This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
3 week old baby help(16 Posts)
My little son is 3 weeks old. We have had a rocky road with breastfeeding. He wouldn't latch due to a tongue tie, we had it snipped but still wouldn't latch. I'm now exclusively pumping which I find a killer. He has been diagnosed with reflux too. We tired carobel powder (no luck) and have just started infant gaviscon. I'm so tired, overwhelmed and struggling (as is my husband). He is feeding now as I'm pumping. Anyway, we've had a bad few days where he isn't sleeping in-between feeds. Last night he woke up at 10.30pm, we fed changed and winded etc. He wouldn't settle and was still awake in time for his next feed at 1.30pm. I then fed, changed, burped and then he eventually fell asleep at 2.40am. So he was awake from 10.30 until 2.40am. Is this normal for a 3 week old? Or is it his reflux that makes him unsettled. It also happens in the day as well. When he is asleep he doesn't seem happy as he grunts, snorts, moves around, snuffles. We are first time parents and are not sure where to turn. Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated x
Four hours awake does seem a lot but as a one-off I wouldn't be too concerned - it takes them a while to learn the difference between day and night! Grunting, snuffling, wriggling etc while they're asleep is totally normal, all newborns do it. He will start to sleep more quietly once he's older.
The sleeping noises sound fine. If he was arching his back/pulling faces that look like he's having a pain I think would be more or a concern. Do you get to see a Health vision? Have any access to breastfeeding support? I think it's amazing to have a baby during current times and not have the support available (or available face to face) it can't be easy for you at all Have you sought advice on here or anywhere else regarding the tongue tie, there's an infant feeding section here, I think pumping exclusively must be so tiring so there's another thing to your credit. Is someone around at all in the day today to let you get some sleep? I think everything is more bearable if you have had some rest. Three weeks is still so little things change all the time at this age. Don't hesitate to contact your GP if you think it is a reflux problem though must new parent are on and off the phone to their GP/HV all the time!
Reflux can make them horrifically unsettled. They should sleep in between each feed on the whole. My 5 month old still does most of the time.
I exclusively pumped for 3 months with DD1. This time I gave up after two weeks (bad tongue tie that they wouldn't snip). We were both a lot happier as a result of switching to formula. So keep it up as long as you can but don't feel guilty if you have to switch. I felt guilty first time round but honestly when they are older nobody gives two hoots whether you breastfed or not. Your mental health is more important.
If your baby does have bad reflux you need to keep upright for as much as possible, you can get a crib that slightly tilts (safely) at one end. And you need to get omeprazole from the GP but it is a fight. Gaviscon often a waste of time
Don’t be afraid to put him on formula if it makes your life easier, so you enjoy your baby more, and if you feel happy doing it.
And most importantly your baby is crying because they have a sore tummy. So try to switch off from the nerve jangling intensity as much as you can and soothe as best you can. For most babies reflux dissipates between 3 and 6 months but it's a hard slog to get there so support each other as much as you can. Feel free to PM
me I can recommend some books that helped us
Just a couple of thoughts - you mention feed times in your post. Are you feeding responsively or 3 hrly? It can be easy to over feed. Little and often is usually best for reflux and more of a biological norm.
Have a read about the 4th trimester. Babies are hard to figure and it's common to think there is something wrong when they are actually just being babies.
DD has reflux she’s 16 weeks, it was diagnosed in hospital whilst we were in for significant weight loss caused by cmpa. We tried the carobel but she only had a couple of bottles a day so didn’t make much difference then she dropped those. I just accept she pukes a lot. Doesn’t seem to bother her. I keep her upright for 30 mins after feeding and then the majority stays down. I was also told at the hospital to put her basket on a tilt with a folded towel under the head end of the outside of the basket and the massive footstool it was on
It may be something other than reflux going on or it may just be they’re awake. Neither of mine spent all the time asleep
You are doing amazingly to pump all the time. There are bf groups doing zoom stuff atm and it might be worth offering breast frequently first because they do get better st latching and feeding. DD has an agonising larch for the first few weeks but around 6 weeks she cracked it. Thankfully
You’re essentially feeding him twice since you’re having to pump then feed so qudos to you for getting this far.
Have you joined any breastfeeding peer support groups? Facebook or contacting LLL directly? At a push a lactation consultant may be able to help with latch and what might be wrong with that aspect.
My baby often would take a long time to settle at that age, especially when the weather was hot. At 5 months he is still awake for longer periods than he is meant to be, but I think he is sneaking in brief power naps here and there which make it possible.
I would encourage you to keep trying the breast if you can because you never know when it will all click for the baby. My LO wouldn't latch at all, so he was initially bottle fed expressed milk, but now he is exclusively breastfed. It gets a little easier as their mouths grow. A nipple shield also made a huge difference in making it easier for him to latch.
Also are you actively putting your baby to sleep iyswim. As in rocking/white noise app/shushing etc after 45 minutes of awake time. As most babies stop drifting off when tired and need a circus act after 45 minutes of awake time (could be slightly
More or less). So really hardly any awake time after feeding for a good while yet.
Huckleberry app is good for reminding you of this.
This time last year i was EXACTLY where you are now. Silent reflux colic baby who was just so unhappy.
The crying is the worst bit, because it is biologically designed to send you into a panic and fix whatever the issue is straight away. It triggers your adrenaline response and can sometimes feel a bit like a panic attack.
You. Need. Earplugs.
Not to ignore the crying, but to put in once the crying starts so that you can pick up your baby, cuddle and soothe them, without feeling that horrible panicked feeling. It just takes the edge off and makes it bearable.
Hang on in there. You're doing an excellent job. Don't be afraid to throw your weight around with the GP or HV - your baby can't speak for himself so you need to be his voice.
I really feel for you . Is it is the reflux he probably needs omeprasole ,if he is struggling with breast feeding maybe try him with formula,,,which is what I did with mu son with severe reflux. Try and keep as upright as possible post feed . Any signs of sounding chesty contact GP . Good luck .My son is now 20 and barring the occasional massive burp he now seems ok .💐
If you want to keep breastfeeding I’d suggest asking for help with latch. I was exclusively pumping but gave up and switched to formula when babies demand went up as I just couldn’t keep up/cope. It really upset me at the time and with hindsight I wish I’d looked for more help.
Reflux is the devil. I had no idea about it and ended up in A&E with my little girl because she was in so much pain - thats when we learnt all about it (and felt a bit stupid taking her to A&E, but hey, how would we know?!). We were told to:
1. Elevate her moses basket slightly with a book (nothing too drastic though)
2. After feeds, keep her upright for at least 20 minutes and wind her until a burp comes up (sometimes that took a good 40 minutes so be prepared, it will come eventually)
3. Feed her smaller amount but more often (don't feed her any less) his way there isn't so much milk to make her feel more uncomfortable
4. Do the cycle movements with her legs and a light massage of her lower abdomen to help receive any gas from the other end too
5. Infant gaviscon - this stuff was amazing for us, however be prepared for it to cause constipation which is where number 4 comes in useful too as well as a nice warm bath. We were given mixed opinions on giving small amount of cooled boiled water to help with constipation too, thats something you need to decide if you want to do or not but we did and nothing bad ever happened.
This will not last so please don't think there is no light at the end of the tunnel because there is.
Finally, the most important thing the nurse wrote down on a piece of paper for us is this:
"You're doing an amazing job"
And trust me, you are.
Thank you everyone, your posts and advice is so helpful. I really appreciate it and it makes me feel less alone. I will read through and take note of what you all say when I have some headspace. But thank you for reaching out to me in my hour of need. It is hard not to feel alone with all this covid stuff going on so thank you x
Please login first.