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Seriously stressed - low weight, bf 8mo hardly eats

(33 Posts)

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Monikita Wed 18-Sep-13 13:40:44

DD is tongue-tied (had 3 procedures done) and has a possible milk allergy. Bf had been going really well from 6mo and she was putting on a good amount of weight, with just sampling different foods for 2 meals a day (she gets constipated easily). She hates purees, doesn't really like being spoonfed and when we do finger foods she does take some but a lot goes everywhere else (or she's just not interested).

I got her weighed 2 weeks ago and she'd only put on 200g in a month (plateauing just above the 2nd centile) but when we measured her, her length had jumped from the 25th to 50th centile, which will worry the dietitian. sad

Last week bf got very painful but this has subsided this week. I started expressing twice a day on Monday in anticipation for starting work next week and now I feel I have no milk (although I'm extremely thirsty). I also introduced breakfast.

Last night I got really worried and phoned milk matters who put me in touch with Ann Dobson. She reckons her tongue tie is still causing her problems (I am not getting it snipped again) with both bf and solids. She also said that when she is constipated I should feed her more solids, not less (I usually cut back on solids and bf more when this happens - then she poos!). Last week she went a week without pooing and this week she hasn't pooed since Saturday. Ann Dobson is coming on Friday evening to assess DD and make recommendations for an osteopath in Cambridge.

So, my questions are:
Has anyone had a tongue tied baby who was a reluctant eater? Did they improve?

How did you get a spoon refuser to eat more finger foods?

Has anyone any experience with Ann Dobson?

Has anyone had a tongue tied baby who was bf well and then whose latch deteriorated?

Sorry for the essay!

JiltedJohnsJulie Wed 18-Sep-13 15:17:56

Moni I'd ask MNHQ to move this thread into the breast & bottle section. I know you are asking about the introduction of solids, but think there are more people hanging around in that section who will have experience of CMPI and tt.

Just wondering what makes you think that you don't have milk? Bis it purely the amount you expressed?

Have you read Hiw might I improve my baby's weight gain. It might be useful while you wait for your appointment on Friday smile

Also, what things are you feeding her? Is there anyway you can sneak more calories into her food?

CrazyOldCatLady Wed 18-Sep-13 15:22:20

Sorry, I can't help with a lot of this. But I do know that an 8 month old isn't going to take huge quantities of solids, and that it's perfectly normal for most of their food to end up on the walls and ceiling.

Also, when DS was small and refluxy he refused bottles as if we were trying to feed him liquid kryptonite. We weighed and measured him all the time and one thing that got repeated all the time by everyone who dealt with him was that the length measurements are notoriously inaccurate. So don't put too much pass on that.

JiltedJohnsJulie Wed 18-Sep-13 15:27:23

Also, are you still expressing? When are you expressing and what pump are you using? If you are stressed it could well have an impact on the a mount you can express. The pump can make the world of difference too smile

Monikita Wed 18-Sep-13 15:28:09

Thanks JiltedJohnsJulie, will ask to move it.

I don't feel I have enough because my breasts feel so soft and it seems to take a long time for DD to get a letdown - which is so strange because up until Monday she could get a letdown quite quickly, although it felt like she was compressing my nipple. I feel as if she's not had enough but she doesn't seem too unhappy (yet) and has a fair amount of energy.

I try and feed her whatever we eat minus dairy, soya and nuts. She had 6 x baby spoonfuls of porridge with a little bit of prune and banana this morning and she took 4 x baby spoons (although I had feed her with my fingers) of soft noodles and salmon at lunch. I put olive oil in everything (bar porridge) to up the calories.

She only weighs around 14lbs.

Monikita Wed 18-Sep-13 15:40:26

I'm using a medela swing and was pumping an hour after her morning feed and an hour after her bedtime feed but then I read that this can take milk away from the next feed, so today I've pumped just once after her 12pm feed (hardly anything came out but I expected that).

