up and so I was given a prescription to be managed by the Lactation Consultant which I felt happy with.
Domperidone is given to mums who have a low supply or for Mums if baby’s who are born prematurely to initiate and keep the supply so they can express.
It’s Monday so this is Day 4 of taking the tablets and I have noticed a slight increase in supply. My let down is quite fierce, Freddie struggles a little bit as the milk flows so fast. If he comes off he literally gets sprayed in the face!
I’m pumping and feeding but still not the recommended times a day as I’m still sore. I’m hoping that thrush is found which would give a good explanation for the pain and would hopefully stop after treatment.
Onwards and upwards as they say!
If you’re breastfeeding and experiencing the same problems I’d love to hear your experiences or tips you may have. I need to get this baby into some kind of routine that suits all of us.