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Thread: nipple confusion in 17-day-old

  1. #1
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    Default nipple confusion in 17-day-old

    My baby girl is 17 days old today, and I have still been unsuccessful at getting her to breastfeed. Much of the problem stems from the fact that she had jaundice when she was born. To lower the biliruben levels, the pediatricians started her on formula. Much to my dismay, I didn't realize that the bottles had fast flow nipples. So, on day 4, when I brought her home, she was quite used to the fast flow. I called the certified lactation consultant a few days later because I still could not breastfeed, and I met with her the next day. Unfortunately, my daughter was sleepy, so the nurse was unable to see just how mad my little girl gets when I try to breastfeed (she cries hysterically and pushes away). the RN gave me a Medela nipple shield to try, thinking that flooding it would help trick her into sucking. I tried that, but to no avail. Then, I met with the RN again, and she had me get a Medela finger feeder, which I was to use to flood the nipple shield more easily. Still, that too was unsuccessful. I met with the RN one more time last Friday and she seemed to be at a loss. She saw just how mad my baby can get.

    While I have been trying, it seems in vain, to get my daughter to nurse, I have been pumping my milk and feeding her with a Avent bottle with a size one nipple. I know everyone says to never use a bottle, but I had to early on to flush out the biliruben and get her healthier.

    But I feel cheated. No one I know has had this experience. Yes, all moms I have talked to say breastfeeding was tough but their babies eventaully got the hang of it. But, I feel like the exception. I try and try but feel like I am failing. And I know time is of the essence.

    I called local la leche mothers, but they all have said my problem is beyond their ability to help and told me to see a lactation specialist. I did. No luck.

    So, I am wondering if there is anything else I can do. I continue to pump, but it is taxing on me physically and emotionally. I want to breastfeed my child, but I am losing faith. Is my situation a no-win situation? Is it hopeless?

    Thank you in advance for any help you can give to me.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: nipple confusion in 17-day-old

    I'd stop giving her any bottles if possible and maybe try a Supplemental Nursing System. This is a bottle with a tube you tape to your breast and the end of the tiny tube is at the nipple. This way, you can feed her expressed milk and she'll be rewarded for her sucking by a decent flow, you get the stimulation needed to produce milk and she gets the practice.

    In the early days of BFing my son, I was pumping to stimulate production and the LC gave us a sip cup to use to get it into him, as well as the SNS.

    The sip cup was great, my husband would top James up with it when he got fed up nursing (or I got fed up nursing 20 hours a day ) and it meant an alternate way to get milk into him without the need for a bottle. He lapped from it like a little kitten...it was adorable.

    Google Supplemental Feeding System and Foley Development (for the sip cup) to see what I mean.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: nipple confusion in 17-day-old



    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    My baby girl is 17 days old today, and I have still been unsuccessful at getting her to breastfeed. Much of the problem stems from the fact that she had jaundice when she was born. To lower the biliruben levels, the pediatricians started her on formula. Much to my dismay, I didn't realize that the bottles had fast flow nipples. So, on day 4, when I brought her home, she was quite used to the fast flow.


    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    I called the certified lactation consultant a few days later because I still could not breastfeed...the RN gave me a Medela nipple shield to try, thinking that flooding it would help trick her into sucking... she had me get a Medela finger feeder...I met with the RN one more time last Friday and she seemed to be at a loss. She saw just how mad my baby can get.
    You sound frustrated...

    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    While I have been trying, it seems in vain, to get my daughter to nurse, I have been pumping my milk and feeding her with a Avent bottle with a size one nipple. I know everyone says to never use a bottle, but I had to early on to flush out the biliruben and get her healthier.
    When your baby latches on to the bottle nipple, his her mouth open wide like it would be on the breast? When you tip the bottle upside down, does it merely drip or does it drip slowly with does it drip with a quick pace?

    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    But I feel cheated. No one I know has had this experience. Yes, all moms I have talked to say breastfeeding was tough but their babies eventaully got the hang of it. But, I feel like the exception. I try and try but feel like I am failing. And I know time is of the essence.
    You're not failing! You are not the exception. Sometimes it just takes a while longer. Remember that breastfeeding is an art. You and your baby will learn--together!

