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Thread: 3-month old struggles when fed, help!

  1. #1

    Unhappy 3-month old struggles when fed, help!

    Hi there! I just joined LLL hoping that someone would help me.
    My daughter never learned to latch on (unfortunately I didn't seek help back then), so I've been pumping and feeding her expressed milk exclusively through a bottle. The first two months she did really well, eager to eat and gaining a lot of weight. A few weeks ago she started to struggle every time we try to feed her. At first we thought it was because of the thawed milk she didn't like. (I pump more than what she can drink, so I froze the rest) We then try to give her fresh, refrigerated milk (warmed). That worked for a couple of days. Then it was the same again. Then we thought it was gas, so we try to burp her, riding bicycles to fart, and even Mylicone drops recently, it kinda calmed her down from crying when being fed to just pushing out nipples. But it still takes 10 to 20 minutes every time just for her to start sucking. Even after she starts to suck, she'll sometimes let go and refuse to eat again, so burping her in the middle is nearly impossible.

    She used to take 4 - 5 oz. every three to four hours when feeding was good, but now she only drinks 3 - 4 oz. every four to five hours (at night even longer, last night she went 7 hours without eating!). We use Avent bottles from the beginning, the nipple size is 2. She has normal wet diapers, saucy poopy ones 1 to 3 times a day. Also she gags and chokes on her own spit a lot, and sucks on her own tongue whenever she's hungry or sleepy (she doesn't use pacifier). Sometimes to calm her down I try to let her latch on my breast, she's much more willing to suck on that than the bottle. But of course she couldn't latch on for long, if at all. Could she all of a sudden not liking the bottle? Or acid reflux? Any other reasons? I'm afraid she won't be gaining enough weight if continuing like this. Help!
    First time mom to my little munchkin - Emma
    Born 6-22-10, 6 lbs. 6 oz.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    NE PA
    Posts
    1,089

    Default Re: 3-month old struggles when fed, help!

    Have you smelled or tasted your milk? Some women have excess lipase- an enzyme that can make milk taste soapy. this link has more info on it.
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/pumping/l...essedmilk.html
    Why can't your DD latch? Has she been checked for toungue tie? that can effect a babies ability to latch. It is possible to get baby back to the breast even at this point which I am sure you are seeing would be easier in the long run. These links have some more info about that if you are interested.
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/ma...pply-pump.html
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/...to-breast.html
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/start/bas...resources.html
    Jessica

    Moma to DS1-the monkinroanie (3/09) and DS2-the sweet pumpkin (5/12)
    Strong Women- May we have the delight of knowing them, the courage to be them and the privilege of raising them.
    And yes I know my spelling terrible (is that spelled right? )

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    20,613

    Default Re: 3-month old struggles when fed, help!

    Good links from the PP. You might want to try offering 1-2 oz every hour or two, and seeing if she'll take them. And allowing unrestricted access to the breast. It sounds like your baby has something funky going on with her mouth- gagging and choking on her own saliva combined with the tongue-sucking makes me think that she could have a tongue tie or perhaps just an issue with coordinating her suck-swallow action. A trip to the LC sounds like a good idea- thyw work with bottlefed babies, too! Meanwhile, watch her diaper output. As long as that continues to be normal, everything is okay.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  4. #4

    Default Re: 3-month old struggles when fed, help!

    Thank you for all the info!

    I don't think my baby has a tongue tie since she can move her tongue and stick it out no problem. She doesn't seem to refuse the milk either, since whatever gets to her mouth during the "struggle" she'll swallow. She's also willing to suck my breasts (again not latch on), just not so much the bottle nipple. So that makes me think it's the bottle or nipple she suddenly doesn't like any more. But yesterday we realized that instead of feeding her every 4 hours, if we wait until 5 hours, she's much more willing to eat (hungry enough i guess?). She'll take in almost 5 oz. every 5 hours with the exception of the night feeding. She's usually too sleepy to finish the 5 oz., usually just 3. So she takes in around 20 oz. each day. Is that enough for a 3-month old baby?

    As far as choking and gagging and tongue sucking, I wonder if it's symptoms of acid reflux?

    Yeah I'm trying to get her to latch back on again. But with me working full time, she'll have to take the bottle as well. It is really not easy being a mom and working full time. Wish had more time with my baby
    First time mom to my little munchkin - Emma
    Born 6-22-10, 6 lbs. 6 oz.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    NE PA
    Posts
    1,089

    Default Re: 3-month old struggles when fed, help!

    20 oz is a little on the low end. How are her wet/dirty diapers? this link has some more info.
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/pumping/milkcalc.html
    Jessica

    Moma to DS1-the monkinroanie (3/09) and DS2-the sweet pumpkin (5/12)
    Strong Women- May we have the delight of knowing them, the courage to be them and the privilege of raising them.
    And yes I know my spelling terrible (is that spelled right? )

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