I just read that link Julie and my instinct has always been to bf more if her weight has dipped but the dietitian is very insistent on feeding her solids. DD and I are bedsharing and last night she fed 4 times (though only one side per feed). I think you're right about being stressed too. After speaking to milk matters last night I felt sick as it seemed to be the end for bf after such a battle sad.

Thanks for the reassurance CatLady. I just feel a bit panicked because it others seem to think she should be eating more!

JiltedJohnsJulie Wed 18-Sep-13 16:06:05

There is very little you can offer her that is more calorific than your milk Moni. I'd bf her at least every 2 hours in the day and offer both sides at each feed. Do you know what milk she will be having while you are at work?

JiltedJohnsJulie Wed 18-Sep-13 16:14:20

Are you on this FB group? Its very useful.

Nothing you've said means the end of bfing, im sure you can work it out with sone RL help smile

JiltedJohnsJulie Wed 18-Sep-13 16:29:47

Just one other thing, I am by no means an expert at expressing but you might find it easier if you do it at the same time every day. Try expressing while you are feeding or look at a picture of your baby, if your baby isn't around.

I'd try a double electric pump like the ameda lactaline. If you don't want to invest I think you can hire one from ameda.

Have you spoken to your manager about expressing at work?

You might find this article helpful toosmile

Monikita Wed 18-Sep-13 22:31:30

To be honest, I don't think the dietitian seems to know much about breastfeeding (or cares). I did mention that breastmilk is very high in calories but she said that they've found babies tend to put lots of weight on once they're on solids and so I should just mix my milk in with her food - easier said than done when she doesn't like to take a spoon!

I bf DD every two hours on both sides (she's never been able to go longer). I'm aiming for her to have ebm while I'm at work - luckily I work for a university so will be testing how progressive they are! I'll need to pump at least 4 times a day and one of my team has found a room for me (bless her smile). I am tempted by that double pump - it will cut down my pumping time in half.

I managed to feed her before bed at 8 despite having already fed her at 7 so I'm really hoping that she's actually trying to increase my supply while she's in a growth spurt (I am so, so thirsty at the moment and quite down). She also went to sleep very quickly although she's been really fidgety today.

Thank you for helping a mum who sounds slightly paranoid! I might get her weighed tomorrow to see what's what. If she's still not doing well I will see if she'll take some prescription formula (it smells horrible) just in case my supply is indeed dropping and I won't be able to pump enough for her.

JulieMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 19-Sep-13 12:45:07


We've been asked to trundle this into the breast/bottlefeeding section.

Wishing you all the best, Monikita. smile


Stilsmiling Thu 19-Sep-13 13:52:56

My DC3 was teething at 6 months so after waiting a couple of weeks for her to settle a bit I went ahead and introduced puréed foods. I had given her baby spoons to chew on for a few weeks beforehand so she would be familiar with them. However, she would not tolerate being spoon fed at all, even with the softest, flexible spoons. Her gums must still have been too sore. She didn't much like taking foods from my finger although I persisted with this for a while if only to introduce new tastes. She did enjoy sitting on my knee or DH's knee and eating from our plates, maybe a piece of broccoli, a piece of boiled potato or pasta for example. I did worry that she was not getting enough as I couldn't quantify what she was eating like I could have with DC1 and DC2. I can only suggest perhaps having a selection of pieces of food she could eat on your plate and see if it will encourage her if you are eating them together. You could do this after she has sat in her own chair for a while. My DC3 was eating a great diet and feeding independently at 1 year (having two older siblings to watch helped) so don't worry that this stage won't pass. I didn't have any problems with DC3 not putting on weight so I understand your concerns although your Daughter is growing in length and I wonder sometimes if the growth charts will suit most children but not all.
With regards to the milk intolerance, are you abstaining from dairy to combat this? Breast milk will help the constipation (assuming there is a milk intolerance and you are not consuming dairy). Lots of water, go easy on the bananas and rice and try lots of soft veg finger foods for fibre. Apologies if I am just listing things you already know.
Good luck. Parenthood isn't easy!

noblegiraffe Thu 19-Sep-13 13:59:04

If she refuses to be spoonfed by you, will she spoonfeed herself? My DD is 7 months and turns her head at the approach of a spoon but if I put some yoghurt on it and put it on the tray in front of her she will grab it and put it in her mouth. Mostly. It's a bit messy, but then I'm finding it all a bit messy!
Baby bonjela before mealtimes can help too.

