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Breastfeeding baby can't put down to sleep

(138 Posts)
firsttimemum15 Tue 05-Jan-16 23:15:15

I don't expect my 6 say old to sleep through the night by any means but I can't out her down to sleep at all. She will sleep after feeds but only on me or partner. She did not sleep for the standard 3 hours in hospital but would sleep in the cot. We've been home for two nights and for both of those I've been feeding at night pretty much constantly. I don't mind but when I put her down she's wakes and wants feeding.

I'm worried about Co sleeping and don't want to do it. I have a bedside crib but I think it's too big for her so have been using carry cot.
Also don't understand how bedside cot works. Babies are supposed to sleep with their feet at end of cot so have been putting her feet at the end towards my head.

Due to the way it had to be set up eg not level with our bed I'm unsure how to use this as an extension of our bed to feed her when we eventually get to that point.

Can anyone help. So many times I've questioned what I'm doing and why. Partner is v supportive

Harverina Tue 05-Jan-16 23:36:32

Hello and contra

FATEdestiny Tue 05-Jan-16 23:37:59

Lets sort out the bedside crib/cot first.

I favour the bedside cot (full sized cot with one side removed, butted up to your bed). But there are also bedside cribs you can buy that are the same but smaller.

The principle start point is that your mattress heights should be the same. So can you adjust the height of the base of the crib? raise it up to match the height of your mattress. If not, placing bricks or similar under the four legs of the crib will raise the height to match your bed.

"Feet to Foot" is to do with how blankets cover the baby. If you are using a sleeping bag instead of blankets/sheets (much better IMO) then you don't need to consider "Feet to Foot". It means that the baby's feet should be touching the end of the cot so that they cannot wriggle under the covers by accident.

The end of the cot can be either end. For convenience we would usually have baby's head end the same as your head end.

Have you tried a swaddle? Many newborns like the secure feeling a swaddle brings. Aside from that, just keep on feeding as much and as often as possible to help your milk supply in these early days.

Harverina Tue 05-Jan-16 23:43:12


Hello and congratulations!

It's quite normal for some newborns to want to feed constantly and to only want to sleep close to someone.

Some questions though -

is she gaining weight?
Is she pooing and peeing?
Has your milk come in?
Has anyone had a look at you feeding to make sure your position and attachment are ok?
Any noises during feeds? Clicking?
Is she sucking deeply?

Sorry for so many questions!

I'm no use about the cot sorry - we used a Moses basket both times right next to the bed.

My dd2 did have a couple of huge feeding marathons - 10 hours continual feeding on day 3 which was overnight. I was crying by the 5th hour. I ended up sitting watching TV with a drink and snacks. That night prompted me to get Sky TV....there was literally nothing on except sales and I very nearly spent a fortune on a steam cleaner after watching an hour long advert which convinced me that it was the best thing I could ever own winkblush

Seriously though it is really hard going but if she is gaining weight, has short wakened periods, is peeing and pooing, then chances are all is ok as it is very early days.

FATEdestiny Tue 05-Jan-16 23:43:57

what a bed nest should look like when set up

and a snuzpod

firsttimemum15 Tue 05-Jan-16 23:44:19

Thank you.
Instructions for bedside cot say my matress should be 2cms higher than the side of the cot.

If her head is next to mine then she isn't sleeping feet to foot with feet at end if bed.

I have tried swaddling and prefer that to blankets. Not using sleeping bags yet. She is tiny and I'm worried she would wriggle down into the bag her head would easily go through the hole and she 2ould smother herself.

Happy to feed lots but the breastfeeding support lady seemed surprised she was sleeping after feeds. Like I say she will sleep but only on me or partner.

I'm worried she isn't getting enough milk with amount of feeding but supply seems to be there and larch seems sorted now. And also worried if I do let her sleep on us that it will develop bad habits..
In no rush to have her grow up. I know she's only days old. I don't want to beat myself up or seem like I'm being harsh but just don't know what to do. Also I don't want her sleeping on us when we are tired as I know the risks

firsttimemum15 Tue 05-Jan-16 23:48:24

She is weeing and pooing. Again om paranoid about that too.

