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Please help - desperate with newborn

(101 Posts)
desperatemum17 Mon 11-Dec-17 13:42:16

I really need help. Posting here for traffic.

DS is four weeks old. First couple of weeks were pretty good: he would go three hours between feeds and was easy to settle to sleep. Health visitor then noticed oral thrush and doctor prescribed Nystatin Oral Suspension for a week and a steroid cream to treat associated nappy rash. This cleared up the thrush and bottom wasn't looking sore but he began being extremely fussy after feeds and sometimes during.

For two weeks now, he will writhe and thrash around and scream after feeding. Once or twice a day, this will start while he's on the breast. I burp him straight after feeding and try to keep him upright for 20-30 mins after every feed. Despite this, he cannot be put down. If he drops off being held/ swayed, we then put him down but he wakes screaming within minutes. During the day, he sleeps on me or in our soft sling, at night he wakes every few minutes, screams, feeds to sleep, is put down, wakes, screams etc.

I've not slept for longer than 90 minutes in one go for a month and I'm seriously concerned about my husband, who feels totally helpless and like we've ruined our lives.

Some additional info:

1) exclusively breastfed
2) husband does a sensitive job within the emergency services and cannot be too sleep deprived so nights are mainly my responsibility
3) doesn't seem to be colic because he can be pacified by holding him upright, doing cycle legs so he passes wind etc but only until he's put down, when he seems like he's in agony again.

I'm worried that this is becoming dangerous: I've fallen asleep holding/ feeding him in bed a couple of times now. Mainly, I hate seeing him in such distress. Am I being unreasonable to think this is more than just newborn behaviour?

What do I do now? GP? Or do I just need to get used to this until it passes? Should I cut things like dairy out of my diet? Please help me because I'm desperate and at the moment, although I love my son, I don't like being his Mum and I hate that I've made this decision when I was happy anyway before having him.

Lostmyemailaddress Mon 11-Dec-17 13:46:23

I'd take him to the gp before cutting out any foods being upright sounds to me like reflux as dd3 only settled upright but it could be possible he could have thrush again.

ColdFeetWarmHeart Mon 11-Dec-17 13:47:25

Some of what you say sounds similar to my DD1. She was fine for first couple of weeks, then started screaming her lungs off after each feed and was very sick. Lots of sick!! At 6 weeks she developed a rash. She was diagnosed with cows milk protein intolerance. I cut all dairy out of my diet.

Is your little one being sick more than the normal spit up? How are his nappies??

Feilin Mon 11-Dec-17 13:47:54

Cut out dairy for a few days . If you are struggling see your gp . He may want to be held so maybe a sling would help in daytime .im sorry i cant be of more help.

Wishfulmakeupping Mon 11-Dec-17 13:48:45

Yes back to gp op sometimes you have to be really persistent I took dd dr 5 times before they diagnosed reflux

Pumperthepumper Mon 11-Dec-17 13:50:00

Don’t cut out anything until you see your GP. It sounds like reflux, my son was exactly the same, but definitely see your GP first.

ColdFeetWarmHeart Mon 11-Dec-17 13:50:10

My DD1 had reflux as well as cows milk protein intolerance. She was on gaviscon for a little while to help. Your GP will need to prescribe so book an appointment to discuss your concerns. Have you had a visit from health visitor lately??

KalaLaka Mon 11-Dec-17 13:51:28

Definitely see your Gp and tell them in detail. Push for help; they may fob you off. It doesn't sound normal, it sounds like reflux or something.

No one at all would be enjoying this!! You've just got to get through it, I know it's tough. It doesn't represent what life is going to be like with a child, things will change. The first couple of months are always really tough (especially the first baby as the lifestyle change is so drastic).

Is your Health visitor any good?

MarmaladeAtkinsX Mon 11-Dec-17 13:51:55

Take to GP. Could be bad colic, reflux or an intolerance.

My DS was similar, baths gave him some respite (taking pressure off his tummy), try the sleeping tiger hold, and he seemed to sleep when we went out for a walk - the bumpier and more cobbles the better!

Do you have a friend or family who could take LO out while you get some sleep? flowers

RaeSkywalker Mon 11-Dec-17 13:53:39

My son was like this, though probably not quite as bad- he has reflux (if your baby isn’t being sick, it could be silent reflux). DS was also diagnosed with a dairy allergy.

BerryBee Mon 11-Dec-17 13:53:44

I would see your GP. But be prepared that you may need to be assertive and go more than once to get a referral to the hospital.
Also try and get HV on board.
It will get better OP. You're in the thick of it now but it will get easier.

helen650 Mon 11-Dec-17 13:53:52

Perhaps try a dummy? It may help him settle if he wants to suck for comfort. I BF mine and they all had a dummy after a few weeks:

Sasbel Mon 11-Dec-17 13:54:00

Poor you, DD was like this, it was reflux. Baby Gaviscon helped. And a sling. Eventually she grew out of it at 14 months. Go see your GP and HV.
Good luck.

TractorTedTed Mon 11-Dec-17 13:54:33

I think I'd take him to the gp too.

