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Breastfeeding 1-2hourly from 4pm onwards - HELP Lock Rss

I need some advise as I don't know what to do.

I am in 2 minds as to wether I should put my 8 1/2 weeks old daughter on the bottle. I don't want to but I am having trouble keeping up with her.

She feeds 4am, 8am, 12pm, 4pm and then every 1-2hrs until 9pm and I don't have much to give her during that time. My breasts are soooooo sore and then when I wake at 4am for her feed I am so engorged and sore from over stimulation that it is making me think is this worth it.

Her weight gains are great (averaging 300-450 a week) so I am reluctant to put her onto the bottle as she is thriving on the breast.

Does anyone have any ideas as to how I might be able to get her into more of a routine? HELP

Hi Belle,
You poor thing, sounds like you're having a tough time there.... Um, could it be a growth spurt?? Have you tried expressing a bit from each breast after her earlier feeds? It just might help build up your milk supply a bit and also would be a relief for you if you could bottle feed her sometimes in the evening (if she'll take a bottle). I found I NEVER had enough milk in the evening for either of my girls and thats part of the reason i gave up breastfeeding so early (3 weeks) with both of them. So i'm not much of a breastfeeding veteran or anything!!! Are you able to get your hands on any of Tizzie Hall's routines? She's really great if thats the path you want to go down. Do a search on Tizzie Hall in the search area of these forums you might be able to find some info that way. Failing that she has a website at where you can purchase routines for bubs of all ages for under $10.
Good luck, hope it all works out for you!

Sarah, mum of Natalie & Jessica

hi belle28,
i am not a breat feeding expert (only lasted 4 weeks) but found that my DS would also cluster feed later in the afternoon. apparantly it is when our hormones and supply are at their lowest. babies also stock up for the night. even though i now bottle feed, my DS goes from 4 hourly feeds to 2.5 - 3 hours with the last feed. it is all normal, many people have posted threads about cluster feeding. so if you are comfortable stick with it! it is all normal!

Hi Belle,

What you are describing is perfectly normal for a breastfed bub. How long is bubs sleeping for after his feed at 9pm???

It has been shown that breastmilk in the evening between about 4-5pm and like midnight has a higher fat content and hence, bubs can go for longer without a feed. As a result of her cluster feeding a night, would make sense as to why she is putting on a great amount of weight. It takes (approxminatley) 6-8weeks for your milk supply to settle and to get into more of a routine.

My daughter is fully breastfed and was doing exactly what u describe and started sleeping through at 8 1/2 weeks. Cluster feeding in the afternoon certainly assists this.

If you are breastfeeding on demand, there isnt a 'routine' as such, although my daughter is 14weeks and she usually feeds at around the same times everyday. Ie. 7am (when she wakes up) 10am, 1pm, 3pm, 5pm, 7pm, and 9pm then goes to bed and sleeps through. My suggestion would be to try and get things done like dinner etc that are usually done between 4-9pm so you can focus on feeding bubs. It does get easier as u go along and bubs get extremely efficient at emptying the breastfed once it is establihsed with babies getting 85%of the feed in the first 5minutes. So me saying i feed ehr every 2hrs approx at night feeds are only 15-20mins IN TOTAL!

As for not having enough to give her, it takes approx. 20mins for milk to begin to fill up the breast again for bubs to feed. It is hard to gauge HOW MUCH milk bubs is getting but by the sounds of it she is doing fine and if you didnt have enough milk then bubs wouldnt be putting on weight. As bub is latched to the breast we have no idea how many mLs as bottle feeding.

Also, the problem at night about your breasts being really full, i had the same problem but at around 11weeks this also settled down and my daughter cluster feeds at night also and sleeps through till 7am. To start with my boobs would leak TONNES and would be painful to feed in the mornings like when the letdown happened. But this also has settled down and i have no longer got any problems. As for your breasts being sore, try to ensure bubs is attached properly in the big morning feed when ur boobs are super full.

Hope this helps, and if u feel comfortable and happy with breastfeeding, then i would encourage you to perservere as it does get better! Take care and all the best! Hope you make the right decision for you and your situation.


DD#1 - 3.7yrs, DD#2 -20mnths, DD#3 is here! 21.08.

My bub was exactly the same, and like you, I constantly got sore breasts from the hourly feed and many times contemplated switching to formula. I eventually reached a compromise somewhere in the middle. On nights when she's like that and wants to feed every hour or 2 hours I give her a bottle of formula at night. It's worked really well, she went back to the breast and fed properly in the morning. So every now and then at night we give her a bottle of formula (it also stays in their system longer, so I found those nights I didn't have to get up for the middle of the night feed). By doing this I also found that my supply was much better in the morning, because I'd given my breasts a break. If you're thinking of doing this you can buy sample packets of formula that make up one bottle rather than having to buy a whole tin.

Sam and Hayley and bub

Hi Belle
While I'm no expert on this as I put Jeb on the bottle at 9 weeks I have been reading a lot to try and get it right next time round....hopefully!! Anyway, cluster feeding at this time is quite normal but it also has alot to do with the rest of the feeds during the day too. Bubs feed up big at this time of day to help themselves stay fuller longer over the night but if they don't get ALL the air up during every feed during the day this eventually takes up more and more room each feed making bub hungry sooner but not able to take as much milk needed because of the little room left because of the trapped air. An idea I have read is to burp every 3 minutes to help get rid of this air sooner and easier during feeds. i know this will make the feeds go longer but the less air in there the more milk taken the longer between feeds etc... I wish I knew about this while I was breastfeeding as Jeb was thriving on the boob too but due to inexperience, stress etc.. I gave up after worrying he wasn't getting enough. Hope this helps a little smile

Welcome to the world of cluster feeding! Yes, that is officially what it is known as!

My daughter did exactly that regularly every night until 1130pm until she turned 3mths old. She still does it most nights now but it usually starts at 8pm and finishes at about 1030pm. Before she turned 3 mths I thought that I didn't have enough milk to keep up with her but then I spoke with the MCHN and she said that it is because the afternoon to dinner time is the time where milk supply is lower and also baby is 'stocking up' for the evening.

It was a nightmare as she was constantly on the breast from about 5pm onwards and I would be in tears because I was so tired and also had a 2 year old to feed, bath etc at that time. I just wanted to cut my boobs off and stick them to her mouth smile

Mum to Aidan 20 Jan 04 and Georgia 10 Nov 05

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