Happy Mothers Breastfed Babies
Results 1 to 4 of 4

Thread: Exclusively Pumping - But want to get back to Breast

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Posts
    11

    Default Exclusively Pumping - But want to get back to Breast

    Hi everyone,

    My little girl was born on 14 October, so she is three weeks old this Friday. She had a 75% tongue tie and was unable to latch. Because of this I have been pumping and then either feeding her through a syringe in the early days (started with 1ml then moved to 5ml), then started using the medela calma bottles to feed her.

    Her tongue tie was corrected about a week ago. However, she has a SMALL mouth, and a tight jaw. And even though she was able to latch maybe once or twice on my right breast she was not nursing effectively.

    I had her weighed yesterday and she is over her birth weight. Born 8lbs 2oz, dropped a pound in hospital (we were in hospital about 3 days after she was born, just in case she had an infection as I had a temperature spike. But we were both fine. Yesterday she weighed 8lbs 7oz, so I'm really pleased! She tends to sleep for 4-6 hours at a time and then eat aroudn 60-100mls. Initially I thought I'd need to start waking her to have more, but with growth like that I don't think I do! That is, of course, if I keep pumping and bottle feeding her... This is NOT my desire.

    Caitlin is my second baby, and I dried up at 6 weeks with my first baby due to undiagnosed hypothyroidism. This time I've been so careful - harvested colostrum before the birth, have been pumping like a mad thing! And typically, if I pump every 2 hours, I get on average 100ml of milk (just over 3oz) with each pump. The most I have got (after a long stretch of NOT pumping) was over 375mls! So my breasts have good capacity for milk storage.

    Now. This is my issue. I REALLY REALLY want to get Caitlin back to the boob. But I'm having loads of issues.

    1. She doesn't open her mouth. She tends to stick her lips out and nibble! Even with a bottle I have to wedge her mouth open more so that the bottle can go towards the back of her mouth. So with a breast - it can take me 10 minutes JUST to get her mouth open enough for a nipple to go in. And by then we are both highly frustrated and annoyed with the situation.

    2. I only manage to latch her on the right boob (after maybe 15 minutes of trying!). She can't latch on the left (which is really annoying because my left breast is the best performer when it comes to milk production!).

    3. When I have managed to latch her she sucks maybe 5 or 6 times and then she just sits there. Yesterday I pumped first to get the milk flowing and then tried to latch her, but because it took 10-15 mins to latch her my milk had stopped flowing by then. I don't leak - she has to suck to get my milk, even when I feel it letting down. I don't have a very fast flow. When pumping (I use the medela symphony) after about 3 mins of the pump going (2 mins of the teasing suck and 1 min of proper sucking) my milk does spurt out. But once again, only in response to the pump sucking.

    4. So IF I manage to get her latched she latches just behind the nipple (or ON it, which is very painful) and she does chew a little and suck a little, but never enough to actually get any milk from me.

    So I'm really frustrated - if I pump then there is not enough flow to encourage her to come onto the boob. If I don't pump then I get engorged! I really really want to exclusively breastfeed her until she's 6 months, and then continue to breastfeed her alongside food for as long as she is interested. She does like the breast, and comfort sucks most of the time when she is on.

    I have a feeding tube that has been given to me by a IBCLC who says I should use that instead of the bottles to feed her. I am happy to start doing that today. But I wanted some advice - what should I do?? Do I stop pumping, put her to the breast for the whole day even though I don't feel she's actually getting much? Yesterday I tried this and I think she swallowed maybe five times. I then gave up late afternoon and pumped, and got out over 375mls of milk in total.

    Really need some practical advice on how to get her to open her mouth, how to get my milk to flow when she's sucking, and whether I should have some structured feeding time where perhaps every 3 hours I put her on the boob for maybe 15 minutes to let her practise, and then top her up with expressed milk to ensure she continues to put on weight...

    Please help! I'd also LOVE to have some hands on help if anyone is available to come to me. I live in Harpenden, Hertfordshire. But am also just as interested in any proper advice that will help me to get off pumping and onto feeding at the breast.

    Thanks,
    Leanne

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    10,756

    Default Re: Exclusively Pumping - But want to get back to Breast

    Hi, I am so sorry you are having these difficulties.
    How much in person assistance with latching etc. have you had? I do not really understand how an IBCLC told you to start using a feeding tube instead of a bottle but did not answer the questions above that of course you are needing answers for. The problem with those questions is that the answers depends on how well baby is able to transfer milk at the breast, and from the tube at the breast (so how much baby needs in supplements and how well the aid is 'working' for you and your baby).... and that is something your IBCLC should be helping you figure out. In other words, she should have come up with an overall feeding/pumping plan for you that includes the answers to all those questions (or will lead to the answers, often there is a period of trial and error, and of course as baby gets better at transfer plans should change and sometimes need to be tweaked for other reasons.)

    I am not even sure what you mean by feeding tube- an at the breast supplementer (aka lactation aid) or something else?

