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Fussiness or genuine distress?

(13 Posts)
CarmenVeranda Tue 23-Aug-16 13:10:58

How do you tell if baby is just fussing or genuinely distressed? DC is 2.5 weeks and increasingly stressed in the evenings, desperately latching on then off, crying, sucking fist/my arm, panicked fast breathing etc. This is after feeding more or less all day and my nipples are killing and he just seems to be really hungry and in great distress at not getting anything. I've read Kellymom which says 'fussing' is normal and not to top up but does this go beyond fussing? It's absolutely horrible to watch him so distressed but is that what other people do? Just try and ride it out? BF MW said to distract but I don't have how you do that with a newborn. He will not be put down either, he falls asleep during feeding and will stay asleep on a person but wakes instantly and goes back to being stressed if put down in his cot. I have consequently had no sleep for days. I don't know what to do now.

Gem14716ArchieB Tue 23-Aug-16 15:48:35

Hi, my little boy (now 5 & 1/2 weeks) has moments exactly like this.

This weekend he did it at every feed all weekend so I can completely sympathise with how you feel. I still worry about what to do for the best too so will be watching this thread.

I've had lots of differing advice from let his tummy settle for at least an hour before letting him back at the breast to its a growth spurt, let him feed as and when he wants as he's having a growth spurt and building up your supply - which has been literally for hours in the same pattern you describe.

I've tried both approaches and found that taking him for a walk in his buggy, drive in the car or even a bath to help him space his feeds a little bit and not topping him up worked for us.

Talked it through with our HV this morning too as I was worried this approach would cause DS distress, could harm my supply and isn't feeding on demand. I was told that sometimes when they get sore tummies they will cue for hunger as all these sensations are new to them and they're not really sure what they need. And giving their tummy a break of at least an hour, ideally 2 can help calm their tummy rather than putting more milk on top of it.

Just worth mentioning we have good weight gain and lots of wet and dirty nappies (we did have the occasional one with a green tinge which correlated with me topping him up initially)

Hope this helps x

Gem14716ArchieB Tue 23-Aug-16 15:54:03

Does you DC get a good feed before the fussing/distress starts? Do you think it could be wind/sore tummy? X

Gem14716ArchieB Tue 23-Aug-16 15:55:00

Does you DC get a good feed before the fussing/distress starts? Do you think it could be wind/sore tummy? X

fuzzyllama Tue 23-Aug-16 16:00:02

Hi op, I was in your position 7 months ago. Had 9 weeks of practically no sleep until she was happy to go in to her basket, so you have my sympathies. With the feeding I also remember this happening around the two week mark, my bf group told me it was a growth spurt, and to give my self a break and hand baby to other half whilst I had a bath and a cup of tea, obviously after she had had a feed. She did tend to calm down when with him and then was calmer when cluster feeding as a result.

CarmenVeranda Tue 23-Aug-16 19:42:44

Thanks for replying, makes me feel better to know I'm not alone, everyone else I know breezed through breastfeeding! I don't know exactly if he's having a good feed at the start, I guess so if it's been a couple of hours since the last one but if it's been incessant all day I feel like I'm 'running on empty'. I read all this stuff that says there is no such thing as boobs being empty but they feel fuller and he seems to feed for longer when there has been a break. I don't know about tummy problems, he does do a little burp and if I lie him Dow straight after a feed some will come back up but not excessively so not sure at all.
If he's hungry though it's impossible to distract him, he either screams or goes to sleep, we don't seem to get many awake but calm periods. He does about one green poo a day too. Aargh, I have no idea if any of this is right or not! Not even my first DC but BF then was a disaster and DC really was starving so I'm v sensitive to not putting this one through the same stress.

Gem14716ArchieB Tue 23-Aug-16 20:42:51

Did they really breeze through breastfeeding? I've found a lot of women put a front on. Please don't beat yourself up by believing that most women breeze through it because i bet they don't xx

At this early age no much awake non feeding time is completely normal.

It doesn't sound like wind is bothering him then. My wee DS goes really fussy at the same time I can normally hear his tummy gurgling or he does a big pump.

You sound like you're doing a fab job. It will all calm down. Xx

Gem14716ArchieB Tue 23-Aug-16 20:48:46

Sorry just on green poo too. Please don't stress about them. The odd green poo is completely fine. When I was I your position a few weeks back I was googling like crazy in the early hours of the morning and became obsessed and stresses with the colour of his poo. Xx

Felascloak Tue 23-Aug-16 20:59:11

My eldest was like this (even down to the green poo) and what worked for us was spacing his feeds out to at least 2 hours and letting him suck something else in between to settle (turned out to be my pinky as he wouldn't take a dummy). Or as pp said, go for a walk or drive.
The health visitor said the first part of a feed can make them more gassy so vert short regular feeds actually can make their tummies sore after a short period but suckling soothes it so you get in a vicious cycle of closely spaced feeds and crying in between.
I know not everyone agrees but my DS was much happier and more settled once we spaced the feeds a bit. It's hard with first babies because it's not always obvious what's genuine demand crying and what's fussiness/tiredness/wind.

CarmenVeranda Wed 24-Aug-16 22:05:30

I'm glad it's not just me! I can't see at the moment how I can spin out two hours between feeds as he'd just be going mental but hopefully it will get better soon.

Eminado Fri 26-Aug-16 03:06:56

Hi Carmen how are things. I think our babies are about the same age. Am 😴 too

CarmenVeranda Sat 27-Aug-16 20:27:34

Hi, thanks for checking in. Things are going ok I think, I have seen a lactation consultant who has helped with the latch and checked for tongue tie and generally reassured me about what's normal. She thought everything is fine so I'm going with more or less constant feeding from about lunchtime and holding my nerve during the fussy phase. I'm going to get DS weighed next week and really hoping things are on track. I wouldn't have imagined BFing is as much psychological as physical! Hope everyone else is doing well.

Coconut0il Sun 28-Aug-16 23:14:30

There is no way I could've distracted DS2 when he was like this. Nothing worked but the boob. I spent the first 3 months with him snuggled up on my lap constantly feeding. He probably went 5/10 minutes between feeds. A mix of hunger and comfort I just went with it. Co sleeping was the only way to get any sleep.

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