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Thread: Made some mistakes already with my newborn

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Default Made some mistakes already with my newborn

    I was unable to breastfeed my first child because he was given bottles at the hospital when he was born, and am frustrated on how to go about it. I'm going to be meeting with a lactation consultant this week, but in the mean time I want to start trying to correct my issues.

    Here's my problem:

    My son will be 2 wks old tomorrow. I left the hospital when he was a little over 48 hours old. Breastfeeding was going great, but he was always sleeping so I only had a chance to latch on a few times before I left the hospital. The day after I got home (he was 4 days old) he wanted to constantly breastfeed, and I became scared because he would fall asleep and than wake up about 15 minutes to hour later. So I was scared he wasn't getting anything to eat, because I was going on breastfeeding almost 3 hours straight. He was getting minimally wet diapers, and than they started spreading out more. I called my lactation consultant who told me as long as he was suck, suck, swallow, pause he should be getting some. My breasts would go from hard to soft, but I was scared that he wasn't getting enough.

    I also have a 4 year old son, who wants his mommy and it became very stressful listening to my son cry that I didn't love him anymore because I was holding the new baby. On top of that the baby was always seeming hungry and crying. My husband would try to spend time with our son, but he doesn't want him.

    That's when I broke down. I have some bottles that are supposed to avoid nipple confusion. When I gave him the bottle after breastfeeding he guzzled down almost 3 oz. So I thought okay, he couldn't be getting enough. But now even with the formula and breast milk that I express he's eating between 2 1/2-4 oz at each feeding. When I pump I only get about an 1 oz, and that's with a manual pump.

    So I tried to breastfeed and formula feed, that's when I started getting trouble latching him on. I get ridges on my nipples, and when I continued it got worse till they started cracking. I started using the lanisoh, but I didn't want to breastfeed because it was so painful and a combination of the other factors made me so exhausted.

    My mother is sending my old double electric breast pump sometime this week.

    This morning I got him to latch on, and he stayed latched on for close to an hour, but the ridges started reappearing. Afterwards, I gave him some formula (because he was crying) and he downed about 1 oz, I believe he recieved some breastmilk. So now I'm wondering what I should do.

    Does anyone have some tips on how to calm my older son, he wants to feed the baby as well, which also encourages me to give the baby a bottle. I was thinking that the breastmilk is what's most important, but my ears and nipples are hurting from all the problems I'm getting.

    As soon as I get the electric pump I'm going to start pumping more to build up my milk supply. But in the mean time I'm just waiting to meet with the lactation consultant so that I can correct what I think is a latch issue.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    627

    Default Re: Made some mistakes already with my newborn

    I just want you to know that, even with bottles given early, it is possible to breastfeed. Our DD got her first bottle at 6 days and I didn't nurse for almost a week. When I put her back to the breast, I never thought she'd take it, but she did. I use a nipple shield, but it works, so I can't complain. She has been given both formula and nursed every day since then while I'm weaning her off the supplements. It can work, so hang in there.

    The thing about newborns is it seems like you're feeding them constantly. Someone told me if I didn't feel like all I was doing was nursing then I wasn't nursing often enough. It's developmentally appropriate, because that's how your supply gets built up. Just because he's drinking the formula doesn't mean he didn't get any breastmilk. If he has enough wet and messy diapers, and is gaining weight, you can feel confident that he is getting enough to eat.

    For your other son, I would make breastfeeding a special time for him. Have toys to play with that he can only use while you are nursing. Save the tv for times when you are nursing. Read to him while you are nursing. Is he curious about what the baby is eating? With my 2 1/2 year old (years ago, she's 10 now), she wanted to see if she wanted to eat that stuff too, so I let her try to nurse. That way she didn't feel like I was keeping something special for the baby...once she tried it, she didn't want it.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    3,900

    Default Re: Made some mistakes already with my newborn

    Welcome!

    Quote Originally Posted by jenmoser1982 View Post
    My son will be 2 wks old tomorrow. I left the hospital when he was a little over 48 hours old. Breastfeeding was going great, but he was always sleeping so I only had a chance to latch on a few times before I left the hospital.
    Did you have help in the hospital?

    Quote Originally Posted by jenmoser1982 View Post
    The day after I got home (he was 4 days old) he wanted to constantly breastfeed, and I became scared because he would fall asleep and than wake up about 15 minutes to hour later. So I was scared he wasn't getting anything to eat, because I was going on breastfeeding almost 3 hours straight.
    I can imagine why you were concerned!

    Does it help to know that most often, this frequent nursing is totally normal and it serves two important purposes: 1) it increases your production levels to meet his demands 2) it fuels his rapid growth

    Quote Originally Posted by jenmoser1982 View Post
    He was getting minimally wet diapers, and than they started spreading out more. I called my lactation consultant who told me as long as he was suck, suck, swallow, pause he should be getting some. My breasts would go from hard to soft, but I was scared that he wasn't getting enough.
    Those are good signs!

    Quote Originally Posted by jenmoser1982 View Post
    I also have a 4 year old son, who wants his mommy and it became very stressful listening to my son cry that I didn't love him anymore because I was holding the new baby.
    Awwww...

    Quote Originally Posted by jenmoser1982 View Post
    On top of that the baby was always seeming hungry and crying. My husband would try to spend time with our son, but he doesn't want him.
    Would it help if your dh held the baby when he has a quiet period, and you then spend some one to one time with your older son? Then, maybe suggest he go out and do something fun with Daddy. Something only a "big boy" can do.


