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Thread: 6 m/o bedtime antics

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    Default 6 m/o bedtime antics

    For the last week or so, DD has been very fussy at her bedtime feeding and I'm getting so frustrated & tired! Looking for some insight as to what might be going on...

    Here's what's been happening: She nurses fine off the first side (I alternate at each feeding) and will fuss when she's done & wants to switch sides. I switch her over (will try to burp if she'll let me, if she's too impatient I just let her keep nursing). She'll suck for a few min but pull off crying before the milk lets down. She'll relatch, pull off & cry several times before she's finally just screaming. It's a frustrated, angry, almost "in pain" kind of scream. She's happier if I just sit her up or lay her down. Sometimes will burp but this doesn't make her any happier if I try to keep nursing. She usually starts screaming if I try to put her back to the breast. Doesn't seem to matter which side she's on either. A few times I've been able to get her latched & keep her calm enough to get a let down, after which she'll usually nurse happily & fall asleep. Tonight, though, I got so tired & frustrated that DH ended up taking her and just rocking her to sleep. He said she went to sleep fine, so she obviously wasn't starving or anything. This only happens at the bedtime feeding. She will occasionally be a little fussy & want to wait a bit for the second half of her meal, but never like this any other time of day. If she nurses during the night I always start on the side that we finished with before & she never has trouble then.

    Other background info that may be helpful:
    - She's getting her bottom center teeth right now (first ones)
    - She has had a fever off & on all week - Dr. said it is a virus, fever is too high to be solely teething related. Ears & lungs have been checked twice & are fine. We've given her tylenol before bed all week for the fever.
    - She had shots yesterday at her 6mo appointment, but the fussiness has been happening all week.
    - I pump at night before bed to help keep my supply up, so letdown doesn't take more than a minute or two when she first starts nursing. On the second side it takes a little longer, but I have already had at least one let-down while she nursed on side #1...so there should be plenty of milk there right?
    - I've tried some different positions, like laying her on top of me, etc., but that doesn't seem to help either.
    - I have also tried compressions/massage while she sucks to try & help the let-down come faster, and I can get her to suck for a few min with this but not long enough usually.

    That's all I can think of for now...have any of you mamas had this happen before? It's so weird cuz it's only this feeding that's like this, which makes me think it's not a discomfort thing. But also it's the second part of her feed, so I don't really think it's totally an impatience thing either...she's already eaten at least half of her meal by this point, so she's not starving. I'm hoping this is just a phase & passes quickly...any insight/suggestions would be very much appreciated!

    Thank you! Also, sorry this is so long...I really get going when I type...
    DD, 7-2-2011, "Little Owl" nursed for 21 months

    DS, 10-10-2013, "Mr. Man" EBF and going strong

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    Default Re: 6 m/o bedtime antics

    Are you giving the tylenol long enough before the feed so it can kick it? It does sound like somethings bothering her teeth or ears. Or maybe is she congested?
    Proud mom of 2:
    DD 5/2008 nursed for 3 years and 3 months.
    DS born 8/2011 nursing like a champ

    Sorry for the short responses...always, always, always NAK or holding a baby

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    173

    Default Re: 6 m/o bedtime antics

    That's what I thought too! But it's only at this feeding/time of day that she does it. If her ears were bothering her, wouldn't she act up all day?

    Also, the tylenol is at least 1/2 hr before this happens. Plenty of time for it to kick in I think.

    Thanks for the response...I'm so stumped!
    DD, 7-2-2011, "Little Owl" nursed for 21 months

    DS, 10-10-2013, "Mr. Man" EBF and going strong

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    Default Re: 6 m/o bedtime antics

    It's common for those things to bother them more at night time because it's calm and quiet and no distractions. Have you tried motrin? I always thought that worked better than tylenol, baby has to be 6 months old for that. I also like Hylands teething tablets.
    Proud mom of 2:
    DD 5/2008 nursed for 3 years and 3 months.
    DS born 8/2011 nursing like a champ

    Sorry for the short responses...always, always, always NAK or holding a baby

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    183

    Default Re: 6 m/o bedtime antics

    arnica for teething pain works wonders.

