"Ask Me Anything" about breastfeeding with RN and Lactation Consultant Erica Campbell

Melanie Nanit Team
edited August 25 in Nursing & Feeding

Join Erica for Tips & tricks for nursing mamas & mamas-to-be on Friday, August 27th through Monday, Aug 30 at 11:59 pm. Ask Erica Anything about Breastfeeding!

Erica is a former Registered Nurse and current Lactation Consultant (IBCLC), she’s also a mama of two! From her professional and personal experience, she had a revelation about education for breastfeeding mothers.

While working on the floor as a Mother/Baby RN, she noticed mothers struggling with the first few days of breastfeeding. They didn’t know what to expect or how to overcome those beginner obstacles. The raw emotions from childbirth combined with the feelings of guilt were enough for her to see that something must be done to help these women achieve their goals.

The Milk Manual is a resource for all parents enduring their breastfeeding journey. Whether this is your very first experience or you’re in the final days of breastfeeding, it’s Erica’s goal to help make your journey as smooth and beautiful as possible.

Erica says no matter what your goal may be, The Milk Manual is a judgment-free zone that is here to educate and support you along the way! We are thrilled to have Erica on the Nanit Community answering your breastfeeding questions!

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Click the bookmark icon on the right-hand side of the discussion.

Erica will do her best to answer all questions.



  • Melanie
    Melanie Nanit Team

    Our AMA with @themilkmanual is now live! Ask your questions today through Monday, August 30th!

  • mkd929
    mkd929 Member

    As a soon-to-be first time mom, what are the most important things to know about breastfeeding (what supplies should I have handy, how can I be best prepared for the journey)? I know everyone is so different, but when can I expect my milk to fully come in? Anything I can do to help with milk supply in the interim? And before my milk comes in - should I still be breastfeeding even if the baby is not getting much?


  • Hi Erica!

    My daughter had a good latch when we were in the hospital but now will only take bottles and refuses to latch (long story - the nurse wanted to give her formula, my milk came in when she wasn’t hungry, engorgement, pumping, bottle). I’m exclusively pumping which is working well but I would really like to get her to nurse again. We’ve seen a lactation consultant a couple of times and my daughter just screams and cries whenever we try to get her to latch. We try to do skin to skin as often as possible during the day and I’m working on making the breast a happy place again. At our last appointment we were both very frustrated and the consultant suggested we take a week off and try again. She will hang out and sleep on my chest and sometimes will get into the laid back position and lick the **** but never ****. She’s 8 weeks now and I’m worried we don’t have anything else to try. Help!

  • Hi, my daughter didn’t latch at the hospital so they fit me for a **** shield, she is now 2 months old and still only latches with a **** shield, I try to take it off and sometimes she does latch but not for long, any downside on using a **** shield with her for the entire time I will breastfeed her ?

  • BsMum
    BsMum Member

    How do you prevent gas’s pains? Baby isn’t the best burper but is constantly hungry. It’s difficult to get burps in.

  • Melanie
    Melanie Nanit Team

    Question from @BLD

    How long can I keep breast milk in the fridge after it is thawed ?

    I froze my milk in 200mL alliquots and my baby isn’t needing that amount in 24 hours - is it okay to use it past the 24 ‘limit’ I am seeing on Dr Google?

  • Pattee
    Pattee Member

    Hello, my baby is 11 weeks old and she used to latch so well, the past couple of weeks, it’s almost as if she forgot to how to latch on well. Do you have any tips on how I can get her to latch well again? Thanks

  • Hello!

    when nursing my son often pulls away and cries but also seems to be trying to latch again. He seems so upset and uncomfortable I’m not sure if it’s a sign of reflux? I also have a over supply so I’m not sure if my flow is too fast for him. It makes nighttime feedings very difficult when trying not to wake up my toddler. Please help!

  • We recently switched to a level 1 bottle **** and my 6 week old is no longer latching for nursing. Just screams and is fussy. My supply is only 50-75% of what he needs. Any advice to continue the bonding thru nursing - have dropped down to only 1x per day in the am before the **** switch as I’m back to work.

  • VDC
    VDC Member


    My daughter is 9 weeks old and in the past 2 weeks we have had some trouble nursing. She will latch very well and feeds very well for the first 7 minutes. Then she begins to get very fussy so I usually try to burp her and offer the other side. She will then latch and nurse for another few minutes but then becomes very frustrated. At this point she will latch and pull away immediately and repeats this a few times before going into full tears.

