Is formula really the magical solution I think it will be?

(108 Posts)
Slh122 Thu 30-Jan-14 06:01:21

I have a 9 day old baby and I'm getting about 2-3 hours sleep on a night.
He settles fine in his Moses basket during the day, feeds every 2-3 hours.
He goes to bed when we go to bed about 11.30 pm then wakes up around 2.
He then feeds constantly till around 7 or 8 am. If he falls asleep on my boob I lay him in his Moses basket and he screams and starts rooting until I feed him again. Repeat constantly.
I can't do it anymore. I feel like leaving him in his crib to cry.
A few people have told me their baby slept longer on formula. Is it true?

AbouttoCrack Thu 30-Jan-14 06:06:11

That sounds fairly normal for a 9 day old. Stick to it. It's sooo worth it.
You are winding him though .. right?

Slh122 Thu 30-Jan-14 06:08:04

I'm winding him but nothing ever comes up - doesn't matter how long I do it for. And he's fine during the day, just on a night he cries and cries and wants to feed constantly.

soapnuts Thu 30-Jan-14 06:09:43

nope - not true. some babies are happier on formula, some happier on breast. at 9 days you're still really early to introduce formula - you're still establishing breastfeeding. ime it's a slippery slope once you start formula because of less stimulation at the breast. have you considered creating a safe co-sleeping environment and letting him sleep with you? both of mine were like this - its gets better but it so tough at the beginning. hope you have some support to help you keep breastfeeding if you want to.

Slh122 Thu 30-Jan-14 06:11:14

We have been co sleeping but tonight everytime I laid him down beside me to sleep he'd start screaming again until I fed him, even though he'd fed for about an hour before and had delatched himself.

Slh122 Thu 30-Jan-14 06:14:14

He's just done it again - come off himself, I've dared to move him to wind him and he started shrieking and screaming until I put him back on. Seriously cannot cope anymore.

TheXxed Thu 30-Jan-14 06:16:30

Perfectly normal for a 9 day old baby.

Slh122 Thu 30-Jan-14 06:18:17

I do want to continue breastfeeding, I'd be really disappointed if I stopped. Just sheer desperation I suppose. And it's so awful when he cries, it upsets me as well. sad

fluffandnonsense Thu 30-Jan-14 06:26:38

Can you express and get your partner to give him a feed? I'm in exactly the same position and without letting my partner give her a feed I'd be getting 1-2 hours sleep a night!

AbouttoCrack Thu 30-Jan-14 06:52:02

I do feel for you. Its so tiring. He's only 9 days old though. It's still such very early days. I agree that bottle feeding at this stage will mess up your supply. Try to skeep as much as you can during the day. It does get better. Honestly.

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 06:55:39

Sounds normal I'm afraid your baby is very tiny still. In the weeks to come thing will get better, try to do nothing apart from feed, eat and rest atm. ( I am assuming it's your first).

Not all babies need winding, mine never did, it tried a few times but it was never needed- all babies are different.

SJisontheway Thu 30-Jan-14 07:01:29

If you are cosleeping anyway, have you tried feeding lying down. As he drops off you just roll away a little - job done

Yes, get feeding lying down working out, and you may find things get a lot easier.

I can guarantee he won't be doing this in a week. He will be doing something else. Which will also be annoying, but not quite as annoying.

If you can hang in there, you can change to formula in a week, in two weeks, whenever, but if you change to formula now, you will have a very hard to impossible time switching back.

headoverheels Thu 30-Jan-14 07:08:29

Try going to bed earlier. 11.30pm sounds very late (for you I mean!) when you have a newborn! It's very common for babies (breastfed or formula fed) to sleep better in the earlier part of the night, so go to bed at 9-10pm to make the most of it.

mrscog Thu 30-Jan-14 07:13:58

Yes what head over heels said, you really need to make the most of the early evening sleep - for the first month of DS life I was in bed at 8.30!

These mega feeding sessions are to build your supply, they don't last long - in a couple of weeks they'll be over.

Have you tried rousing him a bit in the day to offer more feeds then?

Slh122 Thu 30-Jan-14 07:17:48

I've just fed him again for almost an hour then he's delatched himself and I've put him beside me so we can both sleep. Now he's screaming and doesn't want feeding and doesn't need his nappy changing.
I know he's only tiny sad
I just feel like I must be doing something wrong on a night - he's fine throughout the day and then every single night without fail since we came home from hospital it's been this set up of switching between constant feeding and screaming.

Superworm Thu 30-Jan-14 07:20:24

It is full on in the beginning. Nine days is teeny tiny and it takes a while for them to orientate to day and night.

Couple if things that might help. Keep nights dark and quiet and the days light and bright. I used to pop DS by window to sleep in the day. It know is hard in the winter but worth maximising the day light.

Secondly, go to bed as early as possible and try and nap in the day. The sleep deprivation can go on a while regardless of how they are fed, so try and get as much as you can.

Congrats btw smile

Faithless12 Thu 30-Jan-14 07:24:08

It's not a magical solution. At 9 days old DS was sleeping on my chest, the only way he'd stay asleep. I slept in the middle of the bed with my arms on pillows so he couldn't roll anywhere (not that he could/did) I didn't work out feeding laying down until he was 2 months old.

