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Thread: ear infection/nursing strike: should I pump?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    436

    Unhappy ear infection/nursing strike: should I pump?

    Right now Jeremy has an ear infection (daycare ), and he has been eating and nursing very little for the past three days. Yesterday I took him to the ped, who put him on antibiotics, although today his fever still reached almost 103 between doses of tylenol. We've had a hard time getting him to drink enough, and his urine output seems way down. This evening he seemed a bit better and even ate a bit of dinner, but only partially nursed one side before bed, and refused repeated offers of more. He's also quite congested, which might be making it uncomfortable to nurse. I'm worried 1) that he's not getting enough fluids and 2) that my supply will drop after three days of scant nursing (we're only nursing morning and nights these days). I'm not ready to wean yet, I really want to make it at least to 2 years.

    So my question is, should I pump tonight to try to maintain my supply? Of course then I risk having him waking up hungry and me being all drained out. Or just trust that he'll nurse back up when he feels better? I'm worried that we'll get into a cycle in which the low supply of milk causes him to progressively lose interest, leading to further drop in supply, etc. Any advice on what to do?

    Also -- the ped seemed concerned that he might have a UTI, but decided not to get a urine culture once she discovered the ear infection. Anything I should look out for here?
    Annie
    Mama to Jeremy Daniel (12/10/2005)


    I'm a late cloth convert...and you? :tumbsup

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: ear infection/nursing strike: should I pump?

    Hi there. In my experience, if you pump and he gets hungry right away, it might take a few extra minutes but he'll still get milk! If it makes you feel better to pump, then go for it! My DD went on a nursing strike at 9 months for an ear infection and I didn't pump for 3 days. I was in denial and didn't know where to begin. Once I rented and electric pump and really got going, I got lots of milk back so once she got better (after 9 very long days!!!), she had milk. Well, she got all the pumped milk anyway, however we could get it into her . Our bodies are amazingly resilient but it is nice peace of mind to pump a bit anyway. Good luck! Hope he feels better!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    436

    Default Re: ear infection/nursing strike: should I pump?

    Thanks, I did decide to pump last night, mostly on my right side (which he's been refusing), and I'm glad I did as he refused any suggestion of that side last night. Or rather, once or twice he actually tried to latch on, then immediately detached and refused to come near it again. I think it might be because nursing that side means he's lying on the infected ear. He didn't want to nurse this morning either, and barely in the night, so I pumped again this morning. No naptime nursing either -- I know this is now part of his new daycare pattern, as he doesn't nurse there, but it's the first time he has refused nursing when I offered it at naptime . I really HOPE he's not weaning, and that he'll bounce back after he feels better. He has been so sweet with nursing lately, always saying "mmmm, nu-nu" before latching on (and wanting me to say it back to him), so I'll be really sad if he doesn't want to go back to it.

    Uh oh, he's waking from his nap after only half and hour -- what's that about???
    Annie
    Mama to Jeremy Daniel (12/10/2005)


    I'm a late cloth convert...and you? :tumbsup

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    1,987

    Default Re: ear infection/nursing strike: should I pump?

    Ear infections are no fun. I end up holding DS upright on my chest when he is sick so he can sleep better a lot of times. I'd be surprised if he is weaning. Once he's feeling better he'll be back to the breast. You might try nursing him on the affected side in a more upright position. I kind of put DS's bottom on the chair between my legs when I need to do that.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    436

    Default Re: ear infection/nursing strike: should I pump?

    Happily, Jeremy seems back to normal! The fever finally broke yesterday and while his appetite has been slow to return, today he seemed to be eating more solids and nursed like usual at nap and bedtime (although my supply had dropped some, so I'm not sure he got all he wanted). I'm glad I pumped a couple of times as it kept my supply from dropping too low, although I'm not sure it was really necessary and I'm very happy to put that pump back in the closet.

    Interestingly, Jeremy seems to have acquired the word "no" during this episode. We've been lucky so far that while he is very verbal and communicative, he hadn't yet taken an interest in saying no. For the past couple of weeks he has been enjoying yes/no nodding games, and then last week when he emphatically didn't want to eat or nurse he started saying "naaaoooooo" (sounding almost like Portuguese, which is funny, as I've spent some time in Brazil). Now he's discovering the power of the word and we're getting it all the time. Well, we knew it had to come sometime!
    Annie
    Mama to Jeremy Daniel (12/10/2005)


    I'm a late cloth convert...and you? :tumbsup

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: ear infection/nursing strike: should I pump?

    That's great news! I'm glad he's feeling better. Funny about learning no during the illness! Toddlers are great fun!
    Take care,

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