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Thread: Nonstop feeding making me crazy

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
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    Default Nonstop feeding making me crazy

    Hi: I'm not sure if I need advice so much as comfort and help around the house, but maybe someone here will have some ideas. My ds was born six weeks early, and after the grueling nicu-pumping-bottle-feeding routine common to so many families of preemies, we've now been exclusively breastfeeding for a month. (we switched at about his due date, so he's just over 10 weeks now, but 4 weeks adjusted age) When bottle-feeding, even after arriving home, ds ate on the nicu schedule of every three hours (he continued to cue hunger approx every three hours for weeks!). Early in our switch, the breastfeeding was challenging due to tongue tie and my flat/inverted nipples, but we got that worked out, and he has continued to gain weight like a champ -- at least an ounce a day on average. But starting about 10 days ago he began to eat more frequently, and in the last five days he has wanted to eat constantly. At most there will be two hours break, and that has only happened a couple times. It's more common now that he is on my breast for 45 min to an hour, off for 45, and then screaming to go back. On top of that, these last few days he has been wide awake at night, sucking furiously from 2-4am (last night from 1:20-5am, with breaks for screaming). Additionally last night he vomited thru his nose, which clearly hurt a lot -- he has always been a spitter, but lately at night it makes him cough and sputter, so I sleep propping him up. Obviously we are cosleeping. I try my best to accommodate his need to suck, though my nipples get so sore after hours of sucking (and we have a great, lc approved latch) that I'm aelso in tears. That, combined with my very very little sleep, his increased crying, and my disaster of a house, and I'm really very close to cracking. Because of my funky nipples and his immaturity, we aren't really able to nurse in a baby carrier nor lying down yet, and I have to keep a hand directing him even when we're sittingstill. Finally, when he does fall asleep finally (like right this moment), i'm afraid to move because if he wakes he'll want to suck again, and physically I just need a break. My parents got me an iPad, so thankfully I can at least now surf the inter webs while we spend our days and nights sitting in one place...

    I'm hoping this is a growth spurt, but no one has been able to explain to me the timing of growth spurts on preemies. He's been such a vigorous eater since he came home that doctors and lcs are constantly suggesting he is in a growth spurt!

    Are these all normal difficulties? How do other people cope with it? thanks in advance for any suggestions.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    Texas
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    Default Re: Nonstop feeding making me crazy

    Sounds hard, mamma

    It seems like it could be a growth spurt - it's so hard to tell one way or the other sometimes, though (I can almost never tell with my own baby, so go figure!).

    Some of what you list also sounds like reflux (increased crying/desire to nurse, the coughing and sputtering, and extra problems at night).

    I coped with some of this stuff by setting up camp in front of movies and tv shows I liked. Are you able to get outside occasionally? Even a daily walk or two around the block can do a lot for mood. Being a little bitty baby is hard sometimes - so is being the mamma of one

    I know it can sound a little hollow when people say this, but it won't last long. Really
    Elizabeth, mama to Lillian - 10/03/10


  3. #3
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: Nonstop feeding making me crazy

    with the PP. Growth spurt or reflux come immediately to mind. So long as diaper output is normal, that is...?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Nonstop feeding making me crazy

    The constant eating and up to marathon feed at night sounds like a growth spurt to me. In the early days I used to stick my finger in his mouth to accomodate the need to suck. After he had fed and it was bedtime or in the afternoon when it was clear he had had enough to eat I would just stick my finger in his mouth and he would sometimes suck it for an HOUR before going to sleep. I started doing that at around 5weeks. And he started rejecting my finger on his own around 4months. Maybe try that.

    Way too lazy for formula

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
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    151

    Default Re: Nonstop feeding making me crazy

    Thanks all. I have been worried about reflux . Bc he spits up so much normally, I do follow all of Sear's recommendations for managing reflux, but haven't been sure how to judge when medication is something to seek out. If we have a repeat of last night tho, it's probably time to ask do about it .

    We did just get out for a walk, and it was a big relief today. I try every day to walk with him for an hour or so (love my moby) or as long as he'll handle it, but this week he is even crying on our walks... But he finally settled into tonight's. It was sanity preserving--and I don't say that lightly!

    Thanks again. Helps hearing it will pass...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2010
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    Default Re: Nonstop feeding making me crazy

    Awh, poor mama. It will get better. I know it feels consuming now. Do you have any family who could come help you pick up the house? Or maybe it's time to call Merry Maids. It could be the best $85 you spend - if you can swing it.

    Christine
    Baby Girl Born 2/17/10 to her two mommies
    BF from day one. I looked up one day and realized I'm nursing a toddler!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Default Re: Nonstop feeding making me crazy

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*djs.mom View Post
    The constant eating and up to marathon feed at night sounds like a growth spurt to me. In the early days I used to stick my finger in his mouth to accomodate the need to suck. After he had fed and it was bedtime or in the afternoon when it was clear he had had enough to eat I would just stick my finger in his mouth and he would sometimes suck it for an HOUR before going to sleep. I started doing that at around 5weeks. And he started rejecting my finger on his own around 4months. Maybe try that.
    Yep, me too, although my DD wouldn't suck my pinkie (nail bed facing down on the tongue so it can't scratch the roof of LO's mouth) for an hour, and rejected the pinkie earlier than 4 mos. It sounds like a classic growth spurt to me, and those last just a couple days. Here in Belgium I've noticed a marked reluctance to treat reflux, so it really has to be a case of an 'unhappy spitter' who looks terribly in pain before the pedis will prescribe. My DD grew out of it. I'd recommend babywearing to help deal with your getting antsy during bfing, and 3h of babywearing/day not in response to crying (just as a routine) has been shown to reduce crying by 42%--which was worth its weight in gold to me. http://www.askdrsears.com/html/5/T051200.asp#T051201 My daughter's personality changed the first ten minutes she was worn. It's still one of our most valuable parenting tools.

    Here's a diagram of babywearing and bfing in a baby carrier: note that I am *not* endorsing this brand, I just found its diagram helpful
    http://www.mobywrap.com/t-instructio...stfeeding.aspx

    Hey, I don't even own this brand, I've never seen it in Belgium!
    Last edited by @llli*bxlgirl; April 26th, 2011 at 05:41 AM. Reason: dr sears
    Katharine in Belgium
    Be the change you want to see in the world--Mahatma Gandhi
    DD2 Feb 2015 - natural birth VBAC with DD (2010) & DS (2011 VBAC)
    Ouch! Is it thrush or Raynaud's phenomenon?

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Nonstop feeding making me crazy

    Mobys are GREAT carriers!

    Way too lazy for formula

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
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    151

    Default Re: Nonstop feeding making me crazy

    More great advice, tho my boy is picky (or do all new parents feel this way?): he won't take a finger or pacifier (gasp--I know--but I've been so desperate I've been trying every kind of paci...) and does not enjoy me baby wearing him unless we're walking Vigorously (screams). Again, I'm trying all of the carrier styles to see if one clicks...

    We've been trying to bf in a carrier for 3 weeks w little luck. I'm hoping he'll get better at it when he's more mature. It sounds dreamy.

    The good news is that today he's sleeeeepy, So perhaps all this new unhappiness is due to his exhaustion from waking every 45 min to eat. Can't wait to see how much he has been gaining! I'm relishing the rest.

    Thanks again!

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