I am absolutely desperate for some advice about my daughter Lara. She is 3 months old today. Is it normal for her to be feeding for 1.5 hours, and looking like she could easily keep feeding?
She used to have a very healthy weight gain, but this slowed down dramatically from 7 weeks onwards. She is now approx 11 pounds.
Up until yesterday, I used to feed her 40 minutes each feed - switching breasts either every 10 or 20 mins. This is because I have very sensitive nipples and experience pain with prolonged feeds on one breast.
However, with the low weight gain, I did some research and thought perhaps it's because I'm not allowing her to get much hindmilk because I'm switching breasts.
So today I have let her feed for as long as she wants. This morning she fed for over an hour, before I stopped the feed. At her lunchtime feed, she fed for 1.05 hours on my right breast. She then fed for another 30mins on my left breast and - when I took her off - she still looked like she could feed for longer.
She is not continuously sucking, but she will keep sucking. I got a letdown at the 60min mark, so I'm assuming this means she is still actively feeding at this point - I don't think it's possible to get a spontaneous letdown unless she's sucking?
I would really appreciate some advice:
- Is this normal for a 3 month old baby to feed this long?
- Am I correct in thinking that switching breasts every 10/20 mins could be contributing to her low weight gain?
As a quick summary:
- Lara is 3 months old today
- She is not currently experiencing a growth spurt (this is purely me experimenting to see how long she would naturally want to feed for)
- She is exclusively breastfed
- She sleeps through the night, and naps well during the day. She does not wake at night to feed, unless she is having a growth spurt.
- Her latch has been checked by three lactation consultants/nurses and is good
- She was identified with upper and lower tongue tie. This was lasered (cut) at 6 weeks old, and was confirmed as resolved by two independent medical people
- I use nipple shields every feed, as I have unexplained nipple pain
- I do not have thrush, and Lara does not have thrush. I have also had this checked.
- She is well hydrated and needs a nappy change after each feed
- She poos regularly
- I had a breastfeeding assessment which was observed by a lactation consultant when she was 4 weeks old. We weighed her before and after the feed, and she had consumed 140ml.
- Her dreamfeed is via bottle using expressed milk and she drinks 170mls. She could easily drink more if we gave her more.
Please help - I'm quite depressed by the prospect that I need to now feed her for over an hour (how do we leave the house?!), not to mention my poor nipples!