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Thread: Six weeks old long cluster feeding, not sleep alone during t

  1. #1

    Default Six weeks old long cluster feeding

    Hi I'm a FTM and new here. I have a six-week-old baby girl who still struggles at poor latching. According to the lactation consultant, she has a comparebly small mouth while I have long nipples. So it's frustrating every time I need to shove my nipple into her mouth. I never succeed to push all of the lower part of areola into her mouth.
    Last edited by @llli*jing2teach; August 10th, 2017 at 06:37 PM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Six weeks old long cluster feeding, not sleep alone duri

    It's weird that I can only post part of the text.
    Trying to repost here.

    Hi I'm a FTM and new here. I have a six-week-old baby girl who still struggles at poor latching. According to the lactation consultant, she has a comparebly small mouth while I have long nipples. So it's frustrating every time I need to shove my nipple into her mouth. I never succeed to push all of the lower part of areola into her mouth.
    Last edited by @llli*jing2teach; August 10th, 2017 at 07:26 PM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Six weeks old long cluster feeding

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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Six weeks old long cluster feeding, not sleep alone duri

    Hi and welcome, so sorry you are having this frustrating concern. Not sure what problem you were having posting, let me know if something has been left out of your posts.

    Is baby exclusively breastfed at this point or are you also giving supplements? Is nursing painful for you and has that ever improved at all? Is baby nursing about 10-12 times in 24 hours or more? Is baby gaining normally? Basically if nursing does not hurt and baby is gaining normally, all is most likely well. If baby is not gaining well or nursing is hurting or injuring mom, then something is wrong.

    Generally speaking cluster nursing is entirely normal of at least the first several months. (Of course older babies cluster nurse too but not all the time.) Are you concerned about how many times in 24 hours baby nurses, or length of sessions or something else?

    Have you been told you have to push all of the lower part of the areola into her mouth, or that baby needs to have all the areola in their mouth? Generally a good latch does not require anything like that. I guess I am confused why you are doing this. Is this the only way to make latch comfortable for you? Also most babies latch best if given help to latch more or less on their own, rather than having anything shoved or pushed into their mouth. What I mean is, there are many latch and positioning techniques that facilitate a good latch that does not involve doing that. Also because a baby takes the nipple so far back into their mouth, long nipples are not usually a problem. Sometimes very thick nipples can be, until baby gets a bit bigger.

    But at 6 weeks a baby not being able to latch normally...I would find it odd if that had anything to do with mouth size vs. nipple size.

    When did you last see the LC? Can you see her again, or someone else if you prefer? here is info on what to expect at a lactation consult: http://cwgenna.com/lconsult.html
    Last edited by @llli*maddieb; August 10th, 2017 at 11:14 PM.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Six weeks old long cluster feeding, not sleep alone duri

    Hi thank you for your reply. My original concerns includes latching-on issue and sleeping issues. As far as I collected online information, I saw many descriptions or photos showing baby taking all of the lower part of areola into her mouth. That's why I have been doubting the latching condition. Adding that I can sometimes feel my nipple lands on the hard roof of her mouth and being squeezed into "lipstick nipple", I want to hear others advices. Though my baby is getting improvement on latching, she still needs 10+ times feeding and the length of each feeding is rather long like 1~1.5 hours.

    My LC said I have a long and big and round nipple (I guess that's what you call thick nipple), and her only recommendation is to take my baby to craniosacral therapy which I am hesitated. My baby has been EBF for the last four weeks and she is gaining normally and doing better and better on latching. I didn't see any urgency to give her any exterior therapy.

    I have read some other posts here and saw many recommendation of the laid back position especially for poor latch moms. I have tried several times however still not figuring out a proper way to guide the baby to find the nipple. According to your experience, should a petite mom sit upright a little bit or incline more in order to giving baby better chance to latch on?

