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How long did it take for you to establish breastfeeding?

(28 Posts)
MUMMA2BEX Sat 18-Jul-20 04:19:30

As the title said, and does anyone have any tips to make it easier?

OP’s posts: |
ginandgingers92 Sat 18-Jul-20 04:39:27

How far into your journey are you?
I know lots of people say 6 weeks and you'll have cracked it but it can differ. There's so many factors to get right with feeding.
I'm almost 5 months in and still some days it's not perfect BUT I love it.

My main tips:
-Don't pump before 6 weeks if you can help it; it could lead to painful over supply.
-Don't 'allow' a bad latch! I stupidly let my daughter fall into a habit of feeding with a shallow latch and rather than take her off and keep trying until she found a deeper latch, I just let her carry on: she now has a shallow latch which I'm sure means she's not as efficient at feeding as she could be.
- As much bra off time as possible, and minimise use of breast pads if you can. They're a breeding ground for thrush which is a pain in the bum to get rid of if bubs gets it in their mouth.

Finally and most importantly:

⭐️Don't give up on a bad day.⭐️

I live by this and that's how I have got as far as I am.

Breastfeeding can be tough, especially at the moment where face to face support is limited, so be proud of yourself for persevering!

There is a great 'UK breastfeeding support' Facebook group. It's been a lifesaver for me, so worth a join if you're on Facebook!


ginandgingers92 Sat 18-Jul-20 04:46:52

Oh, just thought of something else.

If you're planning on/are exclusively breastfeeding, make peace with the fact that you will be doing all the night feeds.
I have been guilty of sitting in bed in the middle of the night, glaring at my happily sleeping husband and his useless nipples, but genuinely there is no way he can help.

Once you make peace with that it feels better smile but obviously make use of anyone who can help during the day and get some rest whenever you can!

Ginfilledcats Sat 18-Jul-20 04:52:15

5 weeks for me (DD is 5 weeks and 4 days now).

Yes to don't allow a bad latch
Use lanisoh after every feed or squeeze a bit of milk out and rub on the nipple, let it air dry
Try and feed on early queues, baby will be less fussy
Take pain killers if you're sore, or warm flannel in the breast
Try numerous positions, don't get stuck in a rut with one!
Take sweets up to bed at night to have fur energy and morale boost in the wee hours
Relax and don't make any decisions in the middle of the night: everything's better in the morning.

Good luck and persevere for as long as you can or want to. But it's also no failing in you if you choose not to breast feed eventually xxx

onlinelinda Sat 18-Jul-20 04:57:56

Don't keep swapping breasts. A milk meal consists of fore milk, main milk and hind milk. The hind milk has the fat.

Anonymouse99 Sat 18-Jul-20 05:27:16

10 weeks first time round as I had thrush that wasn’t diagnosed straight away. 2 mins second time (perfect latch straight away - my little star baby) and 4-5 weeks with baby number 3 but always had a very shallow latch so I don’t think ever got very efficient. With babies 1 and 3, I set myself a time limit - if I hadn’t cracked it by 12 weeks, I was going to switch to formula. I never needed to do it in the end, but it took the pressure off to some extent.
A few tips:
Try and remember which breast you start on and start on alternate ones each feed.
If you’re struggling, put the baby down in a safe place and take a break for a couple of minutes (open a window, splash your face with water or have a stretch) then try a different position.
Try and see a qualified lactation specialist (although I know this one is difficult at the moment).
If you pump, don’t worry about the baby getting confused between the bottle and you. I never found this to be an issue, in fact it was easiest with the one who started on the bottle earliest.
Good luck xx

Intastellaburst Sat 18-Jul-20 07:35:57

Both my babies took to it as soon as they were born really, I’ve had the opposite problem that persuading them to take a bottle has proved almost impossible. My first baby I remember being harder in terms of sorer nipples and more cracking. When I got engorged I kept feeding from that breast and massaging it until the lumps went down. Get yourself comfy when feeding with lots of cushions and a book or tv shows to watch.

Flamingolingo Sat 18-Jul-20 07:42:35

It took about 3-4 months and a hell of a lot of determination with my firstborn. The first 6 weeks were with an awful tongue tie, then a painful oversupply followed, with block feeding etc. @Ginfilledcats has it about right, especially the not pumping if you’re tying to get it working properly. Considering we are in a pandemic I’d say it’s definitely worth persevering, supply shortages seem to be solved for now but there is no way I would allow my baby’s food to be reliant on the U.K. supply chain just now!

DappledThings Sat 18-Jul-20 19:47:49

36 hours the first time, 5 minutes the second time.

ginandgingers92 Sun 19-Jul-20 03:24:38

@DappledThings I think you've misunderstood OP's question.

WhatTheD1ckens Sun 19-Jul-20 03:30:56

It took 2 weeks for it to stop hurting and then I think by about week 5 I felt it was ‘established’. Almost week 16 now and so glad I pushed through it!

