I am so very sorry to hear what a heartbreaking time you are going through. I understand the frustration and heartache ... see my post HERE to read about the experiences I had.
Originally Posted by kristenco
Has anyone talked to you about the possibility of oversupply/overactive let down? Your babies sound like they are experiencing what my little one went through. I found this LLL resource REALLY helpful, along with the advice of my local LLL Leader. Check this out here ...
Am I making too much milk?
It was like night and day difference once I figured out that was what my baby's problem was. She was also gaining weight rapidly and so the doctor dismissed the fact that she was projectile vomiting constantly as anything to be concerned about. And like yours every feeding was a violent battle except at night. There was a host of other symptoms too ... LLL's page says the following:
"When a mother has more milk than her baby can handle, the following behaviors may be common:
Baby cries a lot, and is often very irritable and/or restless
Baby may sometimes gulp, choke, sputter, or cough during feedings at breast
Baby may seem to bite or clamp down on the nipple while feeding
Milk sprays when baby comes off, especially at the beginning of a feeding
Mother may have sore nipples
Baby may arch and hold himself very stiffly, sometimes screaming
Feedings often seem like battles, with baby nursing fitfully on and off
Feedings may be short, lasting only 5 or 10 minutes total
Baby may seem to have a "love-hate" relationship with the breast
Baby may burp or pass gas frequently between feedings, tending to spit up a lot
Baby may have green, watery or foamy, explosive stools
Mother's breasts feel very full most of the time
Mother may have frequent plugged ducts, which can sometimes lead to mastitis (breast infection)
If many of these experiences seem familiar to you, it may be because you have an overabundant supply of milk, which can cause a forceful milk ejection (sometimes referred to as overactive let-down), and/or foremilk-hindmilk imbalance. The infant behaviors described above are caused by these issues but may frequently be misdiagnosed as colic, lactose intolerance, milk protein allergy, reflux, or hypertonicity (stiff muscle tone)."
There is also an excellent podcast LLL has about oversupply and overactive letdown. It's an MP3 file you can listen to. I also found this extremely helpful and informative ...
Oversupply of Breastmilk LLL Leader Karen Smith talks with Elisabeth Lewin about identifying and overcoming the challenges of an oversupply of breastmilk, and/or of a forceful milk letdown (aka overactive milk ejection reflex). (29 min.)
Please write back and let me know if any of that sounds familiar to you! You are doing an excellent job hanging in there ... that takes incredible commitment, love and strength to do that for your babies. I know how hard it is to have your little one in such distress when you try to nurse them. It is just heartbreaking to see them go through that. You can send me a private message any time too if you'd like to chat.