Cant get 8 day old baby latched on right at all, feel a fucking idiot failure

(45 Posts)
fuckwittery Sat 26-Oct-13 18:35:35

I've fed 2 babies before without much difficulty.
I think i fucked up, i tried to be too confident and latch this baby on without her rooting /being ready, and she still won't root at all. Despite the poor latch my milk has come in and she's getting milk, i just have to feed all the time on blistered sore nipples, i can get her on and milk flowing but i know the latch is wrong and its making it really painful. I went to bf clinic yesterday and the woman showed me what i was doing wrong. I was blaming it on baby not opening her mouth wide (she gapes open and shut quickly like a goldfish rather than the wide open rooting thing) but she seemed to think i should be able to get her on anyway, well i was holding her wrong, moving my breast wrongly, moving baby's head wrongly - she showed me how to do it right -no pain! - and i latched on and off about 10 times with her watching and couldn't get it right once. I am fucking annoyed with myself for being so thick. So embarrassed to give up now when i've fed my eldest two til well gone a year, all my friends ff and i always said oh well for me bf was easier, now feel like i cant tell anyone i'm struggling. Not expecting anyone to be able to advise, just had to rant sad

paisley256 Sat 26-Oct-13 18:41:19

I was fine with ds1 and ds3 but struggled with ds2, we got there in the end but it was upsetting me loads at the time. All i can say is please stop beating yourself up u sound like a very devoted mum and 8 days isn't long for both of you to get the hang of it together, please try and relax you will get there

DoNotDisturb Sat 26-Oct-13 18:44:59

I've had the exact same thing with my third. My advice is keep getting help. I struggled on and caused a crack so deep it only healed at 4 months! Keep seeing the breastfeeding counsellors till you sort it. The la leche league are great.

And stop beating yourself up! Three kids is hard enough at the best of times never mind when one is a newborn.

BigSpottyCupofTea Sat 26-Oct-13 18:50:21

Definitely do not beat yourself up - as you'll know far better than me with my two - each child is different and each mum/baby dynamic is different and presents its own problems/bonuses (my second was more difficult than my first and I had blisters for the first month or so and cracked, bleeding nipples). Have you tried Jack Newman's videos on Youtube? Those helped me with my latch for my second. But above all else, do not beat yourself up!!

bundaberg Sat 26-Oct-13 19:00:50

you're not an idiot or a failure. I ended up visiting the baby cafe frequently with my 3rd as I just couldn't get positioning right.

it's ok to not be able to do it. it's a different baby, different circumstances... keep on getting support and i'm sure it'll get easier.

has baby been checked for obv things like tongue tie?

kidinasweetshop Sat 26-Oct-13 22:03:35

I had the same with DC2 - was in tears in hospital and out of embarrassment kept saying to the midwives that yes I knew in theory what to do as had fed DC1 for 26 months! Turns out DC2 wasn't so clued up!

I actually used nipple shields for 2 days to ease my poor cracked nipples - mentioning this with the caveat of only using them under advice of lactation consultant etc etc but they helped when it was almost too painful to continue.

As her mouth got bigger it got so much easier. Google kellymom - asymmetric latch and the hamburger latch thing really helped.

Keep positive - I've just managed 6 months exclusive BF which seemed a pipe dream early on.

Meringue33 Sat 26-Oct-13 22:08:35

8 days isn't long at all. I only have one DC but I only started to feel he was latching correctly when he was about 8 months!! We mix fed from 9 weeks as I just wasn't confident enough to feed him myself, tho I think with hindsight he was probably fine, I was just over nervous and fixated on achieving the perfect latch.

Slap some Lansinoh on and hang in there. I also remember it took about 3 weeks to stop being painful x

minipie Sat 26-Oct-13 22:12:48

Has dc3 been checked for tongue tie?

fuckwittery Sat 26-Oct-13 22:16:50

Thank you for the support. Sorry about sweary angry post earlier. Just feel v sad now. Cant believe how hard it is third time round! I joined my local LLL group on facebook and posted for help, but had no response. MW is coming Monday AM. Not sure what other support there is available, bf clinic I will go to on Mon PM and Weds but not sure how long I can deal with the blistered nipples. How do I find a lactation consultant? MW was confident she wasn't tongue tied.

Will look at those kellymom links, I watched a video on shallow latch v deep latch earlier. She def has shallow latch I just cant work out how to do the deep latch on, though the bf counsellor managed tp do it for me by shoving her mouth on at the right time, it was amazing it didnt hurt. Bit I iust cant do it myself getting so stressed at every feed.

mawbroon Sat 26-Oct-13 22:22:55

YY to having her checked for tongue tie by someone who knows what they are doing

Workberk Sat 26-Oct-13 22:25:11

Where are you OP? Try to find an IBCLC. Where I live they run some bf groups. Loads more knowledgeable than MW.

Have you checked for lip tie?

It's tough when their mouths are so tiny. It will get easier...

Workberk Sat 26-Oct-13 22:26:44

Just to add don't be afraid to unlatch and relatch to get right latch... Sometimes I'd need to relatch 20+ times at start of a feed. And then still wouldn't be right... But sometimes helped.

NunoBettencourt Sat 26-Oct-13 22:43:33

I can empathise so much with this. DC1 & 2 were so easy. DC3 not so much. In hindsight I'd say a posterior tongue tie was to blame as well as a lip tie but we got through it and I bf until he was a year and my supply dwindled during DC4's pregnancy. And then despite it all being very recent bugger me if I didn't struggle with DC4 to start with too!

My problems between the 2 were:

positioning (boobs were less perky than 7 years previously blush so I was trying to feed at a less than ideal angle!

