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Thread: New baby problems

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    5

    Unhappy New baby problems

    My wife is have problems nursing our 3 day old baby. It seems that all he wants to do is sleep right now. The first day he was latching on quite a bit and then the second day he latched on less and less. When we first started nursing the baby would suck just to suck and we were advised to use a pacifier for when this happens. So, as he bagan to nurse less and less he would sleep more and cry more at feeding times, even refusing to feed. We are so confused right now and are worried that he is not eating. He nursed for about 30 minutes this morning and slept pretty much the rest of the day. He cries soooo much when my wife tries to put him to breast.

    What is the problem?????

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    3,900

    Default Re: New baby problems

    gohard,
    I'm sending this in an email, as well. Has your baby been peeing? Has your baby peed at least three times today? Has your baby nursed since you wrote this? Is your baby awake? If not...

    YOUR BABY NEEDS TO EAT!! WAKE YOUR BABY AND FEED BY WHATEVER MEANS NECCESSARY! <ETA bottle, formula, spoon, dropper...i.e. normal means of feeding a newborn> IF YOUR BABY HAS NOT URINATED AT LEAST THREE TIMES IN THE PAST 24 HOURS, THIS IS A MEDICAL EMERGENCY AND YOUR BABY NEEDS TO BE SEEN!!

    Sorry for sounding so stern.

    Newborns need to nurse FREQUENTLY. Especially in the early days. It is perfectly fine for your baby to nurse as often as he wants. In fact, it's neccessary. Please don't use a pacifier to replace feedings in the early days. It's of the upmost importance that babies nurse frequently. Sucking on a pacifier means they aren't sucking at the breast to recieve food. If newborns don't recieve food, their little bodies begin to shut down and they become VERY sleepy. It's a vicious cycle. They sleep more, nurse less, get sleepier...stop the cycle now. Wake baby gently and get him situated to nurse.

    Please hold off on the pacifier for a little while longer. As I mentioned before, it's important that newborns feed often, especially in the early days. Nurse at the first signs of hunger (stirring, rooting, hands in mouth). Crying is a LATE indicator of hunger. If baby hasn't eaten in more than two hours during the day, wake to feed. You can wait as long as 4 hours at night. Your baby should nurse AT LEAST 10-12x in 24 hours in the early days. Also, you should know that pacifiers can cause nipple confusion. Some signs of nipple confusion might be: pushing mother's nipple out of the mouth, crying in frustration at latch-on or shortly thereafter, pushing back from the breast, or trying to suck at the breast as he does with the paci. Here is a little bit about nipple confusion:
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/NB/NBNovDec02p217.html
    And an article (not LLL):
    http://www.breastfeed-essentials.com...ingnipple.html

    Tell your wife to take off her top, strip your baby down to his diaper (wrap a blanket around both of them), and hold him upright on her chest. This is called kangaroo care, and it will help remind your baby to nurse.

    Here are some links with helpful information:
    www.lalecheleague.org/FAQ/enough.html
    www.lalecheleague.org/FAQ/frequency.html

    Again, if your baby has not had three wet diapers, is not eating, and is very sleepy, you need to call in to the doctor and/or go to the emergency room.

    Please let your wife know that if she needs help getting baby back to nursing well, it is available! Please urge her not to give up. This is just a "bump in the road", and it can be overcome! Find an IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant) and/or LLL Leader in your area. It will help both her and your baby!

    Good luck to you, and PLEASE, please, please update us. Okay?
    Last edited by LLL_Jolie; February 26th, 2006 at 07:56 PM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: New baby problems

    Hi There

    This does sound concerning. Has the baby been in for a visit or a weight check?

    First off, I would strongly advise you to stop the pacifier immediately. Newborn babies do not "suck just to suck". They eat very, very frequently and they need those calories. (Eventually he will learn to comfort suck and it's is absolutely okay to let him comfort suck at the breast.)

    Sometimes these little ones get sleepy and don't want to eat. It's very important that you wake him to eat at least every 2 hours--more if he's showing signs of hunger (rooting, chewing on fists, rapid eye movement--crying is a late hunger cue). Try stripping him down to a diaper and putting him skin-to-skin with mommy. Wiping his head/feet with a warm washcloth, talking, singing, rubbing the top of his head all can help to rouse a sleepy baby. If you cannot get your baby to wake up enough to feed, you need to get medical attention right away.

    You also mention that he's fussy at the breast and this can happen for a variety of reasons. As I said above, crying is a late hunger sign. If you wait until the baby cries to be fed, they can get upset and frantic and it's difficult to latch them on.

    I must say that I'm very, very concerned that your baby hasn't eaten since this morning. I would strongly advise your wife to call a local LLL leader (you can get the number of a local leader by calling 1-800-LaLeche or by going to http://www.lalecheleague.org/WebIndex.html), lactation consultant, or your baby's doctor. You need to talk to someone very soon. And in the meantime, keep working on waking him up and getting him to the breast.

