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boob or bottle?

(20 Posts)
pippa251 Sun 07-Jun-09 08:25:35

Hi, I am currantly 35 weeks with my first and keep having this recurring nightmare about my baby. I thourghly intend to breast feed but I have this dream were the baby starves to death as I am unaware that my boobs aren't working. Stupid I know but it's really starting to bother me.

So my question is can you feel it / tell that your baby is getting milk when you feed?
How do you know it's enough?
Do they get dehydrated easily?

I'm such a novice sorry

FairMidden Sun 07-Jun-09 08:33:01

You will get loads of advice on here

I'm not a breastfeeding expert, just a breastfeeding mum, but I think while it's normal to worry, it's important to remember that humans have been making milk for millions of years before formula milk was invented, and our boobs are really good at it.

I would advise you to go to a local breastfeeding cafe or similar - they welcome pregnant women too. They can help you learn more about breastfeeding. I think understanding how it all works goes a long way to providing you with the reassurances you are needing.

This booklet was brilliant when I was pregnant - it contains lots of useful advice and explains a bit about how it all works.

And do keep coming back here with questions, MN is brilliant for help and support

nevergoogledragonbutter Sun 07-Jun-09 08:33:27

Hello,
Sorry you're having bad dreams. I dreamt i ate the baby when i was pregnant with DS1 so I know how disturbing they can be.

I had an NCT book on breastfeeding to read before i had DS1 which was useful, but that was before i discovered mumsnet, so you'll likely get brilliant advice here too.

In answer to your questions.
You can tell your baby is drinking because they swallow and you can see them swallowing. You can also tell because your breasts will feel less tight.

You know it's enough by keeping an eye on their weight and the colour of their poos.

Do they get dehydrated? Only if not feeding well. You can tell by pinching their skin gently. If they are dehydrated it takes longer for their skin to go back. I never had to give extra water in a bottle.

Keep the questions coming. We'll do our best.

It may also be worth getting in touch with a breastfeeding counsellor. Somebody else can give you a link, as i don't know who does it.

Good luck.
And congratulations on discovering mumsnet now. I wish i had found it much sooner.

FairMidden Sun 07-Jun-09 08:34:09

OK forget that, it's in Polish!

Will be back with anothe link shortly

FairMidden Sun 07-Jun-09 08:41:47

Try this link instead

blush

pippa251 Sun 07-Jun-09 08:45:23

thanks so much- really needed reassurance !

Clockface Sun 07-Jun-09 08:46:50

Your dreams are about your (natural) anxiety about being a first time mum.

I bf my 2 and they never went hungry! If you want to bf you will get heaps of support - La Leche and NCT are v. good at supporting mums in this. And let's face it the benefits are huge - it's free, it's always available, no faffing around sterliising bottles, it's the best nutrition for your baby, it's full of prebiotics and other immune system boosting stuff, apparantly it helps with weaning onto solids...the list goes on. I am v. glad that I bf.

FairMidden Sun 07-Jun-09 08:48:55

This links you to a PDF of the booklet I was trying to link you to

Sorry, been up since before 6 with an energetic toddler - not quite with it today!

JackBauer Sun 07-Jun-09 08:49:32

Oh god pregnancy dreams are the worst, and so vivid as well, I can understand why they are freaking you out.
Some great advice from dragonbutter there. As she said you can see and sometimes hear that they are getting milk by them swallowing, when they have had enough they will fall off and let the last bits drool out of the side of their mouth as well, veyr attractivesmile
You can tell a BF baby has had enough by the fact that they stop feeding, they will stuff their little tummies and then conk out for a bit.
Always remember that you are producing the milk and your body needs time to get used to that, so they will feed a lot to start off with (and I mean a lot) and during growth spurts so that your body produces more milk. The mroe they suckle, the more milk is produced, so let them latch on whenever they want and they will be letting your body know how much milk they need. This doesn't mean that they are hungry,it is just how BFing works.
And try not to dwell on the pregnancy dreams if you can, frightening as they are, they are your worst fears in dream form but they have nothing to do with real life smile

nevergoogledragonbutter Sun 07-Jun-09 08:51:31

...yes, i never ate my baby in RL either.

FruitynNutty Sun 07-Jun-09 09:03:10

I'm sure you'll be fine smile
Just don't set your heart on it too much like I did. I'm a very rare case but discovered I don't have enough milk producing tissue (Hypoplastic tubular breasts - I think only 1% of women have this - So typical that I should be in that 1%sadangry)
Anyway, I had my whole heart set on BFing. Wasn't going to go near formula - didn't see the point when "All women can BF", "Every woman produces milk" and it's "Supply on demand" blah blah blah.

