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6 weeks old won't settle

(20 Posts)
Violettas Thu 13-Apr-17 13:36:01

I'm a mum of a 6 weeks old baby girl and I'm lost. I was desperate to EBF but it doesn't work and I can't accept it, I just keep crying over and over again. We started mixed feeding when she was 1 week old and kept crying because she was hungry. I have been expressing milk since but find it so difficult to keep up with expressing. She is now almost 6 weeks old, doesn't latch on properly, when on the breast she stays on it for 2 hours and comes off hungry, it takes her more than an hour to eat a bottle or she just snacks on it and falls asleep after having 20 ml. I'm lost, don't know what to do as I feel I am constantly feeding her and have no time to pump. Feeling anxious that if I don't pump my milk will just dry up as my daughter is not sucking effectively. I also have a 2 yo to look after and feel bad as i just get my frustration out on her. My 6 weeks old doesn't even settle in her crib or basket. She falls asleep in my arms and wakes up as soon as I put her down. I really don't know what to do? We both developed thrush, so my breasts are very painful. Feel like the milk I express is useless as well as I need to boil it before giving it to her (boiling kills all the antibodies in the breast milk) and that by the time the thrush goes there will be no milk left in my breasts. I really wanted to give her at least 3 months of breast milk, but can't even keep up for 6 weeks....

I'm feeling useless at the moment and feel like I'm failing my older daughter, my newborn, failing to keep up with house work, just failing in everything....

FATEdestiny Thu 13-Apr-17 13:41:14

Stop expressing while you have thrush.

Since the milk has to be boiled before being given, seems a lot of hassle for what it's worth.

Just focus on feeding from the breast. If top ups are needed then ready and formula is fine. But it might be that without the added pressure of expressing that breastfeeding improves

Ginger782 Thu 13-Apr-17 13:42:07

Hi Violettas - Hopefully someone with more experience than I will appear shortly with some advice. You aren't failing - you are working your arse off trying to help your beautiful baby. Please don't feel that you are failing at anything.
Have you/are you able to get a lactation consultant to give you some hands on assistance to assess the latching issues?

Thirtyrock39 Thu 13-Apr-17 13:43:43

Have you had your baby checked for tongue tie? Check and double check. Have you any breastfeeding support groups locally?

wineapotamus Thu 13-Apr-17 14:08:17

You poor thing. It sounds horrible. I don't have much advice only that most little babies don't settle as well in a basket as they do in your arms. Mine certainly doesn't! She sleeps well in the stretchy wrap though. Worth a try to give you some time with your toddler? Chin up, you aren't failing anyone, you're doing your best. flowers

ElphabaTheGreen Thu 13-Apr-17 14:31:56

You absolutely do not need to boil your milk because you have thrush. I'm so sad that somebody told you that - the crap that gets peddled to breastfeeding mothers is utterly outrageous. It's no wonder BFing rates are so abysmal in this country sad

I think you're at a point where you need to pick one route or another - either switch fully to bottles or re-commit to EBF. She probably struggles to latch because she's getting a bottle some of the time, so is getting some nipple confusion, and your supply is probably not up to the requirements of a breastfed 6wo as you've been mixed feeding (albeit expressing - you're still not going to have the supply that an EBF baby will have built up). Feeding also gets very fussy around 6wo because of developmental leap and growth spurt, so that's also going to complicate matters.

I think you should seek help from a lactation consultant to help support whichever decision you make.

Violettas Thu 13-Apr-17 14:47:23

I think I had 8-10 different people looking at my daughter latching on and they all said it's perfect and I'm doing everything fine. She had her posterior tongue tie released so this is not an issue. I know I will have to choose one way or another soon but I just can't accept that I may have to give up on BF and get very emotional.

The advise about boiling breast milk that was expressed during thrush came from both the nurse that prescribed the thrush medicine and my HV. I'm lost, there is so much confusing information.

I'm just trying to give her the best she can get but it's a hard work and I'm on the edge at the moment.

