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Struggling to feed 7 week old

(14 Posts)
Mena1 Fri 03-Dec-10 19:02:02

The title says it all! I have been BF my 7 week old for about 5 weeks, had the usual hiccups in week 2 and 3 and all seemed normal then at week 5 my breasts started aching all over, not the uncomfortable feeling of heavy lumpy breasts but an awful stinging pain. I also find that LO does not seem to be getting enough milk and even after being on both breasts LO is still not satisfied and looking for more. I've started topping up with hungrier baby formula and even that doesnt seem to help much,(it did at the beginning) I'm now considering changing to formula permanently but not sure how to do it. I also feel very sad at the thought of not breastfeeding as I have been enjoying it (despite all the soreness and achiness) but want to do whats best for LO. When LO doesnt get enough milk I get upset and I know LO picks up on it.

Please HELP!!!!

RuthChan Fri 03-Dec-10 19:09:54

You have done well to BF so far. Please don't give up on it yet. If you prefer to continue, it will be possible.
With regards to your baby getting enough milk. The supply increases as the baby demands more. If you think LO is not getting enough, give him more time on the breast. The breast will naturally increase supply the more he drinks. By introducing formula, you disturb this natural cycle. If you want to combine BFing and formula that's one thing, but if you want to exclusively BF, you should try to continue without formula.
How long does LO drink on each side for at the moment?
Are you drinking and eating enough yourself? To keep up your supply, make sure that you are well hydrated and are eating enough so that your body can provide rich nutritious milk for your baby.
5 weeks is a very tiring time for you. try to keep calm and not panic.
There are plenty of professionals from BFing organisations who can offer you help and advice in RL.

nickytwotimes Fri 03-Dec-10 19:10:59

6 wks is massive growth spurt.

Personally, I would ditch the formula and just feed feed feed. go to bed for the day if you can, lots of skin to skin.

have you seen bfing counsellor, bfn, nct, lll all fab. latch might be not quite perfect which will make it harder for her to get milk plus contribut to discomfort. they can also work out what the pain is.

you will make enough milk, honest! it is rotten to feel so sore and down about it. sad

rreally think you should get to a bf group if at all pos. I wouldn't have manged without mine.

Mena1 Fri 03-Dec-10 19:17:43

I've been to a breastfeeding cafe when I was struggling with the latching and been going ever since no change I'm afraid. I am feeding on demand and last night LO was on for 4.5 hours - not joking! I'm tired and drained but trying to carry on. I'm eating well lots of veggies and fresh fruit and have been told to eat more carbs as that can help and still no difference in BFing. I've expressed to see if I can open more ducts as I know ducts can get blocked. expressed 40 mls over 1.5 hours the other day.

nickytwotimes Fri 03-Dec-10 19:26:44

who runs the cafe?

nickytwotimes Fri 03-Dec-10 19:29:40

and has anyone shown you how to do breast compressions? they speed up the milk and help clear ducts

stickersarecurrency Fri 03-Dec-10 19:33:41

Your diet makes no difference to your ability to produce milk so please don't add this burden to yourself - just eat and drink what you need.

I'd suggest you start by phoning one of the helplines for a proper chat with a counsellor. And the advice to spend a long time feeding and skin-to-skin is spot on.

nickytwotimes Fri 03-Dec-10 19:36:36

kellymom is fab too

RuthChan Fri 03-Dec-10 19:46:18

Don't worry if you can't get much by pumping.
I was lucky enough to BF with no problems, but I NEVER got much when expressing. I found it uncomfortable, time consuming and hard work, and I never got more than 30ml or so.
Your baby is far more efficient at expressing milk than your pump is, so you're better off spending the time and energy with your baby at your breast instead.

Mena1 Fri 03-Dec-10 19:55:29

Its an NHS run cafe in a hospital. They are pretty good and said I also need to trust my instinct when it comes to my baby

nickytwotimes Fri 03-Dec-10 20:04:23

the stuff about eating/drinking is, as stickers says, simply not true.

i have found NHS cafes vary widely from fab to really rather rubbish. in fact it was one of these whos advice contfibuted to me stopping bfing ds1 at only a few weeks.

Breastfeeding Network, NCT and La Leche are far better imo. They all have helplines too.

If you feel you would rather ff, then do it and do not ever feel bad about it. You are trying very hard. But if you want to make a go of bfing, then I would try elsewhere for advice as I say.

MoonUnitAlpha Fri 03-Dec-10 20:06:43

Maybe you should see a proper breastfeeding counsellor to watch you feed? It may be that the issues are more than the people at the cafe are trained to deal with.

Stinging pain that came on after a few weeks could be something like thrush or an infection maybe?

ClimberChick Fri 03-Dec-10 20:14:09

The 6 week growth spurt for us was awful, just constant crying for more food.

However, you need to sort out the fact that your experienced this pain. Just try and keep seeing different people in RL to try and diagnose the problem and look up the symptoms of thrush

Mena1 Fri 03-Dec-10 20:43:43

The Counsellor I saw watched me feed and could actually hear LO take a few good sucks before swallowing. problem is LO does that for 4 hours.

Will ask health visitor about thrush.

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