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Thread: 11days, suddenly having trouble latching

  1. #1
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    Default 11days, suddenly having trouble latching

    My daughter has been latching beautifully up until a day or two ago. She suddenly keeps trying to latch on to just the nipple and it's a battle to get her to latch properly. I read this could be due to oversupply or a forceful let down. I recently switched from nursing from both breasts at a feeding to only one per feeding
    (her pedi said to switch after 10 min...but she was spitting up and I think only getting foremilk so I decided to change). Is this the cause? Will time even things out? If not, what can I do?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: 11days, suddenly having trouble latc

    First of all, your pediatrician gave you bad advice. You want to watch the baby, not the clock. There's nothing magic about 10 minutes- some babies feed in less time, some more. Even with newborns, feeding duration and equency can be all over the map.

    Can you tell us why you suspect forceful letdown? Are you experiencing any of the following:
    -frequent engorgement or feelings of fullness
    -a lot of leaking
    -milk spraying or squirting from the breast when the baby unlatches
    -baby making a clicking or clucking noise, or coughing, choking, gagging, spluttering when feeding
    -baby producing predominantly green stools

    The reason I ask is that in general, new moms are encouraged to offer both breasts at a feeding, in order to encourage the mom to develop a good milk supply. So before you go to one-sided feedings, you want to be really sure you have an oversupply issue.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  3. #3
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    Default Re: 11days, suddenly having trouble latc

    I am not sure that's oversupply I'm just trying to figure out what it is. She was latching beautifully every time without any issues and now all of a sudden starts trying to just grab onto the nipple. My nipples had healed up and feeding wasn't hurting at all but now they're sore again from her latching incorrectly over and over. It's making feeding her a stressful experience for both of us.

    She also is fussier at the breast and will sometimes nurse only in 5 minute spurts and pull off. I burp her and then sometimes she'll go back and sometimes she won't. I'm worried she's isn't getting enough. Up until the last few days she would nurse for 10 minutes, burp right away, then nurse for 10 more, and burp. We had a good routine going.

    I'm growing frustrated with the whole thing. Last night I was ready to give up on the whole thing. I'm struggling with being a feeding machine round the clock as it is and now this is just adding to the stress and frustration.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: 11days, suddenly having trouble latc

    Mama, I can understand your worry and frustration! Even when everything is going absolutely perfectly, it's normal to feel like a 24-7 "feeding machine". Also a burping, diaper-changing, rocking, carrying machine that gets pooped and peed on more or less constantly. I vividly remember preparing dinner for me and my DH for the first time after our first daughter was born, and just as we sat down, WAAAAHHH! So I had to sit there, nursing, watching my DH eat while my dinner cooed down on the plate. That sucked!

    That being said, what you describe sounds pretty normal. Five minute feedings certainly could be an indicator of oversupply, as can the baby "clamping down" on the nipple during feeding. But without some of the other indicators listed above, I don't know that you can reliably diagnose oversupply or fast letdown. As a baby step towards treating possible oversupply, you might want to try a more reclined nursing position. Use gravity to fight the speedy letdowns, and make the baby more comfortable.

    Some other causes of fussiness at the breast are listed here: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/...e-nursing.html. Let us know if anything looks familiar!

    You are doing a fantastic job. If you can stick with it, it is going to get so much easier!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  5. #5
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    Default Re: 11days, suddenly having trouble latc

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*mommal View Post
    Mama, I can understand your worry and frustration! Even when everything is going absolutely perfectly, it's normal to feel like a 24-7 "feeding machine". Also a burping, diaper-changing, rocking, carrying machine that gets pooped and peed on more or less constantly. I vividly remember preparing dinner for me and my DH for the first time after our first daughter was born, and just as we sat down, WAAAAHHH! So I had to sit there, nursing, watching my DH eat while my dinner cooed down on the plate. That sucked!

    That being said, what you describe sounds pretty normal. Five minute feedings certainly could be an indicator of oversupply, as can the baby "clamping down" on the nipple during feeding. But without some of the other indicators listed above, I don't know that you can reliably diagnose oversupply or fast letdown. As a baby step towards treating possible oversupply, you might want to try a more reclined nursing position. Use gravity to fight the speedy letdowns, and make the baby more comfortable.

    Some other causes of fussiness at the breast are listed here: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/...e-nursing.html. Let us know if anything looks familiar!

    You are doing a fantastic job. If you can stick with it, it is going to get so much easier!
    She seems to be latching a little better each nursing session. I don't know why she regressed but it seems like she's making progress again with the latching. Of course, my nipples are going to have to recover again from the trauma.

    I have been nursing in a recliner for the past few days so I am in a slightly reclined position. I was previously sitting straight up while nursing. I didn't think about it until you mentioned it but maybe that's the cause of the problem. I think I might go back to that and see if things improve. Maybe the opposite is the issue...the link you posted said it could be that the baby is frustrated with a slower flow. She doesn't come off the nipple right away, but 5 minutes into the feeding when the flow would have slowed. She has always come off when she wants to burp but when that's the case she looks satisfied and is like a little rag doll. She doesn't start rooting and looking for more food until after I burp her.

    Thanks for the supportive words. I really appreciate it. Unfortunately I don't have a lot of BF support around me -- none of my family has breastfed and most of my friends don't have kids yet or ended up using formula. And for some reason I am reluctant to call the lactation consultant that I saw in the hospital. I feel like I have failed if I do so. I don't know why. I am going to try the above and if it doesn't seem to help I will call her.

