Hi ladies! I am a new mom who is (very happily!) EBF. My LO is just about 8 weeks now and BF is going well (lots of wets/dirties and gaining weight) but even though my little boy is getting the milk he needs I still have so many questions! I was hoping you all could help me with a few of my more pressing ones?
A quick background: My LO was born 8 weeks early (he's "due" this week) and subsequently spent 5 weeks in the NICU. We weren't even really able to attempt BF until about 5 days before he came home. I pumped milk from just post c-section until the day he came home and my supply was very good. (I think?) I usually ended up with 3-5 oz depending on the time of day. We left the hospital using a nipple shield but after almost a week at home stopped using it (!) He has now been home for almost 3 weeks.
Also i am not pumping anymore.
Here are my biggest concerns:
How can I tell when he has emptied the breast? I really have absolutley no idea and no matter how long he eats for I can always get a nice spray going afterwards making me think he hasn't emptied it. This concerns me because how can I be sure he is getting the hindmilk? And what happens if he ISN'T getting any hindmilk? Does only getting foremilk relate to gas issues at all? Also, how do I know WHEN to offer him the other side? Usually he will dwindle his sucking down and sometimes pop off at which time I will offer the other side. Recently he has been taking it, but I will still get that spray out of the first side. (he usually only eats off one side but the last few days has been taking the other for a little while as well)
How can I tell the difference between when he is really hungry and just wants to suck for comfort? He doesn't seems to give me any very clear cues. pretty much whenever i put him to breast he'll take it at least for a minute. this is becomming an issue for me at night. He seems to feed constantly between 2 am and 6 am. I don't really mind, but would like to be able to tell the difference for the times i would like to opt out and use a pacifier instead.
It seems to me that in the last week or so his suck is often lazier than it was. Not at every feeding, but at several of them he seems to be sucking less vigorously and also i have to help him with his latch more by pinching my nipple a bit for him.I also can't hear him swallowing as loudly or often. Why would this happen and is it something that will adjust with time? (yes, he uses a pacifier, but has always had one since birth. it was his only comfort while in the NICU, but didn't seems to hinder him learning to latch and suck at all in the first place)
He spits up...a lOT. Not in the amount, but in the frequency. Is there something i can/should do to help him with this? Sometimes it doesn't faze him but other times I can see him stiffen and get upset right before it happens. He also often gets the hiccups right after he spits up.
Is it awful to not burp him every time he eats? Sometimes when I feed him laying down (naps and nighttime) I like to just leave him so he stays asleep. It doesn't seems to affect the spitting up.
I know this was long one! I thank you all for any help!