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Thread: Please help, so many issues but I don't want to give up!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    10

    Default Please help, so many issues but I don't want to give up!

    Hi all,
    We had our baby girl July 5 (9lb2oz!) and she has been doing well breastfeeding after initially losing a whole pound. She's up to 9lb12oz as of yesterday (18 days)!
    The issues we've been having is with her wanting to nurse constantly, which I don't mind. However, the past 4-5 days, my breasts have been REALLY engorged and she's been choking/gasping when I put her on a new breast. I read about OALD and Oversupply. I don't think my letdown is really that fast, it doesn't spray like what some moms have described. It's just a fast drip sometimes. She's been a super lazy nurser since day one (she constantly falls asleep at the boob, uses the boob to fall asleep, etc) and its always an effort to keep her actively nursing for 10-15 min (she usually falls asleep after 3-5min), so I don't know if this is an issue with her keeping up with the flow.
    I asked my pedi about the hind/foremilk imbalance and he said since she's doing well weight wise, he wouldn't worry about anything. However, while I could nurse her all day before, since the increase in my milk, she's thrown up (not just spit up) 3 times in the past 4 days. I feel horrible when she throws up because she used my breast as comfort before, and now its like she gets angry that milk is coming out.
    Will my milk issue balance itself out? I don't know why so much more milk started coming in. At least one breast is always super engorged, to the point where I can't even squeeze my breast to get her to latch on because its so firm. I've tried the block feeding (switching breast every 2-3 hours depending on how much she eats). Sometimes she takes a long nap for 3 hours, so I'm not sure if switching breast is best, or doing the block feeding? Also, should I introduce a pacifier to her so she can get some suckling comfort without having to gorge herself on milk (I'm terrified of her throwing up again). Also, the past two times she's pooped it's been mustard yellow tinged with some green but we also didn't change her right away. My pedi said if the poop sits out, it can turn from yellow to green, so SHOULD I be worried about the fore/hindmilk imbalance?
    Sorry for so many questions, its SO hard breastfeeding because of the unknown. Sometimes I think it'd be easier just to put her on a bottle at least but knowing all the benefits of breastfeeding, I just can't bring myself to it. Oh, I also want to pump because I want to introduce a bottle to her within the next week or two just in case but with me being so engorged, should I wait to pump??
    Last edited by @llli*nan; July 24th, 2008 at 09:36 PM. Reason: corrections

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    866

    Default Re: Please help, so many issues but I don't want to give up!

    Lets see if I can help you out any. Choking at the breast sounds to me like the letdown is too fast. When you feel your letdown you could remove the latch and hand express for a minute or three then relatch your LO. My son had a problem with this for the first couple months (and it did resolve itself) Now as far as a foremilk/hindmilk imbalance....green frothy poop is what you would look for. Your PED is right, the color changes if it sits...but you can not mistake the frothy or boogerish type poop consistency. The more often your LO nurses, the more your going to produce. If you find that you think the poop is showing an imbalance..be sure to feed on the same side twice or maybe three times before switching. You can always pump the other side after nursing to avoid engorgement. Do not "add" a pumping session as this will increase supply. For example your LO nurses at 1..pump right after...not an hour later, than nurse an hour after that, etc.. You will only add to your oversupply issue.

    I personally would not try a pacifier until all nursing issues have past...(my opinion only) because it requires a different suck than the breast does and it might confuse. If I thought that my LO was to the point of comfort nursing and I needed a break, I would pass him onto DH to let him suck on his pinkey finger. No sucking confusion this way.

    Hope I helped a little...
    Leslie- Momma to Aiden 02/28/06 AND Owen 2/28/08...What timing

    Older and wiser voices can always help you find the right path, if you are only willing to listen.--Jimmy Buffet


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Sunny Arizona
    Posts
    3,190

    Default Re: Please help, so many issues but I don't want to give up!