What's your let-down like? I only ask because I discovered mine was really fast, and you mention him screaming whilst feeding. My first did the same. I assumed it was wind/pain etc and so would stop feeding, walk round for ages trying to pacify him etc. It took me ages to work out that he was just taking in too much too quickly, and all I needed to do was wait, he'd relatch and carry on feeding. All the screaming and thrashing was because he was still hungry blush

However from what you describe reflux sounds likely too.

desperatemum17 Mon 11-Dec-17 13:57:21

Thank you so much for replying. Fo answer questions: is rarely ever sick - occasionally spits up a bit but that's it. Also excellent weight gain - put on an entire lb last week.

Explosive nappies - has managed to decorate the walls/ curtains with just how far they explode. Makes me think he must have bad wind? Every nappy has a little bit of poo in it but we generally then have 3 or 4 big ones a day.

I have a sling: he spends most mornings in that so I can make breakfast etc.

Have had two visits total: one the day after he was born from the Midwife and one from the HV at 2 weeks: next one is on the 28th Dec when he's 6 weeks.

I just want him to feel better and to enjoy even a couple of minutes of this experience. Does this still sound like it could be reflux, without being sick?

ineedwine99 Mon 11-Dec-17 13:59:37

Sounds similar to my baby at that age, she had silent reflux, she'd hiccup quite a bit which sounded 'wet', she'd gum her fists a lot, pull of the bottle frequently then go back on, was clearly hungry but feeding was causing a problem, squirm a lot and couldn't lay flat, her cot had to be on an incline (so the acid doesn't move up the throat)
She was put on infant Gaviscon and it worked a treat. I don't know how BF babies take Gaviscon and it can cause constipation so someone may be able to recommed a better medicine to try if the GP agrees.
Good luck OP, i know how hard it is, thankfully she outgrew it but that was only at about 12 months

ineedwine99 Mon 11-Dec-17 14:00:20

She was never sick, occasionally spat up milk streaked liquid

AHedgehogCanNeverBeBuggered Mon 11-Dec-17 14:01:39

DS was exactly the same, what turned things around for us was putting him to sleep on his tummy - I know the SIDS risk is higher so we ALWAYS use an AngelCare breathing monitor (which has never gone off except when we've picked him up and forgotten to switch the monitor off).

Those early days are so hard, I know it's not much comfort now but things WILL get better. Now bf is established you could get a breast pump (I'd recommend the Medela Swing) and your DH could take over in the morning with a bottle before work? My DH does the 06:00-08:00 shift on weekdays and until 10:00 or 11:00 at weekends to let me sleep. It's been a lifesaver!

waterrat Mon 11-Dec-17 14:03:21

Have you tried safe co sleeping? Is it possible he just wants to be held...some babies aee harder to put down than others..or does he seem to be in pain?

If its about human contact have you tried swaddling very tightly and using a dummy...that combination worked miracles with us.

waterrat Mon 11-Dec-17 14:04:03

Yes also my second baby we put on her tummy and I would sleep v near her....

AnnaT45 Mon 11-Dec-17 14:04:09

Sounds like Dd. Cows milk protein allergy and reflux. Cut out diary and see if that helps but also see GP to get reflux meds. You'll start on gaviscon but I don't know many who though it's that great so if it's not working go back. I got ranitidine and she was much better!!

I really feel for you. It's horrendous x

AustrianSnow Mon 11-Dec-17 14:12:31

My dc was better when sleeping on her tummy with silent reflux.

Fiere Mon 11-Dec-17 14:16:30

I had a friend who went through almost exactly what you're describing with her first - it was cows milk allergy and reflux. She put him on prescription formula and there was a huge change in him almost over night. Good luck!

BrambleandCuthbert Mon 11-Dec-17 14:16:37

Poor you.

It's some years ago now but my eldest was like this. It was (silent) reflux - diagnosed by a paediatrician at A&E after our GP sent us there.

Like your baby, mine couldn't be put down ever and he screamed and screamed and screamed get the picture. We had to hold him upright 24/7 - and it nearly killed me.

You need to get him looked at ASAP by the GP. Mention reflux. Describe how he starts screaming during/after feeding because that's classic. Feeding little and often is also classic; it's because the short-term impact of milk hitting the tummy is soothing but, very soon after, the reflux kicks in.

Gaviscon alone may help but it may not be sufficient. Mine went straight onto Gaviscon plus Ranitidine plus something else (Omeprazone, I think). Together, they did help and he eventually grew out of it, and was discharged by the paediatric gastroenterologist just before his first birthday.

I won't lie: it was hellish for the first six months or so. If it's the same for you, you'll need to do whatever's necessary in order to cope.

I appreciate your husband's need for sleep but are there times when he can take the baby? For example, mine used to be on holding upright duties between about 10pm and midnight, and then again for an hour from 6am. More at the weekends. Even if it doesn't push you past 90 mins sleep, it will help a little bit.

You might also like to think about an amby hammock. Suitable until the baby can roll over, they hold them in a semi-upright, cradled position that mimics being in the womb. My son actually slept for, you know, whole half hours at a time in it. Seriously, it was worth its weight in gold and I'd have paid two or three times the price for it.

The only other thing I can say is that, if it is reflux, it passes. I promise. It feels dark and desperate now, I know, but it's not for ever. You haven't ruined your lives and there is joy ahead. Really there is. If you're struggling and think it's "more" than "just" the lack of sleep, please see your HV or GP to rule in/out PND.

BrambleandCuthbert Mon 11-Dec-17 14:19:21

Just seen your latest message. Yes, with silent reflux there's very little actual puke - certainly not more than with the average baby. This is one reason why GPs and HVs don't always spot silent reflux straightaway.

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