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Thread: My baby gets upset and screams when she nurses...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006

    Default My baby gets upset and screams when she nurses...

    Hi, this is my first post here.

    My 3 month old daughter sometimes gets really.... well spazzy (for lack of a better word) in the middle of breast feeding sometimes. It's weird, she'll suddenly delatch and start thrashing about and crying. She'll push against my breast as if she's pushing it away, but then if I direct it to her mouth, she'll latch on. But only for a sec, then she delatches again and start screaming and thrashing about again... is this normal? What does it mean?

    I am confused about whether some of it is involuntary (I know she is just starting to gain control of her arms and stuff), and whether she is trying to tell me one of the following:
    -"I'm done eating"
    -"I can't get any more milk out of this breast"
    -"This is making my belly hurt"
    -"I'm still hungry but I'm getting stimulated and losing control of my latch"

    Anyone have any insight for me?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2006

    Default Re: My baby gets upset and screams when she nurses...

    Unfortunately it could be any of the above!!! When you are not sure what she is trying to tell you, try process of elimination. Try to burp her to see if it is gas, offer another breast, etc. I think part of it is the age they are at. Why? I don't know for sure but my dd just turned 3 mos and she recently started this behavior too and from what I have read from other moms, it is pretty typical. Some of it is that they are easily distracted. I think in my case, my dd must have just come out of a growth spurt or something because she is still eating every 3 hours, but it seems like WAY too long in between because she was feeding about every 45min- 1 hr so I am always trying to feed her out of habit and she gets mad!! I hope at least some of that helped. Welcome to the forums!

    Loving my two sweet girls Audrey (7/18/06) and Annie (6/18/09) Baby #3 due to appear 8/5/10

    Feel free to ask me about my successful HBAC , food allergies, cloth diapers, and the joy of having a high-needs, non-sleeping little dear who has grown into a wonderful preschooler.

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006

    Default Re: My baby gets upset and screams when she nurses...

    Wow. I have also lived what you are dealing with. I have to agree with the process of elimination response. My dd is now 15 weeks but started what you describe at about 11 weeks. It's definitely calmed down, but she still does it some. My dd has lots of eating issues though, so it's hard to separate what's going on. Have you noticed a change in your letdowns? I did and think that was part of our problem initially. I used to have overactive letdowns, then (due to stress I think) I had weak letdowns. I used Fenegreek and pumping to get back on track. Just a thought. If she continues to gain weight, otherwise seems happy and is healthy, I wouldn't worry too much. If it continues or you see other issues (loss of weight, poor disposition, etc.) I would contact your physician. There's always the possibility she has an ear ache or something.

    Sorry no real answer. I wish you the best through this! It's a tough and stressful one.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006

    Default Re: My baby gets upset and screams when she nurses...

    My DS is 11 weeks and he recently went through the same thing, I agree with the pp just try the process of elimination. It could be any of the things you listed. DS used to eat every 1 1/2 hours but then he was getting really fussy at the end of nursing on just one side, he usually only took one side up until this point. I began offering both and then he started spacing out his feedings a lot longer to about every 3 hours which the pp also mentioned, and he also became a lot happier baby.

    I think too that sometimes I am expecting him to still nurse more often and instead of wanting to nurse he actually wants to play for a bit, look at mommy, practice smiling, be changed, etc. He's gone 'nuts' sometimes during a feeding and I put him down on his playmat/gym thing and he happily whacks away at his toys for the next 45 mins. I think we get so used to them always wanting to nurse through a growth spurt etc. and having been newborns who can't see more than 3 feeet away that we kind of get in a rut and expect that to always be what will soothe them, but nevertheless they are growing and developing everyday so there are other reasons why they can be cranky, they just can't talk yet to tell us what it is! You two will figure it out.

    My Little Reverse Cyclers
    *DS born July 2006, nursed 3 yrs 10 mos!
    *DD born January 2011, happily nursing and bucking the bottle just like big brother
    *One Angel baby we sadly never met July 2009

    Happily married to an amazing man who puts up with all my craziness since 1999.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Not around here as much :(

    Default Re: My baby gets upset and screams when she nurses...

    Hi there - so sorry you are going through these troubles right now! But good for you for wanting to stick with breastfeeding and for seeking help!! Your list of possible conclusions are good ones to be sure... you might want to look at the links below as a jumping off point to help you unsolve this "mystery" ...

    Does her fussiness/pulling off coincide with your let-down?
    (Can you feel your let down? )

    good luck

    Try here to read common "symptoms of (over active let down) OALD"

    Try here to read about overactive let down (OALD) and other related issues (non(but reputable)LLL site)

    Or here to help figure out what could be causing the fussiness at the breast. (non(but reputable)LLL site)

    Try back if these don't seem to be the correct conclusion...

    Oh and welcome to the LLL message boards... to help you along the way - heres a link to some of the abbreviations used

    hmmm - I just re-read your post and you noted it occurs during the middle of the feeding? well the OAL might not be the culprit but try the links to see if you can find something that may help anyhow... sorry I missed that point initially.
    Last edited by Number3; October 17th, 2006 at 12:16 AM. Reason: re-read post
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