    Generally whenever a baby is receiving ANY supplements in any way, mom should also pump, even to just be on the safe side. Yes using a lactation aid to supplement baby instead of a bottle (or cup or syringe etc) may well reduce how often/long you need to pump, but how much depends so much on the individual situation it is impossible to advise from this remove.

    Really need some practical advice on how to get her to open her mouth, how to get my milk to flow when she's sucking, and whether I should have some structured feeding time where perhaps every 3 hours I put her on the boob for maybe 15 minutes to let her practise, and then top her up with expressed milk to ensure she continues to put on weight...
    How structured/timed a feeding plan may be is pretty much a matter of moms convenience, a matter of time management for MOM. As long as baby is eating frequently and getting enough overall to eat, there is no need for any structure- newborns normally nurse in a very sporadic matter (very frequently part of the day, less frequently others) and not regularly every such and such hours nor for any specific length of time. So how much structure/lack thereof you are comfortable with and works for you can inform your plan. But again the specifics usually need to be worked out with someone trained in the area who has been able to spend the time with you necessary to figuring this out- this usually means at LEAST one private appointment of 90 minutes or so and then shorter (30-60 minute) follow up consults as needed.

    Babies often simply will not open wide (gape) prior to latching, and this is not always required for baby to get a good latch. But what positions and latch techniques have you tried?

    Have you directly contacted LLL or other volunteer breastfeeding support in your area?

    What to expect at a professional lactation consult: http://cwgenna.com/lconsult.html

    Lactation aid info: (General) http://www.breastfeedinginc.ca/conte...agename=doc-LA

    More specifically about scheduling: http://cwgenna.com/smartnothard.html

    Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ezGIkIkhC_o
    Last edited by @llli*maddieb; November 1st, 2016 at 12:38 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Exclusively Pumping - But want to get back to Breast

    Hello,

    I have a bit of an update. I'm only managing to pump 4-5 times a day at the moment because I'm first trying her on the breast, then I'm pumping.

    She is latching fairly well on the right breast now, and about 60% of the time it does not hurt me. Then she suckles quite nicely and I can hear her swallowing. I can usually pump between 20-60ml from that breast so I'm pretty sure she could get more if she learns. I don't think she gets enough from the breast. Two or three times now she's been on for about 30 minutes, but I'd say half of that is her sleeping. She has a very small mouth, so I'm wondering if she just needs to grow some more in order to gain the skills of transferring milk...

    I feel frustrated though becasue I'm not able to pump as much as I have a 2 year old toddler at home, and I run my own business. When I was JUST pumping and feeding Caitlin with a bottle I managed to pump 7-9 times a day, and was getting around 25 oz a day. That is what I really wanted so that I could establish my supply build my capacity. I don't think the good supply I have at the moment is a sign of it staying that way!

    As for latching - she is very difficult to control. Most newborns you have to support their neck and guide them onto the breast. With Caitlin, I have to hold her back! Because she launches herself at the nipple and bites! She's 3 weeks tomorrow. So instead of having my hand aroudn the back of her neck I'm having to hold the front of her forehead and only when she has a big enough mouth "let" her onto the breast. Although this has been improving, and I've noticed that if she's REALLY hungry then I struggle more with her.

    So to answer your question - she is not transferring milk very well. WHen I get her on the breast I probably hear her swallowing 5-10 times, and I don't think they are gulps. She then either falls asleep and continues to drink a little longer while semi-asleep, or she comfort sucks and after 10-15 minutes detaches herself.

    I'm thinking of getting breast shells to wear between feedings as a way to stimulate my nipples a bit?

    I can't latch her ontot he left breast. It's either too sore and I have to remove her, or she just doesnt manage to latch. I tried a nipple shield once, but she didnt seem to like that...

    Feeling frustrated as I'm not able to pump as much as I wanted to. And I really do want her on the breast rather than having to express all the time or feed her formula. My first child was on formula from 6 weeks onwards, and she has turned out fighting fit. So it's not a huge trainsmash if that is what happens here as well. But I really do want breastfeeding to work, and for Caitlin to be comforted by the breast, and for us to have that bond.

    Yes, I've had help with latching. We didn't manage to get her onto the left breast. And the right she did latch, but she doesn't take in a lot of the breast. My nipples are quite long because my first baby stretched them. And because Caitlins mouth is small all she can fit into her mouth is the nipple. So she latches shallowly, and typically just behind the nipple if I'm lucky.

    I tried finger feeding, but it took her 30 minutes to take 20 mls! I just don't have that sort of time, because she wants between 80-120mls to fill up. So I've gone back to bottle feeding her after she has had a suckle at the breast.

    As for positions - she latches best cross cradle for the right breast. And for the left breast the only way I've managed to latch her is the rugby hold.

    The IBCLC that I've seen hasn't given me any kind of schedule. I will see someone else this next week and ask them to help me with this.

    Thanks,
    Leanne

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    10,756

    Default Re: Exclusively Pumping - But want to get back to Breast

    Hi I am sorry I missed this when you posted. I assume you have seen the new IBCLC by now? If you can give an update I will watch and see if I have any suggestions to offer.

Posting Permissions

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