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Thread: constantly nursing - 45 min per breast

  1. #1

    Default constantly nursing - 45 min per breast

    I have a 7 day old who wants to be on my breast ALL THE TIME. It's not so much that she wants to whenever she is awake but more that she doesn't want to get off. She will eat then rest, then eat again and after a while she is just suckling every once in a while. She is literally spending anywhere from an hour to an hour and a half per session. She will fall asleep on my breast but then as soon as I take her off or try to put her down she will start crying and is inconsolable (unless or course I giver her my breast again). Not only are my nipples sore, but I'm exhausted (she is the worst at night) and I'm spending hours just letting her suckle. Any advice? I don't want to use a pacifier.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    middle of IA

    Default Re: constantly nursing - 45 min per breast

    Hi mama, this is (probably) normal newborn behavior! A baby this age will typically nurse at least 10-12 times per day, and might easily spend more than an hour at each nursing. They won't be spaced out evenly, so you might only get 10 minute breaks for awhile.

    There are a couple things to check to make sure all is well. Is your milk in? How many wets & poops does she have in 24 hours? Have you had her weight checked since birth?

    To cope, you might consider
    - using a sling or carrier so that she can be close to you & held even when she's not nursing. sometimes they are nursing so much because they've figured out if they stop they get put down, and little ones like this have a default setting of needing to be held. i found it helpful to think about the "fourth trimester" - until the end of 3 months, babies really should still be in the womb, developmentally, when compared to other primates.
    - have you learned how to nurse lying down yet? you'll need a safe sleep surface, and then i found this tutorial really helpful: http://www.mother-2-mother.com/tut-layingdown.htm

    ETA: this behavior changes very quickly as her stomach gets bigger and she grows up. It's a matter of weeks - and worse during growth spurts which often happen at 3 weeks and 6 weeks - and then for almost everyone, the nursings space out and get faster. Hang in there!
    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
    May 2006

    Default Re: constantly nursing - 45 min per breast

    Some additional questions for you:
    - Is baby jaundiced at all?
    - Is baby falling asleep rather quickly at the breast, perhaps sucking actively for just a couple of minutes before transitioning to light, fluttery, erratic "comfort" nursing?
    - What color are baby's poops? A yellowish color (like mustard) or more of a greenish or brownish color?
    - When baby comes off the breast, what shape are your nipples- symmetrical, like pencil erasers, or asymmetrical/ridged/wedged/shaped like new lipsticks?
    - Was baby born at term or before term?

    One thing to try, if you have a rather dozy newborn who rapidly goes from nursing for nutrition to suckling lazily for comfort, is switch nursing. With switch nursing, you let baby feed until you feel her starting to fall asleep. Instead of letting her doze off, you remove her from the breast, burp her or change her diaper, and put her onto the other side. When she starts to fall asleep again, you repeat the process, and you keep repeating it until the baby will no longer wake. Switch nursing is great for supply and can lead to a baby taking more milk in less time.

  4. #4

    Default Re: constantly nursing - 45 min per breast

    I think your LO is just trying to up your supply. My LO did the same thing, I think I spent a week with him attached to me while I sat on the couch all day! I would literary grip the couch in pain when he latched. Used LOTS of landalin and started sleeping with no bra to air out...leaked through a few shirts but it helped a lot. Honestly, I kepted a wash cloth nearby and would put that under the side he wasn't nursing when I got up! lol Its frustrating, but it does get better! Do you have a co-sleeper or a bassinet? I have the Arms reach Co-sleeper and its wonderful bc as soon as my LO starts to stur I sit up, pick him up and nurse him. He doesn't even wake up 100% and he goes right back in the co-sleeper. That way I don't have to sooth him bc he never really wakes, its perfect! But in all honestly LET HER NURSE, and keep the Motrin on hand for the pain I would religiously use it every 6 hours for a few days and it did help. She will stop! It does get better!

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