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Reflux, long feeds - is bf really best?

(16 Posts)
sharond101 Sun 21-Jun-15 23:17:03

Currently Dr is bf. She is 6 weeks old and struggles with reflux. She takes ages to feed and feeds around every 2 hours during the day. I can be sat feeding for over an hour (sometimes 90 mins+) and an Hr and a half later she looks for more. I have a toddler who I am barely managing to see. I am struggling to get out and about as the feeds are so long andbso frequent. She has reflux and had a tongue tie snip last week though this hasn't shortened her feed time. I gave her a bottle of ebm today and she took 4ozs in 25minutes which is so much better than from the breast. I am worried formula may worsen the reflux. Ds was exclusively expressed breast milk and I don't want to do that again. Any advice?

LMonkey Sun 21-Jun-15 23:41:12

I haven't had a baby with a reflux issue but could you just try with the formula and if it doesn't make the reflux worse then you could do mixed feeding, i.e.breast feed sometimes so that your baby is still getting the goodness and the benefits of your breast milk and formula feed sometimes for ease and to give yourself a break? This is what I did with my DS due to other feeding issues. Obviously if the formula does make the reflux worse then this would be a no-go. Or do the same with expressed milk, if you just did ebm a couple of times a day that might be an improvement, at least some feeds might be less of a hassle. I do feel your pain, I know it's hard. My friends son had bad reflux issues and it turned out he was dairy/wheat intolerant so she had to cut this from her diet and also got special dairy free formula on prescription.

sharond101 Mon 22-Jun-15 02:47:50

Worried bout supply dropping doing it this way. Can you advise?

Guyropes Mon 22-Jun-15 02:53:25

Do you feel latch has improved at all since the snip? Some. Babies need snipping more than once before things improve. I would definitely be seeking follow up advice from whoever diagnosed the tongue tie before starting formula.

Good luck with it, it sounds exhausting.

sharond101 Mon 22-Jun-15 09:16:46

slight latch improvement only

cleoteacher Mon 22-Jun-15 09:23:30

I am doing bit of both but worried about my supply as it wasn't great to start with a did not putting on weight and hardly seems to be feeding during feeds. She has two bottles a day and I try to do them at times when in so that I can express afterwards so my body is tricked into thinking I've fed. Hopefully won't effect my supply. Also express at 10.30 as was told night feeds help boost supply. My dd is 16 weeks though so only need to do it for couple of months until weaning and will probably reduce amounts of breastfeeding anyway.

cleoteacher Mon 22-Jun-15 09:24:54

Not did not put on Weight. Should read dd hardly putting on weight.

UpUpAndAway123 Mon 22-Jun-15 09:43:31


Are there any bf groups/lactation specialists in area? 90 mins per feed suggests in ineffective latch despite tongue tie correction. You could do with someone spending some time with you and watching her feed.
What are her reflux symptoms? My lg used to vomit (a lot) but was just a 'happy spitter' in that it didn't bother her and she gained weight. Is she in pain and uncomfortable, are her nappies ok? Is she gaining weight?
If you want to move onto formula then do and see how she goes. If her symptoms worsen them take her back to docs. Cows Milk protein allergies are often misdiagnosed as reflux.

The main thing I would be doing is seeing a lactation specialist to try and sort latch if you want to continue bf.
good luck x

LMonkey Mon 22-Jun-15 14:58:44

Doesn't your supply just drop to however much the baby actually wants to feed though, like supply to demand? Its like when weaning them on to soft foods, your supply drops to accommodate however much breast milk they are still demanding so you should always have enough for what the baby wants. At least that's what I thought. Have you spoken to your HV? Around 6-8 weeks babies are meant to become more efficient feeders, I know your lo has reflux so the feeding problems are more to do with that but it might also be partly to do with the fact that she's still very little.

ApplesTheHare Mon 22-Jun-15 21:35:17

Sounds hard OPthanks

If you have a local bf supporter or lactation consultant who could see you that would be best, but I just had a thought about the long feeds. With reflux babies comfort suck to try and ease the pain, but then overeat and trigger more reflux, leading to more comfort feeding. It's a vicious circle. I was dead against using a dummy but the GP suggested giving it a go to try and break the cycle and I wished I'd given it to DD way earlier. It helped with the reflux pain like nothing else.

sharond101 Tue 23-Jun-15 18:58:30

AppleTheHare the bf support team came out yesterday and recommended a dummy. So far so good. Feeds have been cut back to around one hour and we have managed 3-4 hr gaps. Heres hoping for continued progress, (I also bought a bottle of ready to use formula!)

ApplesTheHare Tue 23-Jun-15 20:20:19

Oh that sounds like great news/progress! smile Well done for contacting them, it's so hard with a reflux baby. Hang in there, they DO grow out of it thanks

Guyropes Thu 25-Jun-15 09:15:40

Sharond glad ouve beenseen by the team.... Hope the dummy helps.

L monkey, I was told by my hv that supply gets well established by exclusive bf until at leAst 8 weeks. I think that if you start reducing feeds before you get well established, you run the risk of supply dropping below demand, and with bottles being easier, babies often develop a preference, which makes it even harder to maintain a supply.

Roseybee10 Fri 03-Jul-15 02:58:34

If it helps my dd moved to formula at two weeks and took two hours to take a formula feed at every feed. I feel your pain about the long feeds but didn't find moving to formula really helped at all.
Every baby is different though.

Roseybee10 Fri 03-Jul-15 02:59:02

She has silent reflux. Forgot to add that. She also has a tongue tie.

sharond101 Fri 03-Jul-15 18:22:07

Thanks roseybee

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