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Really unconfident about breastfeeding

(14 Posts)
suzi2 Sat 13-Aug-05 20:59:12

My boy is 7 days old. And I'm feeling really unconfident about his feeding. He seems to sleep loads - 5/6 hours at a time... and I don't know whether to wake him for feeds or let him 'let me know'. Mind you, he's awake for at least 4 hours overnight feeding/grumping/being unsettled.

He seems to fall asleep within minutes of feeding - I usually take him off and try and wake him before trying again. Sometimes he feeds for 10mins, sometimes an hour plus. I'm not sure he's getting enough milk. I have no idea whether he is actively sucking or is just tiring himself out trying. I have a wee bit of pain when feeding but it's getting better. His latch seems not bad - the midwives have been fairly happy with it. I don't know whether to feed both boobs - or when to switch to the other.

So, I just don't get it. Am I doing it right? I just feel so nervous of everything. He has several wet nappies a day (as well as weeing over daddy at least once a day during changing ) although he went 5 days without pooing (3 days old to today). The poo was plentiful when it came but was preceeded by a dry brown poo...

Sorry for rambling - just not sure if everything is OK. i understand now why people use formula!

Miaou Sat 13-Aug-05 21:10:23

Suzi2, congratulations! Bfeeding IMHO is hard work to start with, particularly as there are no hard and fast rules about when and how much (can't measure how much they have had for a start!!)

I am bfeeding my ds who is now 12 days old. I have a big age gap between him and my two dds, so although I am not a first timer, I am certainly having to "relearn" it all.

You sound to me like you are doing the right things. Main reason for saying this - he has lots of wet nappies. Don't worry so much about the pooing - some babies go a long time between poos. My ds in his first week had phases of lots of little feeds (5, 10 or 15 mins) and little sleeps (30 mins), over the course of 4 or 5 hours, then he would sleep for three or four hours, for no apparent reason! IME feeding can be totally random in the first few days! I just fed him whenever he wanted, and left him to sleep when he didn't. Unless you have a particularly sleepy baby (which I would say you don't), then simply go with the flow, and nap as much as you can when he is.

Ds is just now beginning to develop some sort of routine, at nearly two weeks old - he sleeps for about 3 or 4 hours early evening, and has just begun to be more efficient at feeding - will now feed for 30 mins, which sets him up for a good sleep. Some babies take much longer than my ds to get to this point, so don't worry if he is still snacking and napping for a while yet.

Things you can do to get him to feed for longer - change his nappy when he dozes off, or put him down - the loss of your body warmth may be enough to bring him round for a bit longer. However I have only just started doing this with ds in the last couple of days as I felt it was too soon to do it before then.

Sorry, I'm a terrible waffler - I hope that some of this is of use to you! Keep up the good work .

Tipex Sat 13-Aug-05 21:19:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Hattie05 Sat 13-Aug-05 21:24:50

Congratulations!

Don't worry, the early days always are worrying! but soon you will become relaxed and let your little boy lead the way.
So long as your baby is happy and not losing any weight then you are doing the right thing. I used to tickle dd's toes to wake her if she fell asleep on the boob. Just feed to his demand, and he'll make sure he gets enough .
I didn't really have a 'method' as to when to change sides, but did usually other both at each feed. I think i just swapped sides if dd had been on one for a while and was falling asleep, as the switching would also wake her up again.
Quite common for them not to poo everday and then make up for it when they do! .
I never used to wake dd for a feed - enjoy the peace as long as possible.

moondog Sat 13-Aug-05 21:58:15

suzi, we all felt like this at the beginning. it's so new and strange isn't it,and also so hard to learn to let go of logic (in away) and let nature take its course.

I have kept the mad little b/dfeeding diary I kept in dd's first week which I used to push in the face of the m/w every time she came by.

Sort of...

6:17 5 mins (L side)

7:21 2.5 mins (R side)

7:33 8 mins (L side)

If the nappies are wet,then things are going ok. Sit back,put your feet up,let him suck and relaaaaaaax. Believe you me,you won't be once he's on the move in a few months. Then it's go,go,go!

Miaou Sat 13-Aug-05 22:21:00

moondog, I keep a breastfeeding diary too, I find it very useful to see patterns developing.

moondog Sat 13-Aug-05 22:25:43

Oh agree miaou! (I am a fastidious diary keeper.) Just that my early b/feeding days one covered pages and pages in the sort of minute detail I gave as an example.

