Breastfeeding challenges with Type 1 infants

Is anyone else dealing with a type 1 infant that is breastfeeding? My youngest daughter was recently diagnosed at 13 months and we can’t find many references to the challenge. Seems to help stabilize her glucose levels, but it is also hard to measure…

Hello, David,
I was nursing Elisabeth when she was diagnosed at 15 months and the nurses told me I had to wean her since I couldn’t measure the milk. However, it was too difficult in the hospital and I waited until we were at home recovering. Could your wife pump her milk and then feed your baby via bottle so that you can at least measure the milk? I think the nursing is also comforting to your child especially as she goes thorugh so many painful new things (shots, blood checks, etc.) so I would do it as long as your wife and child are able and willing.
Hope this helps!

I’m still nursing my son who is 19 months–was trying to wean him at 18mos when he was diagnosed but for comfort, I kept going. I know I’m not producing more than a few ounces of milk for him at any given time so it’s not an issue–he gets 10 carbs out of it tops–but you might be in a different situation. You might want to use a pump and switch her to drinking from a bottle because that way you can measure how much she’s getting while still letting her have the benefit of the breastmilk. Pumping also is a way to learn how much a certain amount of milk “feels”–that is, if your wife gets accustomed to knowing that the sensation of milk in the breast translates to X amount of ounces of milk expressed with a pump, she may be able to gauge at least roughly how many ounces the baby is getting when she nurses, just by making a guesstimate of the “before” sensation and the “after”. Alternatively, if she knows about how many ounces she gets when she fully empties a breast with a pump at a specific time of day, then when she nurses the baby at that time of day, if she pumps whatever’s left after the baby nurses, she’ll know about how much the baby got. I know it’s guesswork but that’s about the best you can do if you don’t want to totally switch to a bottle. A side effect of all that emptying will be that the milk production goes up, which may not be such a good thing if you’re thinking of weaning her, but is excellent if you’re intending to keep going with her.

Have you talked to a lactation consultant, or contacted La Leche League? They might have resources beyond what little I can offer.

Hi and kudos for continuing to BF while dealing with this challenge. I was not BF my DD when she was dx - but did BF each of my children for aprox 2 years each. From what I have read and researched - the sugars in BM are better digested and used and seem to both help with lows as well as not create spikes. Here is a thread on the Children with Diabetes forums that is about BF a toddler. Might be helpful. I did not read thru the whole thing . . .

Good luck

hey, this is great stuff–thanks for the thread, it’s very very useful.

Thanks all for your ideas, I hope they are helpful for others as well. My daughter solved the problem by weaning herself 2 weeks after diagnosis…