ElphabaTheGreen Thu 13-Apr-17 15:05:51

I have EBFed two babies through thrush., and it cleared up both times without a drop of milk being boiled. If both you and your baby are on topical treatment for thrush, or, even better, oral fluoconazole, you do not need to boil the milk. That's typical HCP lack of knowledge about breastfeeding. I couldn't boil the milk coming directly out of my boobs and into my babies - why on earth would it need to be boiled if it's going via a sterile bottle? confused

Please see a lactation consultant to get the support you need - either to carry on or to let it go. A 'latch looking fine' means absolutely nothing if it still feels like your nipples are being chewed off.

Semaphorically Thu 13-Apr-17 15:47:24

La Leche League have trained volunteers who can help. They were amazing when I had some bf problems.

tiktok Thu 13-Apr-17 16:36:27

This is such a sad tale. Boiling the breastmilk? Really? Jee-zus!!

You may or may not have thrush - it's over diagnosed anyway.

What you do need is a fresh pair of eyes and a good listening ear from someone who knows what to look for....try the BF helplines or a local expert (not one who talks about boiling).

Violettas Thu 13-Apr-17 16:53:59

I have just called the LLL consultant and she confirmed that the expressed milk has to be boiled after the treatment is finished. To clarify - I'm talking about milk I expressed during the thrush outbreak.

FATEdestiny Thu 13-Apr-17 18:13:45

Is there a specific need to express during the outbreak? I'd just breastfeed more.

Violettas Thu 13-Apr-17 19:28:14

She's not breastfeeding well. She stays for hours on the breast, literally 2-3 hours and comes off screaming for food, so I need to give her bottle and pump to keep my supply going. I know in theory I should keep her on the breast for as long as she wants, but I can't abandon my 2 yo and just feed the baby....

ElphabaTheGreen Thu 13-Apr-17 20:39:27

Listen to tiktok OP. You definitely do not need to boil your expressed milk. I can't believe a LLL volunteer told you that as wellsad

Get thee to a lactation consultant. flowers

tiktok Fri 14-Apr-17 11:25:15

OP, milk does not have to be boiled - I have checked my sources and I have found one sole book with a (non-referenced) suggestion of boiling which does not impress me at all. What a faff. All other sources do not mention it.

Just give your milk to your baby.

Feeding responsively is quicker I think than what you are doing . BF direct is surely easier than taking the baby off before the end of the feed, then expressing(and boiling!), then giving by bottle.

Hope things work out for you.

Violettas Fri 14-Apr-17 16:50:27

BF I still easier if the baby breastfeeds, the problem is that my daughter is not breastfeeding effectively and stays on the breast for hours without a break and is still hungry after.

Isadora2007 Fri 14-Apr-17 16:59:53

But she isn't learning to breastfeed effectively because she has a bottle. It's a vicious cycle.
Can someone else have the two year old for a weekend and you can go skin to skin and feed for the whole weekend if needs be to attempt to re-establish breastfeeding? Drink lots yourself and get Netflix or the likes on and put your feet up and do nothing but cuddle and feed your baby. Like a wee babymoon.
Oats are good to so have some flapjack and snacks to hand.
It's sad this start has been so hard but even successfully EBF babies can be very unsettled around this time as well so it may be a little of that 4-8 week grumpy unsettled period which many (wrongly) call colic...

Mysterycat23 Fri 14-Apr-17 17:07:58

Baby will stay on an empty breast to stimulate the supply to increase. Supply takes at least 24h to respond, usually 48h in my personal experience.

When baby is latched on can you hear swallowing? Is baby's jaw moving right up by the ear?

Agree with pp if anyone can help you with 2 YO to give you a baby moon to just be with baby and get feeding established.

Mysterycat23 Fri 14-Apr-17 17:17:16

Water is the one thing that most affects my supply. Are you drinking a big glass at every feed? You should be weeing regularly and wee should be pale or clear, not at all dark. Keep a water bottle with you and sip through the day, refill frequently.

Also flapjacks, hobnobs, anything oaty. Eat plenty!

Ginger782 Mon 17-Apr-17 21:26:53

Hope you are ok OP flowers
It's wonderful you are trying so hard to get breastfeeding established but please remember that if it's detrimental to your mental health, it's ok not to EBF. Honestly. I know everyone on here is throwing lots of advice at you (and it's probably happening in real life too) and it gets so overwhelming. cake

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