A better letdown

by Tiffany
(Grovetown, ga, us.)

When I pump, it takes me like 3 mins to get a letdown and with each let down I get .5 ounces I get maybe 4 let downs in 15 minutes on just one side.

I've been pumping like this for three days now and can't seem to get more just a couple ounces just from the left breast I can't get any from my right. And this an hour after I feed my daughter.

How can increase how much I'm getting when I pump?

Comments for A better letdown

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Nov 01, 2013
by: Lyssa

On average, a baby eats an ounce to an ounce an a half every hour between feedings. Usually, when a mom is exclusively breastfeeding, she makes precisely enough for what her baby needs.

Getting "only" an ounce after baby eats is excellent! The people you hear pumping 3+ oz are usually the ones pumping exclusively every three hours or pumping while away from their baby.

Some women are just unable to pump effectively. Some women find it easier to hand express; you can find videos on Youtube of proper techniques.

You can also try "power pumping." You pump 20 mins on and 20 mins off for an hour on, an hour off for a few hours at the same time every day for a few days and this can sometimes increase supply.

I really would not worry about your supply.

Nov 02, 2013
not better if u get a forceful let down
by: ruby

Is there a reason why your pumping?!? Are you going back to work?!? Or just stocking up on supply?!? I was pumping and only getting a 1/2 once on each side, and I stopped pumping. I put my baby on when she gets hungry since I pumped I increased my supply, but now when I latch my baby on its too much for her to handle. She chokes and gasps for air, and I feel bad. I have like 15 bags of milk put away but if you latch them when their hungry, supply doesn't need to be stocked

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No Let Down

by Jessica
(Prescott, AZ)

My milk stopped letting down completely, and I can only feed him when I'm full, or he's half asleep.

And even then it takes a little while to start up. I have to pump and cannot even do it before nursing because it will still just stop flowing.

It's incredibly stressful and saddening. It breaks my heart. My baby became sad and insecure, so I spent more time skin to skin, and it helped him.

But I don't have enough milk supply, and when I get it up, I can't keep it up. Not being able to nurse him makes it nearly impossible. And it's exhausting plus feeding him, entertaining him and rinsing everything every time in hot water.

It's all pumping, and it hurts after a while. It's draining. And then there's no way I can nurse him when I have little or no milk.

Sometimes I let him try just to reassure him but have the bottle at hand when he gets frustrated. And I feed him with his cheek to my breast.

Sometimes he puts in the effort and latches on for a while, and it works. I also have to supplement, and after drinking a small amount, he rejects it after nursing or after good breast milk.

I need to see a lactation consultant because this is killing me. I wish there were more on the internet to help. I found out, to begin with, my menstrual cycle was drying up the milk, and it got better from there but still isn't good.

The times we can breastfeed naturally and successfully are the best most gratifying parts of my day, other than when he's awake and talking and smiling.

If you are struggling, feel better. Stay positive; I'm with you. Never give up, It's the best and most important thing for your baby. I have hope things will get better.

Also a trick for when the milk comes out and starts spraying, you can put a little pressure covering the nipple, and with a cloth it covers it better because of the wetness, press in just a little (not too much or the pressure can force the flow to stop if you're like me especially) and it will stop the dripping and spraying. I usually always drip from the opposite side once the milk starts coming out and it ends up a wet spot on the baby's side. Not cool. Just in case you didn't already know this. There are my two cents.

Thanks, Jessica (21yrs) and Myles (3mos next week)

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Jan 30, 2015
let down and low production
by: Tracy

Hi Jessica

I always ask moms first to read the page "how do I know if my baby is drinking enough."

Is baby getting in enough milk

The best thing to do is to have your baby at the breast as often as possible. A breast pump cannot stimulate breast milk production as a baby can.

Goats rue can increase breast milk production and improve the milk flow (let down).

Some foods can help increase supply and let down...

lactogenic food list


Hope this helps

Sep 23, 2015
So very helpful :)
by: Anonymous

My baby is two months old. I am a 40-year-old first-time mom. I have been struggling with breastfeeding since day one. I have seen lactation consultants, doctors, and of course grandmas, along with other moms. So far this has been the most helpful information. Thank you! I thought for a while I was the only one experiencing these things. Good to know there are others and ways to help me. Thanks so much! :)

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Let down not continuous

by Karthikeyini

I have milk flow for the first five minutes, and after that, there is no milk coming. After five minutes of pumping again, there is milk flow... So Baby is not drinking after first five minutes. So every time I pump n feed the baby. He is five months old. Please provide a solution.

