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Thread: 18 days old and really need help

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    Houston,TX
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    Default 18 days old and really need help

    I'm new here and am almost desperate for help! First, here's my story (i'll try to keep it short). I have two little girls. One is two years old next week and the other is 18 days. My 2 yo was extremely sensitive to milk protein and soy and i didn't breastfeed. I am determined to breastfeed this time, but find that we're having the same problem again. We supplement with formula because she just doesn't seem to get full after some feedings and when i switched the formula to the hypoallergenic one my 2 yo was on, baby started having a lot of issues at the breast that she never had before. She would latch on quickly and stay there until she was done and always seemed very happy there. Now she will no longer latch without a nipple sheild (which i hate using), and when she latches with or without it, she squirms and slings her head and screams. I know she's getting milk because i hear her swallow and she starts screaming again after she does like she doesn't like it anymore. She always preferred the breast over formula and a bottle but now it seems like all she wants is a bottle of formula. Does anyone have any ideas about how i can get her to latch on again without the sheild and get her to quit taking a bottle? I really don't want to have to give up breastfeeding but i feel so helpless :-(

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    21,249

    Default Re: 18 days old and really need help

    Welcome to the forum and congratulations on the new baby!

    How much formula are you using in a 24 hour period? And are you supplementing after every feeding? The answers to those 2 questions will determine whether you can just ditch the bottles altogether or whether you must phase them out gradually.

    The problems you are having sound like the issues moms have when bottles are introduced very early on. The reason most people recommend that bottle introduction be delayed until around 4-6 weeks is that babies can rapidly decide that they like the easy rewards of bottle-feeding (bottles deliver a fast flow regardless of how well the baby latches or sucks) and start to reject the breast. It's advised that a baby become a proficient breastfeeder before a bottle is introduced. I'm not telling you that to make you feel bad- it's just a plausible explanation for why you're having difficulties.

    If you are not currently using much formula- maybe just an oz or two after some feedings- I suggest putting the bottles on the shelf and simply tugging it out. Baby should eventually decide to latch on and nurse. Hopefully you will not need to use the shield, but if you must then you must. This is the sort of situation in which shields are often useful. Shield or no shield, watch diaper output very carefully. As long as baby continues to have a normal number of wet and poopy diapers, there is no reason to worry.

    If you are using a lot of formula, then I think it would be q good idea to see a lactation consultant, preferably an IBCLC, and come up with a plan for how to supplement your baby (you may want to use a Lact-Aid or Supplemental Nursing System so that baby gets all her food at the breast), how to gradually decrease the amount of formula you are using, and how to increase your supply by pumping while you get your baby off the formula.

    Just FYI, here are some things that many moms assume indicate low supply, but don't (when diaper output and growth is normal):
    - baby takes a large amount from the bottle after nursing
    - baby seems fussy after nursing
    - baby has a fussy period in the evenings
    - baby feeds frequently (every 1-1.5 hours is common)
    - baby does not sleep long periods at night
    - baby will always take the breast when offered
    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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    Jun 2012
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    Houston,TX
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    Default Re: 18 days old and really need help

    She usually gets about an once after two or three feedings. I've heard people mention they use a dropper to supplement after a feeding so baby doesn't get attached to a bottle, but wouldn't the baby just get attached to that because it's still faster? I tried keeping her bottles from her but she cried so much and would barely nurse that we got afraid that she would end up dehydrated. And i also worried about making her reject breastfeeding completely for trying to force it on her

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Default Re: 18 days old and really need help

    Okay, so you're just using 2-3 oz of formula per day? That's great! That's a very small amount and you should be able to simply stop offering supplemental bottles and just nurse. Yes, you are likely to have some extremely fussy days while baby gets used to the idea that she is NOT going to get her bottle, but she's very unlikely to reject breastfeeding altogether.

    This link has some very helpful tips on getting a baby back to the breast: http://kellymom.com/bf/concerns/child/back-to-breast/. Basically, you want to make breastfeeding relaxing and pleasurable. The skin-to-skin and instant reward techniques are said to be particularly useful.

    While you're ditching the bottles, do careful diaper counts. As long a baby continues to have a normal output of wet and poopy diapers, there is no reason to worry about dehydration.
    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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    Jun 2012
    Location
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    Default Re: 18 days old and really need help

    So if i quit giving her bottles and just nurse, what do i do when she's emptied both breasts and still wants more? Should i just let her fuss and cry? What is the best way to increase supply while she's having difficulties nursing?

  6. #6
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    Default Re: 18 days old and really need help

    If she empties both breasts and still seems hungry, put her back on the first breast. If she finishes that one a second time and still seems hungry, put her onto the second breast. Repeat, repeat, repeat- and watch diaper output. As long as diaper output is normal, then things are okay.

    Are you in any pain or discomfort when you nurse? If so, or if you try the above suggestion and you don't see adequate diaper output, go and see a lactation consultant, preferably an IBCLC. And let us know! The best way to increase supply is usually to simply nurse, nurse, nurse. But when that doesn't work, there are lots of things you can do (pumping, herbs, even Rx meds). But before you get into them, try the nurse, nurse, nurse route.
    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!"

  7. #7
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    Jun 2012
    Location
    Houston,TX
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    Default Re: 18 days old and really need help

    Ok i can do that. Sounds like it's gonna be a long few days, but it'll be sooooo worth it if she'll start nursing good again. The formula she's on is great for those who have no other option and my 2 yo was on it full time for her first year, but i don't want anymore of my kids on it if it can be helped. It's just so hard not to get discouraged when it feels like your baby suddenly doesn't want you anymore. I know that she does, but still...

  8. #8
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: 18 days old and really need help

    Yeah, I know it's going to be hard! But you can do it, mama, and we'll be here to remind you what a great job you're doing. Just take your LO to bed and snuggle and nurse round the clock for a few days (while counting diapers like it's your new religion). Do you have help lined up for your 2 year-old? I think having an older kid in the mix makes everything so much harder- someone needs to care for the older kid and that makes it harder to focus on nursing and more tempting to give "just one" bottle so that you can cope with a needy toddler...
    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!"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Bryan, Texas
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    Default Re: 18 days old and really need help

    Mommal has given you great advice...but I just wanted to encourage you to keep going. I had a baby just like yours and we had a few really fussy days but we worked through them and he ended up nursing just fine.

    Hang in there, you're doing a great job. If you have to let your 2yo watch a few extra cartoons or have a few extra special snacks to keep her entertained while you're marathon nursing...that's ok. You've just got to survive!!!

    Keep us updated on how things are going!
    All over the world there exists in every society a small group of women who feel themselves strongly attracted to giving care to other women during pregnancy and childbirth. Failure to make use of this group of highly motivated people is regrettable and a sin against the principle of subsidiary. ~ Dr. Kloosterman, Chief of OB/GYN, Univ. of Amsterdam, Holland


    **Leslie**

    Mama to:
    Shiloh (5/6/06) Nursed for 13 months and Josephine (7/26/08) Nursed for 23.5 mos Currently nursing my new little firecracker, Finley Catherine, born on the 4th of July!!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Houston,TX
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    Default Re: 18 days old and really need help

    My parents and husband are helping to watch her but my dad works 5 days a week and my mom works 12 hr shifts at a hospital, so there's not always a lot of extra help, but i do have some. Pretty much since 5:00 today baby has been nursing almost nonstop. She's napping on my boppy right now. She just can't seem to get full and i'm getting tired. I have a feeling it's going to be a VERY long night. We're making some progress, but it's slow going. Thank you both for the advice and encouragement :-)

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