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Help needed - 7 week old baby, exclusively breastfed, green poos and generally unsettled

(18 Posts)
LauraPacker71 Tue 09-Apr-13 19:06:54

Hi all,

Just looking for some advice really! I have a 7 week old daughter who I have been exclusively breastfeeding since birth. Her weight gain is going well, she was born 8lb 12oz, dropped to 7lb 15oz following birth but when last weighed a few days ago was 11lb.

However, for the past 4 weeks she has been consistently passing green stools - I can't actually remember what a yellow mustard stool looks like! I have been to the doctors of 2 occasions, spoke to health visitors etc and because of her weight gain nobody really seems that bothered! But I am still troubled by them especially as their onset coincided with her being quite windy and unsettled during the day and evenings!

I have concerns that she's not latching on properly when feeding as she never makes a big mouth or seal and tends to nipple feed rather than breastfeed but no matter how many times I try I cannot get her to make a big mouth! I also hear a clicking noise throughout her feeding. The result is therefore that takes in a lot of wind, which tends to come out her bottom half more than often! But you can see it causes her great discomfort at times! I've tried expressing and giving her a bottle but she will not take a bottle (I've spent a fortune trying different makes!!) I'm going to preserve with this though!

I also have worries that my let down is fast as she often coughs and splutters when initially feeding! At most she will feed for 12minutes at a time and I only offer one breast as I have concerns about the whole 'not reaching the hind milk' issue! She also sicks up a LOT after feeds and often when she wakes for next feed she will sick up clear liquid with white lumps! She tends to feed every 3 hours during the day and at night will usually do a 4-5 hour stretch (we did have one night of an 8 hour stretch but that was a one off)!

For the last couple of days she has been really unsettled during the day - I've put her down for naps at the first sign of a yawn but after about 20minutes she wakes up crying and won't go back to sleep no matter what I do, but I can see she's still tired as she's yawning away and just seems unhappy!

Anyway I'd greatly appreciate any advice or thoughts on the above! I know that she's still young and fussiness is to be expected, but I just want to make sure that her feeding is not contributing to her being unsettled!

Oh and I have tried cutting out dairy for a couple of weeks to see if that had an affect - it made no difference to the colour of her poos but it has made them smell a bit better as before they would absolutely stink, which I also found weird as I thought breastfed babies poos weren't suppose to smell horrible?!

lljkk Tue 09-Apr-13 19:11:51

I'd ignore the poo. doesn't mean anything by itself. They used to say it was caused by "over feeding", but it doesn't make much difference if slightly overfed.

Windy: all the usual tricks apply.

Sicking up after meals: I used to limit feeding times a bit for DS because he would over feed & then puke everwhere. So 20 minutes of feed, wind, entertain in other ways. And feed to sleep maybe 1 hour later when grizzly again. This might help with the overfeeding symptoms, too.

Picklepepperpiper Tue 09-Apr-13 19:16:52

I was told by hv that green poo meant baby was getting too much fore milk. Not sure if this is correct as never heard this before.

I was also if let down was too fast then to block feed from one side to try to get it under control.

catlady1 Tue 09-Apr-13 19:22:35

I was also told that green poos meant too much fore milk or not enough hind milk, and to put DD back to the first breast a few times rather than offering the second, or to express a bit off before feeding. Neither worked, until I stopped taking my iron tablets, and a google search told me that they can also cause green poos, so I'm not sure which it was. She's fine now, anyway.

Dey83 Tue 09-Apr-13 19:30:37

Your baby sounds exactly like mine - exactly the same problems. I got very little help so paid for a private lactation consultant to help. My baby is now 6 months old. Firstly well done for persisting with bf, it can be so stressful when you worry that your baby isn't feeding properly!

So the green poo is prob too much foremilk - I used to think it smelt like gone off herbs. Prob not something to worry about too much. I had a forceful let down which ment that my baby couldn't drink fast enough so she would lose milk from underneath. She has always clicked and does still click. Also she has never really fed for more than 10 mins at a time.

The issue we found was that my baby's palette was abnormally high which also had a strong gag reflex when touched. So to manage this she would shallow latch - essentially nipple hang. Luckily she has never caused me to have sore nipple, and although the palette is no longer a problem she continues to have a shallow latch.

My baby used to always also be sick and she used to arch her back and fuss when feeding. Turns out she has gastro (something) reflux. A dietician and feeding specialist diagnosed this even though i was visiting the GP weekly! She is prescribed medication to help with acid and another for sickness. I can't tell you the difference this has made.

She still feeds for max 7 mins but she no longer fusses and enjoys her feed. Also she is sick very little. Can you believe the GP told me I was an anxious first time mum and there was nothing wrong! Luckily I have a sensible pead for my daughter.

