What do you do with a screaming hungry baby first night home?!(15 Posts)
We are due to have baby number 2 in 2 weeks. I'm getting nervous about feeding and have a particular question I'm helping experienced ladies can help with.
When we brought our son home from hospital he didn't latch on well and screamed for the first night to the point where we decided he was starving and to give him formula. It worked but then he much preferred the bottle This was gutting as I planned to exclusively bf And fell at the first hurdle. He was combine fed from then on.
My question is, what do other people do when they have latch problems, no milk and a screaming baby for the first couple of nights? I'm worried this will happen again. Thanks
Could you not stay in hospital for a few days until Breastfeeding is established?
They only need a small amount in the first few days.
I would keep trying to feed- the more the breasts are stimulated the better.
I would like to stay a bit longer this time, if they'll have me, but aware I have a toddler at home to get back to. Perhaps this is the answer though soontobesix. Thanks
There will almost certainly be lovely breastfeeding counsellors at the hospital. Try to to get discharged until you've seen one, or found out how to contact one for advice. Also, there's a national breastfeeding helpline which accepts calls until quite late in the evening.
Alternatively, there will be local La Leche league supporters nearby, and very likely some drop-in clinics.
Get support for bf before you have the baby and have somone at the end of the phone. The early days of bf can be challenging but generally when you get over the hump it gets way easier.
As Nolam says, the baby will need minuscule amounts of colustrum to start with, and if you need to, you can hand express this and syringe/squeeze it into his/her mouth. They can teach you to hand express before you leave hospital.
I went back to hospital for a few hours for some amazing help from a midwife. You are still under their care for the first few days anyway. Easier with dc1 I appreciate.
DS didn't scream at all he slept the first night. The second night he nursed a lot but didn't cry much. It might never happen.
I just kept going. With DS1 I had no idea what was going on and it took a few days to get anywhere near the hang of things with support from the midwife who sent the bf counsellor to see me.
As a pp said, don't worry about volume as they don't need much but really just Keep trying and hopefully you'll find it easier this time.
I would definitely contact whoever is your nearest Breastfeeding counsellor before the baby arrives to get some advice . Ring up the NCT / LLL / Breastfeeding network and find out if there is someone near you who can do home visits, or if there are any drop in groups nearby. If you have some tips from an expert ahead of time, and know who to call in a crisis once the baby is here, you will feel a lot more relaxed and confident about it. Good luck!
What no-one told me until almost the end of the second night with DD2 was that babies are programmed to want to feed for the whole night on the second night to get your milk flowing. If I had known this I would have been more prepared to just get on with it rather than expecting some sleep.
Go find out where your nearest feeding clinic is, and on what days. We had a feeding clinic Mon-Sat in different childrens centres. I could go to any one of them to get help. I was lucky that my appointed mw, was the local bf councillor, and she lived around the corner from us.
I agree that it could have been baby bringing in your actual milk after the colostrum. My dd2 was extremely ravenous all night after about day two, and boy did my milk come in. Though, in the end when bf was established, she only needed feeding 4 or 5 times a day. She was a dream baby, and slept through from 9 weeks old, doing 11 hour stints.
My DD couldn't latch, and we also had an emergency bottle of formula that we picked up on the way home from the hospital. I hand expressed for the first couple of days, which was not enough, and I remember her having the formula in the middle of the night to get us through to morning. Next morning I got my hands on an electric breast pump, and expressed to establish my milk, and for all her feeds. We used the Medela Calma teat with the bottles so she still had to work for the milk. From there we got her to feeding with nipple shields, and then without. That formula feed was the only thing she has ever had that didn't come from me, for which I am proud.
If your little one doesn't latch, look into why. It might be tongue tie, or something else that can be managed. My DD presented almost every symptom of tongue tie, yet her frenulum was not tight. It turned out she had a lot of tension in her jaw, and seeing a cranial sacral therapist turned things around for us. I wish I'd know about that sort of thing sooner. Any future babies will be wisked off to him straight away!
We stayed two nights in the local MLU (had given birth at the CLU an hour away and transferred after 6 hours). So I had support whilst I was in there. Then the first night home we went back in at 2.30am for a feed because I had difficulty latching him when my milk came in. Over the next few days we went into the unit for a couple of feeds, and phoned them once in the night for another. They were absolutely first class.
I was panicky the first few nights that we were home because he would cry when I took him to bed even though we had just fed. And then I figured out that he still wanted to nurse. So then I was panicky that he would never be satisfied and I'd never get to sleep. But over the week my confidence grew and I learned that nursing always soothed him, and no matter how endless his feeds seemed, I managed to "just nurse him one more time" until he slept deeply enough to transfer him to bed.
My back up plan if he couldn't feed was to hand express and cup feed till he was calm enough to try again (I found it most difficult when he was really hungry for a feed and scrabbling against my very sensitive engorged chest) though I never needed to use it.
Things that I think help - don't try to artificially spread out the feeds - it was always more difficult as he got hungry and I got engorged. Try to offer as much as you can. Make sure you are informed about common problems, watch videos/look at photos of what a good latch looks like. Make sure you know where you can go and who you can call for support (don't let them discharge you without this info - and make sure you have a good few successful feeds under your belt first too) My Dsis's advice was to stay until after your milk has come in, and I didn't follow it - oops!
Ask someone to show you how to feed laying down. We did it once in hospital, but I didn't really get the hang of it for a while at home because I had problems with soreness - but once I did, it made a huge difference in terms of the amount of rest I got. We have a bedside cot which makes it so easy.
If you do end up giving formula at one feed because you are desperate, do try again to breast feed, it doesn't have to be all or nothing.
Once you get the hang of it, you may not want to stop, DS is 18 months now and still nursing
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