NothingsLeft Thu 19-Sep-13 20:02:32

DS had very similar issues, he is 18 months now. This may be a bit long, apologies.

His TT was snipped three times but is still very much there. I discovered he had a lip tie around 8/9 months when BFing became problematic with him clamping down. He also had weight gain issues from 6-12 months having been fine previously. He only put on 700g in all that time and i stressed a lot!

Her solids intake sounds good. At 8 months they really don't eat much, some babies will only have a few peas at best, so it sound like she's doing really well smile DS didn't eat 'properly' until 14 months when his appetite just picked up.

The dietician was also unhelpful and not pro BFing. She told me to increase solids as BM has no nutritional value after a year which is obviously rubbish. Problem is, they don't come across BFed babies that much and it makes things easier for them if you FF as it's more quantifiable. I would Bfeed more rather than stressing about solids.

DS is allergic to dairy & soy, so bulking up food with oil helps as do high calorie foods like peanut butter, humous, avocado. Oatly cream On cereal/cooking. I also cut dairy & soy out my diet. I've found he will lose his appetite when exposed to these and I think that was part of the problem.

I express at work too and it was fine once I got into a routine with it. I second timing feeds so you have more easily available milk. It will help at work too.

FWIW having dropped from the 25th to the 4th centime he has now caught up and is over the 25th. I think he out grew his TT/lip tie problems which were at their worse when his front teeth were coming in.

I did try and introduce neonate at 9 months but he would take much. Tbh I wanted to BF so didn't try that hard. Mixing it with BM helped. I'm still BFing him now smile

Monikita Thu 19-Sep-13 20:20:18

Yes, stilsmiling, sometimes she has a tiny bit more if she sits on DH's knee. Letting her take stuff from our plates sounds like a good idea so I'll give it a go.

TBH I'm not wholly convinced that DD does have a cow protein allergy - she had blood in her nappy with diarrhoea which led the paed to diagnose it but later that week I got gastroenteritis (along with half of Bedford). I did cut out dairy for a while but interestingly it was about a month after I re-introduced it (under the dietitian/paed's supervision) that her weight started to do really well. She's not had diarrhoea or blood in her stools since.

She did a poo today and it didn't hurt her so that's good. I am trying to breastfeed her as much as possible. It seems to be every hour today, my breasts seem totally empty and she's getting frustrated that she can't get any milk. Am so worried that she's still hungry sad. Just trying her on the prescription formula and she doesn't like it. Poor wee thing.

I just don't understand how I was able to satisfy DD with breastmilk until Monday and then suddenly my supply has disappeared confused.

Monikita Thu 19-Sep-13 20:28:11

Hi Noble yes, I've given her a loaded spoon but she just likes to pick the food off, have a look at it, chuck it away and then have a good chew on the spoon! She's such a monkey.

NothingsLeft Thu 19-Sep-13 20:34:24

I think you would know if dairy was an issue tbh. It has been pretty clear with DS that it effected him.

If you are feeding more often they will feel empty but your supply will increase even if you can't feel it. I've just had a look at the wonder weeks as there's a big developmental leap around now, so that may play a part.

It is stressful with the weight gain and I don't think we will ever really know why his weight stalled. The peads were not that worried though. I'm a small build so said heat just take after me.

Monikita Thu 19-Sep-13 21:12:46

You don't know how reassuring it is to hear from someone else who's got a persistent TT as well Nothingsleft. DD had her lip tie lasered a couple of weeks before her final TT procedure and at least that's one thing that hasn't grown back.

