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Miserable 6 week old-desperate (long-sorry)

(19 Posts)
Inapickle123 Fri 28-Feb-14 17:34:06

Posted on health too but I'm hoping traffic here is busier-I need help!

Hi

I was hoping someone on mumsnet could help. I had my DS 6 weeks ago and I'm close to the edge. I'm sick of people telling me he's just a "fussy" baby-I know there's more to it. Feeding and sleeping seem to be our biggest issues.

Since DS was born, sleep has been elusive; no surprises there but I have serious concerns about his tummy and how unhappy he seems ALL the time.

We use Aptamil 1 and, initially, he had horrific trapped wind. We changed to DR Brown bottles from avent and he is definitely taking less air in (but is also spitting up much more and eating less, even though we're using teat 2) and is much easier to wind. He still gets very uncomfortable but there's been a big improvement here. I'm concerned about the fact that he's not increasing feeds (been at 3-4oz every 3-4 hours for the last two weeks) but he'll take more when he's ready.

He seems so uncomfortable ALL the time, especially when lying down. We have elevated the mattress of his Moses basket(which he refuses to sleep in during the day-hyper alert since day 1) and he has now been awake since 4am-he wants to sleep, but can't. He's actually I'm his basket just now, dummy in, and writhing and straining in light sleep. Spoke too soon-full scale wailing now.

The main issue is the last feed (4-5am) and first feed of the day (8-9). When he takes the feed he writhes, spits up, coughs, wheezes, chokes, and sounds incredibly congested (think a pug breathing) and has horrific hiccups (8 bouts today and counting) He will either go to sleep and write and scream in his sleep, waking up 30m-1h later, or will refuse point blank to go back to his basket.

He is winded properly (this can take up to 20-30 min) and is definitely sleepy as his eyes are heavy, but screams as he lays flat. When he does sleep (ha!) his breathing is very laboured and raspy.

I went to the GP who shrugged and said "he's just a baby" but I am convinced he has reflux. We were given baby gaviscon which didn't agree with him (bottle refusal, constipation and screaming all day only after 4 sachets) and have been using infacol before every feed but I can't keep being up from 4am-10pm every day without a hint of sleep. My DH has a very demanding job so feeds are all my responsibility. I know I'm home all day but I can't do anything as the only way he's comfy is if he is upright. I'm beyond shattered, my house is a total bomb site and only managing right now because my mum is helping out.

I'm considering changing to aptamil anti-reflux and using the DR Brown level 3/Y teats because I know the formula is thicker. Does anyone have any experience of this combination? Given how badly DS reacted to the gaviscon, I'm very hesitant to keep chopping and changing but I can''t continue to see him so unhappy and not at least try to fix it.

I don't know what to do; he's clearly got a delicate tummy and I don't want to upset it further but I have to do something, especially as I keep being dismissed by the health visitor and GP as an uptight first time mum.

He dozed off and was quiet for 20min but has now screamed himself awake.

Please help

loveisagirlnameddaisy Fri 28-Feb-14 17:39:40

Sorry for short post, just dashing out. There is a great reflux group on FB which you could join for more advice, several mums have mentioned it in passing to me. I think GPs don't really understand reflux or only a few do. My friend's DS had it terribly badly and she was fobbed off for about 4 months. She ended up going to the out of hours GP at the hospital one weekend and saw a doc who just knew the signs and had a lot of experience of reflux. Diagnosed him immediately and put him on ranitidine. He ended up on a few other meds, omeprazole I think. Anyway, the difference was amazing. If you believe that's what it is, keep pushing until you're heard. Good luck.

ExBrightonBell Fri 28-Feb-14 18:07:55

Sorry to hear your little one is still unsettled, Inapickle. It does seem like you might need to go back to the GP (or a different one maybe?) and see if you can try something different to the gaviscon. Maybe ask about the other medicines specifically.

Maybe try videoing your DS when he's having an episode to show the GP rather than having to rely on a description. I would also perhaps tell them that you feel like they are dismissing you as a first time mum. If you call them on it they might be too embarrassed to do it again!

gretagrape Fri 28-Feb-14 19:35:06

This sounds exactly like my son's symptoms although he was BF - we were referred to a paediatrition and they suspected CMPA through my breast milk. We hadn't even considered it but it was when we showed the consultant a video of our son's breathing after a feed (like a 90 year old with pneumonia) that he instantly diagnosed it. He also had constant hiccups, hives all over his chest, cradle cap from nape to eyebrows, wouldn't sleep (he was down to about 6 hours in 24 by the time the GP referred us), constantly vomited up during or after feeds, and had up to 10 liquid poos every day. CMPA will often be diagnosed as reflux because the symptoms can cross over - does your son have any other symptoms as described above?