Pooka Thu 30-Jan-14 07:24:37

It can take a week or two for a baby to differentiate between night and day.

As well as all the advice above, I'd recommend keeping the evenings and nights very quiet, with low lighting etc, and conversely, don't whisper or tiptoe around in the day. Open blinds etc.

JemimaPuddle Thu 30-Jan-14 07:24:45

In the first weeks they do feed much more at night as, I think, you produce more milk at that time.
It's utterly exhausting, I got through by feeding lying down & co sleeping. Also agree with getting to bed much earlier if you can.

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 07:44:53

The milk producing hormone prolactin is highest during the night in mothers; nightfeeding is extremely important during the early days when milk supply is being established, it ensure a good daytime supply.
If you give formula you will interfere with the process and your own milk production will diminish.

Stick with it atm. do you have any support during the day? Try to sleep when your baby sleeps- no matter what time that is.
Forget housework, everytyhing else will wait- you have the most important job in the world in hour hands.

And congratulations!

Overcooked Thu 30-Jan-14 07:54:20

Give him a dummy - now that really was a magical solution for us for both DS and DD - i know some people are 'against' them but I've no idea why, babies like to suck, you're being his dummy at the moment, give him a different one.

Hang on in there, it gets better!

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 07:58:30

Dummies, like all articifial teats can cause nipple confusion when breastfeeding -and can make a woman's nipples very sore, even to the point of bleeding.
Dummies can also interefere with breastmilk supply.

Fairylea Thu 30-Jan-14 07:59:49

Hmm I'm going to go against the grain and say I switched to formula with dd now aged 11 and it was a godsend for me. She did seem to immediately sleep longer and of course one of the main advantages is anyone can feed the baby (without the faff of expressing either) so I could hand her over to dh and give him a turn while I skipped a feed and had a sleep.

I loved formula feeding so much I formula fed ds from birth 10 years later. I felt really stressed with all the pressure to breastfeed with dd and with ds I didn't care less as I knew it suited us as a family.

Do whatever you want to do. No one will be asking how you fed your baby ten years later.

Fairylea Thu 30-Jan-14 08:01:33

(And also you can give a good bottle feed, know they've had a lot to feed and then give a dummy not worrying about supply and demand or whatever whatever else..... Both mine slept 6-6 by about 12 weeks, but I may just be lucky!)

ReticulatingSplines Thu 30-Jan-14 08:05:22

Don't wind him! And try to feed in a position that when he delatches you don't need to move him and disturb him.

He's come from an environment where he gets sustenance constantly so it takes a while to adjust.

AnythingNotEverything Thu 30-Jan-14 08:08:30

One cannot disagree with the benefit that someone else can do a formula feed, but the independent ISIS sleep study reports that breastfeeding mums get more sleep than formula feeding mums, even though they feed more often. The sleeping more on formula thing appears to be a myth.

You've had some great advice up thread. It won't always be like this. Your tiny baby still has no idea about the difference between night and day bid you keep it dark at night and bright during the day he should crack this in a couple of weeks.

DD is 14 weeks and I look back on the early days as putting the work in for the reward of super easy feeding later on. It's tough, but get all the rest you can, whenever you can.

Everything else can wait. It helped me a lot to recognise that my only job in the first few weeks was to feed the baby. And eat cake. But mostly feed the baby.


ChazzerChaser Thu 30-Jan-14 08:09:40

I fed lying down and bed shared. He fed, we both drifted off and slept. He'd relatch as and when and I'd stir and doze. I've never winded him as it looked like it would wake him. And I took him to a cranial osteopath as soon as we were out of hospital, he had tricky birth and spell in neonatal unit. Take what is useful from that - all babies are different. And congratulations and hope it goes well.

BetterWithCheese Thu 30-Jan-14 08:17:54

Slh my DD is 4 weeks old and was just like this at the start up from 2-7 feeding. I can't remember when it changed but probably when she was 2 weeks old she started going 12-4 then resettle and asleep until 7.30. It is so hard at the start then it gets better bit by bit with some steps backwards a well. Can you hand off baby now for a bit of sleep?

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 08:27:36

Fairylea- I'm sorry but that is very poor advice.

"(And also you can give a good bottle feed, know they've had a lot to feed and then give a dummy not worrying about supply and demand or whatever whatever else..... "

For a mother with a newborn who wants to continue breastfeeding then this is about the worst advice she could have.
It's clear you know nothing about how breastfeeding works.

Fairylea Thu 30-Jan-14 08:34:05

At the stroke- if you read my post I am talking about IF the op switches to formula feeding - not if she continues with breastfeeding and gives a bottle. Two very different things.

And I know all about how breastfeeding works. Trust me. I suffered severe pnd because of trying to do it and stick to the guidelines.

If you exclusively formula feed you can give a dummy and it obviously doesn't interfere with supply and demand as it would with breastfeeding - that was my point. Perhaps I wasn't clear.

Superworm Thu 30-Jan-14 08:35:14

Fairy I think you were lucky they slept through so early. Most don't and many need night feeds for much, much longer.

