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4 wk old fussing at breat in the evening and arching back - what is going on?

(21 Posts)
MummyToOneForNow Tue 21-Oct-08 20:55:46

DS is 4 weeks and from early on has been really hard to settle in the evenings. He seems to want to feed but keeps pulling away screaming and arching his back. It is difficult to calm him down - walking round with him in the sling seems most likely to work.

Eventually he tires and if I try feeding him lying down he will eventually fall asleep while feeding. Going to bed seems to take 2-3 hours. Once asleep he will sleep for about 4-5 hours before waking for the next feed.

Could this be due to reduced supply in the evening? Would expressing earlier in the day so dh can give him a top up help (want to try to get him used to an occasional bottle soon anyway as dd always refused bottles and it was a nightmare going back to work ) Could the opposite be a problem - I had a bit of a problem with fast flow with dd and the milk drips out pretty fast when he pulls away?

Would appreciate any advice as it is starting to wear me out a bit! Day time feeds are mostly lovely and calm and about every 3hrs or so...

Nat1H Tue 21-Oct-08 20:59:22

Could it be colic? Mine were always worse in the evenings

mamadiva Tue 21-Oct-08 21:02:10

Agree could be colic or maybe trapped wind.

I dont know much about BF but maybe try expressing like you say, anything is worth a try isnt it.

If you are in doubt go to doctors as there could be something underlying.

MummyToOneForNow Tue 21-Oct-08 21:08:13

I thought colic normally involved pulling kness up to chest whereas ds is doing the opposite - stretching out and arching back - which is why I wondered if something else might be going on. Poor boy looks really uncomfortable and distressed.

pudding25 Tue 21-Oct-08 21:21:50

Are you sure that he is just not really overtired. DD used to do this, we thought she needed feeding and she would go on for a few secs then come off, arching and screaming. We then made sure she went back to sleep within 2 hrs of waking (often, after 1.5hrs) and it turned out that she only ever did the arching and screaming when she desperately needed sleep. She still behaves like this when she really needs to go to sleep immediately and she is now 5ths old.

next time DS does this, try and put him down for a sleep. If he is still unsettled, bung him in the pram and take him for a walk. Or if you have enough room in the house and can't face going out, push him up and down. See if he goes to sleep.

Goldiewithabump Wed 22-Oct-08 11:06:14

My 4 week old also does the same in the evenings. He seems desperate to eat and then when on the pulls away sharply and screams, sometimes crying while sucking!?

Can also take about 3 hours off wandering around and getting him to fall asleep. Although not helped by the fact he wakes the moment he is out of my arms.

Would love to know if you find out what it is.

Othersideofthechannel Wed 22-Oct-08 11:25:28

I agree prob overtired.

SIL's baby did this arching back regularly and it turned out to be reflux but she did it randomly throughout the day and night.

eisbaer Wed 22-Oct-08 20:08:25

expressed top-up will almost certainly help this, or a full feed of expressed milk in a bottle(about 150ml for baby of this age) once baby is definitely 100% hungry.

weeamoomoo Wed 22-Oct-08 21:38:22

i had this problem just on one side and phoned the National Breastfeeding Helpline (0844 20 909 20). i got some excellent positioning advice and havent had a problem since.

what i was doing wrong (completely unaware i only did it on the difficult side!) was touching her head.

it may be something else entirely with your baby, but the breastfeeding counsellor will ask you questions to help asertain what the problem is.

i really think its worth you trying them. good luck!

myermay Wed 22-Oct-08 21:40:14

also check she doesn't have thrush in her mouth - my friends dd did this and that's waht it was

fledtoscotland Wed 22-Oct-08 21:49:30

DS2 has been like this too since about 4 wks old (he is now 7wks) and i think its been colic with him. he screams and feeds but "snatches" the nipple like he's angry wanting to feed but then pulling away and arching his back.

have discovered its colic/trapped wind and dentinox colic drops and gripe water seem to have eased it. he still cries but seems more consolable after a good couple of burps. this week i have also started an evening bath with his elder brother which has reduced the "going to bed" time to about 90mins.

whinegums Wed 22-Oct-08 21:49:54

Sounds familiar - we tried all sorts of colic remedies, but eventually DS (now 15 wks) has been diagnosed with reflux - it's 'silent' so not very much puking. Not saying this is what yours has, but worth checking if colic remedies don't work. If we'd worked this out earlier, we would have saved ourselves a lot of screaming.

surelyyoucantbeserious Thu 23-Oct-08 12:10:25

Sounds familiar - what is reflux and is there anything you can do about it?

