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Help! 6 day old baby won't latch on

(16 Posts)
Leeza2 Thu 23-Oct-08 22:27:30

I'm looking for some advice for my friend Rose. She had her first baby last week - healthy baby, born at term, 7lb 12oz. He latched on well for the first few days but when her milk came in she became engorged and he refused to latch on. She tried expressing to soften the nipple but that didn't work.

So she has been expressing and feeding him breast milk in a bottle. Yesterday she developed mastitis but is still expressing off both sides & freezing the excess.

She doesn't know how to get him to latch on again - he just screams and naturally she gets upset and gives him a bottle.I don't know how to advise her.

likessleep Thu 23-Oct-08 22:33:48

Might be best to ring one of the Breastfeeding lines, such as LeLeche or Breastfeeding Network. They'll be able to go through everything in detail.
Am sure numbers are online - good luck to your friend.

JackOLANTERNstini Thu 23-Oct-08 22:39:00

He probably has some nipple confusion with taking a bottle this young.
Hopefully someone knowledgeable will be on soon to help - I can tell you what worked for me but it may not necessarily be the best thing for her iykwim.
I used a nipple shield when I got engorged as my nipple stretched flat. That seemed easier for dd so she latched on. Once my breast was softer and nipple was out, I took her off, removed the shield and put her back on again and she carried on.
There are also some good videos on the internet showing how to latch - will have a look.
Could try or association of bfing mothers for more help.

JackOLANTERNstini Thu 23-Oct-08 22:42:13

Try these:
Good luck to her smile

Leeza2 Thu 23-Oct-08 22:43:54

Likessleep - I will advise her to phone tomorrow. I think she is exhausted and in pain and just feels like giving up sad

Leeza2 Thu 23-Oct-08 22:44:57

Thank you Jackstini - these are great links smile

VeniVidiVickiQV Thu 23-Oct-08 22:45:40

she needs to get support.

Some things that folk have tried before is to undress the baby and put him under her top and have skin to skin contact. She could try feeding him in the bath, or, laying down in bed - again - lots of skin to skin and wrapped up warm. She could try rubbing the palm of his hand to get him to open his mouth.

balismum Thu 23-Oct-08 22:48:44

nipple shield thing worked for me too, removed it as dd got better at latching on and i relaxed a bit

Leeza2 Thu 23-Oct-08 22:50:47

VVVQV - do you mean telephone advice or face to face eg a visit from a Bf counsellor? Community MWs have been (predictably) useless angry

VeniVidiVickiQV Thu 23-Oct-08 22:51:36

telephone if she cant get decent face to face support from mw or hv.

Leeza2 Thu 23-Oct-08 23:05:23

Well that would be telephone then......

although to their credit they seem to have spotted the mastitis fairly quickly

I feel a bit useless myself as don't know what to do either despite bf for ages blush

Goldiewithabump Fri 24-Oct-08 09:50:55

Hi Leeza2

I have a 5 week old that didn't latch on till day 5. Eventually got a BF counsellor to come to the house, spent 2.5 hours trying to convince babe he wanted to latch on to lots of red face screaming. in the end she left me with this plan, may not work for everyone but by 9am the next morning he was latched on and hasn't stopped since.

Had to stop using the bottle at all. Everytime he was hungry, tried him on my boob, if he wouldn't take it we fed him ebm from an egg cup which he would lap at like a kitten. In practice most of this was poured over him and me. Then try at the boob again. He was hungry for the night and had to completely learn how to bf. It was horrible and I feel for your friend, shouldn't be this hard work!!!!

Goldiewithabump Fri 24-Oct-08 09:52:38

oh and he spent the entire night in bed with me, skin to skin so he could smell me/milk...

Leeza2 Fri 24-Oct-08 15:38:46

Thanks Goldie, that's very helpful. Sorry you had such a hard time, at least you and your baby will reap the rewards now smile One of the things that kept me going through the first horrible weeks of Bf my first was knowing that once you and the baby have it sorted its SO much easier than the alternatives [lazy mum emoticon]

Samantha28 Sat 25-Oct-08 10:41:50

How is your friend getting on now, Leeza2?

Samantha28 Sun 26-Oct-08 13:11:01


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