Happy Mothers Breastfed Babies
Results 1 to 7 of 7

Thread: Looking to vent and get some support

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Southeastern CT
    Posts
    2

    Default Looking to vent and get some support

    Hi all, I'm new to these forums. I'm the mother of a preemie son, who is nearly 7 weeks old, -1 week gestation (born 8 weeks early). Breastfeeding has been a beast for him and for me. He refuses to latch without the shield and seldom stays on for long enough. Per the neonatologist from the NICU, he gets supplemental bottles after each nursing feeding (more like attempt), with pumped milk fortified with Neosure powder. The other half of his feeding is bottle with powder. They prescribed this because he's seriously underweight (2 lb 13 oz at birth, 5 lb 5 oz currently).
    Attempts to nurse in the hospital were largely unsuccessful because he didn't have the stamina. Now he sucks down his bottles and pretty much refuses to even try to latch or nurse. I have been pumping, so he's getting breastmilk one way or the other, but I hate the pump and just want to nurse.
    I don't know what to do. This sucks.

    Ali
    Last edited by @llli*preemiemamact; June 14th, 2014 at 11:48 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    20,799

    Default Re: Looking to vent and get some support

    Welcome to the forum!

    I'm sorry your LO had to arrive so early and be so small and fragile. Being shy of 3 lbs at birth... That's really small, and I can totally understand why he had such a hard time nursing and needed those supplemental calories.

    At this point, he's only a week shy of his due date and he's a pretty nice size. I think those two things mean that this could be a good time to work on more nursing. Here's what I would do:
    - If baby will only latch with a shield, fine. I'd rather see him latching on for a short time than not latching at all.
    - Keep offering the bare breast. Maybe one day things will click and the baby will realize that the shield just gets in his way.
    - Try the tips in this link: http://kellymom.com/bf/concerns/child/back-to-breast/
    - Consider using a different method to supplement, one that does not require a bottle. This link covers alternatives: http://kellymom.com/bf/pumpingmoms/f...ding/#atbreast. The at-the-breast supplementers (Medela Supplemental Nursing System, Lact-Aid) seem like something you would want to try.
    - Keep your baby's bottles small and frequent rather than large and infrequent. Newborns tend to feed about 10-12 times a day or even more frequently, taking small amounts of milk each time (1-3 oz would be typical), and mimicking that pattern with the bottle will mean that the baby will get hungry more often and that you will get more opportunities to try him at the breast.
    - Use paced feeding techniques. Pause the feeding after each oz of milk. Burp the baby in between oz. Feed the baby in an upright position so that a) the flow is slower and b) he has to really work to get milk out of the bottle.
    - Make bottle-feeding as much like breastfeeding as possible. When it's time to bottle-feed, cuddle baby close to your bare breast. Tickle the baby's lips with the bottle nipple and wait until he opens WIDE before putting the bottle in his mouth- that way he won't learn sloppy latch habits from having a bottle slipped into a half-open mouth. Pause the feeding after every oz to mimic the ebb-and-flow rhythm of nursing, and pause to switch the baby over to the other side of your body, just as a mom would switch breasts partway through a feeding.
    - Talk to your doc about the supplemental Neosure powder. Now that your baby is nearly term and is at a healthier weight, I would think that you could slowly drop the supplements and see what happens- can baby grow on your milk alone? My guess is that he can!

    Since you're exclusively pumping at this point, here are some things that may listen your workload:
    - Use a hospital grade pump. You'll probably get more milk in less time, and that will mean more time for you to work on nursing and hey- maybe even get a shower or something to eat!
    - You can pump new milk on top of old 1x before washing everything again, according to my LC. After pumping, leave your pump screwed to the bottle and put the assembly in the fridge. You can use it again next time you pump, swapping in a new bottle if you choose.
    - Get a second pair of pump parts to decrease your workload even more.
    - I found it helpful to keep a large basin full of soapy water next to my sink. I threw used bottles and pump parts in as necessary, and did just 1-2 big wash-ups per day instead of a zillion little ones.
    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!"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Southeastern CT
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Looking to vent and get some support

    Thank you for your lengthly reply! I'm hoping to implement some of the things soon, and talk with the pediatrician about the supplement next week during the two-month visit. Thanks again.

    Has anyone else struggled like this? It feels very lonely when I'm trying repeatedly to get my LO to open his mouth or even stop elbowing me in the breast. Sigh.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
    Posts
    17,423

    Default Re: Looking to vent and get some support

    Keep Pumping! Keep your supply up. I am going to see if I can get Kim to log in and talk to you. She had a preemie that she pumped exclusively for while the baby was in the Nicu and it took months at home I think but she got MK all the way back to the breast and nursed her for well over a year. Hold On Mama!

    Way too lazy for formula

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    4,894

    Default Re: Looking to vent and get some support

    I am awfully late to this party but my life is insane. I hope you come back to read this. DJ's mom is right. My daughter was 7 weeks early and it took me over 2 months to get her to even latch once and another 3 months to get it right. It was not easy and it honestly didn't take anything more than persistence, tears and desperation to get her to the breast. I refused to give up and after awhile I refused to give her bottles. I didn't care what they said about her weight, because she was growing and I knew that's what mattered. The best advice I got was from my pediatrician who was also my lactation consultant. Give her until her due date to even give it a true try. Because she wasn't meant to be born yet and her parts don't match mine. According to this, you hadn't met that milestone yet. I hope at this point you've gotten him to latch a bit and haven't given up. Please feel free to reach out.
    If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun. - Katharine Hepburn

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
    Posts
    17,423

    Default Re: Looking to vent and get some support

    Oh Hi Kim!! Good to see you!!

    Way too lazy for formula

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    2,625

    Default Re: Looking to vent and get some support

    I had preemie twins (35 weeks) and they did wake up around their due date but didn't nurse efficiently until they were 11 weeks. Until then I pumped around the clock, 10-16x/day with a hospital grade pump in addition to nursing. It was very exhausting but very worth it. I don't think anyone would ask you to pump 16x/day with a singleton. I supplemented my babies at breast using a lactation aid (long thin tube connected to a bottle of my pumped milk). I highly highly recommend supplementing at breast so baby learns milk comes from mommy. Even full term babies can have their problems, especially the first 6 weeks, so I'd definitely recommend hanging in there day by day and get whatever help you need, both with breastfeeding and the rest of your household so you have the energy to focus on your new baby.
    Nursed my sweet daughter 3 years, 3 mos.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •