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Thread: help! 4 month old doing silly latching games

  1. #1

    Default help! 4 month old doing silly latching games

    My daughter has started to teethe...and she loves to squeeze her gums together when she's nursing, and all i can say is OUCH!!! and she doesnt even have teeth yet!

    But, i'm here for a bigger problem. Its so big that i was barely able to nurse her today. Lately, she's gotten into the habit of latching, sucking once or twice, and then pulling away...only to want to relatch immediately. She does it alot. When I came home from work on Wednesday, she would pull away, give me goo-goo eyes and smile really big, then get back on the boobie. She did this a few times, and i thought it was cute. She was playing and wasnt hurting anyone, so i just let her do it (she had done it before, except this time you could obviously see that she was playing).

    Usually, though, she gets cranky and cries whenever she pulls away...as if i were taking away the boob. Today, i let her cry a little before offering the breast again, but her behavior remained the same...she pulled away, protested, and wanted right back on the boob. She kept doing it, so i just put the boob away, and had to pump instead (my nipples have become sore from her doing it).

    Have any of you experienced this? What should i do? it is extremely frustrating for both me and my baby to have to play this game. I dont have an overactive let down. I had plenty of milk in my boobs when she did it this afternoon....she was so hungry, but she kept latching and unlatching, so i just resorted to the bottle (and btw, she has pitched a fit every time i put the bottle in her mouth. Feeding her has truly been a struggle these last few days).

    She got her vaccines on thursday (but she was already doing the latching/relatching thing...it has just gotten a lot worse), and i've noted that in the last 48 hours, she has been uber cranky. Not my usual happy baby.

    This makes me think that we are close to being done with breastfeeding. It makes me so sad because i dont want it to end on this note, and because i wanted to do it until she was at least 6 months old.

    Any ideas?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008

    Default Re: help! 4 month old doing silly latching games

    Well, if she is teething it can make her sensitive to nursing. If you've ever had a sore tooth you know how much it hurts. Have you tried any gum soothing/numbing gels? Some moms also find giving baby a frozen wet wash rag to chew on before nursing can help numb the gums and make nursing go smoother. If she doesn't seem hungry you can just try again later. Just remember that whatever the cause babies go through phases and chances are this will soon pass.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Victoria, BC, Canada

    Default Re: help! 4 month old doing silly latching games

    It hurts when they bite because those teeth are right under the gumlines. Youch!

    The latching...unlatching...this sounds oddly familiar. I know its very annoying. Babies get to the age where they are distractable. I think ever since 4 or 5 months, I have had to nurse DS lying down, in a dark quiet room, and oh yeah, he must be wrapped in a blanket. He occasionally does nurse in the cradle position and in a noisy room, but only when he's really really hungry.


    When he got his first 2 teeth, around 5 months, he bit me every nursing session for 2 weeks. I thought for sure, that was going to be the end of things for us. But LLLRenee is right, that was just a phase. Everytime he bit me, I simply ended our nursing session. After 2 weeks he got the hang of it and has rarely bitten me since. I've gotten used to feeding him lying down in the bedroom and in fact its nice having the excuse to rest and daydream a bit.

    Teething and vaccines can make babies cranky, bottle-fed or breastfed. Welcome to the wonderful world of parent-hood.

    Kellymom has some more good advice on teething. Like giving baby a teething toy before nursing. DS likes a cool damp washcloth when he's teething. You can get these freezable toys which are really soothing on the gums.


    Last edited by @llli*monika.h; December 22nd, 2008 at 01:25 AM.
    Canadian mom and breastmilk fan.
    We have 2 beautiful children: Luana who's 9 y/o, had breastmilk for 2 years and is smart as a whip. Lucas who came out kickin', is 4 y/o and continues to enjoy his milkies.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Toronto, Canada

    Default Re: help! 4 month old doing silly latching games

    DD did this for a little while, and then the teething seemed to subside. wet or frozen washcloths should help. Teething toys before a nursing session. Trying to decrease distractions...I too, feed my daughter now lying down. She just can't focus otherwise 90% of the time.

    You may also find she gets relief from a homeopathic remedy like Hylands teething tabs or Camilia. They both really help with the crankies and pain.

    Hang in there. As pp said, FF babies have trouble with teeth too. This will pass.

    Mama to my little Roxie Roo, 06/11/08

    April miles for TBTTW: 63

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2008

    Default Re: help! 4 month old doing silly latching games

    My DD is doing the same with latching... I never connected it to teathing but I did think its because she wants more milk and there is none...I do doubt myself all the time, so its normal:-) As a matter of factt, there always was milk when I checked, but I still never connected it to teathing...
    Could it be something else?
    BTW, she's 2 days shy of 4 months...
    Mother to 3 beautiful girls

    Victoria, our queen, born on 04/15/1993, our pride and joy!
    Natalie, our little princess, born on 08/24/2008
    at birth 7lbs 11oz, 20"
    at 2 y.o check up: 26lbs, 34 1/2"
    Sofia, our tiny princess, baby-surprize,
    born 07/20/2010 at 6lbs 10oz, 19"
    6 weeks: 9lbs 14oz; 21 1/2"
    2.5 months: 11lbs 5oz

    4.5 months: 13lbs 4oz; 24 1/2"

    We are still exclusively
    at work

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2008

    Default Re: help! 4 month old doing silly latching games

    We had the EXACT same problem last month. I was sooooo frustrated and thought nursing would come to an end any day. I just kept at it and did what I had to do to keep my supply normal. I also used a brand new bottle nipple when I had to resort to stored/pumped milk so she would not decide that the bottle was better. Be very careful not to supplement w/formula or it will mess with your supply(unless you pump the same amount of formula she eats) I really think this is a 4 month old thing. My first did the same thing and I didn't know waht to do so it lead to us ending our nursing relationship at 5 mon. But I knew what was up when #2 started doing it. she is 5 mon this week and hasn't done it for a week or two! Hip hip horray!

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