    We occasionally feed her with my pumped breastmilk in a bottle and we never seem to have trouble feeding her that way. I am beginning to think she only wants bottle :(

  • At two months the pediatrician diagnosed our baby with a cows milk and soy intolerance. Tips for navigating while maintaining breastfeeding?

  • I am wondering: is it actually possible for me to lose the 30 lbs of "baby weight" I gained during pregnancy despite breastfeeding? I know I'm burning an extra 500 calories a day, but I also know that I have to eat calories and healthy foods in order to keep up a milk supply. My OB told me that it is a minority of breastfeeding mothers who actually lose all their baby weight. I want to be the majority!! Please HELP!!

  • themilkmanual
    themilkmanual Member, Expert


    hi! first off, congrats!

    it definitely can be a lot of learn in the beginning! you’re already doing great by reaching out and asking for help.

    this blog post has tons of information to answer those questions that you’re asking. specifically about how to prepare and what to buy!

    i also have a lactation related course that details what to expect in those early days! you can get 25 percent off of it (super affordable!) with this link.

    as far as your milk “coming in”, your body will be producing milk during your pregnancy! it will be readily available colostrum when baby is born. colostrum transitions into mature milk in the early days.

  • themilkmanual
    themilkmanual Member, Expert


    it sounds like your body is doing exactly what it should be! you’re giving it 100 percent right now and not enough people hear that this is normal. i totally understand that you’re heading back to work this week but truly you only need a stash for the first day at this point.

    in order to prepare, i’d recommend to continue your current pumping schedule in efforts to save milk. i also want to offer a realistic point of view and state that the amount you’re getting is super common (just less visible on social media in comparison to those huge freezer stash pics).

    as for the side that is producing less, you can try pumping on that side longer or feeding in that side more frequently. but it also extremely common to have one side produce more than the other.

  • SWD
    SWD Member

    What's the most effective breast pumping way? Should the cycles be at a higher level and how much time should be done for breast pumping?

  • Mikkyb
    Mikkyb Member

    Hi! After nursing in the hospital, the nurses pushed me to give my baby formula. I had problems with pumping (LC gave me too small of flanges and my **** were blistering and bleeding), feedings became very painful to the point I would cry and I eventually gave up all together. Since being strictly bottle fed with a combo of breast milk and formula, I’ve now got my baby back exclusively breastfeeding on the breast & bottle when needed.

    How can I work on getting a deeper latch since we were failed from the beginning. He’s now 8 weeks and very active. Hates his head being touched and will thrash around, sometimes a shallow latch is all that works..

  • themilkmanual
    themilkmanual Member, Expert


    hi amy!

    it really sounds like y’all have been through A LOT with feedings and that you’re working super hard so i want to applaud you!

    if you can find an IBCLC that specializes in tethered oral tissues that may helpful. it also may be recommended to work with pediatric/infant physical therapy or a pediatric/infant chiropractor (bodywork).

    crying, screaming, arching and pulling away at the breast can be associate with deeper things!

    it also may be helpful to transition back to breast using a **** shield (under observation of an IBCLC).

  • hi erica!

    i had some problems with feeding the first couple of days and I started giving my newborn formula at night and I breast feed in the day time, however my milk is not enough for my baby when ever she takes a full feed of breast milk she just sleeps 30 mins to max an hour and is she takes formula she gets a stretch of 3-4 hours. I tried all lactation foods and still not enough supply. When I pump it’s a max of 60 ml that’s if I didn’t breast feed for 3 hours or more. What should I do to increase it.

  • Gsmk
    Gsmk Member


    my baby had a good latch and would breastfeed great! She’s 9 and a half weeks and in the last couple of weeks she’s been un latching and throwing her head back and then coming back for more. She’s introducing a lot of air when she does this and it frustrates me because she’s already very gassy and sometimes it gets to the point where she’s so uncomfortable from all the air shes introduced that she starts crying and I have to burp her and then latch on again. Any idea why this is happening? Is it a phase? Or is there anything I can do to help her?