If you feel you are being fobbed off just keep going back and ask to be referred to the paeds' department to get it checked out - unless you are a pain in the arse you will always get told "that's what babies are like" or "they grow out of it" - we must have been 8 times before they referred us.

Queenofknickers Fri 28-Feb-14 20:01:34

Sounds just like my DS at that age - it was silent reflux. Gaviscon , ranitidine and domperidone sorted it out. My son cried so long and hard I just took him to A&E in absolute despair - that speeded up a paediatric referral!

Bless you though, it is exhausting and 8 years on I remember it well. You are doing everything right and make sure someone is looking after YOU as well.

sunshine1991 Fri 28-Feb-14 20:22:06

Poor you sound like me a year ago we used Sma stay down cos gaviscon wasn' t around much but we preferred it tbh and also mummy always knows there baby more then a gp or Hv so if you think there's something wrong keep going til they listen good luck

Bedsheets4knickers Fri 28-Feb-14 20:28:43

You need to make yourself and pain in the arse at the doctors to get him tested for allergies . Dairy , lactose , wheat the whole deal.
Can I ask if you or partner have any intolerances??? It's usually linked.
Trust your instincts my friend has 2 kids both with various intolerances . She had to fight tooth and nail to get 1st child tested second child went straight to her consultant .
Hope this helps x

Inapickle123 Fri 28-Feb-14 20:56:59

Thanks for the replies. It's nice to know that I'm not crazy.

Im almost positive it's either silent reflux or milk allergy. I can't have much dairy as I get very unwell (but it isn't a allergy as such). Ill mention this to the dr next week.

I guess it's just trial and error, which is rubbish as it upsets him so, so much. My DH thinks he's just being a baby but he doesbt see him during the day, or during the night feeds, when he's struggling to breathe and arching his back in agony. He sleeps through it.

The only other thing my mum suggested was the idea that perhaps he's allergic to something simple like dust or struggles in confined spaces (3 of us in a tiny bedroom means it gets quite humid but I keep door open and, if it's hot, open the window to let air circulate)x however, that doesn't really explain the issue with feeds during the day as these are in the living room which is huge by comparison.

Dr and HV on Tuesday. I'm going to write down all his symptoms and video him during an episode to show the Dr.

He's currently snoozing in his bouncy chair- upright. I dread to think what tonight holds.

Addictedtomaltesers Fri 28-Feb-14 23:37:47

Hi OP, what a shame for you.

My ds4 has just turned 13 weeks and really suffered with his wind from about 4 weeks old until around 11 weeks. In these circumstances I think you need to do whatever you can to get both of you some rest. In my case I gave up trying to put him down and let him sleep tummy down on me during the day and co slept at night. I found he was less restless if he was right next to me.

I know it's a bit controversial but I also sometimes slept at night with him propped up on my arm as it was the only way to get him to sleep.

My ds3 was really awful and cried for hours every evening from 3 to 15 weeks old. However, they do learn to deal with their wind better from 3-4 months old ime so hopefully your ds will too.

Obviously in the meantime you should not let the hcp fob you off and fully explore the possibility of reflux or allergy.

Good luck and hang in there, it will change soon

gretagrape Sat 01-Mar-14 07:18:32

My DH thinks he's just being a baby but he doesbt see him during the day, or during the night feeds, when he's struggling to breathe and arching his back in agony. He sleeps through it.

Show HIM the video - yes, he needs to be able to do his job but he also needs to know what is actually happening and how bad your baby is feeling so he can support you both.

Also, second what Addictedtomaltesers says about sleeping position - the only sleep my son got until things improved was propped up on my chest with me leaning back on a load of pillows. I slept in the middle of the bed with pillows either side as well, so if the worst did happen he'd only have fallen onto a really soft surface (it never did though - you find a way of holding them securely but still being able to sleep).

Good luck at the GP - maybe you could also take someone with you who has seen your son in distress so they can back you up and you don't just get fobbed off again?

Inapickle123 Sat 01-Mar-14 09:33:56

DH was home last night and, as he wasn't working today, I made him take the 4-5 feeding slot (which he happily did)

DS went down at 540 and, at 640 started to get really restless. By 7, he was in full scale mode (which I videoed). SPent the last hour and a half dozing tummy down on DH chest. DH was horrified.

He's now had his 83o bottle and is down to sleep (he mustbe shattered) and has already started the high pitched sleep screaming.

GP visit can't come soon enough.

