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Thread: Baby refusing Right Breast

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    32

    Unhappy Baby refusing Right Breast

    My 3.5 month old son has been refusing to nurse from my right breast for 4 days now. I have no idea why: he drinks perfectly fine from my left, we haven't had any major disruptions to our nursing schedule/habits, recently he's learnt to suck his thumb to sleep while lying on his left side (ie. the position when I cradle hold him to nurse on my right breast), so I didn't think he has ear infection; I don't think I've any breast infection either.
    I've tried to bounce him to nurse on my right, he'll take a few sucks, then will pull off. After repeating this for a few times, he'll start crying and I'll have no choice but feed him on my left breast. He usually only drinks from one breast for each feed. Although he's willing to nurse from the right in the middle of the night, his nursing time is shorter than before, 3 ~ 5 min instead of the usual 10 ~ 15 min.
    Tried nursing ds when right breast is full and my let down is forceful, he stops sucking when the let down starts. But he refused to nurse when my right breast is half empty too (and let down not so forceful).
    I have always bf ds using cradle hold, never managed football hold, only tried nursing lying down several times when ds was abt 2 months. Tried to get him to nurse on my right lying down yesterday, wasn't successful.
    My mother-in-law (secondary caregiver) has the habit of cuddling him to sleep with his head on her left arm (ie, similar to bf on the left), I thought maybe ds got so used to this position he's refusing other positions, esp. when he's trying to fall asleep. He has been napping more lately too, though he's still alert when awake.
    Anyone has similar experiences to share??? I don't know how long this is going to last, getting very frustrated having to pump out my right side, and the fact that I'm having trouble pumping is not helping my temper either. Should I continue to offer my ds the right breast??? I'm hoping I don't have to nurse from only my left, it's already bigger than my right, don't want the difference to increase further.......not to mention my current worry of ds not having enough milk cos my left breast hasn't adjusted to the sudden frequent increase in feeding......
    Last edited by tanhui2; September 12th, 2006 at 01:00 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    16

    Default Re: Baby refusing Right Breast

    I have a problem getting my 6 week old to feed on my right breast too. I find it hard to get a good latch, and I have a much stronger let down on that side, but again, even when the let down has gone, or my breast is half empty, he still doesnt like that side as much.

    My mum says she had the same problem, and with one of my sisters it got so bad that she just stopped feeding from that side. She had enough milk on the left side, and the right just dried up!

    Sorry i haven't got any really practical help to give you, as i am struggling with it myself.

    Katy

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    4,894

    Default Re: Baby refusing Right Breast

    My daughter did the same thing for a little while. Eventually she took to the right breast again. I assumed it was because we were both more comfortable with her nursing on the left side (I'm left handed). I continued to offer her the right breast, in many different positions, and if she didn't take to it I would just pump to keep up the supply. I wouldn't stop offering it though, if I were you. It could just be a temporary strike. Good luck and let us know how it goes.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    447

    Default Re: Baby refusing Right Breast

    Well, so long as he's still making enough wet diapers, you know he's getting enough. Just watch the output and try not to worry. Also, at his age he is probably a much more efficient nurser, so he can probalby get plenty of milk in 3-5 min feeds.

    What are you doing with the milk you pump from the right breast?

    I understand the frustration of having one breast larger than the other. My left breast has been much larger than my right ever since I started bf. Funny thing is, ds always prefered my right. I've looked in the mirror with my clothes on, though, and I can't tell then that one breast is bigger -- is your size difference visible even while clothed?

    It would be very possible to nurse from just one breast; many women do it. One breast is totally capable of catching up with the needs of one baby. In fact, I have even heard of a woman who sucessfully efb a set of triplets, so clearly between her 2 breasts she managed to produce enough milk for 3 babies. Not saying it will come to that, but it would be possible to do.

    What sort of problems are you having with pumping?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
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    60

    Default Re: Baby refusing Right Breast

    My dd did the same thing very early on with the exception that she preferred the right side. I would pump the left, but after about one month, the ped suggested that I try to put her on the left side first (especially because I had started to dry up). I also offered it to her when she was sleepy. It took awhile, but now she does take both sides. I am not sure why she had the preference, but I know my nipples are different, so maybe it was more work for her. I also think it was easier for me to position her on the right side and she was more comfortable.

    Keep up the good work!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    32

    Default Re: Baby refusing Right Breast

    the irritating thing is I'm actually more comfortable feeding from my right! my left arm is starting to ache with the higher "work load". hence don't understand why the sudden onset of this one-side refusual by my ds......

    finding pumping difficult, cos sometimes I just can't let down, even after 15 min of pumping, no matter what I do. Now I pump when I'm engorged, so I also have worries of plugged ducts on top of everything else! actually, I'm pumping as I'm writing this......
    Running out of space in freezer to store all this extra milk, as I'm a stay-at-home mum......
    I'm lucky, difference in breast size not so visible after wearing padded bra. Though I myself can feel the bra feeling out more on 1 side than the other.

    Ladies, if the situation is temporary, how long will it persist??? Already I'm so tired from his fussing at my right breast, I only offered it to ds once yesterday. Half a mind to let my right side dry up, just to make my life easier!
    Next week bringing ds to see paediatrician, to set my own mind at ease, in case there's some physical reason for this sudden onset......think my ds going through a growth spurt now, his demand is higher than usual, and his little tummy is now flat (in the past was like a mini beer belly). If he isn't, worried he's losing weight due to this sudden refusal.......hence the trip to the doc!

    very glad there's this forum to post my thoughts and receive encouragement from all of you!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    COUGARTOWN Baby! From here on in!
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    Default Re: Baby refusing Right Breast

    Have you tried the football hold? This allows the baby to latch in the same position that he favors on the other boob? It really works! This is how I fed my baby for the 1st 4months on the side not preferred. Around 4months we started side lye nursing over half the time and in that postion he doesn't care.....

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