Wishin you and your bubba all the best x

FreyaKItty Tue 09-Apr-13 19:37:29

My ds reacted to vitamin tablets (iron and non iron). He Undescended to be windy at night. I also block fed due to fast let down. These two things sorted him out. I also avoided coffee as he reacted to that. Dd never had a problem with any of these things.

mawbroon Tue 09-Apr-13 20:44:52

Green stools, poor latch, clicking, small gape, wind, coughing and spluttering.

Classic tongue tie symptoms. Get her checked by somebody who knows about tongue tie. And beware that there's every chance that your HV/GP are not experts. Many people (me included) are told that their baby isn't tied, when in fact they are.

info here and here

WouldBeHarrietVane Tue 09-Apr-13 20:53:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WouldBeHarrietVane Tue 09-Apr-13 21:04:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Dey83 Tue 09-Apr-13 23:48:26

Yes do get checked for tongue tie - I did too. GP/Hv are not experts so press to be referred to paediatrician if you wish for this to be explored

Bessie123 Tue 09-Apr-13 23:51:41

My ds was like this. He has a tongue tie, which we didn't fix, and we found out later he also had silent reflux and food intolerances. Dairy, eggs and soya were problems. Does your dd sleep ok?

totallynaive Wed 10-Apr-13 08:47:42

I would just add my ha'pennyworth because we had the green poos and the being sick after feeds (especially when lying down to change nappies), plus the inability to settle/sleep with lots of crying and arching. It sounds as if your baby might have reflux, and would benefit from being held upright as much as possible and being lain on a mattress which is at a tilt (prop up with towels, taking care your baby doesn't slip to one side) until you can get a diagnosis/treatment. (Visiting the mn "feeding" topic and enter search terms such as "colic" and "reflux").

The green poos (ours were fluorescent green and a bit jellylike rather than seaweedy) were improved with ours when I spaced the feeds more. My baby wanted to feed in small amounts very frequently (possibly because the new milk going down soothed his tummy for a bit), but I took some mn advice and tried to hold off a bit so that he had bigger feeds with gaps in between, which meant he got more hindmilk - and, possibly, that old milk wasn't mixing with undigested milk and causing a reaction in his gut. I also discovered that his symptoms were not as extreme (but were still bad) when I held off dairy myself (also caffeine, chilli and chocolate). When I started to wean him I found he was allergic to milk protein (still is), although he had by then grown out of the reflux through a combination of gut maturity, being old enough to wriggle and sit up and, possibly, cranial osteopathy.

Sounds as if you have latch issues too, though, so others more expert than I will advise.

rrreow Wed 10-Apr-13 14:48:11

Have you tried block feeding? You basically offer one breast, like you have been doing, but then the next feed you offer the same breast again (I could only ever offer the same breast for 2 feeds, otherwise the other one felt like it was going to explode, but depending on the length & frequency of your DDs feeds you might even offer the same breast a third or fourth time). Because you mention that your DD only feeds for very short periods of time she might still not be getting the hindmilk despite you not switching breasts so offering the same breast on subsequent feed(s) might help.

It's so difficult isn't it when you don't know exactly what is causing something. Definitely also seconding other poster's suggestion to check for tongue tie.

roamingwest Wed 10-Apr-13 19:39:42

Please get baby checked for tongue tie - by a lactation consultant if possible!

My dd is 11 weeks now, finally got her posterior tt recognised and snipped at 8 weeks and she is literally a different baby! smile

catlitterinmyturnups Thu 11-Apr-13 07:17:19

Agree about getting her checked for tongue tie. I have a 7 week old son who was pooing green for a month and contorted with wind. I saw various midwives, bf counsellors and the GP, but no one thought to check for tongue tie because he was gaining weight so well. Lo and behold he had a 50% one, which was snipped on Monday. His poos turned yellow again the same day and he is far less troubled by wind and passing poos now. Still a bit sicky, but he has a cold so think he's got a lot of mucus.

catlitterinmyturnups Thu 11-Apr-13 07:19:27

PS - I tried block feeding, changing my diet, stopping my daily vits in case it was the iron but nothing I did fixed the poos and wind until his TT was released.

JollyPurpleGiant Thu 11-Apr-13 07:19:52

My DS had green poos until 6mo. I had massive, massive issues with oversupply and I think the green poos were a symptom of this.

Also agree with getting baby checked for tongue tie by someone who knows what they're talking about.

OrangeFootedScrubfowl Thu 11-Apr-13 07:31:01

Both my babies have been just like this due to their reflux and my oversupply/fast flow. And their iron supplements (because they were premature) didn't help either!

I was offered renatidine (sp?) for the reflux but as they put on weight and my nipples weren't damaged by the poor latch I just held them up straight for as long as possible after feeds, but otherwise left things, and they improved with time.

I don't know anything about tongue tie but it sounds like you might be wise to check that out.

Best of luck!

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