That usually involves getting at least once, usually more times a night to make a bottle, hence why BFing mums get more sleep. It's a lot less disruptive.

Coveredinweetabix Thu 30-Jan-14 08:40:24

OP DC1 was just like this and it took her a good three weeks to sort out day & night. I remember posting on here in despair! For a few nights, I went to bed as soon as she finished the feed she wss having around 6pm and then feed her in bed around 10 and then midnight & 2 and then get up & come downstairs with her, put on a DVD and watch that whilst she slept/fed & then go to bed again for a few more hours around 5am. Some how, it was less soul destroying being downstairs than it was in bed. Of course, this can only really be an option with DC1!
FWIW, DD had a massive feeding frenzy when she was 23 days (fed every hour, often for 40-50 minutes, something which really tested my sanity!) and after that cluster fed every evening between about 6pm and 10pm but did then last at least three if not four hours at night which was heaven (although, now that she's 4yrs) sounds like hell!
If you can just hunker down with the TV controls, drinks & plenty of foodfor a few days and ride it out.
Good luck.

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 08:41:21

Fairy the use of a dummy can interfere with formula feeding too.

If some of a baby's time is spend on the fruitless suckling of a dummy then they can be less inclined to feed milk- whether formula or breast.

One of the things to keep an eye on is a baby's weight if you decide to introduce a dummy- irrespective of feeding method.
The younger the baby the more the risk.

You were lucky that your baby was unaffected by the use of the dummy- but please don'y aassume that applies to all babies.

Neetalu Thu 30-Jan-14 08:45:34

Hi, my lo is now 11weeks old is I remember my little one was the same.

It was horrendous. I remember one weekend we did pretty much a full 36hour stint....exhausting. We ended up back in hospital so I could sleep and then feed my baby whilst having our every latched checked by midwives.

I ended up cosleeping for the first 6 weeks with my boob pretty much stuck in des mouth 24/7 ans used lots of lansinoh in between.

My biggest light bulb moment was learning to accept this is temporarily how it's going to be so just to hunker down. I moved from bed to settee with all essentials and entertainment at arms length and forgot about anything else.

It was difficult and everyday I wanted to switch completely to formula ( I also got very cracked nipples and a painful deep tissue infection) because I dreaded and feared every feed but it slowly got better. Week by week it did.

Now I'm starting to enjoy feeds and starting to enjoy my lo. I'm wanting to carry on to 6months but if I don't it doesn't matter my daughter will still be fed. I give one small bottle of formula night that my partner does whilst I make tea then I follow. With the boob for the rest of the time she's bf. we introduced that at 9 weeks.

Seek lots of support of bf groups, HV, family and friends.

And do not put pressure on yourself or let anyone put pressure on. There's a big bf guilt brigade out there but don't fall victim to them.

All the best x

Fairylea Thu 30-Jan-14 08:48:42

Most babies unless severely underweight or with medical issues will let you know when they are genuinely hungry and will refuse a dummy - but yes of course you have to be vigilant and always offer a feed if a baby seems unsettled. Mine fed every 2 hours for the first few weeks and I fully accept I was probably just lucky that they both slept through so early, I'm just sharing my experiences.

Offering a formula feed at night is easy - you can use ready made cartons and just pop into a sterilised bottle - you can even buy prepared sterile bottles now like the ones hospitals have.

Formula feeding is more expensive. But I wanted to post to show that for some people there are benefits to formula feeding.

Neetalu Thu 30-Jan-14 08:57:54

Ps sorry for all the typos the keyboard is very small and bloody predictive text!

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 08:58:11

slh122 I know it's a struggle atm. You may want to give one of the breastfeeding organisations a ring- La Leche League are fantasic and very knowledgeable. Their phone lines are open 24/7 and wiil provide practical and emotional support and are happy just to have a chat when things seem tough.

It's your choice whether to give formula or not- do be aware however that introducing formula at such an early stage may see a downward spiral of your milk supply, necessitating more formula whch again will impact your supply.

The introduction of formula at such an early styage is one of the main reasons women stop breastfeeding within the first few weeks.

I don't want to impinge upon your choices- just a heads up- I don't know how important breastfeeding is to you.

Formula is rarely the answer to make breastfeeding easier.

Overcooked Thu 30-Jan-14 10:49:33

atthe please link to your studies showing that firstly nipple confusion has to be shown to exist and secondly that it can cause babies to feed less and lose weight.

I have two friends that are BF counsellors and both used dummies.

Surely this is better than giving up all together if the OP has a sucky baby!

Slh122 Thu 30-Jan-14 11:01:18

Thanks everyone for the advice. We've just slept for about 4 hours then he's had a feed and he's back asleep again now so will try get some more sleep.

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 11:57:06

I have know hundreds of babies who have nipple confusion.

Lj8893 Thu 30-Jan-14 12:06:13

I'm with fairylea. I switched to ff at about day 5, and instantly it was like I had a different baby. Thinking about it now though, I think had problems with my supply as dd had lost a lot of weight, and for the first 12 hours of her life was on a drip so we couldn't bf straight away.

I did feel extremely guilty at first, but now I think ff was the best thing I did for my baby and for myself.
She's 3 months old now and sleeps through 8pm to 8am. (I know that may be coincidence)

Purely anecdotal, but I used a dummy with one baby, the next wouldn't take it at all. Bleeding nipples both times. I found the dummy gave me a welcome break and ds clearly enjoyed it while making massive weight gains. I would have probably given up without its help. The other thing you could try is giving some expressed milk as a top up feed. Or when you have really had enough, give baby to your oh to walk around in pram or sling till they settle. My dh has been known to walk the streets in the very early hours when I have been at my wits end! Not a long term solution but a lifesaver at the time. Hang in there.

Purely anecdotal, but I used a dummy with one baby, the next wouldn't take it at all. Bleeding nipples both times. I found the dummy gave me a welcome break and ds clearly enjoyed it while making massive weight gains. I would have probably given up without its help. The other thing you could try is giving some expressed milk as a top up feed. Or when you have really had enough, give baby to your oh to walk around in pram or sling till they settle. My dh has been known to walk the streets in the very early hours when I have been at my wits end! Not a long term solution but a lifesaver at the time. Hang in there.

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 12:24:43

Lj8893 Fine. God for you. If you don't rate breastfeeding and fall at the first hurdle then that's simply your choice.
Some mothers think breastfeeding is worth persevering for.

Wingdingdong Thu 30-Jan-14 12:25:02

Sounds completely normal to me too, which is probably not what you want to hear. I still have the feeding diary I showed to the HV at the 10-day check-up, thinking there was something seriously wrong. It's along the lines of 45 mins feeding, 23 min break, hour on, 30 min break, 25 mins feeding, 5 mins off... The HV laughed and told me that it was perfectly normal but would settle down around 2 or 3 weeks in. She was right, it did, and exactly the same thing happened with DC2.

Hang on in there.

Oh and formula - yes you might get slightly more of a break as formula takes longer to digest, but you're more likely to be dealing with constipation at this stage and you'll also be spending that break time washing and sterilising bottles and making up formula. Heads you win, tails you lose. No easy answers with a newborn, apart from snatching every minute of sleep you can and making the most of other people's goodwill, because it all disappears around the 6-week mark when you just have to get on with it! Good luck, it will get better and quite quickly, even though it doesn't feel that way when you're sleep-deprived.

TarkaTheOtter Thu 30-Jan-14 12:25:38

OP a 4hr stretch at 9/10 days is brilliant. My 4 week old ds is still only doing 2hr stretches and that's in bed with me!

9/10 days is growth spurt time. They feed and feed but it increases your supply so you can meet their growing needs. This means that if you introduce a bottle you could end up not being able to supply enough if you wanted to return to ebf. I always found with dd that she started sleeping a longer stretch after each growth spurt as her tummy was bigger. She too could sleep 7-7 without a feed at 12 weeks and she never took a bottle.

Fairylea Thu 30-Jan-14 12:28:37

Atthestoke - you're being very rude to suggest someone "falls at the first hurdle" just because they decide not to breastfeed. You have no idea of the thought processes and experiences that go into making a decision to formula feed.

Personally I do rate breastfeeding but I chose to formula feed because of a myriad of reasons, none of which I have to justify to anyone else.

I hope the op feeds however she wants to and gets the support she needs to do so, whether that is breastfeeding or formula feeding.

Lj8893 Thu 30-Jan-14 12:29:19

strokeoftwelve its attitudes like yours that made me extremely guilty!!!! I wasent suggesting everyone who struggles with bf to switch to ff, was just sharing my positive experience of ff.

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 12:30:14

Fairylea- " You have no idea of the thought processes and experiences that go into making a decision to formula feed"

I know a great deal of the challenges that breastfeeding can bring.

Fairylea Thu 30-Jan-14 12:31:06

Well then perhaps some empathy and sympathy wouldn't go amiss !

Lj8893 Thu 30-Jan-14 12:31:22

Now all the guilt has come flooding back thanks to your post. Thanks alot.

freelancegirl Thu 30-Jan-14 12:33:35

My ds, now 18 months, used to feed for hours and hours and was a terrible sleeper. He lost a lot of weight at first so I mix fed for a couple of months. I then went on to exclusively bf until he was 14 months. Mix feeding can be really handy at first when they are tiny and you're worried about what they are getting and I had no nipple confusion or problems with the bottle. Unfortunately it didn't seem to make a difference to his sleep and I just learned to cosleep and feed lying down. So although I think there's good reasons to top up with formula if your baby clearly isn't getting enough on BM alone, it's not the magic bullet (well wasnt for me) when it comes to sleep.

Fairylea Thu 30-Jan-14 12:36:15

Lj- please don't feel guilty. You've done nothing wrong. It's far better to enjoy formula feeding than to feel under so much pressure to breastfeed that it takes the enjoyment away from those early days with your baby. It really isn't anything to feel guilty about.

There is an incredible amount of pressure on mums to breastfeed and it is such a small part of overall parenting. It's nice if you can do it and want to do it but honestly no one is going to give you a medal either way whichever you choose.

