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Thread: Nursing strike! how do I feed my baby?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    18

    Default Nursing strike! how do I feed my baby?

    My 4 month old has been having issues dealing with a delayed letdown, and now he has a cold as well. But he is striking completely now. I can not get him to even take my nipple into his mouth when he is awake. I was able to feed him while sleeping at 945 am and at 2 pm, but it was not easy. It's now 530 pm and that is all he has eaten today.

    And he's not doing a lot of sleep because he is so hungry, so less chances to feed him. I've tried skin to skin, I can't get anything when I pump, and he does not take a bottle, so I am terrified of pumping, and the milk going to waste.

    I'm sorry for rambling but I really don't know what to do. How do I get back to nursing? I didn't really even want to nurse in the first place, but now I don't want to stop.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    1,914

    Default Re: Nursing strike! how do I feed my baby?

    Hi mama, here's some useful information for getting baby back to breast:
    http://kellymom.com/bf/concerns/child/back-to-breast/

    My baby had a similar strike a couple months ago and I was very freaked out. The thing that really helped me was the kelly mom suggestion to be casual. Which was not easy to do since I was freaking out, but I had to mentally get myself to a place where I was more relaxed and then approach baby at that time.

    The other thing is that nursing can be difficult for baby when his nose is all stuffed up. Some things to try: humidifier; breastmilk up his nose with a syringe (if you have expressed milk, or saline drops if you don't); you can consider a bulb syringe although usually babies hate it.

    Don't worry about the milk going to waste if you pump. You can always save it to mix in with oatmeal in a couple of months when he's taking solids. Again letdown is very influenced by stress, so if you are feeling stressed about the strike, it may inhibit letdown. So if you do decide to pump, maybe have DH hold baby and do something to distract yourself - watching TV or a movie, listening to music, reading, whatever.

    Chances are that as he starts to feel a little better (or even if he doesn't) he'll get back to the breast soon. Hang in there!

  3. #3

    Default Re: Nursing strike! how do I feed my baby?

    I understand your frustration and stress. I really do. My lo does that all the time. And I freak out every time. But each time, he goes back to nursing normally after the sickness/teething/distractible period. Like yours, my lo refuses to nurse if he's sick. It's like he needs to concentrate his energy to fight the sickness, so less energy left to digest milk. If he does nurse at night, it will not warrant a trip to the hospital. Sorry it will be tiring for you but that is the only way to 'keep him alive'. Meanwhile, what I did in the day was to syringe feed or spoon feed him. He would not take in a lot this way but at least he will not be that dehydrated. And just accept the fact the he is going to nurse less during this period. Do pump, not so much for keeping the milk, but for constantly emptying your breast to keep the supply going and to prevent engorgement. Or hand express, whichever way that works for you. A scary as it is, this will pass, I promise!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Nursing strike! how do I feed my baby?

    Thank you. I did finally get him to nurse once after just waking up from a nap, and he has already woken once to nurse. He also has major troubles eating when he gets overtired, so it's a vicious cycle right now. I know it iwll pass, and I hope it is soon. I definitely would like to avoid a hospital visit!

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