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Thread: Latch Issues and Nipple Confusion (Concerned Father)

  1. #1

    Default Latch Issues and Nipple Confusion (Concerned Father)

    My wife just gave birth to our daughter on March 17th. I unfortunately listened to the healthcare "professionals" at the hospital during the pre-birth classes and breast feeding classes and assumed they knew what they were doing. They said they readily encouraged breastfeeding, but at the first sign of latching issues and my wife's colostrum coming in a bit slow, they threw us supplemental formula and told us to bottle feed our daughter. About 72 hours after birth, the milk came in (we pumped and tried to breast feed as often as possible and kept her in our hospital room nearly the entire time). However, we are having issues getting her to latch and breast feed and have to bottle feed her the breast milk. Our daughter vigorously refuses my wife's breast (38H with large areolas and nipples are flat). A nipple shield was working, but she refuses that now too. We use a Medela breast pump and my wife is expressing milk at a good rate and we pump 8 times a day pretty regularly, but I am afraid her supply might dry up if we cannot get our daughter to breast feed. I bought the Calma nipples today for the bottles to try and get a more natural sucking motion for her to encourage a good latch. We always attempt to breast feed first, but our daughter just becomes so upset. Our daughter also sleeps a lot and is difficult to wake up for feedings.

    Is it too late to get her to breastfeed? Any suggestions would be greatly appreaciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Posts
    29

    Default Re: Latch Issues and Nipple Confusion (Concerned Father)

    Hi there and congrats! It's definitely not too late and don't give up! The first days can be really difficult. Was she losing a lot of weight? Because it can take 3 days for milk to come in sometimes and colostrum should provide the necessary nutrients. I know that healthcare professionals can jump the gun on formula sometimes when they are concerned about weight gain/loss. My suggestion would be to consult a certified lactation consultant ASAP. Don't give up trying to get her to latch- there are lots of good you tube videos on latching. Also, if you need help waking your baby, try changing her diaper or undressing her. Above all don't give up. These early days are tough but correcting the issues now will set you up for a positive breastfeeding experience. Nurse, nurse, and nurse some more! And props to you Dad for researching this for your wife. Good man.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Latch Issues and Nipple Confusion (Concerned Father)

    Definitely not too late. I agree with pp about seeing IBCLC if at all possible. I also suggest

    Breastfeeding support group
    the book The Womanly Art of breastfeeding 8th edition
    www.kellymom.com article "help, my baby won't nurse"
    Would you consider supplementing with something besides a bottle? If using bottle, use paced bottle feeding. See "bottlefeeding the breastfed baby" on this website.

    Milk production will not dry up if mom is responding to the pump well and pumping frequently (at least 8 times a day) But it is very important to keep offering the breast and trying to get baby to nurse.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    6

    Default Re: Latch Issues and Nipple Confusion (Concerned Father)

    You are such a lovely father and husband for being proactive on breastfeeding. I don't know many men that are like you. Kudos to you and keep up the good work Your wife is lucky to have you in her life.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    153

    Default Re: Latch Issues and Nipple Confusion (Concerned Father)

    So nice to see a father and husband on here and speaking as "we." Just keep supporting your wife best you can. I found that YouTube videos helped me a lot when my daughter's latch was off. I could not find a local IBCLC that would do a home visit so online videos became my teachers. See if you and your wife can add in a few more pumps until your daughter gets her latch worked out. Best of luck to you both and congratulations on the birth of your daughter.
    mommy to Ellie - 2/28/13 8lb 3oz 19.5in

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Cleveland, OH
    Posts
    486

    Default Re: Latch Issues and Nipple Confusion (Concerned Father)

    Have you tried nursing her while she is half asleep? If your wife expresses just a little bit of milk onto the tip of her nipple, then jostles sleeping baby girl a little and touches her nipple to her mouth she MAY instinctively latch on and nurse some. If you can get the sleepy baby to do something resembling a latch, but she keeps falling asleep, then doing some breast compressions, to dribble milk into her mouth can also lead to instinctive suckling, while half asleep.
    My little man was born 12/17/2010.

    Baby girl was born 4/30/2014.

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