I'm a first time mom and my son will be three weeks old tomorrow. Breastfeeding has been going pretty well, baby is gaining solidly and is starting to get that cute chubby look! Lately we've been having some fussiness in the evenings, as well as clusterfeeding behavior. I'm aware this is normal, and I try to feed him on demand and then some.
Sometimes after nursing for a little while in the evenings, he moves his head to the side or the back and unlatches himself, and then opens wide to re-latch or tries to "slurp" my nipple back in his mouth. Or he seems to pull back, like he's stretching my nipple. He only seems to do this in the evenings, so I'm wondering if it has to do with the fussiness babies seem to experience, or if he's playing/bored/etc? At first I wondered if maybe my breast had emptied and he was frustrated, but then I realized I could still express some milk, so I don't think that is the issue.
After he does this a few times, my nipples start to feel sore. I try to encourage proper latching, but he detaches himself and then tries to slurp his way back onto the nipple. I know he's too young to reason with, but sometimes I try giving him a break and saying gently, "That hurts mommy," (the break just makes him cry, though), or I take a minute to burp him, or switch to the opposite breast. Sometimes he seems to get really agitated and thrashes his head around, grunts and cries. Sometimes I have my husband take him and try some calming techniques while I take a break after this happens, but I feel guilty--what if the baby is hungry and I'm postponing his meal?
I'm just looking for a little insight on why this is occurring and what I can possibly do to keep him from getting so frustrated and to keep my nipples from becoming like a popsicle to him. It doesn't happen when I nurse him overnight or earlier in the day, just the evenings. Thanks in advance!