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Thread: Inefficient nurser

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    Default Inefficient nurser

    My son is 3 months old and is so inefficient at the breast. It takes a minimum of 40 minutes (10 minutes per side x 4) to get him satisfied but he would stay there all the time if I'd let him, sometimes sucking, sometimes just pacifying himself. I went back to work last week so he takes 3 bottles of EB at daycare with a huge fight each time. He just never gets enough when he's nursing to be full enough to sleep for more than 3-4 hours max. He isn't exactly reverse cycling, but close enough as he wants to eat every 3 or so hours at night now. Help!!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Inefficient nurser



    Unfortunately I am not seeing a question. Are you wanting to know how to get him to be more 'efficient'? if thats it - I would ask why you think he's not? He most likely is efficient and some babies just enjoy staying at the breast to pacify (comfort nursing)- as you said.

    Most babies at that age dont sleep for longer stretches than you mentioned. Just not ready developmentally for it yet. It all sounds like its going along 'normally'.



    Edited to add this link - sleeping through.
    Last edited by Number3; September 11th, 2007 at 02:40 PM. Reason: add link
    Click here to find an LLL leader near you...or call 1 877 4 LA LECHE for help now.

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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Inefficient nurser

    I guess what I am asking is how can I ensure he is getting enough to be full each time I nurse? He shouldn't be eating every 2 hours anymore yet he has regressed to that so clearly he is not getting enough at each session. Any tips to get him to focus would be helpful, too.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Inefficient nurser

    I remember at 3 months it still took my ds a long time at the breast. Hang in there, he will get more efficient, especially as he gets bigger. My LO also pacified and still does, quite frequently at night, although we are working on gentle ways to reduce it.... It took awhile, but he can now get a full feeding in under 10 minutes.
    Nursing is not only nourishment, but also comfort and bonding. If you are away at work during the day, your LO will want to be with you even more at night. It's his way of reconnecting with you.
    3-4 hours in a row at 3 months is pretty darn good! Although I'm sure you are tired and do not want to hear that.
    We rarely get a 4 hour block. One thing we just started was having DH come in the room and rock him when he wakes up, instead of me nursing him everytime. He is slowly getting use to that as an alternative way to fall back asleep.
    Hopefully the bottles during the day will get easier as he gets more use to them.

    Kathryn,
    Mama to my sweet blueberry eyed boy Joshua
    born on 11/2/2006

    and my blueberry eyed baby Jonah Henry...my water birth baby!
    born on 6/15/09



    MOBY WRAPS ROCK

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Inefficient nurser

    Please tell me how you got him to feed in 10 minutes! That is my dream. As it is, I have to get up at 5:30 am to have enough time to pump, shower, dress, nurse and get out the door by 7:30am. With little sleep, it's taking it's toll.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Inefficient nurser

    Quote Originally Posted by lauraw View Post
    I guess what I am asking is how can I ensure he is getting enough to be full each time I nurse? He shouldn't be eating every 2 hours anymore yet he has regressed to that so clearly he is not getting enough at each session. Any tips to get him to focus would be helpful, too.
    I am almost positive he is full each time you nurse... He just really enjoys being there!! If you want to make sure he's getting enough you can always do diaper checks but it is completely within 'normal' to still be wanting to nurse every 2 hours give or take. It doesnt mean he's not getting enough..

    I just want to assure you that many babies do not always nurse for just 10 minutes (or less) at a time... There's no magic age that they nurse less, or more. Sometimes growth spurts are the cause for wanting to nurse more... sometimes its other things like reverse cycling... and sometimes they alternate from 5 minutes on to 2 minutes on to 15 minutes on. You're doing a fine job!!

    If he seems distracted when he's nursing, you can try nursing him in a quiet dark room, or laying down somewhere. There're more tips here.

    Click here to find an LLL leader near you...or call 1 877 4 LA LECHE for help now.

    "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent."
    Eleanor Roosevelt


    "Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."
    Emerson


    Ban the bags. ......... Watch your language. ....... Help keep Dr Newman's clinic open!

    We demand that our childcare providers are CPR certified... why don't we demand the same of ourselves! Get certified!

    I lost 22 lbs in 8 months... with a bit of determination and common sense information from this book.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    2,393

    Default Re: Inefficient nurser

    I agree that it is different for every baby, but as his mouth gets bigger and stronger, he will become more efficient. My LO is 10 months old now, so he can get what he needs faster. However, he still nurses frequently, day and night. He nurses when he is upset for comfort, or when he is tired. He nurses when he is in a new situation. I guess my point is that I wouldn't consider every 2 hours as regressing.
    One suggestion to get him to focus...Have you tried a nursing necklace? Alot of people sell them on-line. They are baby safe, you wear it, and he can play with it while nursing. That way he isn't pulling off and looking around for things to play with while feeding.

    Kathryn,
    Mama to my sweet blueberry eyed boy Joshua
    born on 11/2/2006

    and my blueberry eyed baby Jonah Henry...my water birth baby!
    born on 6/15/09



    MOBY WRAPS ROCK

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