Hello, Everyone. My son, Sebastian, was born on the 29th (this past Friday). The birth was wonderful and he's exceedingly healthy, but we are having unforeseen issues with breastfeeding. No less than four lactation consultants, my Hebamme (midwife), and an experienced nursing neighbor have tried to help me achieve a latch without success, even when I gave them full "control'. I still try several times daily, but for the time being we are exclusively pumping.
I was sent home from the hospital with a rented medela single electric pump. My milk production has been fairly strong. I get most at night which I've read is normal. Even so, I'm having a bit of a hard time keeping up with my son who seems to want about 70 ml right now (a little less than 2.5 ounces). For instance, I just finished a pumping while typing this and got 65 ml- so I'm just about there and I'm pretty happy with production considering how many days postpartem I am. I'm certainly not getting ahead of the game, however.
When I went home from the hospital I was instructed to do five minutes on each breast a total of three times for a total of 30 minute session. I was instructed to do this every 3 hours in the day and every 2 at night. I don't know when or how I should transition to a different strategy. He EATS every two hours (except at night, he surprised me last night by going 3.5 hours after a 70 ml bottle) so it seems like perhaps I should increase my pumping at least during the day to every two hours. Also, when can I move to doing a longer session on each breast instead of the five minute intervals? Any additional words of wisdom from anyone who's had to pump exclusively?
We have a variety of breastshields coming in the mail, so that's our next step (besides for continuing to offer every day.) I'm so hopeful he'll get a latch when he's a little bigger. I don't know how scientific this is, but the other day I offered him the tip of my pointer finger. He took it, made a latch, and sucked for soothing's sake. Then I offered my thumb. He took it, made a face, and pushed it out forcibly with his tongue. My nipples are as large as my thumb tip. While there are other challenges (very large breasts with nipples that point out and down, which makes positioning a bit of an issue) I am thinking that the nipples might be the issue. Even the very occasional latch that might have been successful is being "rejected". If it's a size issue, I'm really holding on to hope that as he gets bigger he may stop having this reaction.
Thanks in advance for any tips and advice.