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Giving in to formula

(12 Posts)
hiss42 Fri 02-Sep-11 14:48:58

I'm new to bf so I apologise if there is 10 threads a day posted like this one!

I posted last night about agonising thrush, its so painful I keep crying just thinking about feeding. My 16 day old DS has been doing really well, he put on 1lb in the first week! and nearly another 1lb this week, even though I'm feeding through the thrush.
Went to see the GP today who has given me canisten and well as and said she also thinks I have a touch of mastitis. She saw what a state I was in and said not to be a hero and I should maybe try giving him formula tonight so DP can feed him and I can actually get some sleep.

I was horrified by the formula suggestion, if I were to give it to him tonight, what would the implications be? Would it upset his stomach, will he still want my breast tomrrow? Will I stop producing milk? I'm really confused and stressed, I can just about deal with the pain duirng the day but I don't think I can get through another night like last night! I've got a breast pump which is just as painful because of the cracked nipples from thrush, and hand expressing took about 45 minutes for less than 1oz of milk!

cheekyginger Fri 02-Sep-11 15:15:34

I've not been in your shoes from the sore nipple point of view. But i know many people that have given 1 bottle now and again to let sore nipples heal.

Its best to give yourself a break catch up on some sleep and let your nipples have a break and 1 or 2 bottles of formula will not harm your baby. Very unlikely to get nipple/teat confusion from a couple of bottles.

You might find that having a small break now and again means you breast feed for longer rather than "crashing and burning" and giving up now.

Just make sure you wind your LO well after a bottle.... good luck

Tigresswoods Fri 02-Sep-11 15:18:03

As the other poster said, one feed is not going to drastically change anything apart from give you a chance to heal & continue. It's a marathon not a sprint... as it were.

Well done so far grin

midori1999 Fri 02-Sep-11 15:39:44

If you're happy to give formula and it's a one off, it's unlikely to affect your supply, but read up on the 'virgin gut' theory first so you can make an informed choice. There is also the chance of nipple confusion if you give a bottle. I don't think it's that common, but it does happen. You certainly shouldn't feel bad about doing whatever you need to do though.

I was in absolute agony with cracked and bleeding nipples for several weeks at first. The pain when my DD latched on was absolutely excruciating. I also got mastitis several times and so was also having hot and cold sweats and severe headaches. I didn't want to give my DD formula though and I didn't see it as 'being a hero', just that ebf meant a lot to me and was something I wasn't prepared to compromise on. I just took paracetamol to the maximum dose (couldn't take ibuprofen due to contraindication with other meds I was on) and kept telling myself it would get better. I think I stopped taking the paracetamol at around 4 weeks.

Hopefully the medication you have for the thrush will clear it up now and things will get better for you soon.

mawbroon Fri 02-Sep-11 16:23:43

Regardless of whether you give formula or not, you will need to keep your breasts emptied (relatively speaking, because of course they are never empty) if there is even a whiff of mastitis.

What about expressing? Would that help?

tiktok Fri 02-Sep-11 18:39:35

Are you sure it's thrush? Very unusual this early....good idea to get a second opinion on this. Very often a change in positioning and attachment can remedy this sort of pain.

MigGril Sat 03-Sep-11 08:25:10

If you've got cracked nipples then a chat to a BF counciler is in order I think. You shouldn't have pain while BF even in the early days.

click hear for the phone no's.

BoastingByStealth Sat 03-Sep-11 14:51:59

Hope you got it sorted and had a good sleep.

I found a manual breast pump was fantastic to maintain flow.

My DS would drink my milk from a bottle all day long at nursery, but wouldn't even swallow a drop of formula, though DP tried him with 3 varieties.

Stormfromeast Sat 03-Sep-11 15:47:47

Your GP is only trying to be pragmatic. You have already given DS 16 days of breast milk, and that's better than never. At the end of the day, a well and healthy mum is a happy mum who can then provide the best for their child. I'd say do what feels right and sod everything else.

MockingbirdsNotForSale Sat 03-Sep-11 16:53:08

Congratulations on your DS and well done for getting to day 16. I found day 12 hard! This will honestly help. Get some cabbage, put it in the fridge and take off some leaves every so often and put them in your bra. The relief is tremendous and it worked for me in a couple of hours. Most people say use savoy cabbage but spring greens worked for me too.

Also, resting a fleece on the underside of my breasts when feeding made things more comfy when I could not bear anything to be touched. I agree with Tiktok that a latch reposition may help tremendously and its worth finding your local La Leche League or breastfeeding group for some friendly help (try your local surestart centre- your local govt website should have details). You're obviously doing so well for your DS to have put on so much weight. With the position, at Day 13 my jackpot moment was to realise I needed much more support for DD so sat up quite straight on the bed or sofa and had about 3 pillows on my lap with DD laid on them pretty high up so there was no effort to latch on. That was the first time all I felt was a little fluttery feeling and no pain, not even the strong suck even though it was still there. DD did take to a bottle well when required and I found the best to be the Tommee Tippee closer to nature bottles with slow flow teats as the shape is good and they still have to make an effort to get the milk and there was never any nipple confusion. Good luck and make sure you drink plenty of water and remember that paracetamol and ibuprofen are your friends smile.

Jokat Sat 03-Sep-11 20:26:05

Hi, my daughter is 4 weeks old now and I've got thrush as well. It started a couple of weeks ago and I got cream but didn't respond to it. The symptoms got worse and worse and my nipples were an absolute mess, as well as my areolae being terribly flaky and sore. Last Saturday I was in such excrusiating pain when feeding on my laft side that I sobbed throughout each feed on that side, it was just horrendous. The other side was awful too, but I could just about bear it. In the afternoon we decided I would bottlefeed her when the left side was due and just express, I also had mastitis on that side at the time. The next day the symptoms had got bad that the better side was also too sore for me to bear it and the pump had damaged my nipples even more so that I actually decided to stop breastfeeding altogether (even though I had been desperate to do it), I just couldn't cope with the pain any more. Expressing was very painful too, but I only did it for ten min each side, later five, and Tue I went back to the GP and got a different cream, which improved things quickly, and also the oral capsule you talked about. I finally started healing. My dd took the bottly fine and her digestive system didn't seem to mind the formula at all. By Wed this week all my cracks had closed up and the areolae started looking less angry as well. Expressing was practically painfree and the memory of the horrendous pain on Sat that let me give up started to fade, so I have tried to latch her on again. Thankfully she still wants my boob, though she has got lazy and is currently not taking a whole feed. I'm not putting any pressure on though. For now, she still has bottles but several times a day we have a comfort breastfeed as well. I still get the stinging after each feed since the thrush hasn't quite gone yet, but it's much better than it was last weekend. Once I've healed properly, I'm hoping to work towards fulltime breastfeeding again.
When you give them bottles this early on, there is a danger of them starting to confuse the latch since they need to work a bottle teat differently and with less effort than the boob. But I think if you just give the occasional bottle or don't do it for more than a day at a time, your baby should not have problems going back on the breast after.
I hope you'll feel better soon, I literally know your pain, it is just unbearable!

organiccarrotcake Sun 04-Sep-11 09:06:16

There's an excellent leaflet by the Breastfeeding Network on thrush here:

Well worth reading carefully to see if it is thrush, and if it is, how to best treat it.

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