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How do you persuade a Stubborn Baby to take a bottle ????

(24 Posts)
cords Fri 28-Nov-03 12:29:59

DD is getting hungry after feeds (I can tell as she sucks very loudly but no swallowing sound and also chews her hand afterwards) and so presume my supply is runn ing low ... I am trying to give her top up with epxressed milk but she refuses to take bottle, even if I give it to her before the breast when she shld be very hungry (ie 4 hrs after last feed) ... She screams and gets very angry.

I have tried Avent and Nuk bottles and also getting someone else to give the bottle ?

Has anyone else battled like this ? I need reassurance that eventually , persisitance will pay off !

Incidentally, any good advice on building supply ? There isn't enough milk for me to express even an ounce after feed to encourage supply , unless before a feed in which case I am scared that this will mean DD will not get any ...

ragtaggle Fri 28-Nov-03 13:46:41

No advice but just wanted to say I'm having exactly the same problem unexpectedly. DD has been taking a bottle from DH every night at 10pm since 3 weeks old. Now suddenly at nearly seven weeks she's refusing. He's gone out now to buy some medium flow teats in case the flow is the problem (She's been on slow flow) But I have read other posts here that suggest warming the teat. I'll try that to and let you know how we get on.

CupOfC Fri 28-Nov-03 13:51:32

Message withdrawn

codswallop Fri 28-Nov-03 13:52:26

YOu need mears - I think topping up is seen as a bad idea

tiktok Fri 28-Nov-03 14:55:25

Cords - all babies chew their hands. It's a normal, healthy thing to do. It does not mean they are hungry.

Sucking without swallowing is normal after a baby's appetite is satisfied. All babies do it. It's healthy. It stimulates more milk and provides comfort for the baby without giving more milk which they may not need/want - it's what babies do on a dummy.

Unless you have good reasons to think you don't have enough milk (baby not thriving, baby miserable, not enough wet nappies, or in a newborn, not enough dirty ones) then it doesn't make sense to express unless you want to for convenience - the main reason why you may not get much when expressing is technique, anyway. It's no guide to what's available to the baby. It makes even less sense to top up with formula. Sometimes, in extreme situations, this is needed to make sure the baby is well-nourished. But the knock-on effect is negative on the milk supply.

Milk is made by frequent, effective removal of milk from the breast.

Don'r 'presume' your supply is running low. Nothing you have said makes me even suspect it!!

mears Fri 28-Nov-03 22:09:20

I agree with Tiktok. The more you feed, the more milk you make. Babies love to suck nipples, hands, thumbs etc. It is not a sign of hunger. Have confidence in yourself cords

mears Fri 28-Nov-03 22:09:28

I agree with Tiktok. The more you feed, the more milk you make. Babies love to suck nipples, hands, thumbs etc. It is not a sign of hunger. Have confidence in yourself cords

Karen99 Fri 28-Nov-03 22:15:49

Hi Cords, my ds sucked his hand non-stop until about 3months. We thought this was hunger, but it turned out to be his comforter (like tiktok says, very common). I too went through a phase of thinking my supply was low, but frequent feeding reassured me that there was plenty (went to every 2hrs for a few days and started to get engorged when I reduced this back to 3-4hrs a few days later).

How old is your dd? How often does she feed in the day? How is her weight gain? Does she posset alot?

We used to give a bottle of EBM once a week to make sure he got used to a teat so mil could babysit. This took ALOT of effort, and usually ds would only take it from dh when his favourite song was playing and after some crying. Took MUCH longer than the average bf, so we didn't make it into a daily event. The hair-dryer also helped calm him. In the end he would only take a couple of ounces if she did babysit, but this was enough until I got home to do a top-up. We also put infacol on the teat as it was a familiar flavour. The silicon taste/smell used to make him wretch.

Sorry can't be of more help.

Bekki Fri 28-Nov-03 22:31:50

I struggled with the same problem. I tried all different bottles and teats, different times of the day, different people. Nothing worked and then one day (about 8 days ago) aged 12 weeks he drank 3 ounces from the same Avent bottle that we tried from the start. Something must have clicked in him. Perhaps more awareness helped him to see what it was we trying to get him to do. Don't give up she will take it eventually. Good luck. P.S Don't waste your money on different bottles, it won't make any difference. HTH

cords Fri 28-Nov-03 23:59:30

thanks e'one for the advice ...

