Help! Going backwards at 10 weeks(9 Posts)
Hello - I have posted this in sleep too as not sure where it should be really.
After being blessed with a great sleeper and feeder everything has gone horribly wrong and was hoping someone could give me some sage advice on how to get back on track.
DS is 10 weeks old and ebf. He was 8lb at birth (arrived 2 weeks early) and has gained consistently - his last weigh in at 9w he was 12lb5oz.
The first 8 weeks he was an excellent feeder and sleeper. He starts his day at 7am (no idea why! - a natural Gina baby.) I would feed him every 3-3.5ish hours during the day, then clusterfeed between 6-10pmish. He would then wake once in the night between 3-5am, usually around 4-430am. At about 6w we managed to replace the clusterfeed with bedtime at 730pm, with a wake up feed at 1030/11 (I'd offer him breast then top up with EBM if he still seemed hungry).
Then at 8w he got a vicious cold. Was struggling to breathe and had one day where he fed very little at all. I decided to demand feed him by offering him the breast every 90mins or so (assuming he didn't ask for it earlier) on the basis he was feeding a lot less as (I presume) he couldn't breathe well. We did this for 4-5 days whilst he recovered and it seemed to be working ok - his night sleep seemed largely unaffected (some nights he woke at 330am snuffling but the rhythm was still there).
Then last week he suddenly turned into a fussy screaming baby who didn't want to sleep during the day. When he feeds after about 5 minutes he screams and pulls off the boob and stretches his legs right out so they are rigid as if he is in pain. He started waking up every 90mins to 2 hours during the night screaming - usually he wanted a feed although not always. 2 days later I got a stomach virus and projectile vomited for 16 hours straight. This clearly has knocked my supply for 6 as I was so dehydrated - I've tried expressing since and whereas I used to be able to get 100ml off one side consistently and easily I am now struggling to get 50ml.
So - 5 days on from the bug, DS is demand feeding little and often during the day, fighting sleep the whole way. He then quasi clusterfeeds from 530-730ish before falling asleep exhausted. I wake him for a feed at 1130 which is usually short and he falls asleep on the breast. He then wakes up at 230am, 5am, 6am and then starts his day at 7am - he barely has time to get back to sleep after the later feeds!
How do I get back to some semblance of normality? And have I permanently damaged my supply? How do I stop him continuously falling asleep on the breast after 5mins? What does the screaming & stretching out legs mean? Am really worried I can no longer give him enough to satisfy him overnight. I keep hearing "he's such a big baby he should be sleeping 6+ hours overnight" - but he's going backwards!
He's 10 weeks old, it's not the case that most babies that age would be sleeping 6+ hours a night. His size is irrelevant to how he sleeps. The thing about babies is that they don't tend to stick to the same pattern for very long! They're growing and developing which changes how they feed and sleep.
You won't have permanently damaged your supply. Just keep feeding him as he demands it, maybe try not to let him go too long before offering a feed. Your supply will get back to being in sync with him soon.
keep hearing "he's such a big baby he should be sleeping 6+ hours overnight" - but he's going backwards!. My first bit of advice would be to ignore the person who is saying this to you. What makes them think that such a young baby should sleep all night. Smile and nod and if they persist, ask them to Google the fourth trimester .
Secondly, how much you can express is absolutely no indication of supply. Your body will be much more intone now with your baby's needs so naturally will have less to express. Plus, your baby will be far more efficient at getting out your milk than any pump.
As for the feeding. It all sounds perfectly normal. You could try some breast compressions if you want to, but not sure if it would keep him feeding for longer.
I'm not trained though, so you might want to check all of this with someone who is. Have you tried one of the Bfing Helplines or is there a Bfing Support group you could go to?
As for Gina, as much as some people love her routines, please bear in mind that they aren't based on any research and she's never actually had a baby. You might find Help Your Baby to Sleep more useful
Cross posted with @AssainatedBeauty but agree with everything she said
Thank you both. I feel a bit reassured. Although still a bit as to how I've gone from a great sleeper to such a poor one in the blink of an eye!
That's the thing nobody tells you about babies and children. They like to let you think you've got all of this parenting lark sorted out and then they send you a curve ball. You'll be fine
Just as you think you have a routing, it changes. Often with no rhyme or reason. It sounds like you've been very lucky in the first weeks. I think this was is harder to deal with than if your baby had started out a 'bad' sleeper.
It's really common for their sleeping patterns to change. It's also common for them to go through a fussy phase around this age.
I was going to suggest breast compressions too to try keep him feeding for longer but sometimes they just want to feed little and often.
The best thing you can do is just feed as and when he wants to. You won't have damaged your supply, don't worry.
If you can get the hang of feeding lying down, it can make a massive difference to how much sleep you are getting.
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