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*nan View Post
    Hi all,
    We had our baby girl July 5 (9lb2oz!) and she has been doing well breastfeeding after initially losing a whole pound. She's up to 9lb12oz as of yesterday (18 days)!
    The issues we've been having is with her wanting to nurse constantly, which I don't mind. However, the past 4-5 days, my breasts have been REALLY engorged and she's been choking/gasping when I put her on a new breast. I read about OALD and Oversupply. I don't think my letdown is really that fast, it doesn't spray like what some moms have described. It's just a fast drip sometimes. She's been a super lazy nurser since day one (she constantly falls asleep at the boob, uses the boob to fall asleep, etc) and its always an effort to keep her actively nursing for 10-15 min (she usually falls asleep after 3-5min), so I don't know if this is an issue with her keeping up with the flow.
    I asked my pedi about the hind/foremilk imbalance and he said since she's doing well weight wise, he wouldn't worry about anything. However, while I could nurse her all day before, since the increase in my milk, she's thrown up (not just spit up) 3 times in the past 4 days. I feel horrible when she throws up because she used my breast as comfort before, and now its like she gets angry that milk is coming out.
    Will my milk issue balance itself out? I don't know why so much more milk started coming in. At least one breast is always super engorged, to the point where I can't even squeeze my breast to get her to latch on because its so firm. I've tried the block feeding (switching breast every 2-3 hours depending on how much she eats). Sometimes she takes a long nap for 3 hours, so I'm not sure if switching breast is best, or doing the block feeding? Also, should I introduce a pacifier to her so she can get some suckling comfort without having to gorge herself on milk (I'm terrified of her throwing up again). Also, the past two times she's pooped it's been mustard yellow tinged with some green but we also didn't change her right away. My pedi said if the poop sits out, it can turn from yellow to green, so SHOULD I be worried about the fore/hindmilk imbalance?
    Sorry for so many questions, its SO hard breastfeeding because of the unknown. Sometimes I think it'd be easier just to put her on a bottle at least but knowing all the benefits of breastfeeding, I just can't bring myself to it. Oh, I also want to pump because I want to introduce a bottle to her within the next week or two just in case but with me being so engorged, should I wait to pump??
    Hi!
    I didn't have text book OALD but had a lot of the symptoms your describing with the throwing up after a feeding etc, and block feeding helped a lot. I wouldn't watch the clock I did it by feeding. Two feedings on one breast then switching for the next two feeding, etc. I noticed a great improvement in about a week.

    It doesn't sound like you have a milk imbalance but it's something to keep an eye on.

    I would wait to introduce a bottle or paci just yet, you have enough going on without adding possible nipple confusion. You could pump just to help with the engorgement. It's always nice to have a stash of milk in case of emergencies or for when you do introduce the bottle.

    If you get engorged doing the block feeding, I personally did pump just enough to relieve the engorement until my supply evened out.

    It sounds like you're doing a great job, you'll get it all figured out soon. Keep up the good work mama, we're here for you

    Amy married to my bestfriend since 10/30/04

    Proud SAHM to DS born 2/17/07 and DD born 9/11/08 Both weaned together 11/2011
    Currently milk, peach, peanut and tree nut free. DD has outgrown her wheat, cheese, egg, garlic, and citrus allergies

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Please help, so many issues but I don't want to give up!

    Thanks so much for all your help! I tried last night to only nurse her from one breast until that breast felt empty (soft and squishy, right?) BUT she would only nurse for 5-7 min before falling asleep. I woke her up throughout the evening and all night to nurse every 2-3 hours but again, she did not come close to draining the breast. What should I do in this case?
    I switched breasts this morning because the other one was leaking and really engorged, and she nursed a while to soften it up some. She nurses for like 5 min, then falls asleep, then wakes up sometimes 45 min later to nurse again. However, this morning she stayed up and got really upset that milk was flowing from the breast. I think she wanted to comfort nurse, and it was heartbreaking to see her crying at my boob. I ended up cuddling with her on the couch and she fell asleep, but again my breast was not completely drained. I don't know what to do... should I exclusively breastfeed from just one breast until she gets to be a better eater? I don't see how she is gaining weight by eating so little, unless she takes in a lot during those 5 minutes (doesn't seem like it tho because she will suckle some of the time, so she's not actively nursing the entire time). Also, her poop today was dark yellow but had some mucous in it, which is really worrisome. Is that still normal?

