Baby constantly feeding(22 Posts)
My baby is 4 days old and wants to constantly feed (breastfeeding). He seems to be getting enough milk as he has lots of wet and dirty nappies and my breasts are overloaded with milk. He will have a good feed and then 10 mins later be searching for milk again. I don't think he is s earthing because he is hungry but more for the comfort of being breastfed. It isn't too bad during the daytime but it is exhausting at nighttime as he can be awake for hours crying to be fed and then falls asleep at the breast but wakes up and cries again as soon as he is put down.
I am thinking of giving him a dummy just so I can get some rest from the constant being attached to my boob. Can I give a dummy to a breastfed baby this early?
This sounds pretty normal but there are some things to try. Have you got someone who could try to settle him in another room for a while so you could get a little sleep? Some mums find feeding lying down helps, have you tried that yet?
If you are trying to put him in a Moses basket, try using tee shirt that do has worn as the sheet. One of yours won't work as he will smell your milk.
Have you tried swaddling and white noise too?
DH tried settling him whilst I had a shower (just after a feed) but it was no good, baby was screaming by the time I had finished in the shower.
I haven't tried swaddling so will give that a try.
Thanks for the suggestions.
It's such early days and things might be very different next week or even in a couple of days. Your baby very normally wants to be close to you and as you point out needs the comfort of breastfeeding to feel secure. With breastfeeding he gets a familiar taste, your familiar smell, and your familiar voice - all are known to him already from his life in utero ( your breastmilk tastes of 'you' in the same way your amniotic fluid tasted). He was inside you just four days ago, so the closeness of breastfeeding really helps make this transition to the outside world more easy for him.
Working out ways of coping with this is likely to be easier than trying to change this normal behaviour. Feeding in bed, lying down, settling him skin to skin are all options. When you say he is crying for hours at night, is this literally true? It's not good to leave babies crying for hours, so this may not have been what you meant.
Feeding in response to his needs is good for your milk supply and good for his emotional and social needs. It doesn't sound like a dummy is needed just yet. Perhaps wait until things are better established and then think about it?
Theres a few recent threads on this topic, my own included! General consensus is that it's normal, feed through it, it won't last forever. My DS is now 3.5 weeks and is still clustering feeds a few times a day but is nowhere near the crazy boob monster he was in those early days! My only word of advice though, is don't settle for anything less than comfortable feeds, as I had a latch issue and tongue tie which has led to me being very sore now with blocked ducts. The quantity of feeds exacerbates any problems . Good luck OP!
tiktok when I say crying for hours, what I mean is that baby will feed and as soon as he is finished and asleep and I put him down he starts crying. When he is crying I pick him back up straight away to comfort him and he wants to suckle again. I usually let him suckle again but he is already full and just dribbles all the milk straight down me because he doesn't want the milk. This cycle will be repeated several times for hours until baby is exhausted and sleeps.
Unfortunately I can't spend hours and hours feeding constantly because I have other children.
I will persevere and hope things get better.
This is why I switched to formula. It just gets ridiculous.
He might be dribbling because your letdown is quite fast. This is normal in the early days while your supply gets established. Think of the first four weeks as the tenth month of pregnancy, your baby needs to be close to you as that's how they feel secure and it's still very early days. I too have a newborn, DC2 and I'd forgotten how much they hate being put down. I've got a cling-on baby, but it doesn't last long. You could try to get the cluster feeding going earlier in the night. I try to feed mine up between 6/7 and 10 so they have a decent (ish!) stretch of a few hours before waking again.
Congratulations on your baby, it gets easier, honest. In the meantime, be good to yourself.
loveandhate I won't be switching to formula (as long as baby is gaining weight).
starspotter it could be that my letdown is fast as my breasts are very full but baby doesn't dribble when he has woken for a feed after a couple of hours it is only when he has been feeding several times repeatedly within a couple of hours.
The advice everyone has given has been really helpful and helped me to feel better and have faith that I will get through this if I persevere. My first two babies were not sucky babies and would feed and be content so it is all unfamiliar territory but I'm glad to hear that it is quite normal.
I'm a few weeks ages of you but from memory there's a growth spurt at 4 days? I think that's what the midwife said
when I was beside myself with exhaustion Bear with... It gets better.
