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Thread: Almost 6 mo, not wanting to nurse

  1. #1
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    Default Almost 6 mo, not wanting to nurse

    Hi, I wrote a couple weeks ago about drop in supply and got some good suggestions' from Mommal, I believe. I am pumping and nursing but also have to formula feed some. My supply did rebound and I get about 20 oz/ day pumping. For the last couple weeks, I've only been able to nurse once, on average as my daughter only nurses well first thing in the morning. She is wide awake, so I don't know if you would call it a dream feed.
    When I offer at other times of day, her behavior is odd, but I don't know what she is trying to communicate. She tends to arch away and if I continue to offer, she has even become distressed, even though she is clearly hungry. She avoids eye contact but will smile and look at me if I say her name or sing or something. Today the phone rang while this exchange was happening and it was like it interrupted her resistance and she latched for a minute, then remembered? And got off. She wouldn't look at me then but was actually making sucking movements with her mouth.
    This may be coincidence but she has been teething and I wonder if a bottle is more comfortable than bf? This may not explain the good am feed, though. I know she is communicating, just not sure what!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Almost 6 mo, not wanting to nurse

    Hello out there? any ideas? thanks in advance.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Almost 6 mo, not wanting to nurse

    Have you tried nursing in different positions? My LO went through a phase where she would arch away and carry on when I offered while we were sitting, and what I found was that she would only latch on while we were in the side-lying position. I spent a fair bit of time reading in bed for the few weeks that this stage lasted. Mind you, my DD was only about 4 months old when she did this...but still maybe worth a try!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Almost 6 mo, not wanting to nurse

    Hi, thanks for the idea. My LO nurses in the side lying position in bed in the am usually, but will also nurse then in a cradle or cross cradle hold. When she started this (strike?) I tried side lying at other times in the day and she still refused.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Almost 6 mo, not wanting to nurse

    If you think it might be teething related, maybe try offering her a cold teething ring for a few minutes before trying to nurse? Or maybe give her some tylenol or ibuprofen to see if that makes a difference?

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Almost 6 mo, not wanting to nurse

    I will try that. Is it true that teething can be more painful for them as the day wears on, and that is an explanation of why they nurse fine upon awakening? I do know our worst times are when she is really tired but that is understandable.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Almost 6 mo, not wanting to nurse

    Honestly, I'm not sure if it's 'true' or not...but I think babies in general are happier in the morning, and there's usually more milk first thing in the morning, so that could account for better morning nursings too, IMO.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Almost 6 mo, not wanting to nurse

    My baby (5 months) definitely has periods like you are describing, where she doesn't make eye contact and does not want to nurse. This usually only happens if I offer without her "requesting", so usually I don't anymore.

    Here are two articles that have helped me immensely, very good info that I have never found anywhere else.

    http://www.mobimotherhood.org/MM/article-refusal.aspx
    http://www.mobimotherhood.org/MM/article-milkflow.aspx

    From what you describe (and two reasons for an older baby to refuse nursing vs a newborn from the first article I gave you) it sounds like either pain or milk flow issues.

    Milk flow issues are described in the second article link, and this has helped me so much to understand my baby's body language! So valuable. Hope this helps you decode her communication somewhat!
    and Mama to two little girls

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Almost 6 mo, not wanting to nurse

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*carm3 View Post
    Honestly, I'm not sure if it's 'true' or not...but I think babies in general are happier in the morning, and there's usually more milk first thing in the morning, so that could account for better morning nursings too, IMO.
    This is true and is definitely something to consider...after you check out that link I posted hopefully you can figure out why!
    and Mama to two little girls

  10. #10
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    Jan 2013
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    Default Re: Almost 6 mo, not wanting to nurse

    I often get this reception! DS is hungry, but I put him to breast and the back arching - stiff as a board behavior starts. It makes me feel better to know I am not alone when my baby refuses me. I take it less personally. Like a previous poster has said, I suspect it could be a protest about flow because when the situation gets desperate, I will cave and give him a bottle of expressed breastmilk and he gobbles that right down with a big happy grin on his face. I believe that if my milk had let down and was free flowing when he was put to breast, he might be less resistant to latching and feeding. Dream-feeds are definitely the best meals of the day because he's not focused on how long the let-down takes. Perhaps your daughter would be more willing to feed if you primed your breasts to activate the let down and the milk was ready and waiting for her.

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