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Thread: Baby won't nurse

  1. #1

    Default Baby won't nurse

    My ds is 3wks 4days old and have been supplementing by bottle for a week now due to slow weight gain. I have seen the hospital LC and she recommended I supplement my baby with either ebm or formula. I have been pumping every after feeding or every chance I get. I have used other methods os supplementing: syringe, finger feeding and sns but ds still wants to be bottle fed. I always offer him the breast first at every feeding but he still prefers the bottle. I want him to go back to nursing and I dont know how to achieve this. I'm doing skin to skin contact, baby sleeps with me in bed all cuddled up.
    I need some advice as all the methods have been tried and it seems like none of it is working. Baby refuses the breast.
    I am using the Adiri Natural Nurser bottle.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Re: Baby won't nurse

    It sounds like nipple confusion, here is a great link from kelly mom that has ideas to get baby back to the breast.

    Kimberly Mommy to Landin and Avery


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2008

    Default Re: Baby won't nurse

    Your DS is still quite young. You may try to just get rid of the bottle all together for 2 days straight and just nurse using an SNS or some other method. I was told take a 2 day vacation with my DS when he was about the same age too.

    I also recommend you talk to an LC that is not employed by the hospital bec in my experience they are not as useful as others. When DS was 7 weeks old I had one tell me that in a couple of weeks if the new latching that she taught me doesnt work than to consider my options ... in other words quitting!

  4. #4

    Default Re: Baby won't nurse

    The problem with introducing bottles so early is that it's much easier for the baby to feed on a bottle than on the breast---his suck doesn't need to be as strong. So as long as both bottle and breast are in the baby's world, he's going to choose the bottle. No reason to work harder than he needs to.

    The good news is that your baby is still very young. He can be persuaded that the breast is better.

    I see a few different options. You can ditch the bottles and start using a supplemental nurser full time which some mother's have had success with and some haven't. You can give yourself a full day in bed, only nursing and see if, in the absence of all other options, he gets back on the breast. Or you could try to finish at the breast . . . instead of struggling to breastfeed a hungry, frustrated baby, you start him off on the bottle to curb his hunger and then try to switch him to the breast. That way, he starts to associate that full, satisfied feeling with the breast and NOT the bottle. You can read more about it here: http://www.lowmilksupply.org/finishatthebreast.shtml

    Hang in there! You must be exhausted with all the pumping and feeding and making bottles. It's always roughest in the beginning, but it will get better. You're doing a great job of providing for your baby---it takes a really dedicated mother to work through all this. If you can find some hands-on help from a Lactation Consultant, that will probably be very helpful too.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Baby won't nurse

    thanks for all the advice. I have thought about ditching the bottle and just use the sns method and have tried that with no success. My son cried everytime I put him on the breast and the sns method requires that he latches on in order to use the method. I have also tried finger feeding but no success either. It worked the first time but when i tried for the second, he started crying crazy so I had to give in and feed the baby on the bottle. The finish at the breast method seems to work though but not all the time, he falls asleep about 5 minutes after latching on breast.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Paris, France

    Default Re: Baby won't nurse

    Would just like to say I agree with pp's. Although it sounds as though you've tried most methods to get you LO back to the breast. The only other thing I can offer is to say persevere. I had the same problem with my DS - I was told to supplement with formula at the hospital as he lost too much weight too quickly and needed to gain fast. I managed to eventually wean him off the bottle by week 4 and have been exclusively BFing since (although, my DS didn't seem to have nipple confusion) so it CAN be done!

    This is how I weaned DS off the bottle:
    I'd offer each breast in turn (even if he only latched on for a few minutes) before giving only an oz or two in the bottle then offer each breast again but NOT the bottle. I found that as the days went by I needed to supplement less and less, perhaps every couple of feeds, but unfortunately it took a while for my supply to get up to speed with what DS needed. In hindsight I wish I had tried the cold turkey method and stayed in bed with him for a couple of days to just nurse him, but it is so tiring, so I know how you feel

    I really hope you can get your LO back to BFing and I think you are doing such a great job already

    Married 28 july 2005
    Mummy to my DS , born 30 july 2008
    proud to have BF him for 8 months
    Now a Mummy for the 2nd time to my DD , born 15 june 2012 for 15 1/2months! Still whenever we can and

    DS Stats
    Birth: 7lbs 15oz - 19.5inches
    4 yrs: 35lbs 4oz - 3feet 5.5inches
    5 yrs: 40lbs - 3feet 8inches

    DD Stats
    Birth: 7lbs 13oz - 19.5inches
    6.5 months 12lbs 14oz - 26inches
    9 months 15lbs 13oz
    15months 20lbs 11oz - 30 inches

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