    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    I called local la leche mothers, but they all have said my problem is beyond their ability to help and told me to see a lactation specialist. I did. No luck.
    When baby is unable to latch on, it often helps to see someone in person. We can absolutely offer you information and support (), though if you need one to one help with latching on, seeing an IBCLC in person is often the most helpful thing to do.

    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    So, I am wondering if there is anything else I can do. I continue to pump, but it is taxing on me physically and emotionally. I want to breastfeed my child, but I am losing faith. Is my situation a no-win situation? Is it hopeless?
    Your situation is NOT hopeless. Many, many mothers have been where you are now.

    The most helpful things you can do are:
    *Skin to skin contact--this tends to "wake up" baby's reflexes. Baby is stripped down to a diaper, mom is topless and braless. A blanket is draped around mom's shoulders to keep mom and baby warm. Baby is upright on mom's chest.
    *Try nursing when baby is asleep or sleepy
    *Vary positions
    *Try nursing in motion (rocking, swaying, walking, bouncing)
    *Express a little milk to get the flow going before latching baby on.
    * Keep baby close to you between feeds (a sling or other baby carrier can make this easier)
    * If baby refuses to nurse, pump/hand express to preserve your production

    Here's some more specific information and tips:
    http://www.llli.org/FAQ/back.html
    http://www.llli.org/llleaderweb/LV/LVOctNov99p99.html
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/...to-breast.html (non-LLL resource)

    I hope some of this information is helpful to you. We're here to answer your questions and listen to your concerns. Please do keep us updated!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: nipple confusion in 17-day-old

    My little May baby just turned THE BIG ONE!
    Formally known as kaykate23

  5. #5
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    Default Re: nipple confusion in 17-day-old

    http://forums.llli.org/showthread.php?t=27254


    this may help. lots of great help for me. You can do it. Hang in there. skin to skin did it for me along with a weekend nursing vacation. pp has phenomenal advice
    My little May baby just turned THE BIG ONE!
    Formally known as kaykate23

  6. #6
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    Default Re: nipple confusion in 17-day-old

    , I completely understand your frustration. Try taking a nursing vacation, offer your baby the breast before she gets fussy. They get crazy mad when they get very hungry. Try resting a lot, let housework etc be. Find a quiet place to relax and then let it be just you and baby. Also try the supplemental nursing system. Your baby and you will eventually figure it out. Please let go of the guilt because you are doing everything right. Just know that the first few weeks are hard (really really hard!) for every mother.

    Cheers

  7. #7
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    Default Re: nipple confusion in 17-day-old

    Thank you, Jolie and everyone else for your suggestions. It does help tremendously to know that my situation is not a hopeless situation. To answer your question, Jolie, the bottle nipple does drip slowly, but my baby is a chugger. She has an amazing suck when it comes to the bottle. So, I have been pace feeding her and doing suckle training. I will try your suggestions--skin to skin, trying to breastfeed her while she is sleepy, etc. (though I feel that window of opportunity is small because when she wakes up all heck breaks loose; plus I don't quite know how to wake her just enough so that she'll actually suckle as opposed to just sleeping there). My other concern is coordinating pumping with her feedings. Right now, I have been pumping every two hours for thirty minutes at a time, but she eats every three. Should I wake her when I need to pump? Should I pump for a few minutes and then wake her?

    As for the S&S system, my lactation nurse (whose certified) had me get a Medela finger feeder. I've tried it, but it's really hard to change my little girl, whose upset and crying because her diaper's wet, with that contraption taped to my finger. Yesterday, I just wanted to throw it in the trash I was so irritated.

    Again, thank you for your advice. It is comforting to know moms like you guys are out there to help us.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: nipple confusion in 17-day-old

    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    So, I have been pace feeding her and doing suckle training.
    Paced feeding can make a huge difference.

    Did you read the info in the links that were posted earlier? There are some tips that you might find useful.

    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    I will try your suggestions--skin to skin, trying to breastfeed her while she is sleepy, etc. (though I feel that window of opportunity is small because when she wakes up all heck breaks loose; plus I don't quite know how to wake her just enough so that she'll actually suckle as opposed to just sleeping there).
    To get her to nurse while sleeping, just put her near the breast in a position that she is comfortable in. Sometimes the smell of milk can start a rooting response.