    Is your LO trying to pee or poop? Or need to but not want to? Our nighttime fussiness stemmed from the fact that my LO was aware of his elimination and didn't want to go if he had to sit in it (or, he was in a wet diaper, woke up, and thusly upset. We actually found that ECing worked wonders for solving our nighttime fuss issue. I'll offer the potty before bed, when he wakes etc, and he uses it reliably at night.

    What about nursing in a carrier? Sometimes my LO just won't settle -- unless I put him in a front carry and nurse him there. Then he passes out pretty quickly.
    3/2011 {EBF to 6mos, now BF and BLS, CD, EC'ing since 5mos - in underwear at 11mos, and babywearing}
    Babywearing International has chapters - see if there's one near you... most have lending libraries!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    59

    Default Re: 6 m/o bedtime antics

    Do you think that maybe she is just getting full after the first breast? My 10 month old has almost always taken only one side at once. Occasionally he will still want to nurse on the second one but more often than not he is done and wiggles and fusses after I switch him until I put him down to play or sit him up and talk to him.

    Does she seem satisfied after the first breast if you put her down to sleep? Some babies will nurse to sleep and some won't.. maybe it is something new she is trying out?

    Your husband being able to put her to sleep is a good thing, IMO. It has never once happened in my house and I am not sure it ever will!
    Proud mom of two boys!

    DS1- born 1/10/03
    and
    DS2- born 3/8/11


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    173

    Default Re: 6 m/o bedtime antics

    Thanks mamas! We haven't tried motrin yet, she turned 6 m/o last week & the tylenol has been working well to bring her fever down. Will definitely keep that in mind though if this keeps up!

    Not sure if wet/dirty diaper is the problem. She does fuss some when she's poopy, but I usually change her diaper right before this feed. Something to consider though...thanks!

    She may be getting full, I wondered about that. She fusses when she's done w/the first side & is usually pretty impatient for the other one, just not very happy once she gets it. Weird I know. Most of her feeds, she takes both breasts & a "good" feed would be 10 min+ on each side. She usually does not empty the second one like she does the first though. But at night she always (until the last week) took both & would get very sleepy or fall asleep while nursing. So it seems strange that she would all of the sudden not need to eat as much. I'm usually at my emptiest for this feed, since it's the end of the day, so it worries me that she won't "finish" her meal. She doesn't seem to be waking more to eat at night though, so maybe she is getting enough. It's so hard to tell sometimes! We had started cereal but she hasn't had it all week since she's been sick, I've been just trying to focus on the fluids. So that's not filling her up...

    Now that I've thought about it more, she does do this some during her daytime feeds. I just let her go on her way and figure she'll probably be ready for her next meal a little sooner. But at night I really try to get her to fill up so she'll sleep well.

    Hopefully this is due to teething & will pass quickly. Thanks again for the suggestions!
    DD, 7-2-2011, "Little Owl" nursed for 21 months

    DS, 10-10-2013, "Mr. Man" EBF and going strong

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    183

    Default Re: 6 m/o bedtime antics

    Maybe she's not really nursing to eat -- but for comfort. That could explain why she only wants one side. (Maybe just let her keep that side? )
    3/2011 {EBF to 6mos, now BF and BLS, CD, EC'ing since 5mos - in underwear at 11mos, and babywearing}
    Babywearing International has chapters - see if there's one near you... most have lending libraries!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    2,944

    Default Re: 6 m/o bedtime antics

    don't worry too much about trying to fill them up. Because they won't eat more than they want to anyway.
    Proud mom of 2:
    DD 5/2008 nursed for 3 years and 3 months.
    DS born 8/2011 nursing like a champ

    Sorry for the short responses...always, always, always NAK or holding a baby

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