    Quote Originally Posted by jenmoser1982 View Post
    That's when I broke down. I have some bottles that are supposed to avoid nipple confusion. When I gave him the bottle after breastfeeding he guzzled down almost 3 oz. So I thought okay, he couldn't be getting enough.
    Chances are that he would take the supplement, even if he was full. Milk from the bottle drips into the mouth, then his suck, swallow, breathe response is initiated.

    Quote Originally Posted by jenmoser1982 View Post
    But now even with the formula and breast milk that I express he's eating between 2 1/2-4 oz at each feeding. When I pump I only get about an 1 oz, and that's with a manual pump.
    Do know that what you are able to pump is not an indicator of how much milk you make.

    Quote Originally Posted by jenmoser1982 View Post
    So I tried to breastfeed and formula feed, that's when I started getting trouble latching him on. I get ridges on my nipples, and when I continued it got worse till they started cracking. I started using the lanisoh, but I didn't want to breastfeed because it was so painful and a combination of the other factors made me so exhausted.
    OUCH! It sounds like your baby has a shallow latch. Could you try helping him to open wide (like a yawn) before you latch him on?


    Quote Originally Posted by jenmoser1982 View Post
    This morning I got him to latch on, and he stayed latched on for close to an hour, but the ridges started reappearing. Afterwards, I gave him some formula (because he was crying) and he downed about 1 oz, I believe he recieved some breastmilk. So now I'm wondering what I should do.
    Yay for staying latched on, ouch on the ridges. It sounds like tweaking the latch would definitely help in this situation. It's clear that your baby wants to nurse (that's half the battle). Now, to find a way to make nursing comfortable for YOU!

    Quote Originally Posted by jenmoser1982 View Post
    Does anyone have some tips on how to calm my older son, he wants to feed the baby as well, which also encourages me to give the baby a bottle. I was thinking that the breastmilk is what's most important, but my ears and nipples are hurting from all the problems I'm getting.
    How would you feel about letting your ds feed a baby doll while you nurse your baby? Would you consider telling your son that he can't feed the baby a bottle for a little while? You could show him other ways that he could help, like bringing diapers to you when baby needs a change or grabbing mom a bottle of water from the fridge.

    Here are some great tips for entertaining a toddler while nursing your younger babe:
    http://www.kellymom.com/babyconcerns...n-toddler.html

    Quote Originally Posted by jenmoser1982 View Post
    As soon as I get the electric pump I'm going to start pumping more to build up my milk supply. But in the mean time I'm just waiting to meet with the lactation consultant so that I can correct what I think is a latch issue.
    Good luck! Do let us know how your visit with the IBCLC goes.

    In the meanwhile, you might try:

    Skin to skin contact- it can help your baby's suck to be more organized, and for him to latch more efficiently and comfortably.

    Showing your baby how to open wide (even young babies can mimic facial expressions), and "wait for the gape"-mouth wide open like a yawn- before trying to latch him on. You can see some illustrations here:
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/start/bas...resources.html

    Find ways to entertain your older son while you're busy nursing. Some ideas might be: books, games, special toys that only come out when you're nursing, nutritious snacks, ect.

    Spend a little one on one time with your older son, and have Daddy spend some one on one time with him, too. Adding a new person to the family is a big change, and your son may need a little time to adjust.

    Hand express or pump when you must miss a nursing session, or if the nursing session gets to uncomfortable to manage. You can find some tips for assisting the milk ejection reflex here: http://www.lactationinstitute.org/MANUALEX.html This might help you get more milk for your pumping/expressing efforts!

    And finally...take care of YOU! Get as much rest as you can, drink enough water, and eat nutritiously.

  4. #4
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    Oct 2006
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    Default Re: Made some mistakes already with my newborn

    Jolie, you are awesome.
    Just wanted to tell you that.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    Default Re: Made some mistakes already with my newborn

    Quote Originally Posted by ilovebabies View Post
    Jolie, you are awesome.
    Just wanted to tell you that.
    I second that. :

    Mama to Adeline Brett, breastfed for 4.5 years (12/14/05) and little Eliza June, new tiny sprite in my arms and still learning the ropes (7/18/10)

    Family Blog • If I'm here I'm nursing and typing one handed ... forgive the typos!
    And I'm not a newbie at all ... I'm trying to get my old user ID working from back in the day ... paint-the-moon

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    4

    Default Re: Made some mistakes already with my newborn

    The first lactation consultant I met with was in the WIC office. And I came home crying and was ready to give up. They recommended that I just lay in bed for 24 hours for 3 days, and try to work on the latch myself. The wouldn't show me anything and I was basically told I had to figure it out for myself.

    I lost my job when I was pregnant, so money for us is really tight right now. I called another lactation consultant who said she would be willing to work out a payment plan with me, and this morning we went. I made sure my son would be hungry and want to nurse. I was very happy with the results.

    She accessed his weight and his sucking and told me that everything looked good. Than after she assisted me with correcting the latch I was surprised to see the milk in my son's mouth and how much it didn't hurt. My breasts are only making about 1 oz. for the left and about a few tablespoons on the right. In all he nursed for almost an hour.

    She recommended pumping after he nursed, to get my breasts really empty, and latching on more on the right. But as for completely going off the formula its going to take some time to wean him off the formula and completely feed him off the breast. I have some direction, and that makes me feel great.

    She said to call her if I had any questions or problems, she will call me in a few days, and she was sending the papers to my midwife to review. She also gave me some handouts and we worked out a plan for making breastfeeding work. Now I'm just going to plan on attending a laleche meeting for some added support.

    One thing that upsets me is that you'd think that state of Illinois would want women to breastfeed and provide them with free or low cost counseling. It would save state taxpayers thousands in providing formula and save the public assistance more money (less sick children on medical assistance). In the meantime I'm pumping and will enjoy working more on making breastfeeding better for my son and I.

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