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Thread: So frustrated and trying not to give up...

  1. #1

    Default So frustrated and trying not to give up...

    I am so afraid my milk supply isn't enough for my LO. Most of the time she seems satisfied after a nursing session. She pops off the breast in a "milk coma" or falls asleep nursing most times. But she doesn't seem to be gaining weight (will know for sure on Tuesday when she goes to the Dr) and she doesn't poop everyday. Yesterday her poop was brown and had a mucus consistency. I read that mucus could mean she's not getting enough fat in my milk.
    And I think what worries me most is that lately I have to wake her up every 2 hours to eat and when I do she falls asleep after 10 min. I haven't seen a lactation specialist and I'm using a nipple shield. I find that no matter what I try I just can't get a good latch with her tiny little mouth.
    Help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    Louisville, Kentucky
    Posts
    317

    Default Re: So frustrated and trying not to give up...

    How old is your little one? How much did baby weigh at birth, and has baby been weighed since then? When babe is weighed, make sure that they use the same scale, with no clothing and an empty diaper or no diaper.

    It's great that she seems content after most nursings! That's great, and I think you should give yourself credit for all the love and milk that you are giving her!

    How long have you been using the shield? Did they size you in the hospital and are you confident that the shield is the right size for you? Are you wanting to eventually wean off the shield?

  3. #3

    Default Re: So frustrated and trying not to give up...

    She is two weeks today. She weighed 8lbs 2oz when she was born and 7 lbs 10 oz when we were discharged from the hospital. Then she was 7 lbs 7 oz at her first Dr's appointment.

    I've been using the shield for I think a week but I didn't get measured for the shield. It seems to fit pretty well once she starts sucking. I would love to wean off of it once her little mouth is big enough to get a good latch. I have tried nursing again without it but even when her mouth is wide open for a yawn it just isn't big enough to get a latch that doesn't hurt.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    Louisville, Kentucky
    Posts
    317

    Default Re: So frustrated and trying not to give up...

    Hopefully some more experienced and knowledgeable mamas will chime in soon, too.

    You mention that she doesn't poop everyday; how many wet diapers does she have a day? It sounds like you'll know a bit more on Tuesday, and be able to have new (weight) information to help you make decisions from. Did her pediatrician advise what minimum weight he/she would be satisfied with at the Tuesday weighing? Does the doctor's office have a lactation consultant on staff? If not, do you know of one close to you that you can contact if the weight is not deemed
    Sufficient?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Central FL
    Posts
    1,575

    Default Re: So frustrated and trying not to give up...

    To help you find an IBCLC
    http://www.ilca.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageid=3901

    Do you know about breast compressions?
    Are you pumping to try and help your supply since using a shield may have an effect on milk transfer and your milk supply over time. (don't over do the pumping I'm talking like 5-10 minutes after several nursing sessions per day and any of the nursing sessions you feel like your supply wasn't enough, that will help tell your body that more milk is needed.

  6. #6

    Default Re: So frustrated and trying not to give up...

    I do breast compression when I am feeding her. I'm almost positive the Dr will want me to supplement and that makes me more afraid that my supply will decrease more.

    I have a pump and I can use it but I never get much out with it. I've read that it's just that way for some people. So you're saying I should pump for 5 or 10 min after nursing a couple times a day to increase my supply?

    The hospital I delivered at has lactation consultants but I felt like they didn't listen to me. My LO does NOT like the position they kept telling me to use. Every time I try she fights me.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    9,046

    Default Re: So frustrated and trying not to give up...

    So baby will be weighed Tuesday. Then you will see what you are dealing with. Right? Or do you think the issue is more urgent than that?

    If your baby requires supplements, that is NOT the end of breastfeeding. I promise you.

