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Thread: Advice needed

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    28

    Default Advice needed

    My son is 2 weeks 2 days old, he had lost a considerable amount of weight and we took him in to the dr. on July 3 he was down 1 pound 5 ounces from his birth weight. The dr. told me to supplement him and I was able to pump breastmilk for that..(about 2-3 ounces at a time). He gained 6 ounces in 4 days, so the dr. said to stop breastfeeding and within a week he had lost 4 ounces. (I was devastated).



    So…I called the lactation people at St. Lukes yesterday and went in and they discovered that he was not sucking correctly and have instructed me to do some physical therapy with him before each feeding (which he does not enjoy). During the visit to the lactation consultant, we managed to get about 3 ounces into him before leaving. This completely drained my milk on both sides. Since he had been feeding incorrectly this whole time, he had not been getting enough milk out. Last night I was only able to pump about ½ ounce to 1 ½ ounces out (without nursing beforehand). I tried to nurse him, but it became incredibly painful (I had developed a blood blister at the lactation office, which the consultant felt terrible about and the other side had become sore as well). Basically we are relearning how to eat again, since I was unaware he was feeding incorrectly (which I am completely devastated about because I feel like I failed at this and am worried that he will end up on formula and that my milk supply will run out and dry up or something) So we ended up using some formula last night and some today to get him fed and happy (and so he can regain his birth weight a little faster, although I feel like a bad person for doing this but I know that my son needs the food) I called the lactation office again this morning and told them what was going on and they said that I was just probably stressed out and that caused the decline of my milk supply.



    I have been trying as best as I can to get him latched on correctly…he will get on correctly and suck and swallow like he is supposed to only some of the time (I’d say about 30% of the time), the rest of the time he is chomping down on me (which hurts of course) Yesterday the physical therapist said that it was because his muscles in his jaw are not working properly and that the physical therapy would help him eventually get the hang of breastfeeding. I take him in tomorrow for a weight check and hopefully there will be some increase, but I am concerned about my milk supply. I was told to let him feed as much as I was able to handle (pain wise) and then pump the rest and feed it to him (which isn’t working very well because he cries because he is hungry and stresses me out because I can’t do anything for him –other than formula - until I pump which is still yielding only ½ - 1 ½ ounces each time.



    How can I get my milk supply up again? And…most importantly…when will this not hurt? We are basically beginning at square one for breastfeeding and I just want to be able to breastfeed him without writhing in pain each time he latches on.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    66

    Default Re: Advice needed

    Here are a few thoughts:

    - you are not "failing" - breastfeeding is hard work at the beginning and you're doing the best you can. Seeing a lactation consultant and seeking support online are great ways to make nursing easier.

    - pumping output is not a reliable indicator of milk supply, as a baby can extract much more milk from a breast than a pump can. Also the average woman can pump about 2 ounces at a time, so when you get up to 1.5, you're doing quite well, especially considering that your baby wasn't properly latched on for a while.

    - a good latch is key and that's what will make the pain go away. When your baby is not latched properly, take him off and try again even if you have to do it a few times. Are you using the "asymetrical" latch - that's what I found helped me the most at making the pain go away. Proper latch is best learned in person with an LC but I also found this article quite helpful:
    http://www.wiessinger.baka.com/bfing...latchtalk.html
    and here's some LLL info on healing sore nipples:
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/FAQ/heal.html

    - the best way to increase your milk supply is to have the baby suck on the breast. The LCs have given you good advice, but you may be interested in these articles as well:
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/FAQ/increase.html
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/ma...pply-pump.html
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/low-supply.html
    and here's a good article about how milk production works:
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/milkproduction.html

    If you have the time, read these articles, I found them very useful in the first weeks for both getting information and confidence (which is a big part of breastfeeding in my opinion).

    We're here to support you - so let us know how it's going and if you have any other questions.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
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    17,468

    Default Re: Advice needed

    I am sorry you and your LO are having a hard time. Hang in there. How did it go yesterday at the doctor? Breastfeeding is hard. Especially in the beginning. Keep putting your baby to breast as often as he will go. Practice Practice Practice. We lived on the Couch with a boppy pillow the 1st 8weeks. I know things are overwhelming right now. But think of it from your baby's point of view. He never even had to think about food before. He was never hungry. Now he has to do all this work! I'm apalled(but not surprised) the the doctor told you to stop breastfeeding. I'm so glad you have access to a LC! So many women don't. Just know that it absolutley, hands down the best decision for your child and stay determined. As far as pain, there is genereally latch on(inital pain) at least for the 1st 6 weeks. It will get better. You aren't failing. Your tired your overwhelmed. Your a new mother. Congratualtions. This shall pass. Stick with it.
    If you have to supplement try to only do it once a day or so. One of the problems with it when they are this young is getting milk out of a bottle is less work than getting it out of your breast. I say that only because it's important to know....because you don't want him to reject your breast altogether. It's also really important to get their early feeding cues so there's time for practice and success instead of instant meltdown at the breast. Keep us posted!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    28

