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Baby 3 weeks old behaving odd at breast

(20 Posts)
Cupcakemummy85 Wed 06-Mar-13 20:16:23

My dd is 3 weeks old and when I breastfeed her I can be feeding up to three hours and she is unsettled and still hungry so I offer formula tops ups as I obviously have no milk I can express after a three hour marathon and she wants to go back on the boob. She squirms and wriggles at the middle and end of the feed. And makes whimpering noises. I'm currently feeding her to settle her to sleep (hopefully) after a three hour feed and formula top. Can anyone give me an insight as to what might b going on? Could it b wind perhaps? How do u treat wind at 3 weeks?

Wheresmycaffeinedrip Wed 06-Mar-13 20:24:43

Get your latch checked. Three hours is s long time and if she still needs a top up she's obviously not quite got the hang of it. is there a clinic u can attend?

Cupcakemummy85 Wed 06-Mar-13 20:41:07

Yes when I went they said my latch is good. I'm going again next week but it seems at the beginning of a fed when the milk flow is strong it's fine and if she comes off the nipple is perfect but if it's half way through or the end the nipple can sometimes be a little bit lipstick like. The midwives say she is just a very hungry baby and she is gaining weight very well but even if she has a full bottle if breast milk or formula she still wants to go on the breast. I can't satisfy her hunger and neither can a bottle lol. A midwife came round latched her on and then my dd came off herself and midwife thought she was finished but dd wasn't and wanted more after 50 mins on the breast and on the other breast. The midwife was very surprised! Everyone seems baffled.

Wheresmycaffeinedrip Wed 06-Mar-13 20:53:08

Forgive the personal question but do u have large breasts? Could it be that it's slightly harder to maintain the right position as a result of the manipulation needed and perhaps your arm / her head is slipping ever so slightly after a while resulting in a less efficient feed. I'm no expert I formula fed but I did try really hard to breast feed dd1 and that's exactly the problem I had - bit the large boobs mine are tiny but she literally would feed and feed and feed for two hours at a time and still be hungry she just didn't get enough from me. They couldn't figure out y either as latch was fine apparently. Also has she been checked for tongue tie. Please forgive the personal question just s thought as at my clinic I went to there was a woman who they showed how to sling her breasts so she could feed better and it was just a thought. smile

katiecubs Wed 06-Mar-13 21:20:15

When does she do it? DS is 3 weeks and does this every evening - he is unsettled and squirmy and wants to be on the boob all evening. Apparently it's quite normal behaviour and works to increase your supply.

Meringue33 Wed 06-Mar-13 21:52:55

Cluster feeding is normal. Are you sure you can't satisfy her - does she completely drain your boobs til there is no milk left?

happynappies Wed 06-Mar-13 22:11:45

I'd second having someone check for tongue-tie. I'd breast-fed three children and thought my fourth would be fine, but she just wouldn't stop feeding... Couldn't put her down. The health visitor thought she was fine but I didn't and was referred to a lactation consultant who found the tongue tie. She had it snipped at 8 weeks, and we haven't looked back. It might not be of course, it could just be she's establishing the milk supply. Keep asking for help/support, they will get to the bottom of this.

Cupcakemummy85 Thu 07-Mar-13 02:29:28

She had tongue tie and it was snipped on her first week. It did get better after that, my nipples healed and I don't get pain but the latch does go bad once it gets to the middle of the feed, when the milk doesn't flow as fast, she starts to fuss and pull on the nipple and wriggle. I take her off when this happens and latch her on again but she does it again. She is satisfied at night time feeds just first thing in the morning and first thing in the evening. So it means we r late for everything in the morning and I can't put my dd1 to bed at night because I'm doing a two-three hour feeding marathon. The top ups are the only way my boobs can have a break lol. She does empty each breast completely so there is nothing left I make sure of that. I'm drinking fennel tea as I've heard that good for ur milk and for their wind. No massive changes yet confused

Kveta Thu 07-Mar-13 02:42:06

It is unlikely that she is truly emptying your breasts, although it definitely feels like that sometimes!

Cluster feeding is totally normal at this age, and 3 hours sounds normal too. I understand why you are offering formula (been there, done that), but in my experience, just relaxing and feeding more actually satisfies the baby more, as it gets your supply to regulate. The more you feed, the more milk your body makes, it's pretty cool actually! Plus which, all the washing and sterilising bottles and preparing formula actually negated any rest I got by giving DS a bottle of formula when he was wee. Are you switching between boobs when she seems dissatisfied? That always worked for me. And keep yourself hydrated and fed, so you feel OK too.

Do you have a local LA leche league you can talk to, as they are generally great for support at any stage of breast feeding, and can help you decide the best approach for feeding your baby.