DD is almost 3 months and was almost 5kg at 2 month check ...so must be nearly 6 now ? She poos however very irregularly , infact once every few days at best ... Does this mean there isn;t enough food for her ???

I am trying to get her to take a bottle only because I need to go and do errands ect which makes it hard for me to BF all the time ... I wld happily express so she can have breast milk ... By the way, I live in Hong Kong and it is not as Breast feeding friendly in public as in UK.

TikTok ... I hope u are right abt the sucking ... I am just piecing together the fact that breasts do not seem full anymore, her sucking and her entereing a 3 mth growth spurt ...

Karen99, I think I will try your method of feeding every 2 hrs to get supply going again ...

I have also started working out again and (pls do not chide me as I have beaten myself up abt it all last night ) smoking the odd few ... I KNOW now that this must be negative on ilk supply and so WILL STOP ...

tiktok Sat 29-Nov-03 12:10:34

Cords....the other thread about constipation explained how infrequent pooing is normal in breastfed babies.

Cigarettes have only a very marginal effect on supply - but yes, it's better not to do it!

You don't need to hope I am right about the sucking! It's an established fact. Babies like sucking. It's what they are programme to to. It's why thumb sucking, finger sucking and dummy sucking are very common behaviours.

Softer breasts are normal after some weeks of breastfeeding. It happens to almost everyone. It's because the fat that gives the breasts their shape has been replaced by milk making and storing tissue when bf is well-established. It's also because the body has stopped the tendency to over-produce, and the milk you make is in direct response to the milk your baby says she needs - and more sucking removes more milk, which puts in an order for more. The breasts are never totally empty, but the degree of fullness is what *stops* breastmilk production. Leaving full breasts untouched makes you make less milk.

I do hope your confidence grows. Understanding how breastfeeding works will help, I think....but it seems that no matter how often you hear the message your baby's behaviour, and her pooing, is all normal, you feel very doubtful! What can we say to help you? Do tell

Karen99 Sat 29-Nov-03 12:49:47

Cords, just to follow on from Tiktok (as everything she has said is SPOT ON!) I was told that constipation equals little rabbit droppings. DS started to poop once every 36-48hrs which worried me, plus the quantity changed, but it was still smooth and no rabbit droppings so I put it down to a "maturity" thing and that his guts were getting more efficient at doing their job.

As for the milk supply, my breasts felt floppy all the time (and still do!) after about 10wks in, so you have to trust your body that it's making the right amount. My supply *appeared* to drop when we returned from a week at Centreparcs. DS only fed for 5mins at a time whilst we were out and about and I thought my body had started to change to that new demand. As mentioned a few days of frequent feeding at the beginning of the next week proved that there was plenty.

And totally agree about "degree of fullness is what *stops* breastmilk production" as when DS dropped his night feeds I was engorged for about two nights, didn't express and was over-flowing by the 7am feed. By day three my boobs felt floppy to a little full at the 7am feed, all engorgment gone as my body had adjusted to the new demand.

I know it's hard, but have faith all is ok

Karen99 Sat 29-Nov-03 12:55:10

Cords, forgot to also add that your dd would benefit all round if you throw the packet away. Plus the money you save can go towards little presents for her. Go on - do it now.

tiktok Sat 29-Nov-03 13:18:35

Also, Cords, working out and any other form of exercise won't make any difference to your milk supply.

aloha Sat 29-Nov-03 19:52:27

Cords, Tiktok is a breastfeeding counsellor and expert - so her advice is very accurate and expert. PLEASE believe her. Floppy breasts are normal and a sign that your body is making the right amount of milk for your baby, not that your supply has dropped. You make milk as she removed it. Sucking does not mean lack of milk - my ds was (and is) incredibly sucky. He'd suck on me all night if he could, and was much happier with a dummy - sucking behaviour occurs in the womb - are you saying that babies in the womb are hungry? Please trust your body that's got you this far.