Ages = ahead
Also we resorted to show giving him a bottle (of expressed breast milk) on day 6 which is supposedly too early but DS took it and has ever since and means I can get some rest.
On the letdown issue, there seems I rhyme or reason to when mine is too fast for the baby. Sometimes I'll have fed loads, then they'll be a particularly forceful letdown and baby starts coughing etc. My first was a sucky baby and now I appear to have the same again. Maybe try loading earlier in night? Also I find that mine is particularly bad if overtired and can't catch sleep - is usually late or middle of the night. Hang on in there! You're not the only one awake at 4am with a Velcro baby!
It's really tough in the early days but you'll know from your older child that things get better quickly.
Have a look on YouTube at the happiest baby on the block soothing techniques, they will be helpful for your husband to try and settle him.
I used to feed in bed lying against the Moses basket blanket because it would warm it up to them put her in it.
I also think it's good to try and get him to feed well to fill up, tickle his feet or cheek to keep him drinking.
My dd2 is 4 months now, breastfeeding is a dream now and the early days are a distant memory, it will pass and you are doing a great job, enjoy
I have a 4 day old as well. Premature so we are closely watching him
Tonight has gond well I have instigated a double feed thing. He can only manage a few minutes at a time.
So wake - feed, break for snooze and possibly a burp, feed. Then a longer break for a nappy change then after a bit more feed and then hold til fast asleep then into moses. Worked a treat tonight
Last night he didn't settle in moses once.
I think he needs both the closeness and some help digesting.
I always think a burp makes more room
Bf coordinator suggested meaning back to slow the flow if lots of milk
Also smoothing the breast towards the nipple to help him get the most with least effort.
Hope there is something useful there for you
Last night was better and I am feeling more positive now. Everybody's kind and helpful words and a night with a but more sleep has really helped. Baby woke only 3 times during the night and went straight back down after each feed.
We tried swaddling and he really didn't like not being able to move his arms so we swaddled from under the arm only which he seemed to like and seemed to keep him more cosy and snug. I also held him close for 15 mins after each feed once asleep and that helped enormously with him staying asleep once put down.
I gave ds a dummy at 5 days old and felt terrible about it! But it made all the difference. He still fed like crazy for the first 3 weeks or so but if I popped it in his mouth after he'd 'finished' a feed it stopped the need to 'comfort suck' ten minutes later and helped lull him into a sleep. I'd give a dummy a try and persist if baby won't take it. If they're truly hungry they'll soon let you know!
The problem with a dummy is it can interfere with getting bf established at this early stage. I'm not prepared to risk it here.
I haven't used one at all with my other babies but I would consider it from about 6 weeks on when bf really established
I ebf my son until he was 4.5 months and he fed constantly. one of my toughest memories is being out for the afternoon at our friends' house and having him on the breast for 5 hours straight, switching from one to the other all afternoon. Every time I took him off he screamed. I was so sore.
I also have a 4 year old so this was not sustainable and I was getting really down so I put him on formula and now he feeds every 3 hours on the dot and sleeps through the night, and I finally have some control.
I think we have got to the bottom of the endless feeding.
Baby was feeding every half hour to every hour yesterday but only feeding for 5 mins at a time. I tried a bottle in exhaustion and concern that baby wasn't getting enough milk but he only sucked for 5 mins and drank very little.
I bought some Infacol as baby was crying all the time and seemed uncomfortable. Within 8 hours he had farted a dozen times and burped 3 times and seems a bit more comfortable. His last two feeds have been for 10 mins each with a 3 hour gap between them.
I was just coming here to ask if it was wind! Making sure my DD was properly winded after feeds was the key to getting her in the cot for a sleep. Although it didn't always work and she would only sleep in us for a lot of the first two months. I found walking up and down the stairs holding her to my chest/over my shoulder was the best way to bring all her wind up. It settled after the first couple of weeks and then she wasn't very windy at all.
Feeding constantly is normal but at a few days old they need to sleep loads too. Newborn sleepy cuddles are the best! Good luck with your baby.
Thanks superb. He is definitely a windy baby - I think he farted about 15 times during last night and belched about 6 times. The Infacol is working well at helping to release all the trapped wind.
I found a dummy was a godsend personally and had no negative effect on bf. Anecdotally friends found the same.
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