DappledThings Sun 19-Jul-20 07:01:36

Have I? With my first it took longer to feel confident but after 36 hours he was latching well and I felt confident he was getting what he needed. It was a bit painful for the first few seconds of every feed but no more than that and I never needed pads as I never leaked.

I'm not sure what else established means.

HarrietM87 Sun 19-Jul-20 08:22:37

It took about 3-4 weeks with DS. That was before the pain stopped - he’d had a bad latch at the beginning so I ended up with a badly cracked nipple - ouch! Also it hurt with let down for a few weeks.

Once it stopped hurting it was a total dream - really seriously worth the few weeks of difficulty for 13 months of a fantastic feeding experience. Agree with the advice never to give up on a bad day.

HarrietM87 Sun 19-Jul-20 08:23:33

PS I never leaked either, never had issues with supply (over or under) or letdown or anything like that. It really depends on the baby and your body I think.

Somethingorotherorother Sun 19-Jul-20 19:30:45

@DappledThings i had a similar experience, DD latched perfectly from minute 1, and it was pretty much plain sailing from then. Slightly uncomfy for the first few seconds for a week or so, but nothing major. I know we were lucky, but it does happen.

Babyboomtastic Sun 19-Jul-20 22:03:56

I'm not sure what established means.

I'm lucky in that I didn't ever get more than mildly sore nipples, for the first 3 weeks ish I had a few seconds of discomfort initially. In terms of when I would just put baby on without thinking about it and continue to do stuff with a baby feeding from me, maybe a few weeks.

Shmithecat2 Sun 19-Jul-20 22:07:49

As soon as DS was born and checked over, midwife put him to my breast and he basically camped there for 3 hours. It went really well for us. No issues, no mastitis, no bleeding nipples (occasional blanching if he got lazy), no thrush, nothing. This isn't a brag, just wanted to show there can be good, happy, easy bf journeys.

DramaAlpaca Sun 19-Jul-20 22:09:45

I was lucky like DappledThings. It took just a couple of weeks for DC1 and I to establish breastfeeding and it slotted into place immediately with DC2.

dottyrobin Sun 19-Jul-20 22:15:18

I agree with pp about never giving up on a bad day! It took me over 10 weeks to feel pain free and happy breastfeeding.
I did actually start to throw in the towel when she got to 6 weeks and it wasn't magically better. I started adding 1-2 day bottles and breastfeeding the rest of the time. Once I realised it was actually no longer painful I managed to switch back to EBF.

rm15 Sun 19-Jul-20 22:22:09

Took me about 8 weeks to stop it hurting and everything just clicked (tongue tie cut at 2 weeks, thankfully no mastitis etc) I was fully marching towards moving to bottles and had got to 2/3 feeds a day when things just got better.
He’s 7 months next week, eating 3 meals a day and still going strong with no bottles and back to all boob.
My tips are:
- good nipple cream (I used expert midwife it was wonderful)
- hot showers for achy boobs and a good nursing bra
- when the cluster feeding comes just roll with it, get snacks and line up something good to watch. It doesn’t last forever!
- it’s ok to not enjoy it, I don’t particularly get the whole bonding thing but I’m glad I persevered if that makes sense.

I found the night feeding hard, but once he got to 11/12 weeks he didn’t need a new nappy so I used to feed him sat on our bed in the dark. If he does wake up now (if he does it’s about 5am), I pop into his room ninja style and feed him in the dark and he’ll go back to sleep. He’s still not great at finding the boob himself so needs some direction!

Also, DH did a dream feed until around 14/15 weeks (formula or breast milk if I had expressed either or) around 10/11 and that meant I got a big sleep until the next feed at 3amish. I found that a huggggge help with breastfeeding as I was just more rested and gave my boobs a rest in the painful days.

Good luck xxx

Lazypuppy Sun 19-Jul-20 22:22:59

About 2-3 weeks

IlikedtoROAR Sun 19-Jul-20 22:28:59

First time 10 weeks I was in agony
Second time 4 weeks ( and I thought it would be easy having done it before )

firsttimemama6 Sun 19-Jul-20 22:47:24

@ginandgingers92 how do you know if a baby has thrush please? Just wondering what I should look out for? She has a whiteish tongue but guessing that is just down to the milk. Thanks

CostaCosta Sun 19-Jul-20 22:51:41

5 months! I breastfed, had ill health so pumped and fed, found it so hard so went back to breastfeeding. Ds is almost 2! Every time he feeds (which is still a fair amount) i feel so glad I carried on!

CostaCosta Sun 19-Jul-20 22:51:49

5 months! I breastfed, had ill health so pumped and fed, found it so hard so went back to breastfeeding. Ds is almost 2! Every time he feeds (which is still a fair amount) i feel so glad I carried on!

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