11 days old and feeding for 2-3 hours at a time

(17 Posts)
Bunnymummy82 Fri 29-Nov-13 01:31:48

I have an 11 day old who feeds for 2 or 3 hours a time esp at night - the midwife said they only need to feed for 40 mins a time - am I doing something wrong? Have resorted to a formula feed a couple if times at 4am when my nipples can't take any more so am slightly desperate! Any advice appreciated!

Bluecarrot Fri 29-Nov-13 01:37:17

Is your baby actually thinking milk of using your nipples as a comforter? Are you using anything on the nipples like lanolin or coconut oil?

I read that cluster feeding at night is common.

I've no first hand experience but didn't want to leave you unanswered overnight. I didn't manage to breastfeed dd1 so been reading a lot up for dd2 due in a few weeks.

Bluecarrot Fri 29-Nov-13 01:37:46

Thinking = drinking!

Bunnymummy82 Fri 29-Nov-13 01:43:15

Thank you! I am not sure if she is really drinking milk or just playing with my nipples - whenever I think she is done she does head nodding and rooting. Have got lanolin which helps!

YankNCock Fri 29-Nov-13 01:44:03

This sounds completely normal to me, with both of mine I felt like I was stuck under them for hours. When they are little like that, sometimes it takes them a while to get more efficient at getting the milk out. As time goes on they will need less time at the breast.

If you have a particularly 'sucky' baby, you could try a dummy. I think 10 days was where I gave in with DS1, because I was so tired of him being on me constantly.

Try to avoid giving bottles if you can, your boobs are getting used to producing milk and are magically working out how much they need to produce and when. Giving a bottle can interrupt that, so if you do use a bottle, you might try to hand express some at the same time to keep your body 'on track' with what it needs to produce.

Good luck, you're doing great!

wellieboots Fri 29-Nov-13 01:47:38

I was told up to an hour per feed but I don't think time limits are particularly helpful. How frequently is LO feeding? At that age, I found that DD would sleep lots during the day and feed quite infrequently as a result. She then caught up at night, feeding every 1.5 hours, it was horrific! Its not a popular idea but I started waking her in the daytime, not letting her go more than 3 hours between feeds. Gradually she started being a bit more settled at night.

YankNCock Fri 29-Nov-13 01:48:37

xposted, oh I love the head-bobbing and rooting, so sweet! Except at 2am when you just want a few hours sleep, right?

If you know the baby has been feeding for ages, there's no harm in popping in a dummy to see if s/he is just wanting to suck. If milk is really what s/he's after, a dummy won't pacify for long!

Bunnymummy82 Fri 29-Nov-13 02:13:31

Thanks so much for the support! Might try dummy... Don't like formula feeding at all but hate idea that she's hungry and feeding for so long is so sore! Will try to avoid and just persevere with breast feeding...

HenD19 Fri 29-Nov-13 02:19:09

The dummy is a great idea and I'd try that before giving a bottle as it will affect your milk production. Unfortunately the feeding that you describe is completely normal but should ease off soon. It sounds like you're doing really well though!

As everyone has said, this is completely normal, although you never quite expect how long the babies can go for!

I found it helped to thinking of these marathon sessions as my DD putting her order in as it were - she's letting your breasts know how much milk to make. For me, it was also better once I gave in to it, rather than saying "she can't still be hungry...", easier to cope with.

Using a dummy can interfere with that, as not all the message gets to your breasts if she's sucking elsewhere. (same as with a bottle), so it's not generally recommended in the early days, until your supply is better established.
Plenty sucking = plenty milk!

Lanolin is your friend, although if you're getting raw, you might want to get someone to look at the latch, for your own protection!

Congratulations on your little squishy one, and keep asking for advice here if you feel the need - there are loads of really knowledgable MNers around.

smile

Woody31 Fri 29-Nov-13 02:49:19

Hey Bunnymummy, firstly well done for sticking with it and trying your hardest to establish your little one breastfeeding. Loads would have given up completely by now as I bet your nipples don't feel like your own. A few thoughts from me......Every child feeds at different speeds, some super quick and some slow. Both my DC were slow feeders but I had a very friendly MW who just said don't let them feed for longer than an hour, unlatch them gently by slipping in your finger and come back to it a bit later. Agree with others that lanolin cream is amazing but also I can assure you it's highly unlikely your nipples won't feel this sore by the middle of next week. Your baby is still very little and the best thing is to continue feeding on demand, but make sure this is at least every 2-3 hours in the day - even if you have to wake them for a week or so to get it going. The more they feed in the day the less they will (eventually)feed at night. Don't beat yourself up about the bottle - it has given you a little break and is supporting you to BF for the rest of the time so in that respect its mixed feeding going well! I hope things settle down for you soon - keep us updated and remember lots of feeding in the day (even if you have to escape all those visitors this weekend to do it).

JollySeriousGiant Fri 29-Nov-13 05:28:51

Woody's post is excellent.

The other thing I read is that if when they are attached baby is sucking less than once every 15 seconds, they are sleeping and you should unlatch them.

agendabender Fri 29-Nov-13 05:41:49

this is very normal and will help to increase your milk supply, which giving formula will hinder. This might be fine with you, no judgement from me. Get some lovely lansinoh for your nipples, and best of luck!

Sunnysummer Fri 29-Nov-13 05:56:27

Woodys post is excellent. Using a dummy or formula at this point is absolutely fine if you wish to, BUT not a great idea if you want to give exclusive breast feeding a shot, as the reason your baby is sucking so much is to bring your milk in.

I was also told to detach after about an hour to an hour and a 1/2 or when the sucking becomes fluttery - it's really helpful if you can then hand the baby to DH or mum, as with no milk on offer they often calm down with just cuddles.

Other than that, just lie in bed with the baby, coat yourself in lansinoh and get your partner or family to bring you masses of box sets, water and treats! This stage passes quicker than you think smile

Bunnymummy82 Sat 30-Nov-13 02:07:55

Thanks so much everyone! Glad to hear its normal! Think it's just hard when the cluster feeding is at 2am - if it was 2pm I could cope much better but I'm trying to let my partner sleep a bit at night so he can relieve me during day so it gets a bit lonely at night! Also she is now being naughty with not wanting to latch properly... Anyway, we are persevering and agree that embracing it rather than thinking she can't still be hungry helps!

Well done you. I got through the first 4 or 5 weeks one feed at a time, then we really hit our stride and started reaping the rewards of convenience, ease etc. (and now, after 14 months, we're still going!)
soon you will get to that good bit too, where it's easy, comfortable and convenient, and she'll begin to take more in the day and less at night.

Then you can look at her growing and say 'I did that' and feel all proud. So worth persevering smile

Featherbag Sat 30-Nov-13 09:48:01

Hi Bunny, I have a 9do and I'm having exactly the same experience, sometimes he feeds for over 2 hours (always during the night) but I'm just letting him get on with it! Feeds during the day are 10-15 minutes so I'm going to try putting him to the breast every 2 hours today and see if it has any effect tonight. On Wednesday he fed about 11 times during the day then only woke once between 11pm and 8am, whereas yesterday he fed 7 times and has done his marathon feeding again overnight. Could be a coincidence but we'll see! I've had really painful nipples too, they still are sometimes but for a few days now I've been wearing breast pads with a good glob of Lansinoh on them and changing every couple of hours. After a couple of days of this there was a marked improvement. I also got the bf support workers from the hospital to come and observe a few feeds, they were able to give me some tips to improve latch and general comfort, does your hospital offer anything like this?

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