Don't let anyone make you feel bad.

TheXxed Thu 30-Jan-14 12:37:33

LJ8893 no one else is responsible for your feelings, the OP asked for information about breast feeding.

If you feel so sensitive about the subject avoid these threads.

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 12:39:08


"I switched to ff at about day 5, and instantly it was like I had a different baby. I think ff was the best thing I did for my baby and for myself."

Make up your mind ffs. You have jumped from it being the "best thing" to feeling guilty.
well it's your choice to feel that way- but don't try to persuade others to give up breastfeeding to salve your guilt.

Lj8893 Thu 30-Jan-14 12:40:44

Ummm the thread title is about formula feeding.

I didn't think I still felt sensitive about it anymore, my dd is now 3 months and I haven't had an negative attitudes toward my ff her until atthestrokeoftwelves post which quite frankly wasn't very polite. And was bound to make even the most hard nosed person feel slightly sensitive.

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 12:41:13

fairylea- I have plenty of empathy for the OP and given constructive advice- none for you however as you are happy to sing the benefits of formula it doesn't sound like you need any sympathy.

Lj8893 Thu 30-Jan-14 12:43:13

I am not trying to persuade anybody!!!!!!! The OP asked if formula feeding was the magic solution, I was just saying that for me it was the magic solution but it did come with a side order of guilt. (And mild pnd)

Don't get me wrong, when I have another dc I will attempt bf again as I was so hoping to bf for at least a year. But it didn't work for us this time.

dannydyerismydad Thu 30-Jan-14 12:45:55

It's a choice only you can make, OP. Women need to choose the way of feeding their babies that works best for them and their families.

Remember though, once you make the switch, it's difficult (although not impossible) to go back. Only offer formula if you are at peace with your decision to stop breastfeeding.

There's a chance it will make a difference, there's a chance it will make no difference at all, and there's a chance that your baby will change patterns soon, so no matter what you do, things will get better.

Fairylea Thu 30-Jan-14 12:47:47

That's fine atthestroke, you're right I don't need sympathy. And I'm not ashamed to say that formula really made a difference to how quickly I recovered from severe pnd and also to my bond with my baby because I wasn't doing something I didn't enjoy anymore.

I wish someone like me had come along when I was struggling and feeling down and said it's okay to switch to formula, it doesn't make you any less of a mum and it doesn't mean you've failed. Because that's how I felt and I could have done with hearing that, to give a balanced view alongside the many, many persuasive voices of breastfeeding supporters such as yourself.

This thread asks about formula and I've just said that for me it make a huge positive difference switching to formula feeding. I am entitled to share that view just as much as you are yours.

I'm not saying the op should switch to formula at all, unlike you trying to persuade her to keep breastfeeding.

TheXxed Thu 30-Jan-14 12:50:45

dannydyerismydad gave wonderful advice, just to add.

My baby fed all day all night I felt like trapped and could even go to the post office without him screaming, not crying. Screaming.

I adapted myself around him, co-slept,put him in a sling. At 10 months he sleeps if i put him down awake no bed time ritual, sleeps through the night in his own crib.

Lj8893 Thu 30-Jan-14 12:54:13

I've just had another read of your post strokeoftwelve
I didn't fall at the first hurdle.

The first hurdle was when I first bf my dd after birth and she stopped breathing on the breast and then had to spend her first 12 hours on a drip.

I think its fair to say that could have had a major impact on my supply and the way I felt about breastfeeding. However I still attempted to bf her when she was out of the incubator and drip, and she very quickly and drastically lost lots of weight (within 2 days) so by the 5th day of sleepless nights and dd looking smaller and smaller by the day, I caved and switched to formula.

I don't really know why I am justifying myself to you actually but it makes me feel better about my choice.

naty1 Thu 30-Jan-14 12:55:39

My sister successfully bf after giving a dummy.
Her baby was more contented then mine when I wanted to give one later she wouldn't take it.
I would imagine as long as you wake baby up and ensure feeds say at least every 3 hours your supply would be fine
(Though now no need to take away dummy)
I had to put her down in middle of bed with my arm round her and try to slip it away later (superking bed)

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 12:55:49

You are right- you don't have to justify yourself and I am not sure why you are doing so.

Lj8893 Thu 30-Jan-14 12:58:14

Because you clearly have a big problem with ff mothers. I was just explaining why you first post to me was such a massive jump to conclusion on your part.

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 13:02:00

You are jumping to conclusions if you think I have a problem with ffing mothers.

Pot Kettle.

Lj8893 Thu 30-Jan-14 13:04:26

Ok fair enough, I apologise for that comment.

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 13:09:19

Ok Lj8893.

Hoppinggreen Thu 30-Jan-14 13:10:04

Take all the advice about BF but iF you feel that FF is the way forward then there's nothing wrong with it. I have 2 very bright healthy children who never had any boob. Persevere with your BF but be kind to yourself too and so what is ultimately best for you all as a family.

Lj8893 Thu 30-Jan-14 13:11:53

Can I ask strokeoftwelve what you suggest I should have done in my situation?

