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Thread: hungry baby refusing the breast

  1. #1

    Default hungry baby refusing the breast

    My story is kind of long. At about 4 weeks, grandparents came out to visit the baby. She had been quite the challenge and the help from them was accepted and I was thankful. My milk didn't come in for 5 days and so I was supplementing with formula in the beginning because she had lost a significant amount of weight. So, she was able to feed from the bottle. The grandparents were here for 4 days and I had plenty of milk saved up, so they were feeding her a lot. And I wasn't pumping enough. After 4 days of not feeding her from the breast very often and not pumping enough, my milk supply went down, significantly. I took me a month to get it back, and it is still not the same. But, since this time, she is now 2 months old and when she gets really hungry, she will scream when I put the breast in her face. She won't take it. So, I give her a bottle and let her eat anywhere from a 1/4 ounce to a full ounce until she has calmed down and then she will take the breast. It was super frustrating a couple weeks ago. But, now I have been just thinking this is how she is and I can't change it. I talked to my pediatrician and she said it is a habit that she needs to break. Any suggestions? I think she doesn't want to wait for the let down, because she is so used to instant gratification.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    20,865

    Default Re: hungry baby refusing the breast

    Welcome to the forum! It sounds like you have a pretty good system going- offer the baby a bit of milk in a bottle, and then latch her onto the breast. What would happen if you gradually tapered down the amount of milk in the bottles?

    An instant reward technique that might work for you would be to express some milk onto the surface of the nipple before latching baby on. Baby might be more prone to nurse if she gets the taste of milk in her mouth- provided she will latch on, that is. Will she?
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,331

    Default Re: hungry baby refusing the breast

    What if you are super proactive about getting baby to the breast early, so it is as little as possible that baby gets that hungry? Offer to nurse at earliest cues, even prior to any cues?

    And/or, Hold baby skin to skin, on your chest, is a comfortable position, BEFORE baby is showing hunger signs, and when baby starts to root, let/help baby slide down to the nipple when baby wants? (Helping baby get there but not "putting it in her face.")

    If the issue is impatience waiting for letdown, maybe hand express until there IS a letdown?

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