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Breast feeding newborn- urgent advice pls(35 Posts)
my third DC is 4 days old and i am really struggling with breast feeding him.
I managed to BF my first two but it wasn't plain sailing....i mixed fed my son pretty soon as i genuinely was totally unprepared for the reality of BF in first fee weeks and thought I was doing something wrong.
my daughter had silent reflux which was hard. both had dummies within days which made things easier for me but in hindsight made BF harder.
so, with my third DC i felt determined to give it my best shot. but i am really struggling. he was over 9 pounds and since 24 hours old he has wanted to feed continuously ...really. 4 hours one night, 6 the second and last night literally all night.
if he comes off asleep i pop him in his Moses basket and he is screaming looking for food within 5 mins. he is very content whilst feeding and midwife thinks his latch is fine.
it's just the same in the day. he literally feeds/ doses at breast all day and screams for food when taken off.
I just don't know what to do. I had hoped not to give him a dummy for a couple of weeks to establish milk supply but i feel desperate.
DH is back at work next week and I have no idea how I will get the DC to school etc... currently i am timetabling loo breaks.
I've read lots saying it's like this for 6 weeks?? Help.
Totally and utterly normal. Newborns often feed for hours at a time. Usually in the evening/night. Very difficult if you have older children but the phase won't last long.
Um Could be normal could indicate a problem. Your milk won't have come in yet, but I would expect some sleeping after feeds of colostrum.
Are you getting sore? Could you get him checked for tongue tie and positioning? - nose to nipple, head tilted back, etc?
How are the nappies? Any weight in them? Meconium?
Oh and congratulations
oh god i just dont think i csn manage. is not long 6 werks? thanks
Although the screaming when put down was normal for all 3 of mine - so we did slings Which kept them happy for an hour or 2 between feeds so I could see to the others. Dc2&3 lived in the sling until about 5montgs!
And it shouldn't be quite so continuous once your milk is in
It's normal - mine would cluster feed for up to 8 hours a time . He's only three days old so your milk probably hasn't come in fully yet.
It's really hard. I don't think it's a popular thing to say but breastfeeding can be physically and mentally very demanding.
Do what's best for YOU. If that means you WANT to mix feed, then you don't need anybody's approval or permission. If you want to breastfeed then be pushy about getting help in - your other half needs to do more with the older ones for example. Yes, timetabling loo breaks is normal. Cluster feeding is normal.
For what it's worth, I solely breastfed my son. I've just weaned him now at 19m after a rough start bfing. I'm pleased I did it . At the same time, if I have another I will be adding a bottle a day in the mix because being the only one who did all the feeding day and night was tough, and ds was a clingy, high needs baby.
Some things that helped me: insisting dh did more. Stretchy sling and they can bf while in it, bf big cushion (absolute godsend)
Anyway, yes it's totally normal. Mine was like that for almost four months. He'd have fed all day and night if he could have even at a year. Utter boob fiend.
Oh and get him checked for reflux - another way slings can help is keeping them more upright.
Good luck - it may just be totally normal but he may be a demanding one.
RL help is really needed here OP - because what posters here remember as "constant" feeding may be different from what's happening to you. Have you got numbers for the breastfeeding helplines? local BF counsellors?
It could be normal or it could indicate he's not transferring milk as well as he could be. The best way to tell at this stage is wet and dirty nappies.
At 4 days he should be doing at least 3-4 yellow poos a day and at least 4 wees.
It can be really hard work
Hello, firstly huge congratulations on your DS.
Secondly, it's great you are determined to get BF established, and you absolutely can. Screaming constantly and the history of reflux in your other DC makes me suspect Cow's Milk Protein Intolerance may be at play here. I am sure you are absolutely exhausted but if you are able to consider going dairy free just for a few days to check - I strongly suspect you will see a huge difference. If not, no harm done. Please PM me if you want!
