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Old Feb 25th, 2010, 12:59 PM   1
redpoppy
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The science of "let down"


so someone said something about multiple let downs in a feed and baby's not being patient enough to wait for the next let down.

how do let downs work? do they become more frequent as your baby grows?

i feel a let down on my left breast when I start feeding on my right (and occasionally the other way round) is it okay/acceptable to keep switching baby from one breast to the next till she's properly full and wont take any more?

Also, my expressed amount isn't increasing and wondered of there were any hint or tips to get more and encourage multiple let downs?

any other let down info?

thanks for the info



 
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Old Feb 25th, 2010, 13:05 PM   2
anothersquish
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Try not to switch breasts to "catch" the letdown, I have letdown both sides at the same time as well, its common (and slightly annoying at times...haha) feed from one side for a good ten to fifteen minutes and then change. If you feel a letdown in the breast you arent feeding from apply gentle pressure with the palm of your hand and the flow will stop after a few seconds.
It does take time to increase the amount you can express, dont worry. It can take several days to get a noticeable difference (ie noticable to the eye) and several weeks to really build up, it depends on how often you are expressing.



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Old Feb 25th, 2010, 13:08 PM   3
anothersquish
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WHat I should mention is that some peoples letdown happens later that others, some people do indeed have seperate 'flushes' of milk. Letdown can take a few seconds or several minutes (its usually quicker when you latch baby and slower when you are expressing) and it varies on the person as to when it happens.



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Old Feb 25th, 2010, 13:32 PM   4
frouphea
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I noticed an increase in milk 3-4 days after increasing pumping time, so perhaps it hasn't been long enough for the output to increase.

Letdowns - what pump are you using? Does it have two phases?

Have you tried breast compression?



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Old Feb 25th, 2010, 15:01 PM   5
geekone
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Hi

I dont really feel a let down and have only leaked once during the night after a growth spurt (he was so knackererd he slept longer) Some people dont get an obvious letdown i have heard also i dont feel the pull of milk when he is feedong but know he is getting loads



 
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Old Feb 25th, 2010, 15:08 PM   6
Lucy Lu
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I think it was me that said something like that redpoppy - I can sometimes feel 3 or 4 let downs in a feed but basically the milk that flows from the first let down lasts a long time and from that I think LO gets most of his feed. However he's always been quite a lengthy feeder hence why I feel further let downs. I'm pretty sure there isn't much in terms of quantity of milk in these later let downs going by LO's sucking, but it reassures me that he is getting more of the fatty milk. I guess you could say he is 'comfort sucking' once the initial let down stops flowing but I was taught by a lactation consultant to just let him keep feeding until he's finished, never to pull him off - and since I did that, his weight gain at the beginning really took off (after a slow start).

Definitely don't keep chopping and changing breast or you might struggle with getting her to the fattier hind milk - just let LO go on drinking off one side as long as she wants to, let her naturally come off - and if she's still hungry then, then put her on the opposite side.

Have you tried expressing off the breast you have just fed from at the end of a feed and giving that to her in a bottle straight after? You'll probably get next to nothing out, but because it will be the fattier hind milk, even very small quantities of this will help LO in building weight.



 
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Old Feb 25th, 2010, 18:09 PM   7
Seraphim
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If you've been changing sides to 'catch' a letdown... this might be where your dirty nappies have disappeared to... less hind milk, less fat, less dirty nappies.



 
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Old Feb 25th, 2010, 18:52 PM   8
Eve
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I just started to feel letdowns a few weeks ago, lol... not too sure on the science of them and all, but I would't change breasts until one is finished, or baby has been on like others said, around 15 minutes or more.



 
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Old Feb 26th, 2010, 04:29 AM   9
madasa
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I was always very milky from the spare breast at first. I used to attach a pump to it whenever I could, while LO was feeding. I "caught" the milk that way, and froze it for Justin Case I wouldn't swap breasts (that sounds weird! ) at least until LO unlatches on their own.

Your boobs are never really truly "empty" because they keep making milk all the time. That is how come you can have more than 1 let down. Normally you only feel the first one



 
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Old Feb 26th, 2010, 07:56 AM   10
Leesie
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Hi Redpoppy

Not sure about how to trigger multiple letdowns but re. expressing milk I was struggling to express more than 10 ml at a time when I was using a manual pump. I'm now renting an electric pump and am now expressing about 70 ml per 15 min session. I massage the breast whilst pumping it and try to express 4 times a day to build up the production. If you're not already using an electric pump maybe you could look into getting/renting one?

Also have you tried pumping one breast while baby feeds on the other? It can feel a bit awkward at first but definitely works for me ito speeding up/strengthening letdown.



 
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