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Thread: How sleepy should 10 week old be at the breast?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2008

    Question How sleepy should 10 week old be at the breast?

    Any experienced nursing moms have tricks for keeping an older baby awake to nurse?

    Baby is 10 weeks, and we just started back to nursing from being on the bottle. Originally when he was born I could NOT keep the kid awake to nurse, and he got dehydrated - welcome to supplementation.

    Now that we are trying this, I can not keep him awake. I have tried the burping, changing, tickling feet and rubbing his ears and head.
    I am really scared about this, as I don't want to go the route of dehydration again, but I want to work more and more at the breast and less at the bottle.

    I can tell from pumping he is only taking 1 - 1 1/2 oz at the breast. Since I have only been pumping in the past, he would eat between 2 - 4 oz. Seemingly this past week or so he has taken smaller amounts sometimes (1oz by bottle this morning, but more at later feedings). Since he has been nursing some, he diapers will be wet, but much less than when he eats at the bottle.

    I think if he would stay awake a little longer maybe he would eat more? He doesn't seem unsatisfied, but he is not experienced at this yet so I am trying to be careful. I have a lot of criticism from my in-laws in the bf business and all I need is for him to not gain weight adequately. He is already smaller 25% on his size, and 50% on his weight, so she is convinced he is not eating enough!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2008

    Default Re: How sleepy should 10 week old be at the breast?

    50% means he's right in the middle. Bigger isn't always better.
    When I have a glass of ice water while nursing I'll touch it on his arm or foot. it annoys him, but he stays awake. ans annoyed is better than dehydrated.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008

    Default Re: How sleepy should 10 week old be at the breast?

    i never understand when mediacal people say that they are not eating enough as baby only at 25% or something..it is based on averages..so 50 % is the average..and therfore..nealry half HAVE to be below and nearly half above......!! so nothing wrong with your babies size..he may be a bit smaller than average(height wise)...but then nearly half of babies are...or we wouldnt have an average...

    look at his output to see if he is getting enough...

    look at this link


    with my son when he would fall asleep, i stripped him to his nappy...even now he still falls asleep sometimes when feeding..but he stays latched on...just gently sucking..but not feeding...but i leave him on and after 5-10 mins or so..the gentle sucking leads to another letdown and he will start feeding properly again....i also stroke his cheek if he has stopped and it tends to start him up again.......

    i also tried breast compression when in the first few weeks it was difficult to keep him awake for feedings...
    Samantha ---- Mom to Lucas, born 19th Jan 2008..and Georgia, born 8th June 2009
    Lucas 8lbs 1oz born at 42 weeks..now 27lbs at 20 months....bf exclusivly till 10 months then partly till self weaning at 17 months
    Georgia 8lbs 12oz born at 39+4 now 14lbs 5oz at 14 weeks...bfing going strong despite a shaky start

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008

    Default Re: How sleepy should 10 week old be at the breast?

    My MIL always asked me "are you sure you have enough milk?" with my first one. Drove me crazy!!! Good for you for sticking with the BFing!

    My dd would wake up if I would rub lotion on her arms and legs during a diaper change in the middle of feeding! I also have a friend who found that when breastfeeding her first baby she literally just had to let him snack all day long -- lots of cluster feedings but he gained weight and eventually got more efficient. Just form what I know anecdotally, I think 3 months is a turning point for lots of babies with breastfeeding. Good luck!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2008

    Default Re: How sleepy should 10 week old be at the breast?

    Congratulations on sticking with it!! I understand how hard it is to deal with criticism. Keep it up!! With my little boy, I would have to strip him down and keep a cool wash cloth handy to rub on his feet or back to wake him up. However we also did the cluster feedings as was mentioned. After a month of letting him nurse when ever he wanted he gained weight and leveled out on the feedings, now he eats every 2-3 hours. I would suggest trying on demand feedings if that's possible for you. Sounds like you're doing great. Just hang in there.

    Loving wife of 3 yrs. to A.W.

    & SAHM

    to beautiful baby boy, Jack (12/5/07)

    Born- 8lbs 4oz 20 inches
    2 months- 12lbs 13 3/4 oz 24 inches
    4 months- 15lbs 2 oz 26 inches
    6 months- 17 1/2 lbs 27 1/2 inches
    9 months- 19lbs 5 oz 28 inches
    12 months- 21 1/2 lbs 30 inches

    Nursing 15 months now... YAY!!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2008

    Red face Re: How sleepy should 10 week old be at the breast?

    Thanks for the advice. I am just wondering if the poor kid is tuckered out from working a little harder for his meal. This morning he took off like a starved kid, but I still think he only took about an ounce. I offered him a bottle afterwards, but he didn't want it.
    Yesterday I actually woke him up a couple of times to nurse, since he is taking little snacks.
    I am a little sore, not bad though, as he is still not opening really wide to latch yet. Do you think that will improve as he gets more experience? Once this morning he tried to latch so quickly he got just part of the breast and left a little bruise - ouch! He also has decided to clamp down when he is done-I try to get my finger in there before he does that!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2008

    Thumbs up Whoo hoo - getting the hang of it!

    Thanks girls for the advice!

    Today is going much better! No bottles so far - he just hasn't taken them after nursing!

    He has taken to the left breast now like a champ! I have no idea how much he ate, but he nursed for quite a while, went through one good let down - he went to sleep and did that flutter sucking thing - went through another let down. I tried to switch breasts mid stream and he cried and cried. I figured he was not satisfied, so that's when I put him back to the left breast and he went the second round. How will I know if he is quote "satisified". They say if they pull off the breast on their own? He just went to sleep - like a deep sleep where he twitched and was limp. I think he must have been satisfied. Again, I offered him a bottle of warm milk about 15 minutes later, from what I had pumped and he didn't want it at all.

    I am just going to keep offering breast as often as I can, then bottle. If he doesn't want the bottle, great. How am I going to be able to chuck this pump though? He doesn't even drain one breast, let alone both! I can get anywhere from 10-5 ounces per pumping. The usual is about 6. I did read about oversupply though, and I think I will just offer the left breast for now as it makes the most milk and pump the rest. Will my supply decrease?

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