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lalalisa

Breastfeeding

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Hello,

I've heard from a few moms with POTS that when they stopped breastfeeding they experienced a major POTS crash. For those of you who have breastfed with POTS can you share with me your experiences when you stopped.

My daughter is almost 7 months and I'm hoping to wean her around 12 months. I'm a bit nervous as I've actually seen an improvement of some of my symptoms with nursing.

Blessings!

Lisa

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Nursing was easy for me and though I initially thought I would wean my first born at a year old, we decided to let her lead the way on when to wean. Nursing a toddler is actually different than nursing a very young baby. They don't nurse as often, your milk actually changes to a lower fat percentage to meet the growing needs of an older baby but they still get all the antibodies and immunities as before.

I worried ofcourse with my first child if I was doing the "right thing" ... but seeing how all three of my kids benifitted from a longer nursing period and are now really independent and confident teenagers and young adults, I am glad I did.

The world health organization use to list a stat that said babies will self-wean anywhere between 9 months of age to 2 and a half years old. When my kids were toddlers, I simply adopted the practice of 'never offer and never refuse.'

The reduction was so gradual that I never noticed any hormonal changes or a decline in my POTS symptoms.

For us, it worked well and our pediatrician was totally supportive.

Good luck finding things that work best for both you and your nursling.

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I nursed both my children for a year, the first weaned himself and I weaned the second. It was just too draining (pardon the pun) physically for me to continue. I had hyper-lactation syndrome (80+ ounces a day) and had to go on full strength BCPs to even control the milk production. Once it was weaning time, I stayed on the BCPs till my milk dried up. I was still very symptomatic with both mine and the first year after birth was the hardest for me physically. I would guess that the POTS crash would come with a sudden hormone shift, so if you do it gradually, your body should adjust more easily. Just like with everything else POTS: slow and steady, don't do anything quickly or dramatically.

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I am in opposite land. Pregnancy and nursing made my POTS worse. I unfortunately weaned my daughter at 4 months b/c I was so sick (nearly bedridden) and seemingly getting worse. It was the hardest decision so far in my parenting experience and very emotionally painful. I also started taking an SSRI and beta blocker and was concerned about the impact on her. My ob-gyn said it was ok to keep nursing, the pediatrician said it was not ok. Very confusing, frustrating time.

I did have a slow, gradual improvement in symptoms after I stopped nursing, in my case.

It is interesting how POTS patients can be impacted differently by hormones.

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For me, breastfeeding has kept my symptoms away almost completely. I planned to nurse my first child for a year, but ended up letting him self-wean at 2.5 years because I learned of the benefits for him and for me if we continued past the first year. I became pregnant during this time, so I never "stopped"- and still felt great after my second birth- also nursed him for an extended period of time. I noticed around age 3, when his nursing habits dwindled considerably, that my symptoms started creeping back slowly. I would probably conclude that the extended breastfeeding definitely helped my hormones shift in a gradual, natural way- thus preventing any POTS crashes. But- we are all different :)

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