    If your baby wakes ravenously hungry, you could try starting her on the bottle, then offer the breast for comfort. You could feed her the bottle in a nursing position, then when she is sleepy, pull the ol' switcharoo.


    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    My other concern is coordinating pumping with her feedings. Right now, I have been pumping every two hours for thirty minutes at a time, but she eats every three. Should I wake her when I need to pump? Should I pump for a few minutes and then wake her?
    Will your baby nurse at all at this point? That would make a difference in my suggestions...

    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    As for the S&S system, my lactation nurse (whose certified) had me get a Medela finger feeder. I've tried it, but it's really hard to change my little girl, whose upset and crying because her diaper's wet, with that contraption taped to my finger. Yesterday, I just wanted to throw it in the trash I was so irritated.


    Definitely try before she is ravenously hungry. If there's any way possible, check her diaper and be sure she's comfortable and happy before attempting to feed.


    It gets easier! You'll see. You can do it!

  9. #9
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    Default Re: nipple confusion in 17-day-old

    Home Executive,
    I just tried to breastfeed her not too long ago. I picked her up while she was still sleepy and put her to my breast while I walked around (one of Jolie's suggestions). She latched on but did not suck. Then, out of no where it seems, she began getting fussy, woke up, and screamed. I calmed her down and tried again with the other breast. But no luck. I then changed her diaper and fed her some of the pumped milk and tried one more time once she was calm since i was beginning to leak. She sucked for about 15-30 seconds and then began crying.
    To answer your question in regard to my question about how to coordinate pumping, she nursed once for about five minutes last Friday at the lactation consultant's office. But then she had me take her off the breast so that she could weigh her. I believe she said that she took an ounce. However, when we tried to get her back on the breast, Sophia would having nothing of it and began yet another crying episode.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: nipple confusion in 17-day-old

    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    I just tried to breastfeed her not too long ago. I picked her up while she was still sleepy and put her to my breast while I walked around (one of Jolie's suggestions). She latched on but did not suck.
    That's good! That is one of the steps to getting baby back to the breast.

    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    Then, out of no where it seems, she began getting fussy, woke up, and screamed.
    It gets better. It's a very good sign that she latched on! Don't give up hope. So many babies start out with these tiny steps, and one day just up and start breastfeeding out of nowhere. Some start nursing as late as 4-6 weeks. The key is to continue offering the breast daily, without forcing. You'll get there!

    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    I calmed her down and tried again with the other breast. But no luck. I then changed her diaper and fed her some of the pumped milk and tried one more time once she was calm since i was beginning to leak. She sucked for about 15-30 seconds and then began crying.
    Improvement!


    Quote Originally Posted by At-a-loss View Post
    To answer your question in regard to my question about how to coordinate pumping, she nursed once for about five minutes last Friday at the lactation consultant's office. But then she had me take her off the breast so that she could weigh her. I believe she said that she took an ounce. However, when we tried to get her back on the breast, Sophia would having nothing of it and began yet another crying episode.
    Wow! That's fantastic news. Do you feel reassured that she is able to latch on and efficiently drain the breast?

    As far as pumping goes, your schedule sounds good. Are you concerned that she might decide to nurse soon after you pump?

    As an aside, here's an informative resource regarding maximizing milk production w/a pump:
    http://newborns.stanford.edu/Breastf...roduction.html


    Below are some quotes that you might find helpful/reassuring. The URL to the the full text is located below the quotes.

    "If your baby refuses to breastfeed because he perceives it as unpleasant, what can be done to reestablish the breastfeeding relationship? It is important to remember that your baby loves you despite his refusal of the breast. Activities that encourage a renewal of the physical bond between mother and child are crucial. Skin-to-skin contact, kangaroo care techniques, baby-wearing, co-sleeping and co-bathing are all ways to encourage your baby to experience pleasant physical contact with you. Once he starts to feel comfort while being close to you, he is more likely to go back to the breast."
    http://www.llli.org/NB/NBJulAug01p136.html

    "In general, one of the best remedies for babies experiencing a reluctance to nurse is skin-to-skin contact. This can stimulate the baby to awaken and know he needs to feed. The mother can strip the baby down to his diaper and allow him to snuggle against her bare chest. Tuck a blanket or sheet (or a large t-shirt) around them both if more warmth is needed. This skin-to-skin contact comforts both mother and baby and allows them to become intimately acquainted, relax together, and fall in love with each other."

