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Thread: Need help, unable to continue feeding at the breast.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    11

    Default Need help, unable to continue feeding at the breast.

    This is my first post here and in some sense a last ditch attempt at getting my 5.5 week old son back to nurse at the breast again. I'll be very grateful for any help.

    I nursed him for the first 4 weeks. We had some challenges but he was gaining weight well and that was good enough.

    I introduced the bottle at 4 weeks and 1 day since I plan to return to work after 8 weeks and that conincided with feeding at the breast taking a nose-dive (the timing could just well be co-incidence). I would start off with a good latch and he would immediately try to push his head back, push the breast away and basically try everything to just have the nipple in his mouth. If I ehad him firm enough to not be able to do this, he would scream and cry. I take him off and trying latching him correctly again and the whole cycle repeats. Like i said our latch was never perfect before, my nipples would end up looking pointed like a lipstick and blanced before but this new behavior means that I'm simple unable to continue feeding him.It a stressful, he screams, i fret and utlimately i am sore.

    About the bottle: I use dr.brown's wide mouth bottle, and he does seem to have his lips spread out well most of the time atleast.

    I saw a lactation consultant about this, she suggested that I was probably having a fast let down and he was doing this to basically control the flow. I do have a fast let down sometimes, mostly if I haven't nursed in a while and my breasts are full but not always. She said that I try a reclined position and that if this was getting too difficult I should just pump and feed.

    I notice that DS does this even when the breast is almost empty. Nonetheless I'm still trying to feed him reclined and haven';t had much success.

    I've now resorted to pumping to feed him. Its only been a couple of days and I miss nursing him so much already. In the middle of the night I wake up when he cries and I instad of feeing him from a bottle and then itting down to pump, I just so wish I could get him to feed. But I'm at my wits end on how to fix this.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    middle of IA
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    1,882

    Default Re: Need help, unable to continue feeding at the breast.

    oh, mama, i just responded to your other question, but i am SO ANGRY at your LC . her advice to feed reclined is good, her advice to "just pump and feed" is horrible. it's never "just" pumping and feeding. that is WAY WAY WAY harder, often in the short run and always in the long run, and as you already know after a couple days, nursing is so lovely, and becomes more and more lovely and more and more useful as a parenting tool as baby gets older. so i am afraid of her advice undermining breastfeeding for you and i want to encourage you to do everything you can to get back to the breast.

    so that means managing your fast flow, which yes, means reclined positions, but there are other things you can do like sidelying and letting the first flow go into a towel. and i'm guessing most important for you, nursing as often as possible. every hour, if he'll take it. the MORE you nurse, the LESS powerful that first gush will be and the more baby will be able to control flow and not feel like he's choking or drowning.

    will he go to the breast at all now? please please try at least once a day until you can see a different LC, preferably an IBCLC, who can help you figure this out.
    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
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: Need help, unable to continue feeding at the breast.

    hi there,
    i am no expert, i've been breastfeeding for 3.5 months but i went through the same thing with overactive letdown. my baby would pull off the breast too, pushing back her head like your LO. Sidelying position saved me, we now feed in bed ALL the time! l also would catch the letdown in a burping cloth and let baby suck on my finger in the mean time. it took a while for me to get the hang of things and i was so frustrated too. hang in there! you can do it! stick with it! it's so wonderful (let alone easier) to nurse baby vs pumping and feeding. the women on this site give such great advice and encouragement keep posting your questions and progress! best of luck mama!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    5,912

    Default Re: Need help, unable to continue feeding at the breast.

    I personally have figured out these are not the kind of questions i can help moms online with. i just have way too many questions. otherwise i am just guessing.

    i suggest you call a lll leader or other breastfeeding helper. call as many as you can until you find someone who will really talk this out with you. I don't see eping as a second place option when your baby was nursing fine up until now and there is every indication this could be something very fixable and/or temporary. that is more like a 10th place option. if you are in the US there is the national helpline as well, and you are very welcome to pm me with your contact info if you like.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    5,912

    Default Re: Need help, unable to continue feeding at the breast.

    sorry if my pp seemed unhelpful-my baby was fussing and i posted before i finished. while i do think finding some phone help (or in person help) would be most helpful, if that is not an option, or in the meantime- i suggest there is more ways to address ffld than laid back position. kellymom.com has a good article and pp had good suggestions. one thing that often helps is for mom to encourage more frequent nursing. this really helps with ffld AND it helps with latch and thus with painful nipples. Yes, nursing more often can often help.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    11

    Default Re: Need help, unable to continue feeding at the breast.