    I have also noticed that a lot of the reference infomation on BFing says to feed before baby is really hungry and crying. It seems like no matter what my daughter is always fussing and frantically looking for food. I've tried waking her up every two hours from naps as well as waiting for her to wake up herself. No matter what's it's the same. I have to change her diaper before she eats b/c she won't eat with a dirty diaper. And she cries through that...so I don't know how to avoid her frantically looking for the breast. Maybe eventually when she's not sleeping as much? Is this normal?

    Thanks again for all your help. You've been a lifesaver.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: 11days, suddenly having trouble latc

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*bonadl View Post

    I have also noticed that a lot of the reference infomation on BFing says to feed before baby is really hungry and crying. It seems like no matter what my daughter is always fussing and frantically looking for food. I've tried waking her up every two hours from naps as well as waiting for her to wake up herself. No matter what's it's the same. I have to change her diaper before she eats b/c she won't eat with a dirty diaper. And she cries through that...so I don't know how to avoid her frantically looking for the breast. Maybe eventually when she's not sleeping as much? Is this normal?
    This is all normal. 3 of my babies would start in fussing and crying as soon as I started messing with them, then they would decide they were hungry and then scream because I was taking too long to change their diapers. And it's NOT BFing that's the reason...even my fourth baby, the one I'm feeding via a cleft feeder, did it. It takes time for them to learn that there's a pattern to this...diaper change then feed. I even tried changing after feeding, but then they always woke up too much to go back to sleep and would want to nurse again.

    You haven't failed if you call someone who IS supportive of BFing, ya know like a LC. You're just asking for some support from someone who is willing to give you some instead of handing you a bottle!

    Something I have found that cures almost all nursing problems...go to bed with baby. Nurse laying down. Just let baby nurse as much as baby wants to when baby wants to. Before you know it, nursing is easy.
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  7. #7
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    Default Re: 11days, suddenly having trouble latc

    with the PP. Some babies go from zero to sixty in a heartbeat. I always laugh a little when I read the advice to get to your hungry baby and start nursing before she starts to cry, because with both my kids there was literally no more than a microsecond between them waking up and realizing they were hungry and them starting to scream their little heads off. They were not kids who would wait around rooting or sucking on their hands.

    If you are in any doubt about how things are going, please call the LC. I know it can feel like an admission of failure- it's why I was reluctant to call when I ran into issues with my first. But I have learned that women who become LCs do it because they really, really enjoy helping new moms, and the LC will be happy if you call and give her a chance to practice her craft.

    And this is going to sound trite- but "be the change you wish to see in the world". If no-one in your circle of family and friends has been successful at breastfeeding, then you have an opportunity to be the first. And then somewhere down the road, one of them is going to have a baby, and she's going to run into a breastfeeding hurdle, and who is she gonna call? That's right: YOU! Everything you are going through right now is going to make you a stronger, wiser mom.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  8. #8
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    Default Re: 11days, suddenly having trouble latc

    Thanks to you both for all the advice and encouragement. She is latching on well and isn't fussing at the breast so much now that I'm sitting upright again (for the last two feedings since I realized what might be going on). It's only been two feedings but it's been less stressful for sure.

    However, all day she's only nursed for MAYBE 10 minutes on one side and then she's full, with some pauses for burping in between. She had been nursing 10 min, burping, then 10 minutes more (approximately...I stopped timing it after a while) and burping again. I'm worried though that she isn't getting enough food. Have you seen them go through ups and downs like that? I'm sure if she was still hungry she'd be fussing...but wondering if it's typical for an almost 2 week old. I guess it makes sense since they can eat a ton during a spurt...do they have little spells where they eat less too? I plan to ask the doctor tomorrow at her two week checkup but since he gave me some poor breastfeeding advice, I'd like to see what you ladies think. He also told me it was okay to give her a pacifier...she only took it for maybe 20 seconds but I think it might have screwed up her latching. Which reminds me -- when do you recommend introducing bottles? I've read 3-4 weeks, but wonder what your experience is? I don't want to wait too long and want to give my husband the opportunity to feed her maybe once a day.

    I can't believe she's almost two weeks already!

  9. #9
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    Default Re: 11days, suddenly having trouble latc

    Yes, babies will go through all sorts of changes. They'll feed more frequently or less frequently, stay on the breast for long periods or prefer to nurse quickly... The best thing to do if you're worried is to watch diaper output. As long as that is normal, then baby is getting enough to eat.

    WRT pacifiers... Again, I think your doc's advice is at best cavalier and at worst misinformed. The usual recommendation is to avoid pacifiers until 3-4 weeks, or longer if breastfeeding is not going well. You want the baby to become a proficient breastfeeder and establish a good supply before you introduce an artificial nipple into the mix. My understanding is that you actually want to wait 4-6 weeks before introducing the bottle. That means daddy misses out on some early baby-feeding fun, but there's a lot of other stuff he can do (baths, diaper changes, swaddle, rock, etc.). And if you're thinking the bottle will buy you a break... Well, I hate to say it but it won't. In the early weeks of breastfeeding, you should pump every time you offer a bottle, in order to keep your supply up. So you'd just be exchanging nursing the baby for pumping, and not only is pumping generally less effective, it's also a missed opportunity to cuddle the baby.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

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