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Thread: Newborn eats till he pukes but wants more

  1. #1

    Default Newborn eats till he pukes but wants more

    My lo is 4 weeks old today. He was born at 6 lbs 4 oz, and now he's 8lbs 4 oz. He feeds fine during the day but at night, maybe because he's alert and awake, he wants to nurse continuously till he throws up. Generally, I'd nurse for 20 minutes and try to burp him in between and after. The problem is after burping, he would demand for more, and he looks like he's still hungry, so I'd nurse him again. When he finally unlatches, he will start to make whiny noises that makes me think he's uncomfortable and more often than not, he'll end up throwing up (not just spits, like actual gushes of milk). And after throwing up, he'll demand to be nursed again. It's like a vicious cycle and can lasts as long as 3 hours!

    His pediatrician said he's overeating and suggest that I nurse him for 20 mins, and then give him the pacifier, which I have also tried but often times, he just spits it out and cries loudly until I nurse him again.

    I'm wondering if anyone else had had this experience and have advice on how to satisfy his hunger but not feed him till he pukes.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Newborn eats till he pukes but wants more

    Three things I'm thinking. 1. He's confusing sensations of an upset tummy with being hungry. 2. He wants to comfort nurse and hasn't quite figured out how to do it without milk flow. 3. You have an oversupply or strong letdown that is causing him to throw up.
    If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun. - Katharine Hepburn

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Newborn eats till he pukes but wants more

    Is this behavior happening in the evenings/early night? It's pretty normal for babies to "cluster nurse" at that time.

    If you're seeing projectile vomiting, back arching and other signs of pain, in combination with constant nursing (day and night) then I would strongly suspect reflux.

    If it's more just that he nurses a lot and then spits up (even a lot), but is otherwise happy and content, at least for most of the day, but then acts like this just in the evenings, I would probably figure it's normal fussiness combined with a really strong milk flow, and baby will probably just grow into it/out of it. 4 weeks is usually the height of evening fussiness.

    In neither case is the problem that you are "overfeeding" the baby. Your pediatrician is giving you outdated advice.


    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Newborn eats till he pukes but wants more

    My DS used to do this, right at this age. Wanting to nurse for long periods, then urping, then wanting to nurse again, then urping. It didn't seem like reflux, and it was bothersome to him, so we ended up using a paci which worked pretty well. I'd be super alert to feeding cues. it usually happened in the evening after several hours of clusterfeeding. I'd give him the paci, lay him down to sleep, then when he was deeply asleep slip it out of of his mouth. I was afraid of it masking hunger cues, but it didn't seem to make a huge difference. He grew out of it quickly (12 to 16 weeks maybe? I can't remember) and he never used a paci after he was 6 months old, but it did seem to help at that time. Other things, like swaddling and sleeping on me, seemed to help as well. Basically, it seemed like comforting him in every way possible and not disruputing hunger cues too much, solved the problem, which didn't last very long in retrospect.
    Ellen

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  5. #5
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    Default Re: Newborn eats till he pukes but wants more

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*joe.s.mom View Post
    In neither case is the problem that you are "overfeeding" the baby. Your pediatrician is giving you outdated advice.
    Breastfed babies don't overeat.

    Have you tried keeping baby upright For a while after nursing him? That might help him keep his tummy contents down here they belong. Even just elevating the head of his sleeping surface a bit- by placing a pillow under one end of his crib mattress, for example- could help.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Newborn eats till he pukes but wants more

    We had a bit of oversupply and DS would spit up large amounts while latched on and nursing. For us, DS didn't NEED to nurse on both sides, he got plenty of milk from one breast at a time. When I stopped offering the second breast a lot of our tummy issues got better. You, of course, have to assess your own situation.

    Like the PP's said, he may just want to comfort nurse but ends up sucking down a bunch more milk that he didn't really want and his tummy can't handle. Based on your description I wouldn't jump to reflux or anything quite yet.
    My little man was born 12/17/2010.

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  7. #7
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    Default Re: Newborn eats till he pukes but wants more

    Growth spurt? I've noticed my kids do this around growth spurts. Like they're increasing the supply for later but can't necessarily handle it right now.

    Either way, I agree that if he's generally happy I'd try not to worry about it. Definitely not over-feeding.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Newborn eats till he pukes but wants more

    DS did this for a while. I had tons of milk so he couldn't really comfort suck like he wanted without getting too much milk. It was messy, but it did go away on its own.
    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.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Newborn eats till he pukes but wants more

    Thanks everyone for your replies. I took some of your advice; I started nursing only on one breast per session and after each feed, I burp him and prop him up on a pillow. The vomiting continues, but he seem to demand less now after each vomit. However, I noticed that each time after nursing, he would make grunting noises, like he has some sort of congestion. Sometimes while he's asleep after a feed, he would suddenly cry out for a few seconds, and then goes back to sleep. And this happens throughout the night and day. And he's super gassy. Would this be reflux? I visited another pediatrician and he said lo has colic. I'm really hoping this will go away soon.

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