Pinter Sat 01-Mar-14 09:39:19

Sorry you're having a miserable time Pickle

Don't be fobbed off by the HCPs. You know something isn't right

Could you try him in a sling for daytime naps? Being upright might help him if it's reflux. It's not for everyone but I got some much needed kip sitting propped up on the sofa with DC in the sling

Good luck thanks

TheScience Sat 01-Mar-14 09:42:01

If you are intolerant to dairy then I reckon there's a good chance your baby is too.

Ginnytonic82 Sat 01-Mar-14 18:07:39

My Ds was very much like this, it is incredibly difficult. He did improve at around 3.5 months, following referral to paediatric team. He was prescribed ranitidine and we use gaviscon every other bottle. He is now a very happy and healthy 4 month old, but the hell and heartbreak of the first few months is still clear in my mind.

Try to be as kind to yourself as you can. Call in friends and family for support and try to take a break from your lo every day (even a 10 min walk round the block while your mum/other takes Ds will help). How's your HV? Mine was instrumental in getting Ds diagnosed and went with me to the GP for immediate referral. If you have a good relationship with her, give her a call, she's there to support you. If the GP is slow/there's a long wait to see paed clinic take Ds to A and E during an episode.

For now keep his Moses basket propped up, wear him in a sling as much as possible. Keep him upright after feeds for around 30 mins. Also I found that if I winded by patting it seemed to exacerbate his reflux, instead I gently, but firmly rub his back and circle his body whilst he sits on my knee, ask your HV to show you.

Ginnytonic82 Sat 01-Mar-14 18:09:08

My Ds was very much like this, it is incredibly difficult. He did improve at around 3.5 months, following referral to paediatric team. He was prescribed ranitidine and we use gaviscon every other bottle. He is now a very happy and healthy 4 month old, but the hell and heartbreak of the first few months is still clear in my mind.

Try to be as kind to yourself as you can. Call in friends and family for support and try to take a break from your lo every day (even a 10 min walk round the block while your mum/other takes Ds will help). How's your HV? Mine was instrumental in getting Ds diagnosed and went with me to the GP for immediate referral. If you have a good relationship with her, give her a call, she's there to support you. If the GP is slow/there's a long wait to see paed clinic take Ds to A and E during an episode.

For now keep his Moses basket propped up, wear him in a sling as much as possible. Keep him upright after feeds for around 30 mins. Also I found that if I winded by patting it seemed to exacerbate his reflux, instead I gently, but firmly rub his back and circle his body whilst he sits on my knee, ask your HV to show you.

Ginnytonic82 Sat 01-Mar-14 18:09:32

Sorry for double post!

Muddywellies10 Sat 01-Mar-14 18:38:41

First of all huge sympathies - it sounds really hard going. My ds had severe reflux with very similar symptoms to those you are describing. Trust your instincts and go back to a different gp. Our experience was that gaviscon didn't really help (and created problems with constipation) but ranitidine was great (although it did take approx 10 days to work effectively, it has to build up and oesophagus heal). Other things that helped us - keeping him upright for half an hour after feeds, Moses basket propped up at an angle (next directories under base) and feeding little and often. He spent at least part of the night sleeping (I use the word loosely!) in his bouncy chair as that gave a better angle and he was more comfortable in it. Otherwise it was sleeping on a triangle pillow, propped upright (this when watched) or sleeping on us (we took turns). It is so tough and one of the hardest things I have ever dealt with. Ranitidine was brilliant though when it kicked in and he did outgrow it at 7 months. He is now a happy 9 month old with no reflux who sleeps in his own cot happily and only wakes about once between 10 and 7 - never thought we would get there! As other posters have said could also be CMPI as many symptoms are similar - stick to your guns and go back to your gp, like you my instincts were telling me something was wrong, trust yourself! Also whatever it is, CMPI or reflux, it will get better and you will get through it, even though it is hard to believe now....look after yourself.

Clarabell78 Sat 01-Mar-14 20:06:49

My ds had horrendous reflux and we found that aptamil really aggravated it. After trial and error with a few different formulas cow and gate seems to agree with him. That plus gaviscon, ranitidine and cranial osteopathy made an amazing difference. It's horrendous so I can completely sympathize. Don't take no for an answer with the doctor and if getting nowhere take him to out of hours of a and e at your local sick kids hospital. I second videoing a feed or the symptoms to show the doctor.

BigPigLittlePig Sun 02-Mar-14 21:47:04

This is reflux, clear as day. Does he have anything else, like eczema or horrific offensive poo (sorry)? The extra things like that would point more towards a milk allergy than "simple" reflux.

Get thee to a gp.
Get yourself a sling - you will find the daylight hours so much easier.
Try sleeping LO wedged onto his right hand side with a rolled towel under his back - this with the head propped up can help.

Good luck, it is awful but fixable xx

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