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Jan 13, 2016
try breast compressions
by: Tracy

Hi Karthikeyini

Have you been to a lactation consultant? It's tough to tell what the problem is when I can't see you and your baby breastfeed. I suggest you see one in your area.

You can also use the tips on the let-down page to increase let down such as breast compression while feeding.

Kind regards

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by jennifer

Help! My baby is six months old.

I am having trouble with let down at night time over the last few weeks. I know I am an over supplier of milk, so that is not the issue.

I am engorged at that time and still let down takes forever. It is making me somewhat discouraged. It often takes 30 mins when during the day only takes 3-5min any suggestions. Baby and I are getting frustrated.

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Sep 06, 2012
Let down reflex
by: Zelda Behr

I can see that this might be a huge problem as all mom's want as much sleep as possible at night.

Things that might cause this include...

* Stress or PPD the more you worry about the let down the worse it will get.

* Large amounts of alcohol.

* Smoking while breastfeeding.

* Certain Medication.

Here are some things you can try to help...

* Breast compressions: Place your breast between your index and middle finger while the baby is latched and gently squeeze the breast while moving the fingers towards the nipple.

* Try pumping a bit before a feed.

* Look at your baby, touch baby's hair and snuggle a bit the "love hormone" Oxytocin is released, and this helps with let down.

*Remember to relax.

More on the let-down reflex here...


Hope this helps.

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Painful letdown

by Rachel M
(Spruce grove, canada)

After seven weeks of having a painful letdown at least half of my son's feedings, I decided to do some research.

I waited so long because I thought it was an adjustment phase, and it has been five years since my daughter was a baby. I came across overactive letdown, and things made sense.

He would choke, get sprayed if he unlatched, had watery poos (not green or frothy), was VERY gassy, and often cried for what seemed like no reason for hours some days.

Not only did the letdown info make sense, but I learned that most women with OALS also produced too much milk, which was often accompanied by foremilk/hindmilk imbalance.

I fall into those categories too. I discovered this a few days ago, and have since started trying to follow some of the ways to correct the imbalance and overproduction.

I have noticed so far, that my letdown has become less intense, but I am still dealing with the rest of the issues. I am glad to have found such informative sites that not only offer helpful suggestions, but let me know that I am not the only one with this problem, and things can get better for both of us.

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Signs of Forcefull Let Down

by Jessie
(Miami, FL)

Wow....I mean Wow. I wish every OB-Gyn, and Pediatrician had your website and La Leche League...I have been asking questions about my let down, and everyone only said, it will get better with time. This is so much better.

My baby has all the above symptoms. When my milk comes down...It is like majorly spraying everything. She is sprayed every time she releases. She chokes, she clicks.

It is like you have a camera here!! Thank you. I am going to keep looking at the other things on this website...Just didn't want to leave without leaving a comment.

Thank you again. Will tell others...Thanks. PS. I am trying to wean her off of me. I will read that section for anyone reading...as soon as my daughter lost her umbilical cord and was able to turn her head without assistance. I put her to sleep on her stomach; I waited until about two months old. She woke at night, before that every two hours on her back, after that she woke up 6-8, then 10 hours.

At about three months, she started to flip her self on her back and would wake her self up. She still does...so now she wakes up at all different hours at night... don't know how to teach her to keep sleeping. I have tried to teach her to flip back on her stomach, but all she does is flip back on her back and smile!! Help.

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Avoid leaking breasts

I had a bad issue of leaking breasts. And I had tried many types of nursing bras, but they weren't helping.

Then I got to know that I needed to start wearing tops that were also padded. I got to know about morph maternity wears that were padded and affordable.

I got them through online shopping. Morph Nursing Bras are very comfortable, and the fabric is so soft. They have made nursing a much easier and pleasant experience for me. Their nursing tops are also great. I can nurse discreetly without exposing my belly.

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Wipe that babies face!

It might just be me, but I feel bad for that poor baby who was practically choking on the milk. Why was the mother purposely spraying it all over the babies face? That just seems cruel.

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