  5. #5

    Default Re: Please help, so many issues but I don't want to give up!

    I am not sure how much help this would be but my son (he is one month now) would fall asleep right away as well. I went to a Lactation Consultant (about latching issues) and he was doing it there too and what she did was rub his back, tickle his feet and touch him a lot in order to keep him actively nursing. His eyes would be closed but he was nursing.
    I would also do like others suggested and pump just enough to relive the engorgement..that might (again I am unsure) help with the let down as well.
    I wouldn't give up! This is my third baby and I am still asking questions (putting up new post today as a matter of fact!) and going to Lactation Consultants!
    If what we say isn't helping or you just don't understand don't hesitate to contact LeLeche or a Lactation Consultant (your hospital should be able to direct you there) I went to one and they solved my latch issues! They are wonderful.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    26

    Default Re: Please help, so many issues but I don't want to give up!

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*nan View Post
    I don't see how she is gaining weight by eating so little, unless she takes in a lot during those 5 minutes (doesn't seem like it tho because she will suckle some of the time, so she's not actively nursing the entire time).
    Hi, Nan!

    Congratulations on the birth of your baby girl! The first few weeks can be a confusing and sometimes frustrating time, although it sounds like your baby is doing well--gaining weight and nursing often.

    Babies can consume a surprising amount in a short period of time! They are remarkably efficient in getting what they need. You mention several times that you're looking for your breasts to be "drained" or "emptied." This isn't necessary for your baby to get enough milk. She will know when she has enough.

    It is also very common for a newborn (and that would what your baby is, at not quite three weeks) to nurse and then sleep for 45 minutes and then nurse again. Totally and completely normal. Many newborns are taken somewhat aback at the force with which their mother's milk lets down, and it takes a while for them to grow up enough to be able to handle it. Perhaps "grow" isn't the right word; maybe "mature" is better.

    It is usually recommend that mothers wait about introducing pacifies & bottles for several weeks, until breastfeeding is well-established. So you may want to hold off on them for a while.

    You mentioned that your baby sometimes takes a three-hour nap. Since most newborns need to nurse 10-12 times in 24 hours, she'll need to nurse more frequently (see above) at other times of the day (or night!) to even things out.

    Lots of babies are "gushers" when it comes to spitting up. And not all of them are happy about it when it happens. But most of them get used to it after a few times. It seems to be a family trait in our family! At least breast milk doesn't smell when it comes back up, nor does it stain like other things tend to do.

    Nan, it's perfectly normal to have lots and lots of questions about your baby! Feel free to ask here--that's what these forums are for.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Please help, so many issues but I don't want to give up!

    In response to your lo falling asleep:
    My baby girl fell asleep often during feedings and it was very frustrating. Feedings would take close to an hour and then we'd be back at it an hour later. I started stripping her during feedings down to her onesie or even her diaper to keep her from getting an snuggly and warm. I even went as far as using a cool wash cloth on her. Eventually she started staying awake for feedings.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    186

    Default Re: Please help, so many issues but I don't want to give up!

    << She nurses for like 5 min, then falls asleep, then wakes up sometimes 45 min later to nurse again. >>

    As previous posters have noted, this is a perfectly normal nursing pattern for newborns. She will go to longer stretches between nursing as she gets older but at her age this is exactly what she should be doing.

    Another thing; there are components of human milk that induce sleep. My son would close his eyes while he nursed but would keep an active sucking pattern going. The trick that worked for me if he was actually falling asleep was to stroke his face just in front of his ear. Also stroking his hair against the grain.

    ~~ Meri
    Truth never dies but it leads a wretched life.

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