But for now, just going with the flow should be enough - for the first few weeks, baby wants to be close to mum all the time anyway, and normally feeding all the time too, to get your supply up. Enjoy the cuddles while you can smile

happynappies Thu 07-Mar-13 02:47:46

It might take her a while to learn if she's still sliding on and off later in the feed. Can you try feeding her lying down maybe? They can cluster feed generally in the morning and evening, busiest times if you have other dc's. you can't empty the breat though, milk is constantly being produced, so don't worry about that. Someone more knowledgeable about the physiology of bf needs to advise here, I'm more of an instinctive breeder, I would swap to the other side after an hour it have no idea if that would be recommended. Have you tried massage and cycling her legs for the wind? Can you put her I a sling and carry her close to you while you sort dd1 out? I feed and feed my dd then have to get on with the other dc's as we have to get to school in the am, then once we're back can feed freely again... She used to wake regularly through the night presumably to compensate as she's exclusively bf but at 5 months she can do longer stretches now. It may not be what you want to hear but I'd stop the top ups and just feed her as often as you can,you will have enough milk, your supply will increase to meet the demand. Maybe ask Hv to see a lactation consultant re latch throughout feed, maybe there's a better feeding position?

happynappies Thu 07-Mar-13 02:52:46

Morning Kveta, i guess you're up bf at this hour?!

Kveta Thu 07-Mar-13 03:01:02

I was, but baby is asleep and I can't get back to sleep. She was up from 11.30, so I am annoyed now. Grr!!

I miss those early months where she slept...

happynappies Thu 07-Mar-13 03:03:22

Oh sad. Hope you get back to sleep soon!

Cupcakemummy85 Thu 07-Mar-13 08:00:18

I know it sounds unbeliveable that she feeds and feeds and isn't satisfied and most people I see assume its the latch but when I latch her on in front of then I just here an "oh". Because they see I'm doing it correctly. I breastfed my other dd1 for a good length of time so I do have some inkling of what I'm doing smile every baby is different though. I feed her lying down at night time and she sleeps very well but in the day and early evening there is no satisfying her. I switch boobs throughout the feeding time too. If I stop the too ups I will risk neglecting my dd1 and not making it anywhere in the day lol. I don't mind mix feeding and the amount I'm breastfeeding there's no way I will dry up lol. My dd1 wasn't this hungry. It truley is a hunger thing. It's hard to believe until u see it though. I just don't have the time to feed and feed. Even if I pump (which would b about 5 ounces) she still seems hungry!! Lol I'm exhausted. She is so windy though (bottom wind). It's obviously uncomfortable for her. sad

Cupcakemummy85 Thu 07-Mar-13 09:18:40

I've just given her 4oz of breast milk and she was screaming to go on the breast! What is going on?! Lol I have the hungriest baby in the world. No wonder she is gaining weight like its going out of fashion!!

happynappies Thu 07-Mar-13 09:44:45

Well it certainly sounds difficult, exhausting and frustrating, but you honestly won't risk neglecting her, because the more you feed the more milk you will produce. If she is wriggling and sliding off the breast part way through the feed she is possibly taking in lots of air at that point so could she be crying through pain rather than hunger? I'd still advise seeing a lactation consultant even if the latch is fine. I have breastfed 4 now, all over albs when born, all hungry, all on 98th centile, exclusively until 6 months (well, this one is 5 months but we're nearly there!!). I still wanted the lactation consultant to look at things because my fourth one just couldn't be satisfied... didn't seem right. The tongue-tie thing was the problem. Perhaps the whole tie hasn't been removed? If she seems fine at night, what happens if you put her in a sling or in the buggy? Will she go off to sleep at all?

I don't know about mixed feeding because I haven't done it, but it seems like your dd wants to bf! I feel for you, I know how difficult it is when you're trying to get out of the house and do things, and when you have other children to look after, but it sounds like you're doing a brilliant job. I'd just ask a specialist for more advice, its what they are there for, and a simple adjustment could make all the difference. My HV kept going on about getting a 'deeper latch' which I couldn't really understand as my dd was feeding fine, but when she got a bigger mouthful of breast, she fed for shorter periods of time as she could feed more efficiently. Keep going!

happynappies Thu 07-Mar-13 09:45:29

*feeder, not breeder (earlier post!!) - bloomin' iPad!

happynappies Thu 07-Mar-13 09:47:49

just re-read, I see you mean risk neglecting your eldest... How old is she? Remember this is quite a short-lived period, so if you can't get out to your normal activities it won't last long. I know you have to get to school though if she is school age ;)

Kveta Thu 07-Mar-13 15:14:27

cupcake my DS was like this - could guzzle 4oz of formula then nurse for 2 hours + we stopped with the formula after a few days, as it wasn't helping.

It was so so tiring though, I do know what you mean. And he was my first, so I didn't have anything else to do but feed.

I think for now, your older DD will have to make do with cuddles on the sofa whilst you feed DD2 - a few weeks of cbeebies is fine (if she's that age!). I found myself feeding DD in a lot of playgroups and playgrounds in the early days, so DS could get out the house. 3 weeks is still so tiny, you need to make life as easy for yourself as possible - call in favours right left and centre, do easy meals, get other people to wash dishes/clean the house etc, and you just concentrate on your children.

It does get easier though, trust me - by 2 months, we took both kids to the Olympics (why?!! madness!) and there is no way we could have done that at 3 weeks, or even 6 weeks, but feeds just got less and less intense, and life got easier.

Offcolour Thu 07-Mar-13 15:32:52

My dd was like this, would feed literally for hours. Her latch was fine but turned out that her head was in slightly the wrong position so she wasn't feeding as efficiently as she should. Once I corrected that the feeds were much shorter. I'd definitely try a b- feeding line for some advice.

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