    Default Update

    first of all, I mis typed...the dr. originally said to stop supplementing him after he had gained 6 ounces...then he lost 4 and so we sought help.

    they have determined that DS is a bit tongue tied. so we are working with a physical therapist to correct that. In the meantime...breastfeeding has become incredibly painful. one LC had suggested using a nipple shield (which has recenly given me blisters and rubbed me absolutely raw) unfortunately, DS won't latch on correctly without it atm. his poor little tongue doesn't reach out enough to suck correctly.

    I have been pumping and feeding him with an eye dropper (we are hoping to try cup feeding soon). but I feel like I am letting my son (and DH) down. I have really tried hard to breastfeed, and it is getting more excruciating as the days go on. I am able to do it successfully when I am with an LC, but as soon as I get home, I am not able to get it right.

    we have been pumping and supplementing some with formula if he seems to not get enough (he's about 90% breasfeed and 10% formula). DH wants me to be able to nurse him for the emotional/bonding and comfort of DS, but the pain and soreness is so much that I am in tears even before I try to breastfeed...pumping hurts, but not as much as when DS is attempting to nurse.

    I really don't know what to do.....

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
    Posts
    17,468

    Default Re: Advice needed

    Quote Originally Posted by mkshriver
    I was told to let him feed as much as I was able to handle (pain wise) and then pump the rest and feed it to him (which isn’t working very well because he cries because he is hungry and stresses me out because I can’t do anything for him –other than formula - until I pump which is still yielding only ½ - 1 ½ ounces each time.
    I would change this around a bit. Try pumping in the morning before you feed. ANd perhaps on one side while you have the baby on the other throughout the day. That way while you and the baby are getting "practice" you already have something to feed him so you have "something" for him beside formula and pumping while feeding will continue to stimulate your letdown. There are women who exclusively pump because they find that easier. So there is that option as well.

    You talked about your DH wanting yout to do it for the comfort and the bonding. While these are nice things that will accompany breastfeeding, the health benefits are the real reason to find a way to make it work. Breastfed babies are much less likely to have Eczema, Asthma, Food allergies and ear infections just to name a few. Which is just a nice way of saying formula fed babies are MORE likely to encounter these and a plethera of other problems.
    I hear the pain and frustration in your last post. You can do this. It's never easy in the beginning. It's the time when your resolve is most important. If you look at the pumping section there are a few post there from women who do it exclusively you could look at. But continued support/supervision from an LC also should help. Especially if you are able to postion him correctly while with her. That says IT CAN BE DONE. Don't feel inadequate or like you'll never get it. He's your son. You guys will get it. You just have to have patience with yourself. I think pumping in the morning when your supply is up so you know going into your nursing sessions will help. Good luck.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    18,063

    Default Re: Advice needed

    are things any beter today?
    have they talked about clipping your sons tounge? That might be worth gettting a 2nd oppion about. its a simple, and you might have to look around to find a doctor to do it for you.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Advice needed

    have you tried going to a sex store and getting nipple desensitizing cream it may help with the pain.
    I know what u are going trough. My son was born and got very ill when he was 15 days old. I also had an extreamly low milk production and he did not gain his birth weight back until he was almost 2 months old. I was told by everyone, except my mother, to quit breast feeding and go straight to formula. That was not an option for me. We did supplement he would nurse for 15 mins on each side then I would give him a bottle of formula. I can not count the amount of time I spent crying at night when we were all tired and frustrated that I was failing my son. But I wasn't ... AND NEITHER ARE YOU!
    You are doing a great job and you have a great attitude.. most people would have given up by now. Keep doing what you are doing. I agree that you should ask a professional about the tounge clipping.. it may help. It wont hurt forever. Keep seeing your therapists and LC they are a wonderful sourse of info. BTW it is normal that you can do it great for the LC but when you get home you have a hard time. You are stressed and it doesnt make it easier that your babe is screaming and hungry.
    Learn your babes cues and mybe try to nurse before he gets too hungry so that he is not stressed out and he can take his time getting the boo in his mouth. He may be completly disinterested but it may work. Other than that you may want to run around shirtless so that your breasts have lots of air to heal. GOOD LUCK I hope you do well.and update us

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