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Thread: Seriously worried - Thumb sucking covering hunger cues?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
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    40

    Default Seriously worried - Thumb sucking covering hunger cues?

    After 2 weeks of sucking her hand, my LO (12 weeks yesterday) found her thumb this past weekend. She has so far been a restless sleeper, and I was really happy yesterday that she had a good nap (1 hour - unusual for her) thanks to self-soothing herself back to sleep with her thumb.
    Last night I nursed her from about 9:30 to 9:50pm, and we got her to sleep about 11pm. I went to bed at midnight, thinking "in a half hour or so she's going to wake me for a feeding". Well, I woke up at 4am!!! That's almost six and a half hours since her last feeding! I grabbed her and nursed her without her even asking for it, and it's now just after 5am and I am sitting here writing to you because I am seriously worried! Is her thumb-sucking messing with her normal feeding needs? She's never gone so long and usually wakes me every 2-3 hours during the night. Isn't it bad for her to go so long without feeding??

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    middle of IA
    Posts
    1,885

    Default Re: Seriously worried - Thumb sucking covering hunger cues?

    eh. it's probably fine, and it's probably a fluke (hate to tell you!) there are a lot of 3 month olds who sleep "through the night" like that, so as long as she's gaining well, nursing on demand the rest of the time, and having enough wet diapers, enjoy the sleep! things'll change again soon enough, too.

    also be aware that nursing is no longer good birth control for you now ...
    DS1 6/7/11
    DS2 10/29/13

    Nursing, pumping, cloth-diapering, babywearing, working professor mama with the awesomest SAHD ever.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Victoria, BC, Canada
    Posts
    940

    Default Re: Seriously worried - Thumb sucking covering hunger cues?

    My DS started sucking his thumb at 3 months and I can tell you I was the envy of many mothers.

    As long as there are no concerns about weight gain, I wouldn't worry about. She'll probably just have larger feed when she wakes in the morning.

    If you are feeling engorged you can wake her up and feed her, but other than that, just enjoy your sleep!

    Oh yeah, my thumbsucker is above the 97% percentile so no worries about weight gain here.
    Last edited by @llli*monika.h; October 9th, 2012 at 12:38 AM.
    Canadian mom and breastmilk fan.
    We have 2 beautiful children: Luana who's 9 y/o, had breastmilk for 2 years and is smart as a whip. Lucas who came out kickin', is 4 y/o and continues to enjoy his milkies.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    1,110

    Default Re: Seriously worried - Thumb sucking covering hunger cues?

    Enjoy it!! It might not last :P DD3 is a thumbsucker and the best of my sleepers. We co-sleep so I usually sleep feed her when I go to bed and she usually wakes up two more times (last night night she woke up every hour or less :S) She's 11 mo now and the happiest of my babies. Thank you thumb! LOL

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,107

    Default Re: Seriously worried - Thumb sucking covering hunger cues?

    "Thank you thumb"!

    I don't think you have to worry, except about the birth control angle. As the PPs said, this is probably a fluke, you can feel free to nurse whenever you wake up in discomfort, and as long as there's no larger concern over weight gain, this is just a stage during which other mothers will envy you.
    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!"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
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    294

    Default Re: Seriously worried - Thumb sucking covering hunger cues?

    My DD did exactly the same thing at almost exactly the same age. I was worried, too, because she had had early trouble with weight gain and we had been instructed to never let her go more than 4 hours without nursing as a newborn. So it was a little hard to get my head around the idea that maybe sleeping a longer stretch could actually be good for all of us! She did that for a few weeks and kept gaining totally fine.

    I'll just say though that now, a couple of months later, she nurses ALL. NIGHT. LONG. But there are confounding factors there... I went back to work and started worrying about my supply, so I started putting her next to me to sleep (she was in a co-sleeper before) and latching her on every time she seems a little unsettled. I am sure this goes against all kinds of sleep advice, but I feel like it's a nice way for us to connect after being away from her all day and she seems to like it too so it's working for us. So I don't know if she would have kept sleeping longer stretches by herself or not. Try to enjoy a long uninterrupted stretch if you can get it!! She'll let you know if she's hungry.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    40

    Default Re: Seriously worried - Thumb sucking covering hunger cues?

    Thank you so much for your replies!
    I feel much better and am looking forward to some good sleep tonight!
    By the way, weight gain has never been a problem for her and I was never going to rely on breastfeeding as a form of birth control!
    Thanks again.

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