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Thread: baby falls asleep at the breast & stops sucking

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    621

    Default baby falls asleep at the breast & stops sucking

    my 2 week old tends to fall asleep very quickly at the breast and/or often stops sucking after a few sucks. any suggestions on how to improve this? he is very difficult to wake up too once he's fallen asleep like this...

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    184

    Default Re: baby falls asleep at the breast & stops sucking

    How often does he feed?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    113

    Default Re: baby falls asleep at the breast & stops sucking

    Hannah fell asleep while nursing a lot when she was first born. The lactation consultant at the hospital suggested nursing with only her diaper on, or changing her diaper, or touching her with a wet washcloth to wake her. I found all of them worked, though wet washcloth sometimes made her cranky. Now when she falls asleep i find that simply tickling her under her chin or behind her neck will wake her.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
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    128

    Default Re: baby falls asleep at the breast & stops sucking

    Riley did the same thing when he was itty bitty! We tried changing his diaper, using a wet wipe, etc. We also (I know this sounds bad) would thump his feet sometimes. The thumping worked, and so did tickling him on the cheek or at the nape of his neck.

    Good luck! It does get easier!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    1,770

    Default Re: baby falls asleep at the breast & stops sucking

    If you're looking to just wake baby up, lots of things have worked for me . . . I start nursing w/ baby clothed in case I need to wake him up while nursing. If I do, I start by removing articles of clothing. That usually does the trick. If not, diaper changes (cold wipes work for the startle factor), sitting baby up and talking, any kind of tickling. It can get a little frustrating when they're new and they want to eat and sleep at the same time, but can't Also, another thing that helps me w/ my 5 wo is to make sure he is FULLY awake when I put him to the breast to start eating . . . if he JUST woke up or is a little drowsy the boob puts him RIGHT back to sleep. Heck, I get sleepy everytime I nurse! Good luck!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    2,770

    Default Re: baby falls asleep at the breast & stops sucking

    This is very normal at this age. You can strip him down to his diaper for some cool air and skin-to-skin, try a damp wash cloth, tickle his feet or his neck, walk your fingers up and down his spine, lift his arm and gently jiggle it, tap under his chin, or sit him upright.... If nothing works, maybe let him snooze just a bit and then try again.

    Enjoy this phase! As your LO gets older, he will wake up more and be more aware of his surroundings, and then he will fall asleep at the breast less. Haley still falls asleep occasionally while nursing, and gets very sleepy while nursing at bedtime, but she rarely conks out totally anymore.
    I love my kids. I care for them accordingly. What more can I say?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    44

    Default Re: baby falls asleep at the breast & stops sucking

    Ok, to continue with this post. My LO does the same thing falling asleep at the breast constantly, so if i continue to wake him up how do i know when he is done sucking and not just sucking for the sake of sucking because mom keep waking him up? I am so not figuring out this how long at the breast stuff. I know i'm only two weeks in, but it is still confusing to me.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    79

    Default Re: baby falls asleep at the breast & stops sucking

    Quote Originally Posted by kburly77 View Post
    Ok, to continue with this post. My LO does the same thing falling asleep at the breast constantly, so if i continue to wake him up how do i know when he is done sucking and not just sucking for the sake of sucking because mom keep waking him up? I am so not figuring out this how long at the breast stuff. I know i'm only two weeks in, but it is still confusing to me.
    If your baby is actively sucking and swallowing a pause when swallowing then you should leave your LO on because she/he is feeding. If you are experiencing just random sucking and no swallowing your baby is using you as a paci. If you are concerned that baby isnt staying on long enough or awake long enough you can use breast compressions to get more milk dr newmans site has reat clips on this at http://www.thebirthden.com/Newman.html

    HTH!
    Becky

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    96

    Default Re: baby falls asleep at the breast & stops sucking

    We had the same issue. We would undress him, wipe him down with a cool washcloth, hold him in a burping position and rub his back pretty vigorously, etc. Sometimes it would work, sometimes we would just end up having to try a little bit later. We did get through it though after a few weeks.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    6

    Default Re: baby falls asleep at the breast & stops sucking

    Hi,
    I'd like to second the advice about using breast compressions.

    I had a terrible time keeping my daughter awake for feedings, but once I learned about breast compression I was usually able to keep her swallowing even in her sleep by timing breast compressions to her sucking.

    Watching the Newman video about swallowing taught me how to recognize when she was getting milk and when she wasn't (if it's quiet in the room, you can hear the swallow-neat!).

    Good luck! Now I sometimes yearn for the days when I had to wake my daughter up rather than work to get her to sleep!

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