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Thread: Fussy/hungry at breast - LONG feedings

  1. #1

    Exclamation Fussy/hungry at breast - LONG feedings

    I am about to go crazy -- I don't know what I'm doing wrong, any help would be wonderful!

    My 9-week-old nurses wonderfully in her night/early morning feedings, however nursing during the day is exhausting and I'm about to lose my mind. Most feedings last 1.5-2 hours and she is discontent the whole time! She latches for about 5 minutes, then pulls off and on, arches her back, or wails with the nipple still in her mouth. She keeps latching on and off, waving her head around like she's trying to find the nipple, latches, then pulls off crying. Sometimes I break down and give her milk that I've expressed and she will usually take it (other times she swirls it around in her mouth w/ her tongue). I know she is still hungry because she'll smack or chew her fingers and will not go to sleep. It's like she needs a break for a half an hour after feeding, because after a long period of fussiness and/or disinterest, she'll finally re-latch, suck awhile, and fall asleep (and she sleeps for several hours, so she must have gotten enough milk to last her). Is there anything I can do to help her stay latched and not get fussy? Why does she eat fine in the middle of the night and not during the day?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    20,952

    Default Re: Fussy/hungry at breast - LONG feedin

    That sounds really frustrating! The first question I have is, how is the baby's diaper output and weight gain? Is she producing At least 4-5 sopping wet diapers per day? Is she pooping at least once a week? The second question I have is, what is happening when she unlatches and goes into her cuckoo routine? Do you ever see her cough, choke, gag, splutter or cough at around that time? Make a clicking or clucking noise? Do you see milk stream or squirt from the breast? The reason I ask is that some of the behavior you're observing can be the result of a fast letdown of milk, which could explain why she's easier to nurse at night, when you are probably nursing in a different position which may slow milk flow. But there are a lot of other possibilities, too, so I wouldn't say "fast letdown" right off the bat.
    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

    Default Re: Fussy/hungry at breast - LONG feedin

    Thank you for responding!! She is producing at least 4 wet diapers a day, every-other one with poop. When she unlatches, she's just mad. Milk drips slowly when she unlatches, and she never chokes or coughs or acts like she's getting too much. When she sucks, there is sometimes a clicking noise that she makes with her tongue -- not sure if that means anything. We nurse in the same position always, night and day. I got my period one month after giving birth (and I've pumped/nurse since giving birth) -- could it be that the milk tastes different due to hormones? But she's accepting it at night, so maybe not? She just ate and she sucked/swallowed well for 10 minutes or so, then got mad, so I switched breasts. She ate about 4 minutes on the other side, but then stopped. She's crying like she's hungry, but will not even try to latch on. She kind of calms down when I hold her up, but gets angry when I lay her back down like I'm going to nurse. I don't think it's gas, because she's not arching her back or spitting up or anything else I've seen her do when she's been gassy before.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    418

    Default Re: Fussy/hungry at breast - LONG feedin

    I would guess that LO eats better at night because she is sleepy and relaxed as well as you being more relaxed. We went thru a phase that W had long feeding (more like an hour) it lasted for a few weeks and got better. He was about 2 months old then. The biggest advice I can give you is to try to relax (I know easier said than done). Set comfy on the couch and have your partner bring you dinner and such until she goes to bed.

    What you are going thru does sound frustrating. Hope that things get better for you soon.
    I am Klisti, I married my best friend Kris two years ago.

    The love of my life, Wyatt 8-28-11 AKA the little dude

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    20,952

    Default Re: Fussy/hungry at breast - LONG feedin

    The clicking noise generally indicates that the baby is breaking suction. This can happen when a baby is trying to control a fast flow of milk, but it can also happen when the baby's latch isn't quite right- and a not-quite-right latch could explain the long feedings. It could also explain why your baby does better in the middle of the night, since milk tends to be most abundant in the night and early morning. So your baby could just be having an easier time getting fed at night.

    How's her weight gain? If that's okay, I'd consider this to be in the realm of normal. If her weight gain has been low, I think I might want to see a lactation consultant, preferably an IBLC.
    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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