Am so glad to hear that your lo managed to put weight back on. I got DD weighed today and she'd only put on 50 grams in 2 weeks - she's falling back to the 0.4th again and I'm just beside myself.

I'm going to put my pumping times in my work calendar so everyone knows I'm not free then and will be taking loads of photos of lo with me too. I'm now just really worried I'm not going to be able to pump enough as my boobs just don't seem to be making anything and just dreading having to pump 8 times a day (including the wee hours) to get my supply up again (I've never really been able to produce much when expressing).

DD loves bread so am going to make some pancakes with sweet potato and the oatly and hopefully that will dupe her into eating more grin. If it works she'll be eating pancakes all the time! I stick olive oil in EVERYTHING at the mo - I'm like Jamie Oliver (but better looking).

How long was it before his latch improved again? Did you have osteopathy or anything? DD's has had loads but deep down I don't think it does anything.

Monikita Thu 19-Sep-13 21:30:19

I really hope that's it - she's just trying to get my supply up. I'll try skin to skin tonight, maybe that will remind her to latch properly.

Trying2bMindful Fri 20-Sep-13 00:17:18

at 8mo your supply has probably settled down, hence you feel your boobs are empty when it is very unlikely they are. I bet she is just in a growth spurt and got better at bf so finishes quicker. plus at that age i know my LO would get bored once he was done and start looking at me..... for ages i thought he was accusing me of not having any milk but i know that wasnt the case now!

my LO had a PTT and we had it snipped, although it did not grow back. tbh i thought the osteopath made the most difference, along with him just growing a bigger moouth!

Keep the faith. Ann D has a fabulous rep. just make sure you have RL support afterwards too - RL hands on support - LC or LLL support. From people trained in bf. the problem is most drs and dieticians are not so you cannot rely on them.
(btw There was a report recently that said breastmilk is higher in calories than solid food so keep bf on demand and keep offering solids when you are eating them.)
At 8 mo my LO woudl try solids but not much was digested; he definitely preferred to eat my food until quite recently. roll forward to 16 mo and some days he seems to not stop eating real food but on other days he has no interest at all. Solids ending up in your hair, their hair, the kitchen floor, walls and everywhere else is par for the course - i wish i had a dog to keep the place clean!!!!!

best of luck. Remember all kids grow at different speeds and develop an interest in food at different rates too. All will be well in due course - this too shall pass smile

Trying2bMindful Fri 20-Sep-13 00:18:43

btw coconut oil is fab. use it as butter on bread and in cooking. yummy high calories.....

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 20-Sep-13 08:51:02

Hope your appointment goes well today smile

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 20-Sep-13 17:16:03

Sorry didn't have much time to post earlier. If she's never been properly diagnosed with CMPI I'd push for thorough allergy testing. If you google allergy uk baby milk, it should give you some useful info smile

If you want to try pancakes we do blueberry pancakes at the weekend and as I'm DF I use almond milk instead of cows. Perhaps you could add more calories by giving her some maple syrup to dip them in? smile

Keep posting and let us know how today went smile

Monikita Fri 20-Sep-13 18:38:31

Thanks Trying! Yes, my sister was similar for my poor mum and she is a very happy, clever and healthy 29 year old smile My mum (and BF specialists) keep telling me that she will catch up. It's just the guilt when I feel DD is still hungry but she can't seem to get the milk - her latch has become painful again as well. Hopefully if she's getting regular ebm from next week it might help (she feeds so well at night though - her nappy was soaking this morning).

Just bought a double pump so hopefully will get more milk expressed.

Will defo try the coconut oil - can you get it in supermarkets or is it a bit more specialist?

Unfortunately Ann Dobson just phoned an hour ago and said she couldn't make it tonight after all. Waiting to see when she's next free...

Monikita Fri 20-Sep-13 18:55:25

Thanks Jilted. I have blueberries in the freezer AND maple syrup so that shouldn't be a hardship for me to eat to make for DD. Is sugar ok for babies then?

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