Latch seems ok. Had Home start round who rang me again today. She seems to be ducking deeply/going through all the feeding stages. Eg deep sucking and then flicking at the end to get fat containing milk.

I've joined mums net as I was getting so frustrated. It's reassuring to see if anyone else has been in same position.

firsttimemum15 Tue 05-Jan-16 23:50:25

PS she lost 9.6% of body weight midwife coming tomorrow to check on this. Also a bit annoyed as hospital didn't weigh her before we left which I believe they should do when discharging babies. Friends baby was weighed on discharge at same hospital.

We have only had 2 nights at home

FATEdestiny Tue 05-Jan-16 23:53:41

2cm mattress height difference is neither here nor there. I thought you meant the crib was a lot lower than your bed and you were having to reach right down into it! Surely you are still seeing it as an extension of your bed space if it is more-or-less the same height as your bed?

You could like 'snuggle in' to the crib and around baby. I have a full sized cot co-sleeper and in the newborn days would often find myself half in and half out of the cot, snuggling up to the baby.

Please try not to worry. You are doing great. Just enjoy these early days and follow the baby's lead. flowers

Harverina Tue 05-Jan-16 23:55:40

Ok so tomorrow will be a better indication. Are you letting her stay on your breast when she is doing the fluttery sucks? That's really important, though tempting to take them off.

Is she crying to be fed? Any other signs of hunger - other hunger cues I mean?

How are your nipples?

Why was the bf adviser surprised that she was sleeping after a feed?

I personally wouldn't worry about bad habits just now. She is tiny and just wants to be close to you. That side of it is absolutely normal.

Harverina Tue 05-Jan-16 23:56:36

Has she only been weighed once since she was born?

Hawest1 Wed 06-Jan-16 00:00:32

My ds1 was like this aswell! I spoke to midwife & she said that it wasn't so much that he was hungry it was more of a comfort thing like he was using me as a dummy, so in the end up he got a dummy & I actually got a good nights sleep!
I know they aren't for everyone but by that point I would have done anything for a half decent sleep!
Ds2 never had a dummy but he didn't breast feed either so I duno what I would have done this time round x

firsttimemum15 Wed 06-Jan-16 00:04:10

She's staying on at flutter sucks, yes. I was taking her off at first as one midwife told me she wasn't feeding. Breastfeeding lady explained that wasn't correct.She was surprised she was not settling. She is sleeping but on us.

Even if I adjuted height of cot if I were to put her head next to my head her feet don't reach the end of the cot to sleep feet to foot which contradicts all advice. It didn't seem like an extension of our bed due to height difference. I'm so confused. But we are not there yet because she won't go down

All posts are appreciated.

Harverina Wed 06-Jan-16 00:17:12

Do you have an alternative bed for now for her? I know she isn't going down just now but that may change soon smile

She should definitely have her feet at the bottom, particularly if you are using blankets that she can go under. Sleeping bags aren't ideal when they are tiny for the reasons that you said.

Sounds like you really know what you are doing, even if it doesn't feel that way. There will always be doubts, and that is 100% normal.

Take turns to hold her so that you aren't falling asleep while she is in your arms.

You can try a couple of things to make her bad more enticing - had you tried warming it slightly with a water bottle before putting her in? Or put a muslin in your bra for a bit and then place her in the bed with that close to her so that she can still smell you when you put her down.

She is still so tiny though and just wants to be close to you. All normal.

Tomorrow she is weighed you will have a better idea of how well feeding is going - weight of course isn't the only indication of this, but fine is gaining it will put your mind at ease.

Hope you have a more settled night

Harverina Wed 06-Jan-16 00:20:43

So many typos sorry!!

And I didn't mean to leave the water bottle in the bed!! I am tired confused

firsttimemum15 Wed 06-Jan-16 00:29:03

She is feeding though she isn't using me as a dummy cot is a chicco next to me. Don't think I meant 2 cms will check the instructions again tomorrow.

