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Thread: Tongue-Tie Clipped, but still taking only the nipple in

  1. #1

    Default Tongue-Tie Clipped, but still taking only the nipple in

    My son was born with severe tongue-tie. We had it clipped after I went through 3 different lactation consultants, and the last one discovered that he had tongue tie. He had it clipped at a week old. The latch didn't get any better, even though the doctor said it would be an instant difference. I've been having to use a nipple shield because he blistered both of my nipples. I have tried everything to get him to latch on without the nipple shield, because that thing is so darn difficult to put on, especially when you're sleep deprived in the middle of the night. Has anyone gone through this and had success, and what did you do differently?

    Please advise!

    He also falls asleep at the breast and usually feeds for about 1-1 1/2 hours at a time, so I have been pumping as well.

    I usually strip him down to his diaper, stroke his face, tickle his tummy and feet, and nothing seems to wake him up.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2013

    Default Re: Tongue-Tie Clipped, but still taking only the nipple in

    Hi - my son had his tongue tie clipped at it took about 2 weeks or so before we really saw a difference. And I talked with a lactation consultant during that time who said that it drove her nuts when people say it will be an instant change - that much of the time it takes a bit before the baby learns to work his "new" tongue. There are exercises that can help - tapping the tongue to make him / her stick it out, and putting your finger in their mouth and gently pulling the inside of the cheek outward. And rubbing the incision to make sure it doesn't grow back (weird, I know).

    What we had to do also - and this is riskier - is give our son a bottle of expressed breast milk once a day to get him to a bigger size - that made such a huge difference. As soon as he was bigger, he was stronger and fed better. Anyhow for us it worked, but I worried a lot about nipple confusion, bottle preference, and about him nursing less when we gave him a bottle (thus compromising my supply, etc.). He didn't have any problem transitioning between the two most of the time and still nurses like a champ (and is a fatty! Ha!).

    I feel your pain - it gets better, I swear! Stick with it!

  3. #3

    Default Re: Tongue-Tie Clipped, but still taking only the nipple in

    How old is your baby now? Is he gaining ok at the breast, or needing supplements?
    He also falls asleep at the breast and usually feeds for about 1-1 1/2 hours at a time, so I have been pumping as well.
    I'm confused. Is he falling asleep but continuing to nurse?

    Shields are a hassle but if the shield is keeping baby nursing at the breast, that is good. There is no reason to think you must get off the shield right away (except that it is a pain.) As Hadleymonroe points out, size matters. Just baby getting bigger may well make the difference.
    What kind of after care instructions were you given by the doctor? Have you seen the IBCLC again for more latch/suck training? Hadleymonroe has good info for you there! This is very important!

    tt is weird. Sometimes there really is instant relief. But in other cases the struggle continues. Remember many mothers struggle with extreme latch pain and injury even when there is no physiological barrier in the first place. So there is never a guarantee of instant fix. And other things may be going on.

    My oldest may have had a mild tongue tie that was part of why we had such terrible latch pain, nipple injury, inability to latch. But nine years ago it was rarely treated or even recognized as far as breastfeeding goes. We had to use shields for about 6 weeks, and when he could latch well on his own, he was able to wean off them.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Tongue-Tie Clipped, but still taking only the nipple in

    He will no longer take the breast with the shield on or without. I had to start pumping all the time just so he would eat. I would put him at the breast, and because it's easier for him to get milk faster through the tommee tippee bottle, he's refusing the breast. I'm crushed.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2013

    Default Re: Tongue-Tie Clipped, but still taking only the nipple in

    Oh I'm sorry you're having this experience. Just know that it may very well not be a permanent state - I had a night when I thought that was happening (that my son was preferring the bottle and wouldn't take the breast anymore) - and then he went right back to the breast, happily, the next day. Also my friend had to exclusively pump and bottle feed her little guy for the first 6 weeks or so, I think - and she just emailed me and told me he's gone back to nursing.

    So they can - and often do! - go back to the breast! Sometimes they just have to get a little bigger so that they can feed well.

    Anyhow that's just what I've learned over the past 11 weeks (I'm a new, first time mom, so may be totally wrong. But that's my impression).

  6. #6

    Default Re: Tongue-Tie Clipped, but still taking only the nipple in

    Babies have come back to the breast in circumstances you would not believe. So while I understand how very disheartening this is, please know there is certainly hope.

    Did you feel a good affinity for any of your IBCLC's? have you contacted local breastfeeding support (if there are any) like LLL?

    We can try offering more suggestions here, if you like, but we need more info- babies age, what you have tried, positioning and latch wise, weight gain history, supplement history etc.

    Has anyone suggested a lactation aid? Have you tried one?

  7. #7

    Default Re: Tongue-Tie Clipped, but still taking only the nipple in

    I have done all the positions and latch techniques. I use a nipple shield so he doesn't destroy my nipples (he blistered me the first week). He is 12 days old. I have been pumping and feeding him from the tommee tippee bottles for the past week. He has been gaining weight just fine. I have given him a total of 4 formula bottles (3 ounces) over the 12 days.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Tongue-Tie Clipped, but still taking only the nipple in

    It is good news your baby is very young. And you've had to hardly supplement any formula at all. 12 ounces total over 12 days is a very small amount of formula. so if your baby is gaining well, it is from your breast milk not from the formula. that is a very good indication that you do indeed make enough milk despite these early difficulties.

    If you have tried every single latch tecnique and position and none have worked any better than the others, the thing to do is to try every single latch technique and position again and see if anything improves the situation at all. Sometimes what did not work two days ago will work today.
    I would also suggest when you give bottles that you do not give such large ones. 3 ounces would be a very large feeding for 12-day-old baby. A normal feeding would be more like 1 to 2 ounces with baby feeding 10-12 times a day or more.
    This is important because you want to keep bottlefeeding as much like breast-feeding as possible -that will help bring baby back to the breast. If you search 'tool kit' on this website you will find a page called the tear sheet toolkit. Read the one called bottlefeeding the breast-fed baby. A baby will very often take more from a bottle than he would at the breast and this can cause something called bottle confusion or flow confusion-you want to try to avoid that as much as possible and feeding your baby this way may help.
    Also Go to the website Kellymom.com find the article called 'help my baby won't nurse' that gives you lots of great ideas for helping encourage baby back to the breast.
    Try to continue pumping at least 8 to 10 Times per 24 hour day. I forget if you said what kind of pump you have but it would be best if you had a hospital grade rented pump you're still bringing in your milk production this early and it is important that you have a very effective pump and you are pumping very frequently. You don't need to pump forever each time, in fact that can backfire. try to do 15 or 20 minutes on each side.
    I also strongly suggest that you see your lactation consultant again or another lactation consultant. I really think it is important that breast-feeding be assessed again. You need help working on baby's latch. it should not be hurting you and injuring you to nurse your baby.
    Last edited by @llli*lllmeg; May 21st, 2013 at 02:38 PM.

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