Breastfeeding helpline numbers
Until your milk is in I would offer formula. That's what I did and it was fine
We also offered small feeds of formula til my milk was in, which would hopefully be very soon for you now you're on day 4 xx
Unfortunately, although it may have been the right decision for pervious posters, if you are determined to get breastfeeding established, adding a bottle will have the opposite effect as breastfeeding works on supply and demand, especially in the early days. I suggest speaking to your midwifery team or a breastfeeding support- ideally one in person which could be more helpful for you. However, you must do what is best for your individual mum-baby diad. Congrats on the new baby and well done for getting this far.
And if it is cows milk protein intolerance then formula will make it much much worse. My CMPI baby showed marked improvement within 3 days of me going dairy and soya free.
I mean this with the best will in the world but advising a Mum asking for help to establish breastfeeding to give formula is really not helpful. I'm sure I'll get slated for that comment but it's basic BF logic: supply and demand is regulated at this stage by how much breastfeeding you do. Giving formula as a fix will potentially impact supply.
Agree with SleepWhatSleep. Good luck OP! Please let us know how you are doing when you can.
I was also trying to establish breastfeeding and I did, very successfully. But until my milk was properly in I offered formula in a little doidy cup or syringe so that there was SOMETHING in my baby's tummy.
But baby should be getting enough colostrum for their needs at each feed. It
isn't necessary to supplement with formula unless something is wrong and we don't have enough information here to say that. The more (correct) stimulation the nipple/breast gets the quicker the milk will come in and the better the supply. If the op wants to breastfeed it's really best not to sabotage that with formula. But they should be checked IRL that everything is ok.
How are things, OP? Do you have access to any RL breastfeeding support? Tricky over the bank holiday I guess. Big hug.
How old are your other kids OP? I can imagine how exhausted you must be! This is such a difficult time.
My first DC was very much like what you describe. I resigned myself to barely any sleep for the first 6 weeks. I watched Netflix on my tablet pretty much all night.
I didn't have any other children at that point though, so it was more doable.
I can't offer much help, sorry.
Fenugreek helped with my milk supply, which did make things much easier for us. Not sure if that's an issue for you.
As PP have said, your milk should come in very soon now. It will be a relief. If you can (and want) I would persist with exclusively breastfeeding until then. It will be easier from then on.
Get him checked for tongue tie ASAP.
My DS was feeding constantly and I started a thread on it - most people told me it was normal but it WASN'T. And some people told me to formula feed even though I'd said I wanted to persevere with breastfeeding
Anyway, I went to a breastfeeding drop-in and was lucky enough to get help from an excellent breastfeeding counsellor who assessed him for tongue tie and said he had it. We then got it divided and it fixed the feeding issue (he fed more efficiently and for less time).
Unfortunately most midwives aren't trained to do a proper tongue tie assessment. You need to see a lactation consultant - and if it's not tongue tie they will be able to advise on other possible causes and solutions.
You can find a lactation consultant here:
thank you all for taking the time to respond and advise.
my daughter's experience of reflux was v different to how my son is now. he loves feeding and he's happy cuddling me afyer feeding (she was v unhappy at breast or bottle til she was on medication).
i actually feel like the breastfeeding this time round is going better...there is pain when he goes on but then its ok and as I said he is content.
it's more everything else.....if breast feeding realistically means I can't collect the children from school on time or make their dinner....then I need to be realistic. my DH is great, v supportive and doing everything else, but he has no choice but to return to work next week and there are things that need to be done by me eg school run, which is one of the reasons i need to hope for some balance.
thanks to those of you who suggested dairy intolerance. i will wait til a couple of days after my milk is fully in and if no improvement do as you suggest.
Have most of you been able to BF a newborn to sleep who will then sleep ib their moses basket for a while?
has anyone introduced a dummy successfully with BF and if so when?
thank you all again.
The absolute, full on, CONSTANT feeding is probably just about to finish when your milk comes in, OP. Give it another couple of days, and try a couple of school runs before you do anything drastic.
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