    Here is what I would suggest.
    Nurse as frequently as baby will. Try to keep baby awake on the breast by using breast compression and switching sides, several times each feeding if possible.
    If baby falls asleep, pump. Even if you do not get much. Pump anyway, at least a little. Pump as many times a day as you can without it interfering with babies time at the breast. You are not going to get much when pumping if you have a baby who is nursing frequently, especially not when a baby is only two weeks old. That is fine. If you are concerned about your milk production, and especially if you do need to supplement, pump anyway.
    Make sure pump is the best you can get and new or in good working condition. Do not assume you just 'don't make much' when pumping. There is lots to do to try to increase pump output if it is needed. Of course you may not need to pump at all. It depends on if baby is truly not gaining well.
    When baby is weighed, forget birth weight. That is irrelevant at this point. You want to look at gain from the last weight check until Tuesday. And if baby was not weighed on the same scale both times, or not weighed carefully on the right kind of scale, or not weighed naked or in dry diaper, all of this may make the weight check incorrect.
    If your baby's doctor suggests supplements, get clarity on what EXACTLY he/she is prescribing. How many ounces a day and for how long. Ask if your expressed breastmilk can be used. Consider looking for donor milk. If you do indeed need to supplement with formula, do it. But be sure to pump and be sure to get help with breastfeeding. If a baby is not gaining normally when breastfed, that is a problem, and supplements, even if needed, do not solve the problem. Don't allow your hcp to throw formula at the problem without getting you help as well.
    Just because you found the LCs not all that helpful at the hospital, (fairly common, for several reasons) do not dismiss the idea of seeing an IBCLC now. A good International Board Certified Lactation Consultant is worth her weight in gold. If you cannot see an IBCLC, what about local LLL?
    What happens if you do not wake baby every two hours? How long will baby sleep? It may be fine to let baby sleep longer stretches here and there, and you may find baby nurses more readily if more on her own sleep/wake pattern.

    You are using a nipple shield. Can baby latch and nurse without it? Shields can interfere with milk transfer. This does not mean don't use it! If you need it in order for baby to nurse, by all means, use it. But that probably means you DO need to pump as much as you can to make sure your milk production stays at good levels.

    If your baby does not like the position they told you to do, do what works! There are no rules when it comes to that. links on latch and positioning below.

    Yesterday her poop was brown and had a mucus consistency. I read that mucus could mean she's not getting enough fat in my milk.
    This is nonsense. Please do not let this worry you. If a baby is not gaining normally, then that means baby is not getting enough milk overall. (Or there is some health issue that is not about feeding at all.) if baby is gaining normally, then baby is getting enough milk overall. All breastmilk has what a baby requires to grow in it. We look at poops in an attempt to measure intake between weight checks. It is the frequency and overall size of the poop, not so much the consistency, that gives this info. But the most accurate measurement on if a baby is getting enough milk is accurately measured weight gain.

    So you're saying I should pump for 5 or 10 min after nursing a couple times a day to increase my supply?
    Because you are using a shield, AND concerned baby is not getting enough, you probably want to pump way more than that. Pump as often as you can without interfereing with babies time at the breast.
    Last edited by @llli*maddieb; September 14th, 2014 at 07:17 PM.

  8. #8
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    Jun 2009
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    9,046

  9. #9

    Default Re: So frustrated and trying not to give up...

    Thank you so much for all the good information! I will update after her appointment on Tuesday.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Central FL
    Posts
    1,575

    Default Re: So frustrated and trying not to give up...

    Don't give up.
    I know the first 6 weeks are really hard. Many newborns will nurse almost constantly for hours on end, especially in the afternoon/evening.

    You may also want to see if a different interval might work better for you at night, like maybe 3 hrs or perhaps a 4 hr stretch and then 3 or 2.

    If baby is swaddled or using a pacifier it might keep her from waking on her own since those are sleep extending methods.

    If Dr says you need to supplement, look at possibly using a lactation aid instead of bottles. So the supplementing can be done right at the breast.

    here are some other resources that might help
    http://www.lowmilksupply.org/index.shtml

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