Demented Sat 29-Nov-03 20:38:23

Cords you have had loads of fab advice, I just wanted to add a bit about exercise. I went back to my aerobics classes etc when DS2 was 7 weeks old and fully b/fed and it caused no problems with supply, if anything it helped.

cords Sun 30-Nov-03 10:41:43

Dear All ...THANKS !!!!!

Will have faith in all your supporting advice and reassurance ...

Have stopped the cigarettes

And will continue to exercise !

And am starting to live with floppy boobs !

Incidentally DH is now feeding DD her first formula in a bottle .... I just wanted to try and see if she would take it ...and after 4 go's she is taking it now !!! Last night I went out for first time and got someone else to give night feed and mmorbning feed out of a bottle too ... thankfully we seem to be making headway ... AM using the Dr Brown teats as they are soooo much softer and smaller than AVENT ones ... I will be expressing though so that she keeps up with taking Breast milk but out of a bottle .

auntynon Sun 30-Nov-03 17:47:05

I also have a very stubborn baby who won't take a bottle. I have been trying to get her to take ebm for 2 weeks, from dh, at various times of the day etc. Shes just not having it, I want to go out and leave her with dh for day/evening, in crech at gym etc. How long should I persist before giving up? I have no problems with my milk supply, she just loves my boobs and hates the bottle. She is now 3 mths, I know I have left it late to introduce a bottle.

tiktok Sun 30-Nov-03 18:01:13

Glad to help, cords

Just one teensy word - it's not a good idea to go too long between feeds more than just occasionally. What I mean is, even if your baby has expressed breastmilk, if this means your breasts are 'unused' for ages and ages, it could have a negative effect. Occasionally, though, there will be no harm done

Demented Sun 30-Nov-03 20:31:51

auntynon, I left my DS2 from 7 weeks twice a week for an hour at the creche in my local leisure centre, I found that he would take the ebm from the carers until he reached about the three month stage when he then completely refused, I got fed up throwing ebm down the sink so stopped providing the bottle, just made sure he was fed before he went in and was prepared to feed him fairly quickly after we came out, I think by the time they are three months they just know what they want and which method of delivery they prefer. Can't help much with the evening query as I had no social life and still have no social life .

auntynon Tue 02-Dec-03 10:59:05

demented, dh managed to get dd to take 1 oz of ebm from a bottle last night, I warmed the teat first and that seemed to work, on a mission to express more for tonight! Still dreaming of resuming social life, works xmas dinner on Friday is just not possible, lunch with ante natal group is on Thursday though - hurray .

Karen99 Tue 02-Dec-03 15:41:52

That's really good news Auntynon. Never thought about warming the teat. Good idea. Enjoy the lunch.

ragtaggle Sun 07-Dec-03 10:03:06

Auntynon - just wanted to say that don't think for a minute that your babies bottle refusal is to do with you leaving it 'too late'. My dh has been giving our dd a bottle at 10.30pm since she was 3 weeks old- as recommended by Gina Ford to 'prevent the common problem of bottle refusual'. Last week - at seven weeks old - she decided she'd had enough and only wanted the breast. We went out and bought different teats to no avail. I stayed out of the room - as I always do - and still she wouldn't take it. We tried everything but it seems as though her mind is made up.

I find this quite depressing as I really want to be able to go out for more than three hours at a time without feeling she might starve. I'm contemplating being 'hard' about it one night and refusing anything but the bottle - at the moment we eventually give her the breast after 40-50 minutes of trying. However, I suspect that 8 weeks is too early to be that cruel. But bloody hell bottle refusal doesn't half make you feel that the umbilical cord is still well and truly in place...

cords Sun 07-Dec-03 11:25:17

Dear All ... I am glad to report that after having spent this whole week geetting DD to take a bottle, we seem to have finally succceeded and she will , even from me, even though she will struggle sometimes. My tip is to wait till they are really hungry , i.e crying for food , and also to maybe get them to feed when tired as well as less alert and eyes are closed. I ofund DD was also encouraged when I rock her gently whilst trying to give the bottle so therefore soothed and relaxed .... it was no good trying when she was angry. when she screamed , I left it and tried after letting her calm down.

At last, I feel like I have a sucess story to tell ... she is still waking up 2x in ight for feed !!! She is now almost 13 weeks old !

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