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Help!!! 5 day old refusing breast

(38 Posts)
WallinoMio Sat 17-Nov-12 19:46:35

I've been a mumsnet lurker since finding out I was pregnant in March, but this is my first post...I desperately need some advice!!!

I gave birth to DS on Monday and have been breastfeeding ever since...the first couple of days were horribly painful thanks to no help in the hospital with latching on, etc, but we've been figuring things out and getting much better. My milk came in yesterday and ever since then DS has been refusing to latch on...since last night he has only fed once, at 7am today. When he cries I try putting him on the breast but he flails around and won't stop crying - he completely refuses to latch on. And we both get more and more stressed and upset.

In my desperation (and with massively painful milk filled boobs) I sent my OH to get a manual breast pump, so have expressed some milk (not very much; less than 30ml) which DS then took from a bottle. So now I'm worried that I've ruined my breastfeeding efforts by introducing a bottle so soon. So my questions to all you experts are these:

1) Will introducing a bottle at this point make it impossible for DS to take the breast again?
2) How can I encourage him to latch on/stop his massive hysterical crying fits every time I try to feed him?
3) In our desperation during one of said crying fits we gave him a dummy which we now have ended up using when he's so hysterical literally nothing else will work - is this going to ruin his ability to latch on? Was it far too early? Should I stop using it?
4) Since he was born DS hasn't really been a regular feeder - he sleeps A LOT and doesn't seem very hungry - should I be waking him up to feed him?

Sorry for all the questions but I don't have anyone else to ask (living abroad away from family) and I'm starting to feel really down. I feel like I've sabotaged my intention to EBF and really really want to get DS to feed again. I feel like I'm failing already sad Please help!!!!!

Jollyb Sat 17-Nov-12 20:36:20

As others have said now that your milk has come in your breasts have probably completely changed shape making it difficult to attach. The priority now is rehydrating him - cup, syringe, bottle or breast. You may find it easier to express a little off before you start to feed him. He needs to feed regularly overnight. As he is behind I'd try to feed him 2 hourly overnight. If he is drowsy or doesn't start feeding soon you need to get him seen by a doctor pronto.

Lots of great advice, if you can find a lactation consultant who can visit you, that would be great.

My only thought, perhaps it's been said and I've missed it, is that if your let down is very fast, that can cause them to pull off. Can you un latch for a minute until it settles and try re-latching.

Perhaps try positioning the baby differently to feed such as a cross-cradle hold or a modified football hold?

Or maybe try breast compressions?

PukeCatcher Sat 17-Nov-12 20:44:04

Congratulations on the birth of your baby.

Loads of excellent advice here already and ditto what they have all said, definitely get some milk into him to dehydrate him.

Could you try feeding him lying down? This was the only way I could get DD to latch on for the first couple of weeks with my DH's assistance.

aamia Sat 17-Nov-12 20:51:03

A & E would be where I'd be headed now knowing the full story. Really worried he's dangerously dehydrated. If you get plenty of milk in now then maybe see how it goes but he is very young and the worst they will do is send you home again.

Mooandme Sat 17-Nov-12 21:08:45


BF is so hard initially. With mine at that stage I've had a warm bath with them to encourage let down & lots and lots of skin to skin (letting the baby constantly suckle whilst sleeping). Even if not latched on just let your DS sleep on your breast.

Lots of great advice too from previous posters.

amazingmumof6 Sat 17-Nov-12 22:28:36

PukeCatcher I'm sure you meant to REhydrate him!!!smile

PukeCatcher Sat 17-Nov-12 23:26:49

Oops grin

Pick your excuse from the list :-

Fat thumbs / dodgy phone spell check / lack of sleep

amazingmumof6 Sat 17-Nov-12 23:37:05

PukeCatcher I blame the phone! grin

Wormshuffler Sun 18-Nov-12 07:05:40

How was last night op? X

WallinoMio Sun 18-Nov-12 18:24:03

Thanks again for all your messages - only just getting back online now!!! So last night I gave him a bottle of formula asap which he took with no problems. Woke him up a couple of hours later and gave him a bottle of expressed breast milk, then he woke up on his own every few hours and fed like a champion! And has been feeding regularly all day today except for one feed this morning that we had trouble latching on again. Luckily a friend of mine came round earlier and lent me an electric breast pump (which I LOVE) so now have a supply ready to give in a bottle asap whenever we have trouble! So am feeling so much better! Lots of wet nappies today but still no poo yet - am hoping that will happen at some point soon though considering he's been feeding so much? (never thought I'd be looking forward to a pooey nappy!!). And will obviously talk to the doctor tomorrow morning too. DS has perked right up though, has been waking up regularly to feed, the formula (even though I didn't really want to give it) seems to have kick started things and - fingers crossed! - so far no problems changing between bottle and boob!!!! Hopefully things will continue like this!! Thanks again for all the advice!!

Wormshuffler Sun 18-Nov-12 19:40:13

Brilliant, well done you x

aamia Sun 18-Nov-12 20:58:33

So glad to hear he's ok and things are going well. Well done!

fluffacloud Sun 18-Nov-12 23:14:24

What a difference a day makes!

Glad to hear that you're all doing well smile

PS dont worry about dirty nappies just yet BM is easily absorbed and has very little waste product. My DD often went without a poo for a few days.

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