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Thread: Baby prefers bottle over breast

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    9

    Default Baby prefers bottle over breast

    My 14 week old had a hard time taking the bottle. Now, she prefers the bottle over breastfeeding. After the initial let down and fast flow, she'll pull off and will refuse to get back on (arch her back, start getting upset and cry), even to the other breast, even though there is plenty of milk (I know, bc if I pump afterwards, there's a lot of milk). How can I continue to breastfeed and coax her to breastfeed? We are using a newborn nipple to keep the flow slow. I"ve also tried using the breastflow, but she doesn't like that bottle. I'm also doing breast compressions while she is feeding... Any other suggestions? SHould I breastfeed her and not give her the bottle afterwards...and continue on with that, even though she is crying hungry? I do'nt know what to do... I'd really really like to continue breastfeeding. Any help would be appreciated.
    Thanks!

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

    Default Re: Baby prefers bottle over breast

    From what you mentioned, here is what I think the problem might be. It sounds like you might have OALD (overactive letdown)...pumping after feeding will only increase the milk supply, and make it harder for your lo to handle the letdown. Compression of the breast will do the same. Compare it to you trying to drink from a hose pointed directly at your mouth. I was pumping after feeding in the beginning (per advice from wellmeaning friends to help "keep my supply up") This created overabundant supply and OALD, and a baby that refused to nurse, would arch back etc. and pull off after the letdown.

    Do you need to give bottles right now? Are you returning to work? If not, I would hold off on bottles for a bit, and work on coaxing baby back to the breast, and get your supply under control. Baby will get plenty of milk from nursing, and your supply will regulate to what the baby needs. Pumping after nursing will increase your supply, and might be too much for baby to handle. KWIM? (unless of course your supply is low, but it doesn't appear that way from what you said)

    If you can, stop bottles for a while and work on just nursing. Nurse laying down or inclined so the letdown isn't as strong. Once you feel the letdown, gently release the baby's latch and squeeze your letdown into a towel, and then relatch. This makes it easier for baby to handle the flow. Lots of skin on skin contact to keep that nursing bond. Also, nurse when LO is sleepy. Right when waking from a nap is a good time, because they do not suck as hard.

    HTH.

    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

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    9

    Default Re: Baby prefers bottle over breast

    Hmm...I do'nt think it's an overactive letdown, because she's on for about 10 minutes before she comes off....it's when my flow slows down, that she de-latches and starts fussing.... that's why I was doing the compressions. Also, we've tried feeding her after she's come off, to see if she is still hungry...and she will take a bottle after she's come off.... so I think she is complainig of the slow flow.... and after the flow slows down, she associates the breast with the slow flow and won't latch back on.

    I am working..so I can't stop the bottles completely...but when I am with her, should I just solely nurse her and not have my husband give her the bottle at all costs? Even though she seems to be hungry after the fact? Should I continue to just try and breastfeed her anyway and hope that she will nurse? What if she refuses to latch on...what should I do in that case? I don't want to force her, as i'm afraid she will associate the breast with negative things.

    I"m only pumping afterwards, when she hasn't been on for very long...like 2 minutes and refuses to get back on....

    Thanks!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    1,512

    Default Re: Baby prefers bottle over breast

    Are your nipples "Normal" - and do you know for sure? I did not know that I had flat nipples until I was nursing my LO and my SIL was nursing hers and I saw her nipples. Wow - huge difference. I asked my OB and she said yes, mine were Flat and to pump first to "draw them out" before nursing. Don't know if this is your issue but I thought I would mention it. Keep trying. It may also be a phase.
    Samantha: born 3 1/2 weeks early on Sept 2006 6lbs 4 oz 18 inches long with situs inversus totalis. Now a strong healthy little girl that wants to be a NICU doctor, loves her little sister and breastfeeds her dolls!
    Milk donated with while nursing first LO: 2,200 oz
    Alexandra: born 3 weeks early on July 2010 7lbs 8 oz 19.5 inches long.
    Milk donated with while nursing first LO: 1,200


    For information on becoming a Breastmilk Donor http://hmbana.org/index/donatemilk

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    154

    Default Re: Baby prefers bottle over breast

    Most babies will take a bottle after nursing and it´s not because they are still hungry...sucking and swallowing is something they will do.....and then maybe spit up!!!

    Try to nurse directly if you are present and leave the bottles only for when you are not there....
    Karina, Neonatal Nurse, mother to Martin, born at 33 weeks 02/11/2007...
    I love ...... .....my baby loves it

    I relactated....IT CAN BE DONE!!!

    I also love
    Tried to


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    1

    Default Re: Baby prefers bottle over breast

    Hi there, I just started experiencing this myself and I think I know what it might be. My daughter has always been a very "fussy" eater even back before I tried giving her bottles (in fact, there was one day when she was about 5 weeks old where she refused to nurse all day and that was the first time I tried giving her a bottle - without success). The answer, in short, is that my daughter prefers the flow of milk to be very fast and gets very angry and impatient when it isn't. I just wrote a blog post about it here (http://operonscript.com/2007/11/24/mystery-solved) if you want more info. It sounds like you might have the same situation. The best approach I have found is to stop trying to feed altogether and distract my daughter until she is more calm. This also gives time for there to be more milk so the flow will be faster. It's really frustrating, though, since it can often take several tries before she is ready to eat. I have not found compressions work very well myself.

    Good luck!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    1

    Default Re: Baby prefers bottle over breast

    Modelvirus - did you ever find good answers to your questions? I'm having the exact same problem. I'm back at work so baby is getting 3 bottles a day from caretaker. I'm using slow flow stage 1 nippes and asked my caretaker to give the bottles as slowly as possible, but my little one still shrieks after ~5 minutes of nursing with me. I really don't want to give in and give her bottles because I have a few trips in the next few months where she'll be with me and only breastfeeding will be available. I've been tolerating the screaming and having her re-latch on over and over again until I'm convinced that she got enough to eat. But it's not pleasant for her or me - just wondering if you found any other tips out there that helped you.

    Many thanks.

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