  • Hello

    are there any particular foods and drinks that you recommend to consume to increase milk supply? And any to avoid that decrease supply? Thank you

  • P27
    P27 Member

    I’m struggling with breastfeeding my almost 3 week old. He does latch but it hurts me too much, I have sore **** pretty much all the time. I try to give them a break by pumping and bottle feeding breast milk. It’s impossible for me to go 24 hrs of pure breast feeding. What are the best tips to a good latch? Also he sometimes refuses switching ****. Should I cut down on the time in one breast and is it imperative to give both every feed? Any advice to make the pain go away is well appreciated!! I do get tightening of the **** so that is reassuring my body is ready to feed him.

  • Mari
    Mari Member

    Hi, my daughter is 6weeks old and I’ve been doing breast feeding, pumping and formula (formula only when I have no breast milk stored and my breast are sore). I tend to just give her my breast milk in a bottle because it takes 20mins. Where if I do my breast she takes an hour sometimes 2 and she doesn’t have a wide latch so it’s painful at times. How can I make breastfeeding less painful Ave not as long?

  • SWD
    SWD Member

    If you want to freeze breastmilk, should it be done the same day or can you store several ounces in the fridge and then combine them to freeze?

  • themilkmanual
    themilkmanual Member, Expert

    hi @Manuela1991

    in my personal opinion, **** shields help aid your feeding experience! if you have no problem using a shield, then continue using it for as long as you want. if you are concerned that she is not latching without the shield, i would definitely recommend a oral assessment with an IBCLC that specializes in tethered oral tissues.

  • SWD
    SWD Member

    Hi Erica,

    Usually when I pump, I will get about 2 ounces if my baby hasn't fed and was provided with bottled breast milk. During a consultation session, my baby is able to get more milk when breastfeeding. I'm a bit anxious about my return to work and how to get the same volume of milk for my baby to bottle feed while I am working. Any suggestions regarding this would be great

  • Cory_S
    Cory_S Member

    Hi Erica,

    My wife has been trying to breastfeed and pump for our two-week old newborn. She has pretty significant pain during and a dull, lasting pain afterwards. Our paediatrician has ruled out thrush and suspects vasospasm, but can’t explain the pain during pumping. The lactation consultant that we saw last week said that my wife has a good latch so that doesn’t seem to be at play either. Any ideas here as to how to find the cause of the pain and a solution for it would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks for you time!


  • themilkmanual
    themilkmanual Member, Expert


    i like to give this analogy:

    when we (adult humans) eat, we start off fast and we start to get slower once we eat. with newborns, they do a similar action at the breast, starting really fast and eventually feeding much slower.

    when you pump, you want to mimic your baby!

    so you’ll start off pumping at a faster setting (high cycle). the suction should always be customized to whatever is the most comfortable FOR YOU. once you start to see milk droplets or after 2-3 minutes, you’ll switch that setting to a slower setting (low cycle) with a little bit more suction (as much as comfortable for you).

    most pumps automatically do this. the spectra is a great pump but it does not automatically switch so you’ll definitely need to play around with it.

    ultimately, the goal is milk removal so if you’re getting an adequate output with your current setting, no need to switch.

  • Callie
    Callie Member

    Hello! My newborn is almost 3 weeks old. My milk supply hasn’t increased much over the last couple weeks. That, combined with a sleepy baby who doesn’t latch for long, has led me to triple feeding (try at breast, bottle with formula + pumped milk, pump for 30 min). This is a very time consuming process that takes about 75 min! I usually only pump about 30-40 mL total. How long do moms usually keep this up? When or how do I decide to move to exclusively pumping with formula (do I even make enough for this?) or migrate to just formula?

  • _matchadoin_21
    edited August 30

    Hi Erica,

    When I was in the hospital, I was given the paper timetable to keep track of my newborn son’s feeding (2-3hr feeding). Then his average feeding sessions were about 30 mins (15 min on each breast). When we got home, we decided to use the app to keep track due to his underweight. Now my son is almost 6 weeks, I’ve been noticing that his feeding session average around 10-15 mins total, should I be worried? I’m told that once the baby is gaining weight, I don’t need to keep track of feeding sessions. But feeding session timing are good for my breast (emptying breast/ maintaining supply). Some day he eats less and other days, he eats more. Will my body have enough milk when his feeding fluctuate like that? I already see my left breast milk supply is a little less (he prefers right breast). Thank you.

This discussion has been closed.