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Thread: Tongue Sucking - Any way to correct this?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Pineville, LA

    Default Tongue Sucking - Any way to correct this?

    I spoke with a lactation consultant (which I can't see often - I don't have transportation during the day) and she told me my newborn is sucking on her tongue while latched on, and she ends up pushing my breast out. She latches fine but only stays latched 30 seconds to a minute - as soon as she stops and starts again, she starts sucking her tongue. I've already nearly quit breastfeeding because I only had a manual pump starting after day 3 and my milk didn't even start to come in until day 4. I still haven't gotten engorged and I could barely pump 1oz out of both breasts until I got the electric pump (now I can get around 2oz.) She can't pull enough milk by herself and I can nurse her for an hour and she is still unsatisfied because she can't stay latched.

    Is there any way to correct this problem? I have been pumping and feeding her that after a few tries but I am literally getting zero sleep doing this. All I have time for is to try to feed her at the breast, feed her some pumped milk, pump again, and start the process over. I almost gave up already but I got an electric pump today so, if nothing else, I will try to exclusively pump for a while. The lactation consultant told me to try a nipple shield but she isn't pulling milk through it since my milk came in better - it's like it doesn't fit anymore and I haven't gotten to go see her again to see what size I need. She also does the tongue suck thing with that.

    I would much rather feed her at the breast than with bottles. She gets tons of air with bottles because she's sucking on her tongue.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Pineville, LA

    Default Re: Tongue Sucking - Any way to correct this?

    She's 6 days old today also. Which makes me feel even worse because I feel like giving up so soon. It's really important to me but I woke up earlier so dizzy I felt like I was drunk. I know lack of sleep comes with having a newborn but I'm really getting no sleep. I've had maybe 5 hours since she's been born. On top of that, I can't find time to eat or drink so I know that's going to effect my supply. I gained 50lbs during pregnancy and I look like I weigh less now than I did when I started. I had totally given up last night (thinking I wasn't going to be able to get an electric pump because we really can't afford one - the WIC office was nice enough to give me one since she is having latch issues, though) and was crying every time I looked at her. If anybody could help, it would be very much appreciated.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    New York

    Default Re: Tongue Sucking - Any way to correct this?

    Congratulations briplusamie!
    and welcome to these forums.
    Breastfeeding is a learned behavior for you and your newborn.
    The first two weeks of an infant's life is devoted to learning how to breastfeed.
    so on day 6, you are still in the early phase on the learning curve.
    it will be so much easier if you lay back or lie down and let her latch on while you are in a resting position.
    who knows why she is a tongue sucker, it could be a habit she learned in utero.
    do you have anyone staying with you? someone who can hold the baby so you can eat, go to the bathroom?
    I did not make milk early on with my first baby, it took more than 8 days of nursing all the time until she figured out how to suckle and my milk finally came in.
    you can always hand massage and hand express to help stimulate the milk supply and then get her on the breast.
    if you can avoid the bottles and the artificial nipples just for now and really pay close attention to working on her latch and suck
    you will overcome and avoid chronic obstacles.
    the best way to help your baby learn to open wide and suck is to offer her the breast , lie her naked body against your naked chest let her lick and taste you let her practice opening her mouth while she wriggles herself into position and relax.
    at this tender young age she should be spending every moment on you learning how to nurse.
    You can put her in a safe place while you eat, drink and shower and then its back to breast. You can sleep with her as long as you have a firm mattress and if your a non-smoker.
    keep her naked except for a diaper. Let your body keep her warm.
    Started my family in 1986
    Finally done in 2001

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Re: Tongue Sucking - Any way to correct this?

    esthervegan gave you great ideas.

    Does your WIC have a breastfeeding peer counselor program? And do they do home visits?

    Have you called your local LLL (if there is one?) SOME LLL Leaders are able to do occasional home visits. A LLL Leader is a volunteer and she is not a lactation consultant, but rather a mom experienced with breastfeeding, but some hands on help with positoning and time management ideas etc, plus just the sympathetic company, may help.

    Some lactation consultants do home visits too. Have you asked about that?

    I second the idea of doing laid back breastfeeding, this helps so much with latch issues. See links below, and remember you can adjust this type of positoning as you need.

    If you are pumping only, or mostly pumping, hopefully WIC gave you a hospital grade pump, that is what you really need if baby cannot latch. A less powerful pump is better than nothing, of course.

    Do not worry about feeling engorged. You do not WANT that, it hurts. If you are able to pump 1 or 2 ounces at this early a stage, you are likely doing fine milk production-wise. For one thing, a newborn this age would only take that much at a feeding at best. For another, a well nursing baby is going to be able to extract milk far better than a pump. Do not worry over much how MUCH you pump, just keep pumping frquently IF baby cannot nurse well or at all.

    Breastfeeding is hard right now, because you are having these issues. It will get easier and easier until, very soon, breastfeeding becomes a tool that makes mothering easier. Formula & bottles may seem easier now, but formula stays the same amount of work for the duration and never gets easier and never gives yiou the many fringe benefits breastfeeding does.

    All new mothers are exhausted & overwhelmed physically and emotionally in the early days. This is why all new mothers need supportive help. What friends or family can come over and hold baby so you can take a nap or fix you something to eat?

    Laid back: http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...astfeeding.pdf & http://www.biologicalnurturing.com/video/bn3clip.html

    Pumping log: http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...umpigchart.pdf

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: Tongue Sucking - Any way to correct this?

    Yes, the cycle of pup, feed, etc is exhausti g. I have done it. My fourth son was born unable to breastfeed and I had to exclusively pump.

    What did the lactation consultant suggest?

    with PP. if you can hang in there and work on this -- and yes, I know exactly how tired you are -- it will get better. But if you decide to EP, that may derail you, and I can promise that EPing gets harder, and you can't do it with just a regular pump. You need a hospital grade pump. You need to pump 120 minutes a day broken into 10-12 sessions....which on top of feeding baby, is a LOT of work.

    I would call around and find an IBCLC who does house calls too.
    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!

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