Shallow latch - did the hamburger squash method to getting the latch a bit deeper which helped massively.

Waiting for that wider mouth gape rather than thinking 'oh, that'll do let's get in with it'

Don't know if my experiences are of any use but didn't want you to think you were alone in feeling how you are.

Remember it is very, very early days. And it is always harder than you remember it being.

I would just check with the midwife about posterior tongue tie just in case they haven't considered that (or even know it exists). Ask maybe if there's an infant feeding coordinator at your hospital? I had one come out at home with DC3 and one from a different trust I went to see with DC4. Both were really helpful.

Oh and lashings of Lansinoh. You will get there smile

NunoBettencourt Sat 26-Oct-13 22:45:25

Forgot to say.

Congratulations on your new baby!

fuckwittery Sat 26-Oct-13 22:47:18

I'm in north herts. There's a private ILCLC near me but I'm not sure how much she charges. The latching and relatching thing really distresses me, as every time I latch on its really fucking painful and if I take 20 goes to get it right I'm crying in pain and baby is really distressed, also no guarantee we'll get it right at all. . Sometimes i totally cock up and I screamed in pain earlier today I got it so badly wrong and she really nipped my battered nipple. Sometimes when she's latched, I stick with it although its not quite right, but good enough i.e. she's getting milk as I can hear her swallowing, but probably not the right thing to do as its still painful.

fuckwittery Sat 26-Oct-13 22:55:06

Nuno that all sounds familiar. One boob is droopier than the other and that one is really difficult. Will try the hamburger thing next feed. Googled, the infant feeding coordinators only run clinics for women staying in hosp. Feel like I've dropped off the bf radar a bit as I had a home birth with a private midwife, she is coming twice a week but I've had to searchout other support, and can only find a bf clinic twice a week locally, not sure if there should be anything else available.

NunoBettencourt Sat 26-Oct-13 23:26:07

I used to keep on with a poor latch because it wasn't quite as bad as it could be and because it hurt to start again. Although for some reason it did take until this baby to work out how to unlatch properly and less painfully (had one of those lightbulb moments swiftly followed by a d'oh!).

It doesn't seem quite right that bfing support isn't there as much just because you had a homebirth with a private MW. I know I was seeing the NHS community midwives afterwards but neither of the infant feeding coordinators I saw were from the hospital I delivered at. And I think it was the HV that referred me the first time. And I've just remembered that my GP gave me the number for the second one with DC4 (although it ended up being the MW that referred me in the end). Might be worth trying?

I know Monday must feel so far away though.

kidinasweetshop Sun 27-Oct-13 05:34:15

If you can get to a physio, laser treatment is amazing for grazed nipples.

kidinasweetshop Sun 27-Oct-13 05:35:51

(They came round the post natal ward for us - not in UK)

If you Google Australian breastfeeding network and call internationally they are really really helpful.

Call the nct bf helpline. They might send round the local nct bf councellor.

DampDudes Sun 27-Oct-13 05:55:13

sometimes if you wait until you get that wide gape then, by the time you've brought then to the breast, they've closed their mouth again!

When you say baby doesn't root does that mean if you bring her right up to your nipple (without waiting for an open mouth first) then she won't open her mouth? Sometimes this is the most effective way of getting a nice open gape.

AgIomparClinne Sun 27-Oct-13 06:09:07

My son was very difficult to feed. He was checked by 5 midwives and they all told me that the latch was wrong and to keep taking him off if it was a bad latch and try again. I was taking him on and off 10-20times. I felt like a total idiot. They could latch him on at BF clinics and the difference was amazing why couldn't I do it. We were feeding for hours��Eventually at 7 weeks someone suggested a posterior tongue tie and we had it clipped. The difference was amazing and immediate!

As a quick check see of your DD can actually stick her tongue out... Try mirroring or putting your finger into her mouth and drawing her tongue out (neither are the correct way to do it but will give you an indication) if her tongue only goes to her lips and seems blunt and squared off rather than pointed then it's probably a TT.

You are doing a fantastic job and she is getting milk. Be kind to yourself.

LadyDowagerHatt Sun 27-Oct-13 06:48:12

Agree with PPs - sounds like it could be a posterior tongue tie. My lg did the goldfish mouth and pretty much 'nipple fed' for a while as I couldn't get her latched on deeply, and when I did she would just pop off again. It was really quick and simple to get it revised and there is a big difference in her feeding now. A lot of doctors, HVs and midwives aren't able to identify any but the most obvious tongue ties - I saw an IBCLC from LLL who spotted it straight away.

It's unlikely to be a tongue tie, as she's had a pain free feed, with help. Please keep going to BF clinics, or call one of the helplines, they can be very helpful.

McBaby Sun 27-Oct-13 09:10:27

Sounds like tongue tie as baby has shallw latch and nipple is damaged. How does your nipple looks when coming out the babies mouth.

We had v bad posterior tongue tie which was not spotted for 8 weeks but in that time it was a circle of feeling like I was getting somewhere and feeds becoming less painful but then getting much worse.

If you can afford it get the lacatation consultant per ASAP. If not ring your loach sure start centres to find out who runs bf support group as some very good lactation consultants run the breast feeding drop ins so you can get very good advice for free.

Take painkillers regularly I found this Elle's a lot with the pain. You also need to try and get nipples to heal between feeds. My preferred method was jelonet I inside of breast pad then some Vaseline.

You do have to make sure no excess cream etc on nipple when trying to get them to latch as lansinoh and Vaseline etc are very slippery and cause baby to slip back and latch to become shallower.

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