    Good luck
    Jen
    "Mothers are designed to be available to their babies--to help them make the transition into this big, wide world. To teach them to trust, and love, and feel good about being alive."
    --Elizabeth N. Baldwin, Esq., So I Nursed Him Every 45 Minutes

    Click here to find your local LLL Group
    How to tell if your breastfed baby is getting enough milk!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    2,156

    Default Re: New baby problems

    We too had a sleep baby, he was 3 weeks early. My milk took 3-4 days before it came in. My husband would tickle the bottom of his foot while he was latched on to try to keep him awake. We would also lay bare chest to bare chest.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Charleston SC
    Posts
    2,601

    Default Re: New baby problems

    Just wanting to know how this wee one is doing? Very concerned also?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: New baby problems

    he has indeed urinated 3 times today. i ran out and bought a travel breast pump to transfer my wifes milk and we are working on it as we speak. thanks for the responses i am holding him as i type this. so it is short i will keep u informed

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    1,168

    Default Re: New baby problems

    OK, it's good news that he is on schedule with the wet diapers.

    Newborns are often very sleepy. It's hard to wake them up to eat, and it's hard to keep them awake at the breast. Ordinarily people tend to think "Never wake a sleeping baby" (at least that was my mindset when I brought my son home from the hospital), but with newborns you often DO have to wake them up. Because if they're not getting enough to eat, they respond by getting even more sleepy, and it becomes a vicious cycle that can quickly become quite dangerous.

    So it is vital to get some milk into him every 2-3 hours right around the clock. (A 4 or even 5- hour stretch might be okay at night if he is feeding well through the day otherwise.)

    It is also vital for your wife's emerging milk supply -- and her breast health -- to get frequent stimulation and emptying. So if baby is not nursing well every 2-3 hours, then she should be pumping that often. What brand of pump did you buy? (some of them, like the ones made by formula companies, tend to not work well.)

    You need to stop giving the pacifier for now -- it sounds like nipple confusion is setting in, as the baby previously latched well but now is not latching well. If he is too upset to nurse, try soothing him by letting him suck on your clean pinkie finger, then once he is settled offer the breast again.

    Kangaroo care can be a wonderful way to get a newborn back onto the breast -- skin to skin, with momma's heartbeat where he is used to hearing it, and the breast becomes familiar and cozy, not confusing.

    When trying to wake him or keep him awake for nursing, there are lots of tricks for stimulating him. Skin to skin helps -- rub his cheek, flick the soles of his bare feet (harder than it seems you ought to -- I was surprised at how hard our home-visit nurse did this, and then saw how well it worked on my sleepy 3-day-old DS) -- another trick is to muss up his hair if he has any, by rubbing against the grain.

    Offer both breasts at each feeding, and change his diaper between breasts if he needs help staying awake for it.

    This is all completely exhausting and overwhelming for new parents -- I can remember so vividly what those first few days were like, and it's been over four years ago in our family. But the work and worry and sleep deprivation will be well worth it in the end, and with luck it will only be a few more days before the sleepiness wears off. Once he has regained his birthweight and is waking on his own to nurse at least every 3 hours, then you can relax, stop watching the clock so much, and just enjoy the baby more.

    Until you reach that point, though, use a nursing log like the one linked here to keep track of his feedings, diapers, and general behavior:

    http://www.wiessinger.baka.com/bfing/early/log.pdf

    This will be an invaluable record with the kind of data a lactation consultant or LLL Leader can use to help determine what's going on and how to fix it.

    Kudos to you, Dad, for being such a support for your wife and son right now!! They are lucky to have you. Best wishes and warm supportive thoughts for your wife. Do keep us posted.

    --Rebecca

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    863

    Default Re: New baby problems

    My son was also a sleepy newborn, so I can relate. You are getting WONDERFUL and CARING advice from the previous posts and as a first time mom, myself, I'm not sure I have much more to offer. We did many of the suggested things and have had a very successful breastfeeding relationship-- one that I would not give up for anything (still strong after almost 10 months)!

    I just wanted to tell you how great it is that you are so supportive to your wife and congrats on the wee one. Please encourage your wife to attend a local LLL meeting ASAP as she will get even further support from other moms who can relate like no one else. Maybe they will even have couples meetings that you can attend with your wife?

    Keep us posted...your family will be in my thoughts and prayers!
    Kristie L.
    LLL Leader
    (the poster formerly known as fezzik812)
    Wife to Brett, Mommy to Seamus (5.1.05), and Emelie (1.18.08)
    "You must be the change you wish to see in the world."- Ghandi

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: New baby problems

    Thank you guys so much for the support...this is hard on me and I cannot imagine how it is for my wife. I have shared with my wife some of the things that you guys have said to do. It is very importatnt for us to breastfeed, but at the same time I cannot and will not let the baby go hungry. We managed to get him some milk from the pump, but are still going to get him up every 3 hour and attempt to get him on breast. Is this going to be even more of a challenge since I have introduce a bottle?

    P.S. I have trashed the pacifier.

  10. #10

    Default Re: New baby problems

    I would strongly suggest you NOT use a bottle to feed him the pumped milk. For tonight you can feed it by spoon or medicine dropper. Tomorrow you can try to get ahold of a supplemental nursing system or a finger feeder. PLEASE PLEASE call someone locally to help her get that baby to the breast. Pumping the milk is only a temporary fix.
    Jen
    "Mothers are designed to be available to their babies--to help them make the transition into this big, wide world. To teach them to trust, and love, and feel good about being alive."
    --Elizabeth N. Baldwin, Esq., So I Nursed Him Every 45 Minutes

    Click here to find your local LLL Group
    How to tell if your breastfed baby is getting enough milk!

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