If it doesn't work out, please don't be hard on yourself. Easy for me to say, shame I can't follow my own advise! hmm

Most women can do it. a lot of women find it very very hard but as long as baby is getting regular wet nappies and is putting on weight (btw, they always lose it in the first couple few weeks) then keep at it if you can.
I'm a great believer in "Happy Mum, Happy baby" so if it's getting you down then don't try to be superwoman - do what you feel is best.
Good luck! smile

Castiel Sun 07-Jun-09 09:09:18

Pregnancy dreams are awful. I dreamt I had a very, very long and traumatic labour and gave birth to... a tarantula. Now, the long and traumatic labour bit I can relate to but dd is certainly not an arachnid! I had many, many more, giving birth and forgetting for a week so the baby starved, losing the baby, selling her to a witch, exchanging her for a cat and on and on...

Clue up on bfing now and have faith that you can do this. Just a couple of things though. You don't produce milk straight away, you produce colostrum which is a thick sort of yellowy substance that you make in small quantities but is extremely good for the baby and highly calorific. It is normal not to make milk at first. Your milk will come in, mine took 5 days but dd managed just fine on colostrum.

Expressing is no sign of anything. If you can't squeeze milk out or pump it out, this means absolutely nothing in terms of how much milk the baby can transfer.

A bfed baby latches on, swallows (you can see and hear it), goes from working its mouth quite quickly to longer, deeper sucks as they settle into a feed. They normally come off completely floppy and 'milk drunk' with milk running down their chins. It's such an amazing sight. A bfed baby wees regularly, poos yellow, mustardy, seedy nappies and is alert when awake.

All the above is a small snapshot of how you know bfing is working. It is no substitute for reading up/talking to sombody who knows. In our area they haad antenatal bfing classes where they asked you to take a doll with you! Does your area offer something similar?

I bfed exclusively for 7 months and am still bfing at 25 months. I had moments of doubt and worry and cracked nipples and a lot more besides but I have love love loved bfing.

Noonki Sun 07-Jun-09 09:12:04

Hi pippa

I had really weird dreams when I was pregnant, very normal given all of the feeling of the unknown!

As a general rule if the baby is growing and having wet nappies they are getting enough milk.

Breastfeeding and bottle feeding have their different benefits to the parents and some say breastfeeding can be harder to begin with.

But I have expericence of both and found breastfeeding (after the inital 3 weeks or so adjustment time, when life is abit mental anyway) to be much easier once you get your head around it.

I would advise that you get the midwifes to help you as mucha s possible at the beginning. Don't worry if you feel like you are harassing them, because if you can get the baby to latch on you (something you both need to learn to do) you've pretty much cracked it.

Come back and ask lots of questions here too!

JackBauer Sun 07-Jun-09 09:14:16

Oh, and there were no escaped lions on my maternity ward and DD was not eaten....wink

Castiel Sun 07-Jun-09 09:14:44

Fruity is right too. Her advice goes for nearly all aspects of parenting. You can hope for and plan for things to be a certain way but not everything will be like those plans. You do the best you can for you and your baby and you adapt to your own personal situation. I found out the hard way that having my heart set on a natural labour meant that I hadn't dealt with the very real eventuality that I might end up with an em cs.

Aww, congratulations to you.

And MN is here for all your bfing help and support in the first days/weeks/months. Alongside rl support of course.

FruitynNutty Sun 07-Jun-09 09:25:38

Same here Castiel! (also had c-setion- breech baby) I had my heart set on a lot of things with my last pregnancy.
Just have to remember that some things are beyond your control and but you will have your beautiful baby whether you bf or not, have a natural delivery or not etc..

pippa251 Sun 07-Jun-09 13:17:58

cheers guys

the practical advice has really put my mind at ease- hopefully I wont need to worry about that dream again!

God pregnancy hormones make you so irrational

I'm going to try to go to a bf group meeting as advised !

thanks again

nevergoogledragonbutter Sun 07-Jun-09 17:42:21

i am loving the pregnancy dreams on this thread.
lions on the maternity ward!
sliced baby in a sandwich!

JackBauer Sun 07-Jun-09 18:14:16

My favourite one was, after spending the weekend watching 24 while 8 and a half mnonths pregnant, I gave birth to Jack Bauer, who immediately started torturing the MW saying she was a terrorist.

pippa251 Mon 08-Jun-09 08:17:16

my wierdest dream was I was the sole survivor of the plague (like the programme survivor) and I kept finding babies who were locked in houses and I had no idea what to do with them, how to feed, pick up etc

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