Not a sarcastic question, I'm just genuinely interested. Like I say I hope to bf when I have another dc and don't want the same thing to happen again!!

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 13:20:44

Firstly getting good support is essential- not always found within the NHS.

You had a traumatic experenc- for which I am genuinely sorry btw.

Formula is sometimes necessary and it does sound as if some good judgements were made at that time.
Once the situation was stabilised and baby back home then if you had wanted to ebf again then focus on increasing your supply ( while supplementing with formula as necessary)
At only a few weeks post partum your prolactin levels are still very high so ramping up to full production again should be relatively easy. ( remember even women who adopt babies and who have never given birth can still breastfeed)

This could be achieved by a number of measures, having a 2 day "babymoon", super switch nursing, the use of a supplementary nursing system ( SNS), perhaps domperidone treatment.
The exact management of the situation would depend on your circumstances, but in all cases you would need knowledgeable help.

Having said that the chances of success would be high and formula could be dropped in a relatively short time.

Getting expert help is the key though.

naty1 Thu 30-Jan-14 13:23:39

I think ff could make a difference but, if 90% of bf babies say experience this then this is how it is "meant to be"
It is the long sleeping of the ff babies if it exists that is unusual.
I think more could be done to prepare people for the reality.
Ff can cause it's own problems like more spit up, constipation and wind, and babies can be allergic to the milk.

Lots of people I know bf and used dummies

Lj8893 Thu 30-Jan-14 13:25:01

Thank you. Fingers crossed my next experience will be completely different but that's some good advice.

atthestrokeoftwelve Thu 30-Jan-14 13:27:01

You have my best wishes Lj8893 X

Pooka Thu 30-Jan-14 13:51:24

I breastfed dd and ds1 to a year and ds2 to 2 and a bit.

They all had dummies from about 2/3 weeks old. I would have gone crazy if not. Dd in particular (first baby) had rotten colic. The colic made her stomach hurt. She fed for comfort. Got worse stomach ache. Vicious circle. The dummy helped her out and we didn't look back.

sherbetpips Thu 30-Jan-14 13:56:00

My son did this, he never really fed properly because he was using me as a dummy. I introduced a dummy at 10 weeks because I was at the point of giving up. I managed to carry of bfing and sometimes formula for another 6 weeks before we switched to formula completely. I would say if they have had a good hours feed then give a dummy for the comfort it offers. I tried to limit offering the breast to every two hours.

ElleCloughie Thu 30-Jan-14 14:02:50

For what it's worth, I was expressing milk and bottlefeeding non-latching DD for the first three weeks, and I found all the messing round sterilising bottles and stuff exhausting, especially during the night. I also fairly quickly realised that I was only ever going to get any sleep if I co-slept, something I had always said I wouldn't do. But it works for her.

AnythingNotEverything Thu 30-Jan-14 14:04:20

There's a difference between introducing a dummy at 10 weeks and introducing one in the early weeks when you're still trying to stimulate and settle your supply.

naty1 Thu 30-Jan-14 14:18:38

Maybe but if they are comfort sucking surely you are creating too much supply

AnythingNotEverything Thu 30-Jan-14 18:06:26

Maybe naty, maybe, but oversupply is better than undersupply, don't you think?

naty1 Thu 30-Jan-14 19:23:42

But out of a choice between formula and dummy, I would expect dummy is better as the formula will definitely decrease demand and supply as the baby is full.

intheround Thu 30-Jan-14 19:31:45

I used a dummy and breast fed til 10months.
I introduced it once BF was established at about 2 weeks, DS2 liked to comfort suck. He would be so full of milk he just sicked it up again. I used it to help settle him to sleep and once he'd dropped off I'd gently remove it. I used it for about 2 months.
It did not cuase nipple confusion, affect my milk suppy, nor give me sore nipples

intheround Thu 30-Jan-14 19:35:04

Also, as a mum, I think get to know when your baby is hungry and when he is comfort sucking.

harverina Thu 30-Jan-14 23:36:37

At 9 days it is normal for your baby to feed frequently. That doesn't make it any easier, but be assured that what you are experiencing is not unusual and the only way to get through it is to rest when your baby is sleeping or happy being held by someone else.

Is formula the answer? Well of course it means that someone else can feed your baby instead of you, so you could maybe get some more rest. It doesn't necessarily mean that your baby will sleep any better though.

Ultimately it really depends on whether or not you really want to keep breastfeeding. Cluster feeding is natural as is wanting to be held constantly. I recently posted on here when my, now 3 month old, newborn baby was cluster feeding overnight for 8 hours at a time. It was exhausting. At the time it's hard to see how you can keep going, but you do and in a few weeks things will be much easier.

Hope you have managed to get some more rest - honestly it does get better grin

MissRatty Sat 01-Feb-14 03:38:47

We had this too at 9 days...there are a LOT of growth spurts in the first few weeks. I was at my wits end. I did get some help from a breastfeeding group run by the NHS, help with my technique which helped my LO feed more effectively ( he had quite a shallow latch). It does get better. My DH was giving bm top ups and one bm feed at night via bottle which helped me sleep for a few hours, but that is a choice we made x

JustLetMeSleep Sat 01-Feb-14 08:55:47

Have you tried giving him infacol or another colic relief medicine? You give a squirt of infacol before feeding and it helps them burp after. It helped both of mine, and DD1 was like your DS, sucking and then screaming.