    The second part of my question is about her sleeping situation. I feel like she only sleeps on my breast during the day time. Once I put her down she would wake up crying hardly like accusing me abandoning her.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Six weeks old long cluster feeding, not sleep alone duri

    Ok, thanks for clarifying. So, There is no need for any particular portion of the areola to be in baby's mouth to get a comfortable latch. How much areola and what part would depend on how large a moms areola is, how large her nipple is, how baby is positioned at the breast, as well as baby's size and anatomy. When you watch videos or see pictures, which I think is a good idea, use what you see not as a precise model but as a jumping off point for your own explorations. You will probably find for yourself much better what works for you by going by how the latch feels rather than how it looks. If nursing is comfortable for you, latch is probably fine, even if there is some nipple misshapenness happening, which might just be a result of your nipples being large. Of course it also matter that baby is getting enough milk, and you tell this most accurately by weight gain and not from behavior. So, again I wonder if baby is gaining normally?

    she still needs 10+ times feeding
    Yes most newborns (the newborn period is up to 3-4 months) need to nurse at least 10 times in 24 hours. This is entirely normal. And in fact it is not like this necessarily reduces that much after 3-4 months. But nursing sessions do commonly get shorter over time (after 3-4 months.)

    the length of each feeding is rather long like 1~1.5 hours.
    This is a little long for every session but, could be also entirely normal but also might indicate a milk transfer issue. Again it would help to know gain rate. One thing that many moms find helps with long feedings is breast compressions. Have you tried those? Let me know if you would like more info.

    The second part of my question is about her sleeping situation. I feel like she only sleeps on my breast during the day time. Once I put her down she would wake up crying hardly like accusing me abandoning her.
    Well, to a newborn baby, being put down somewhere alone day or night does feel like they are being abandoned and yes, they will cry like crazy to prevent this. This reaction is entirely instinctual based on hundreds of thousands of years of evolution - as far as babies are concerned, they should be held pretty much all the time, because anything else means they will quickly be eaten or die of exposure like our prehistoric ancestor's babies would have if they were ever put down. Of course some babies will sleep alone just fine, or will at least some of the time, but many will not, or will only do so if they are nursed into a deep sleep before being put down. So this does not mean baby is not getting enough to eat. The only way to tell about that is weight gain.

    I have tried several times however still not figuring out a proper way to guide the baby to find the nipple. According to your experience, should a petite mom sit upright a little bit or incline more in order to giving baby better chance to latch on?
    Again this is something you are best to experiment with. You are definitely on the right track, adjust your amount of lean to what is comfortable to you. Anything between sitting straight up and down or lying completely flat is what is meant by "laid back" so it is going to vary lots mom to mom what works best. Also adjust baby's position, baby can be in any position at all when mom is nursing laid back. Also if you can do this as much as possible with you completely topless (just until you get more practiced) it often makes it easier. Baby coming into contact with your body at several points (chest, tummy, hands, knees, even feet) help baby figure out the way to push themselves to the right spot. But there is no need to make baby crawl to you, if baby seems to need help go ahead and use your hands and adjustments you make to your own position to gently lead/ push etc. baby to the nipple, and if you need, you can shape your breast to help baby latch. But as much as possible you want to bring baby to the nipple rather than the nipple to baby if that makes sense. You can see how this is much easier if baby is more or less on top of you, but that does not mean laid back is the only positioning to try. Sidelying works well for many, and the "old fashioned" cradle or football holds work better for some. There is no one right way to position baby at the breast, there are many ways.

    Cranial sacral therapy is very gentle and reportedly can be helpful when there is a situation of a tight jaw, birth trauma, or for some reason some physical tightness preventing baby from getting a good latch-I know may LCs who recommend this to their clients. But of course there is no guarantee it would help and it is obviously not going to change your anatomy. It sounds like things are improving, so as long as that is the case and baby is gaining fine, you can keep working on this on your own. Or you might want to see the LC again or someone else to get more pointers on latch and positioning. I can offer you more links to more info on latch and positioning, but it sounds like you have found lots on your own already. In person help, even with a peer counselor like a LLL leader, can be very helpful.
    Last edited by @llli*maddieb; August 11th, 2017 at 05:58 PM.

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