    Thank you for the support. I don't think it is an issue with fast letdown. It happened when I met the lc cause one of my breasts was sore and I hadn't fed him off it for a few hours and it was engorged. I haven't noticed a fast let down when I nurse regularly. I Think it's a habit DS has picked up and I don't know how to change it. I did try nurse him again yesterday and it was the same. He only wants the nipple in his mouth, nothing more. Instead of unlatching him multiple times and frustrating him, I tried to let him be and slowly get more breast into his mouth as the feeding progresses by bending down. I didn't have much success though. I will try again this morning. He will still take the breast, so that is some solace. He also needs active help in latching on and I found that to be an issue with the side lying position.
    Each feeding session takes 45 mn to an hour and he has about 10 minutes or less of active suck time. It is tiring and frustrating for both of us. Earlier ( first 4 weeks) his lower lip would be at the edge of the areola, now it is at the edge of the nipple. maybe introducing the bottle caused this?

    Again, thank you for the support. It's invaluable when I'm at my wits end and have nowhere to turn. I will contact the local ll leaders and also send you a pm llmeg.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    middle of IA
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    1,882

    Default Re: Need help, unable to continue feeding at the breast.

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*sowmyakittane View Post
    Again, thank you for the support. It's invaluable when I'm at my wits end and have nowhere to turn. I will contact the local ll leaders and also send you a pm llmeg.

    good for you! you CAN work this out!
    DS1 6/7/11
    DS2 10/29/13

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

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    5,912

    Default Re: Need help, unable to continue feeding at the breast.

    He also needs active help in latching on and I found that to be an issue with the side lying position.
    are you trying side lying or laid back? they are different. side lying is mom and baby lying down on their sides facing each other. laid back is mom in reclined position and baby 'on top.' and you certainly can assist with latch as needed in laid back. both laid back and sidelying can be good positions, and both can be helpful for ffld. But laid back can really help with painful latch in general. Laid back allows gravity to help keep baby on the breast rather than actually working to pull baby away as in sidelying or mom in a sitting up straight posture. It also is a more biologically natural position and allows/encourages baby to latch and nurse instinctually. Again, this does not mean to not help baby latch such as with a breast sandwich latch approach if baby needs that help! if you are trying laid back and its not working, i suggest adjusting YOUR angle-many moms find they lean back too far at first. it is fine to just be slightly reclined if that works better. Or adjust babies position as baby can be in any position that puts babies mouth near the nipple.

    some examples of laid back: http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...astfeeding.pdf

    http://cwgenna.com/quickhelp.html (latch self-help suggestions- pix at bottom show mom leaning back)

    video: http://www.biologicalnurturing.com/video/bn3clip.html

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    11

    Default Re: Need help, unable to continue feeding at the breast.

    Thank you. I will try this. Currently I'm feeding the baby every 1.5 to 2 hours when he is awake and pump when he is asleep so that the fast flow reduces a bit. I've also developed a milk blister and a plugged duct. so some of the things that I'm doing for it like emptying the breasts often and hot compress is probably contradictory to what I need to do for oversupply. His latch remains the same even when the breast is not full. I will try the laid back position as suggested in the PDF.

    Thanks a ton again.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,912

    Default Re: Need help, unable to continue feeding at the breast.

    Are you nursing baby every 1-2 hours? Or feeding with bottle?
    And how long does baby sleep? Pumping 'extra' will increase production which you don't want-on the other hand, if even with baby nursing frequently you have engorgement and/ or plugs, some low setting pumping (or hand expression) just to aleviate pressure may be warranted.

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