You could also try the NCT breastfeeding helpline - I really despaired with DD1, it was just feed feed feed scream scream scream and the person I talked to had suggestions that made a big difference. On her advice we did give her a dummy and also started swaddling, which helped her to settle a lot. She really needed to suck to get to sleep and I found it really unbearable to be feeding her for so long. She never had problems with the dummy and nipple confusion luckily. I was very careful about watching if her latch or anything changed and was going to take the dummy away if it did to try to avoid it but for us it was just not working without that. I don't know about formula so young but I'd try other things first. Have you tried feeding him wrapped in a blanket so that when you transfer him it's warm already? Or wrapping him in a t shirt you've worn so he can still smell you? That worked for a friend of mine.

With DD2 she wouldn't take a dummy, hated swaddling, wouldn't go in the cot or basket but just about managed to be in bed with me at night (but only slept on us in the day). I just had to make it as safe as possible for her and accept it. You only need one solution, and right now it doesn't have to be a cot or Moses basket. I hope you can find something that works better for you. It will change quickly, but those early days are extremely hard, I know.

Tryingmybest123 Sat 01-Feb-14 14:00:33

In a similar situation. Have a toddler and a 15 day old. Seem to breastfeed 24 hours a day! Am getting about two hours max a night. Shall I switch to formula? I fed the first one to nine months, do feel guilty. Nine days is early and it is worth persevering. I Am only considering the switch because I cannot spend time with my eldest.

AnythingNotEverything Sat 01-Feb-14 16:47:37

Trying - you might be best to start anew thread, but only you known of formula will help. My gut feeling would be that formula would take you away from the older one more through warming up and washing etc.

You've bf before so know it gets easier in leaps and bounds. How about a special box of toys or books especially for when you're feeding the little one? How about a bit more tv time than usual?

Oly4 Sat 01-Feb-14 17:08:24

I breastfeed for 9 weeks and switched to formula for various reasons. i found it FAR easier to bottle feed and sterilise etc than to breastfeed. I'm not anti breastfeeding, this is just my experience. My son is never ill and is thriving. Good luck op with whatever you do

atthestrokeoftwelve Sat 01-Feb-14 17:19:06

Oly4 that's interesting. I found breastfeeding so easy, especially with an older child around.

Oly4 Sat 01-Feb-14 19:31:34

I wish I had found it easy, I was always so jealous of anyone who did. For me it was an exceptionally difficult, emotionally draining experience. The switch to formula was a relief. Again, I'm not anti breastfeeding at all, I wish it had worked. But every mum needs to do what she thinks is best for her family. Good luck to everyone! X

Pobblewhohasnotoes Sat 01-Feb-14 20:30:40

At three weeks old DS was still only wanting to sleep on us and was formula fed and feeding every two hours night and day. It's not a magic cure, it just takes time.

We bought a slumber bear, it was the only thing to settle DS in his cot. Babies take a while to learn what night and day is too. It all sounds normal to me.

harverina Sat 01-Feb-14 21:44:15

Trying I feel the same at times but it does get easier - feeds become quicker and sometimes less frequent. For me dd2 feeds less when we go out so I try and make plans like play dates, trips to soft play etc as it means dd1, who is 3, gets plenty of time to play.

MrChow Sun 02-Feb-14 00:28:30

I think there was a recent study that showed infacol does diddly squat.

PamRavenscroft Sun 02-Feb-14 03:42:26

Really glad I found this thread - I'm ebf dd2 (4 weeks) & finding it really hard. I bf dd1 till she was 1 with no real problems, but this time around it is proving to be far more challenging. She feeds a little, then starts squirming, goes red in the face, cries & fusses. She is full of wind but even once I've brought it up she is desperate to get back on and suck but as soon as the milk starts flowing she pulls off & claws at me & herself, bobs on and off & cries. It's very distressing for both of us! I've been to a bf support clinic & while I agree with them that she looks hungry when all this happens, i don't think she is. Her weight gain is great, as are here wee & poo output. I think she's getting what she needs early on in the feed & then she's too full for anymore but still has an urge to suck. We introduced a dummy a couple of days ago & so far so good but I'm quite paranoid about whether its going to muck everything up, so it's good to hear that it didn't ruin bf'ing for many of you.
Sorry for the long post, OP I genuinely think at 9 days I would give it a bit longer for things to settle down on their own, ff at night this early could affect your supply & it can be hard to go back. Even a dummy I would try to hold off a bit longer. I co-slept with my first and swore I wouldn't do it again as we never got rid of her but I'm so shattered I've ended up doing it again - it's also really nice to have some calm cuddle time when she's not screaming at my boob.
Good luck, don't feel guilty if you do decide to introduce formula, but do be prepared that it might not be something you can go back on down the track. You're doing a great job & it's brilliant that you're giving bf'ing such a good go & thinking through all your options properly.

naty1 Sun 02-Feb-14 09:30:46

We used infacol and it does make them burp. But now she is allergic to soya and im just wondering.. As the only food before 6m

dannydyerismydad Sun 02-Feb-14 14:43:24

Pam, it sounds like you may have oversupply or a fast let down. Have you tried feeding in the biological nurturing or "laid back breastfeeding" position? Your little one may find it more comfortable with gravity helping to control the flow.

