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Thread: Little Screamer

  1. #1

    Default Little Screamer

    My daughter is 5 1/2 weeks old. I have a forceful let down which before the past week or so has not created any problems besides choking when fed. I started unlatching when I let down and wait until the flow slows down to relatch.

    Half of the time feedings go extremely well with no problems. The other half of the time ends with inconsolable crying until I can get her to sleep. The crying starts either after I unlatch, or if I don't unlatch, right after the let down. I've tried pumping when this happens and feeding her the expressed milk with a bottle. Half of the time I can get her to eat, and the other half of the time she will eat a little and then start crying as before so I'm not sure if the problem is associated with feeding from the breast or not.

    This has become very hard to deal with. I should also note that she never cries during night feedings (after 10) and almost never right when she wakes from a nap.

    Some things that calm her down temporarily are music, movement, and light. She definitely does NOT want to sit down. Sometimes I can get her to nurse standing up and walking around. I'm with her almost all day everyday and she is held most of the time because she doesn't like to be put down for very long and often wakes when she's sleeping if she's in her crib or bassinet. She also gets lots of skin or skin contact from both myself and her dad.

    When she has a crying spell I can tell she's still hungry because during the temporary (momentary!) times when she's calm she's sucking on her hands or my shoulder and rooting around.
    Last edited by @llli*violetsmom; August 28th, 2013 at 07:04 PM. Reason: add more information

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Little Screamer

    partly, all that fussiness just sounds normal for a baby that age. but have you tried offering to nurse earlier, before she's super hungry & frustrated? this will help with the fast letdown too over time.
    DS1 6/7/11
    DS2 10/29/13

    Nursing, pumping, cloth-diapering, babywearing, working professor mama with the awesomest SAHD ever.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Little Screamer

    This sounds pretty much like classic colicky baby. Typical for this age and temporary. It can be really exhausting. Been there!

    Since you mention fast letdown, besides it causing fussyness due to the flow being too much for baby, it can also cause gastrointestinal discomfort in some babies. If that is the case here, it will get better as your milk flow slows down over time, but other things that help that you could try are nursing more frequently and as Auderey says, at earliest cues -or even before a cue- (it really does help) and nursing "uphill" (in a laid back position with baby on top of you) as well as the flow into the cloth trick.

    How are things otherwise? Nursing comfortable for you? Are you pumping as a regular thing or just when you are feeling like you cannot get baby to nurse? If weight gain and output are normal, I would suggest not pumping or bottle feeding. that will typically prolong or worsen the issues of fast letdown. Some moms find calming baby prior to nursing (with a pacifier if necessary-pinkys can be great pacifiers) can help.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Little Screamer

    with the PPs.

    Some things to try:
    - Calm house- lights, TV, and stereo down or preferably off
    - White noise- radio static, dryer or vaccum cleaner sounds, road noise
    - Motion- rock in a rocking chair, give baby a stroller ride, put her in a swing, wear her in a sling
    - Closeness- wear her in a sling or hold her skin-to-skin
    - Warm water- bath her in the sink or just get in the tub with her
    - Trip outside
    - Give her a pinky finger to suck, with nail held down towards her tongue- if she's hungry, this may be,o her remember that sucking, not screaming, is the key to getting her needs met
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  5. #5

    Default Re: Little Screamer

    She's been gassy for the past few weeks but that seems to have gotten better. I do feel her stomach gurgling often though. She nurses every hour (sometimes before) and rarely goes 2 hours.

    Otherwise, nursing is really great and I experience no discomfort. I pump only a few times (2-4) a week for freezer storage and only 3 oz from one breast a time. I have to be gone for class 2 hours 2 days a week and 1 hour another day. I nurse and pump right before so she has a bottle while I'm gone, but I feel better knowing there's extra in the freezer in case.

    Do you think the (mostly at nighttime) crying episodes is due to colic or rather my FFLD?

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Little Screamer

    If it's mostly happening at night, then yes, it's probably colic or severe evening fussiness. Most moms find that they have more abundant milk and consequently stronger letdowns earlier in the day, since levels of prolactin (the milk-making hormone) tend to peak overnight. By late afternoon/evening, letdowns tend to be a little less strong- but baby's ability to cope with them may also have ebbed, since she's probably starting to feel pretty tired.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Little Screamer

    only 3 oz from one breast a time.
    ONLY 3 ounces from one breast? That is a lot to get from one breast during a pump session. I am not at all saying that is a problem, I just want to assure you that is quite a bit of milk. Higher than normal for the occasional pump session.

    OK Pumping as needed for separations is of course fine.

    Do you think the (mostly at nighttime) crying episodes is due to colic or rather my FFLD?
    I agree with mommal, also, there is no need to worry overmuch which it is, as it does not really matter. What works for the one works for the other. And both are usually temporary issues.

    Sounds as if breastfeeding is going great and your baby is healthy. I know this super fussiness is hard to take but this will pass!

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Little Screamer

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*lllmeg View Post
    Sounds as if breastfeeding is going great and your baby is healthy. I know this super fussiness is hard to take but this will pass!
    DS1 6/7/11
    DS2 10/29/13

    Nursing, pumping, cloth-diapering, babywearing, working professor mama with the awesomest SAHD ever.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Little Screamer

    Just want to add that make sure she isn't just getting really tired and isn't just trying to nurse to sleep! My little boy did and still does that...he acts hungry but he's really just tired and is looking for any way to comfort himself to sleep, but doesn't actually want to eat.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Little Screamer

    nursing to sleep is a biologically & nutritionally normal behavior. there's nothing wrong with it!
    DS1 6/7/11
    DS2 10/29/13

    Nursing, pumping, cloth-diapering, babywearing, working professor mama with the awesomest SAHD ever.

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