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Thread: latch problems/suck confusion...HELP!(warning:long)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2007

    Default latch problems/suck confusion...HELP!(warning:long)

    Hey all,
    My little Joseph is now 6 days old and we're having tons of problems with breast feeding!!
    First off we had a super long labor with a epidural that wouldn't take and so it was topped up 3 or 4 times. Once my little one was finally cleaned up we tried breast feeding but had no success, but no one tried to help, they just left it at he wouldn't latch. I didn't get to try again for a long time and still no one to really show me anything. For the couple days in the hospital I pretty much just hand expressed colustrum and fed it through a syringe and since he wouldn't eat he had some formula over night.
    They had a lactation consultant come and see me and we got him to latch, only for a few mins but it was enough where they thought I would do okay at home with pumping and continuing to work on the latch.
    Well over the next couple days I saw a couple more nurse/consultants each giving me some new tricks and it seemed he would latch whenever they're around but then at home we have problems again and I can only get him to latch part of the time.
    Well two days ago we had to spend the night in the hospital because of jaundice and since he wouldn't really latch he only had pumped milk through a bottle all night. The next morning they sent another consultant but since I was able to latch him before she showed up they figured all was well and sent me home.
    To try and wrap this up we're still having serious problems, I'm producing tons of milk but he doesn't want to latch, he's super sleepy all the time whether from the epidural or the jaundice or both and we fight to wake him up and then it takes an exhausting 20-40 mins to get him to latch, he won't take my nipple, he doesn't like that he needs to work for his food so he might semi-attach, suck once or twice but if the milk isn't imediatly there he pulls off. We both go though so much stress in this whole process.

    Somebody please tell me what I can do!! I read one article on here that suggests stopping the bottle completely to get away from the nipple confusion and to cup feed or some other form...I would like to know how to do this because if I can get rid of the bottle that would be great but I fear that if I don't give the bottle he won't eat at all. If anyone has anything to offer I would be so grateful, I want to breast feed so badly it's just taking it's toll on my stress levels because it just seems he doesn't want to eat from my breast!!
    Thanks, Kim

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007

    Default Re: latch problems/suck confusion...HELP!(warning:long)

    Lots of hugs to you and your LO!

    I know the jaundice makes BF'ing hard to start out with, they are super sleepy until it clears. You could try BF'ing in different positions (newborns love the football hold imo), walking around, playing music, etc. to keep him awake. Once I got out of my glider my LO stopped falling asleep when I was nursing him.

    You should be SO proud that you are producing tons of milk!!! Do you have a pump? If so keep pumping and build up a nice freezer stash. I did that when my LO wasn't nursing properly and my body went wild making milk.

    I'm sure you will get some good experienced advice coming along soon on here.... I just wanted to say I understand how you feel. By day 6 I was still in tears and BF'ing was a total disaster but I was determined like you are and I promise it does get better. You and your baby will be BF'ing in harmony very soon. Stick with it!!

    Mommy to
    Logan 5-23-07
    Colby 12-14-09

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    out of my right mind

    Default Re: latch problems/suck confusion...HELP!(warning:long)

    Hang in there! The first several weeks are the hardest. You can get through it though. First off, I would be careful about pumping a lot. From what you mentioned in your post, the fact that you're already making so much milk so easily leads me to believe you could wind up having oversupply issues if you pump too much. Just keep trying to nurse first. That's what I had to do. You can always pump a little first, to get your milk to let down, then let your LO latch on. Sometimes that helps if they've become lazy because of the bottle. If you can continue feeding with a cup or dropper instead of a bottle, that will probably help significantly. But if you can't, I recommend using the Playtex NaturaLatch nipples. They're shaped more like mommy, so it forces LO to use the same suck on the bottle they would on the breast. It was a dramatic improvement for us when we switched! Hang in there! It gets better!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Knoxville Tennessee

    Default Re: latch problems/suck confusion...HELP!(warning:long)

    I had problems the first couple of nights as well. When I called the nursery at the hospital to help me change my lo diaper and bf they told me word for word "Honey we have 34 other babies here right now you are going to have to do the best you can on your own" My DD is 9 days old now and doing great with bf. The fact that we have been able to stick with it and continue bf I consider to be one of my greatest accomplishments. Every time I thought about giving up I would just relax and remind myself of all the reasons to continue (some of them selfish I will admit My little girl was born without the sucking reflex. She kept her tongue stuck to the roof of her mouth. She couldn't even suck from a bottle. What helped the most with her was to put my finger in her mouth and pull & push it gently to remind her how to suck right b4 putting her to the breast. I also feed her naked in just her diaper for skin 2 skin contact. That helps to keep her awake. Please keep trying and RELAX...if you are tense and frustrated your baby will pick up on it and you'll get nowhere. If you can't get a good latch, put baby down and calm down yourself. Walk around drink some water and look yourself in the mirror and remind yourself that you are the bast thing for your baby. BF is a learned skill and working as a team you and your lo WILL PULL IT OFF...I hope I have given you some tips you haven't already heard Best of luck to you

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Re: latch problems/suck confusion...HELP!(warning:long)

    gosh huggs to both of you! You have both had a rough time.
    SOme babies it just takes them a while to get the hang of breastfeeding!
    You can do it.
    Don't be afriad to call your local leader she can help!
    You have to follow the 1st rule feed the baby.
    here are two good links to start with!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007

    Default Re: latch problems/suck confusion...HELP!(warning:long)

    Again well done for sticking with it!

    It may feel hard now but dont stress out about it, you are doing a great job! And remember that any breast milk is good breast milk whether it comes from a bottle or your nipple. I have read so many success stories on this board about women in he same situation as you, who have struggled at first, but ended up having super-sucky babies in the end!

    Sounds like you are working at it really hard. Maybe take a little time out, and get naked with ya babe and just cuddle!

    Let us know how it goes.
    Karli, Besotted mother of Ashley,8lb 9oz - 9th May 2007 and Fae 8lb 11oz 17th Feb 2010, both born at home, naturally.

    Nappy-free @ 18 months EC'ing rocks!
    Just leave it alone.

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