    "Babies who are not desperately hungry are more cooperative at feedings, so suggest that the mother watch for early signs of hunger. These signs include REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep, where the baby's eyes are moving rapidly under his closed lids; lip movements, especially those that also involve the tongue; turning the head back and forth and bringing the hands up toward the face."

    "Trying to feed the baby as he is just awakening or very drowsy works well for many families. As we drift to sleep or awaken, we are in a more primitive state of mind and since breastfeeding is a survival behavior for babies, sometimes they revert to feeding well at this time. Co-sleeping makes it easier to recognize early hunger cues and either wake the baby to feed or become aware of baby's self-awakening."

    "A technique known as "rebirthing" has been helpful for many nursing couples. Mother draws a nice warm bath at least deep enough to cover her knees. The bathroom is darkened, perhaps lit with candles with appealing scents. Quiet, calming music may be softly played. The mother gets in the bathtub and her helper hands her the baby. The mother floats the baby in the water, tummy up, supporting his body firmly and holding his face always above the water. After a time, the mother picks up the baby and snuggles him at her bare breasts. Many times the baby will nuzzle, then latch on and nurse! The mother can place a small towel over the baby and splash warm water from the tub on him to keep the baby nice and warm. When the mother is ready to get out of the tub, her helper can take the baby and wrap him in a towel and diaper him while mother dries off. They can continue their snuggle in a favorite chair. Even if this doesn't result in the baby nursing, it is an enjoyable experience for both the mother and the baby."

    "A technique known as "rebirthing" has been helpful for many nursing couples. Mother draws a nice warm bath at least deep enough to cover her knees. The bathroom is darkened, perhaps lit with candles with appealing scents. Quiet, calming music may be softly played. The mother gets in the bathtub and her helper hands her the baby. The mother floats the baby in the water, tummy up, supporting his body firmly and holding his face always above the water. After a time, the mother picks up the baby and snuggles him at her bare breasts. Many times the baby will nuzzle, then latch on and nurse! The mother can place a small towel over the baby and splash warm water from the tub on him to keep the baby nice and warm. When the mother is ready to get out of the tub, her helper can take the baby and wrap him in a towel and diaper him while mother dries off. They can continue their snuggle in a favorite chair. Even if this doesn't result in the baby nursing, it is an enjoyable experience for both the mother and the baby."
    http://www.llli.org/llleaderweb/LV/LVOctNov99p99.html

    "Lots of skin-to-skin contact can help your baby nurse better and even gain weight faster. Keep your baby with you as much as possible, and give him lots of opportunities to nurse (even if you're not successful). Get skin-to-skin with him, first when he is sleepy, right after a bottle feed (or however you're supplementing). This way baby has the opportunity to sleep and wake up happily, skin to skin at mom's chest, and mom is right there to catch the earliest hunger cues. If baby moves toward the breast and then falls asleep before even mouthing the nipple, or after sucking twice, then these are positive baby steps, not failures."

    "Comfort nursing is often the first to come, followed by nutritive nursing. Offer the breast for comfort any time you see a chance- at the end of a feeding when baby is not hungry, when baby is going to sleep or just waking up, when baby is asleep, and whenever he needs to comfort suck If your baby is actively resisting nursing, then try encouraging comfort nursing after baby is comfortable with skin-to-skin contact. After baby is willing to nurse for comfort, you can then proceed to working on nursing for "meals" as well."

    "When using a bottle, encourage baby to open wide prior to giving the bottle. Stroke baby's lips from nose to chin with the bottle nipple, and wait until baby opens wide like a yawn. Allow your baby to accept the bottle into his mouth rather than poking it in. This will teach your baby to open wide for feedings, which is a good start to getting on the breast effectively. "
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/...to-breast.html (non-LLL resource)

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