My 4 week old does a lot of back arching and seems very uncomfortable between feeds. Sometimes he will go straight on to the breast and feed, other times he will pull away and fuss. I was thinking it's just wind as my milk comes down v fast, making him take in a lot of air when he feeds, but maybe it's reflux? He normally falls asleep at the breast but wakes up shortly after crying, back arching, red faced and nothing seems to help him. Have tried all sorts of things but nothing seems to be working...

Mummyforone sorry I don't have any advice but hope your situation gets better.

surelyyoucantbeserious Thu 23-Oct-08 12:13:07

Hmm looked up reflux on babycentre and it seems the solution is the same as with most things - it will get better as your baby gets bigger..........

Othersideofthechannel Thu 23-Oct-08 13:11:27

SIL's baby had really bad silent reflux. They diagnosed it when she was 4mo with a fibreoptic camera down the throat and she had to have gaviscon after feeds and another medicine before feeding.

SweetBasil Thu 23-Oct-08 13:50:55

Arching and crying (screaming!) instead of feeding is one of those classic signs of reflux. It's horrible. My LO, who has reflux and a cow's milk allergy, started refusing feeds at nine weeks. He's now five months and still refuses feeds every day. If it is reflux, there are things like acid reducing drugs or cranial manipulation that might help. Otherwise, an ear infection or thrush can also make it hard to feed but surely it's unlikely that you'd only have a problem in the evenings? I hope that it sorts itself out - babies change so much in these early days. And it's common enough for babies (but distressing for their mothers) to go through a brief period of refusing. Ugh, been living this for three months, could write a book on it. Fingers crossed that this is just a bad phase that is over before you know it.

whinegums Fri 24-Oct-08 21:09:37

Hi again, sorry, haven't been on for a couple of days. My DS also has floppy larynx, which is linked to reflux, diagnosed via fibreoptic laryngoscopy. He's been on Infant Gaviscon anyway (has to be prescribed by doc for babies under 1 year), which definitely helped with the reflux, and now also has ranitidine.

SYCNS and Mummy21, if you think your LOs may have reflux it's definitely worth a trip to the doc.

labebete Fri 24-Oct-08 21:25:13

my ds had terrible silent reflux and arching his back was one of his symptoms - not to say this is what your baby has of course.

DS did this and cried in pain all day rather than just at the classic collicky time in the evening, he often pulled away to scream and then went back to feed. A HV diagnosed him first off - might be worth a visit?

pudding25 Sat 25-Oct-08 12:41:22

Surely if it was reflux, then the arching/crying would happen throughout the day and night not just in the evening?

Best get the dr to check it out just in case.

liger Sat 25-Oct-08 12:54:59

my ds2 does exactly this when he needs to burp during a feed. I sit him up and pat his back. Sometimes I have to persist with burping for a while but it always comes in the end. He feeds happily afterwards.

But as it only happens in the evening for your ds and going from my experience with ds1 it could be tiredness. Its like a physical expression of not knowing quite what they want to make them feel better.

MummyToOneForNow Mon 27-Oct-08 10:28:54

Since my initial post (sorry - haven't been on for a few days) ds has started throwing up what looks like a full feed once or twice per day (enough to soak his clothes and a muslin).

I've looked up reflux and it sounds quite plausible so will be asking the hv's at the baby clinic this week and go and see my gp. A book I have says it often starts between 2 and 4 weeks (ds is now 5 weeks). The back arching is now happening during the days as well and I hate to see him so uncomfortable.

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