MrChow Sun 02-Feb-14 21:45:49

Infacol study link here. infacol study

PamRavenscroft Mon 03-Feb-14 01:47:12

I tried that danny, but it didn't make any difference. I just saw the child health nurse & she was happy with dd's weight gain & said to keep an eye on her nappies to make sure she's getting everything she needs. She said it sounds like she's a very efficient feeder but does need to suck, she suggested trying a dummy. So we'll try that @ see how we go. Glad I didn't bother with infacol!

qumquat Mon 03-Feb-14 10:24:01

When do babies tend to stop needing to cluster feed? Dd is nearly 4 weeks and it's killing me. A bit of washing up of formula bottles seems infinitely preferable to constant pain and no sleep to me, but trying to get to 6 weeks.

ditsygal Mon 03-Feb-14 10:31:28

I breastfed for about 4 weeks, then did a couple of weeks of expressing and feeding bm in a bottle. I have to say breast feeding nearly killed me - I got all the help I could find, but I had a little lump on my nipple to start with and I think this always was a problem as it started to bleed early on, eventually as my baby fed almost constantly my other nipple got cracked and bleeding too. I was in agony and crying all the time. Expressing was less painful but meant I seemed to get even less sleep as I had to feed him then express when I put him down.
Eventually I switched to formula - and for us it really was a godsend and saved my physical and mental health. I wish I had taken to breastfeeding better, but it didn't work out and I'm not going to beat my self up about it.
Do what is right for you. If I have a second baby, I will mix feed from early on to see if this helps me breastfeed for longer, and if it doesn't work out I'll switch fully to formula. It really isn't the end of the world. A happy mummy is the most important thing for a baby.

qumquat Mon 03-Feb-14 13:15:34

Thanks for your post ditsy gal. I'm so desperate to stop bfp but feel so guilty. But I cry every time dd wakes up I'm dreading feeding so much, and that can't be good for her either. All she sees is me crying. I wonder if I switch to formula she might occasionally see me smile.

Oly4 Mon 03-Feb-14 14:17:58

Qumquat, the situation you're in doesn't sound good for anybody. I also cried my way through breastfeeding. Formula feeding saved my sanity. If you really want to continue bf is there anybody can help? Can you express and get somebody else to give your baby a bottle? If you do switch to formula, don't feel guilty. My children are thriving on the stuff! Maybe try mixed feeding first? Yes your supply will drop for those feeds you replace with a bottle but I know plenty of people who've mixed fed for months with success. Do what you feel is right xxx

AnythingNotEverything Mon 03-Feb-14 16:57:07

At four weeks you may have breastfed long enough for your supply not to be negatively affected by mixed feeding. Give it a go. You could express of use formula. It is not poison! Plenty of people successfully mix feed. It can also lead to a reduction in supply, but only you can say if that's something you're happy with.

If it's still very painful at four weeks I'd suggest you get your latch checked. Is there a breastfeeding cafe near you? Are you covering yourself in Lansinoh after every feed? At about five weeks I realised I needed to get DD to latch deeper. Even now at 15 weeks I have to re-latch her regularly to get a pain free feed as she naturally seems to favour a shallow latch.

qumquat Wed 05-Feb-14 01:21:45

Thank you. Yes latch is bad but no joy so far in getting a deeper latch. I've been to lots of bf cafés where I'm shown latching techniques but just can't make it work. Am giving a few bottles now to save my sanity. Although I know you shouldn't I feel like such a failure.

jellyandcake Wed 05-Feb-14 02:27:27

Am remembering the early weeks bfing ds1 and starting to feel a bit panicky. The cluster feeding through the night in the early weeks was so horrendous, however, I could sleep through the will I manage this time with a 3yo? I don't understand how co-sleeping works - the advice is no duvet or pillow so how do you get comfortable and warm enough to sleep yourself even if baby does?

Going back to the OP - my baby never needed winding, it all came out the other end! Mw said that's very common for bf babies. Bfing for me 'clicked' ie became easy at about 8 weeks and it was so, so easy. I was so happy I stuck with it because it gave me so much freedom, never having to sterilize anything or pack up bottles in advance of going out. Also a big money saver! It was very hard 2 weeks in - the night before dh went back to work I didn't sleep at all as baby fed literally all night without a break. I cried all the next day! It got better. I am very apprehensive about going through this with a toddler to look after but it was definitely worth it and it calms down a lot.

My son was sleeping long stretches through the night at 8 weeks. He started doing 10hrs a night about 10 weeks in (and then it all went to shit in the 4month sleep regression, which hit at more like 3.5 months). It can and does happen with bf babies.

naty1 Wed 05-Feb-14 08:47:58

I had the same where she slept really well for a few weeks then started waking again. I wonder if it was just too soon to drop night feeds and supply dropped

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