Reminds me of how shaky and unsure I felt about the whole thing. Remember when dd was 12 days old,going to an M&B group and watching inopen mouthes astonishment as another girl managed to breastfeed and talk at the same time!!
Felt so {envy] lol!

henshake Sat 13-Aug-05 22:33:20

My DS would be on for ages or sometimes just quick sups. Lactation specialist said quick sups could be cause his thirsty & is only wanting the foremilk.

I started to take note of the difference in the suckling, if was taking nice deep suckle then more than likely still awake. If short suckle & more like sucking a thumb then DS was asleep. At this stage I would swap him over to other boob & normally this would wake him up & he'd finish his feed & then go back to sleep.

DS is now 9 mths & still bf, he is alot more quicker as he is used to it now. It does get easier. Wish I'd persevered more with DD.

DS would sleep for ages and still does. Apparently boys are lazier than girls.

Agree re pooing is concerning but Midwife & HV both reassurred me that they are using up all the milk and as liquid little or no solids to come out so quite normal to go days with no poo.

Also, if you're concerned that he is getting enough. Take him to baby clinic regularly for weight check, if he's putting on as should, then he's getting enough. I speak from experience here as was told that DD wasn't latching properly by HV but midwife (lactation specialist) checked latching and okay and she said if putting on weight then babe is definitely getting enough milk.

Sorry for rambling. Hope it get's better for you soon.

PS trapped wind & gripes gets better around 3 mths.

henshake Sat 13-Aug-05 22:39:23

Moondog just read your last mail. I feel jealous every time I see someone bf like they show in the books. At a bbq the other week a mummy stood holding her babe in her arms with babe clamped on, she was talking away & of course peeps just thought babe asleep.

My boobs have been heading south for sometime, so am envious of those who can hold baby in crook of arm. I've always had to sit to feed as have to hold boob up for babe to feed.

Shoulders, hands and back are knackered.

jennifersofia Sat 13-Aug-05 22:42:56

Hey, how wonderful that you have a brand new baby and you are really getting on with the breastfeeding, well done, and congratulations.
I remember when my eldest was just born - both my dh and I felt like we had landed on another planet. Don´t worry - you will become much more confident quickly. It sounds like you are doing well. Although some don´t agree with waking a baby to feed, my youngest was very slightly jaundiced, which made her sleep a lot in the early weeks, and I found that I did need to wake her to feed, and wake her during the feed - usually done by opening her clothing up and rubbing her feet. Also I found with both my babes feeding just off one breast at a time in the very beginning was sufficient, but it does depend on your milk flow, and the baby´s appetite.
Keep on going- it sounds like you are doing fine.

moondog Sat 13-Aug-05 22:46:53

My shoulders and back are knackered too henshake! For some weird reason,I've always had to hold the boob being fed from.Couldn't just sit back and let babe do his/her thing. Over 3 1/2 years,it's a bloody weired position to maintain!

Don't regret it for a second though!

Aero Sat 13-Aug-05 23:01:20

Congratulations on your new arrival and don't worry - we all felt the same in the beginning. You'll soon relax into it. I was led by my ds1 as to how much and how often he fed (he only ever fed from one side at a time, sometimes for a few minutes, sometimes for ages) and once I'd got over the initial soreness of bf, it was all plain sailing and he got himself into some sort of routine. Not quite so easy with dd and ds2, but I managed to bf all of them for around a year. You're doing everything right, and as long as his nappies are wet and he's gaining weight, I wouldn't worry too much.

<Little hijack> Miaou - did I miss a birth announcement whilst on holiday!! How did that happen? Congratulations anyway on the arrival of your ds - lovely news. Am I allowed to know what you called him - couldn't find anything in birth announcements?

spidermama Sat 13-Aug-05 23:26:49

SEVEN DAYs ..... ahhhhh! Congratualtions. He's so young. Please don't worry, you're doing really well.

He'll take what he needs. He'll wake when he's hungry. You really have to trust him. He knows what he's doing.

It takes a few weeks to trust it and for the whole thing to settle but I can tell you it's so well worth plugging away at. I'm feeding my fourth and it's a joy. (He's 6 months old now).

Don't worry about the poo. They often go for days and day without pooing. It just means he's using it all up.

Good luck. It gets easier, Hang in.

Miaou Sat 13-Aug-05 23:42:55

Hiya Aero - never quite made it into birth announcements as dh posted the details for me when I was still in hospital - here is the thread with all the details! Think perhaps I should summarise in Birth Announcements

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