Yes she has only been weighed once since birth by the community midwife who came to visit after we got home. X

firsttimemum15 Wed 06-Jan-16 00:32:49

PS Haverina if what I'm doing with cot is correct then concept for tiny babies seems a bit flawed.
Thanks for your reassurance smile

Quodlibet Wed 06-Jan-16 00:52:35

I've heard good things from quite a few people about the Cocoonababy (or similar) being really good for newborns who don't like being put down. You could put it in your bedside cot or basket for now to solve your other worries too.

Have you had any advice on how long you can leave her between feeds if she's lost weight? Sometimes they advise to not leave it longer than 3/4 hrs, waking them if necessary.

But generally, a newborn who wants to feed a lot and who wants to be in contact with you and won't be put down sounds massively normal!

Have you thought about trying a sling for daytime so that she can sleep on you and you can get on with stuff? (When you are ready to).

Harverina Wed 06-Jan-16 01:04:46

I think the advice about how long to leave it between feeds would depend on weight gain wouldn't it? If things are going well in terms of weight then the advice would be to be led by baby, providing there are plenty of wet and dirty nappies etc.

No worries firsttime - hope tomorrow goes well. Will check back in the morning.

firsttimemum15 Wed 06-Jan-16 06:41:16


Last night it looked like we were heading the same way so I took the decision to lie her on the bed and feed next to me. Still couldn't figure out how to get her in the Chico and feed out of that.

But. I got some sleep. She still wouldn't settle in cot so I did what you would probably call co sleeping. I don't want this to be a long term solution but I needed sleep.

Have been advised even without knowing she was underweight not to go more than 3 hours without feeding.

Thank you so so much for your support. Any further Advice appreciated.

Hootthatnanny Wed 06-Jan-16 07:15:10

I think you're overthinking the chicco! Your head doesn't have to be at the same level as your baby's head..but if you did want to be you'd obviously have to shuffle down the bed and that might be uncomfortable. And the aim isn't really to feed the baby whilst they're still in the chicco..for me the benefits have been being able to get her into our bed for a feed so easily! Just scoop her out and feed and put back again (although she doesn't always like to be put back, much like yours and most babies it seems!).

fluffikins Wed 06-Jan-16 10:00:52

Yep agree with above, you don't need them to be at the same height as your head or feed them in it, it's just handy to have them close so you don't need to get out bed to feed!

I think it's massively normal for babies to want to sleep on you and sleep after feeds. I'm one for a nap after a big dinner myself! I'd also google the 'fourth trimester' and that'll explain why your baby is not so much into the crib. It will pass though but for now you need someone to take a shift of baby holding so you can sleep a little.

We found a sleepyhead was the only way ours would go down in her crib and she's still using it now at 7 months so was a good investment for us

dinodiva Wed 06-Jan-16 10:02:33

For the first couple of weeks I went to bed as early as possible (alone) and my husband stayed up with DD just bringing her to me for feeds. We'd swap over around 3ish when he would go to bed and I would stay up with her and I'd usually manage to get her back into her Moses basket for a couple of hours and get a little more sleep. The other thing we found really helpful was a gro-snug - a cross between a sleeping bag and a swaddle which made it so much easier to put her down in.

firsttimemum15 Wed 06-Jan-16 10:18:07

Thank you both

So do you put your babies with their feet at end of cot facing your head?

I have a gro swaddle and lady night was swaddling g before feeding so I didn't have to wrap her and then try get her in cot. I tried a few times but it just didn't work.

Partner took her this am so I could have a sleep. She slept from about midnight until 3am but like I say next to me on the bed.

It's so hard isn't it. I'm reassured that others have been there. Think I find it hard because she would sleep in hospital cot.

I've seen the cocoon baby and sleepy head. They seem expensive so we haven't invested but now I'm wondering if I should. But if it doesn't work it's another 100 quid spent for no reason..... x

dinodiva Wed 06-Jan-16 10:28:08

My DD goes in either way round depending on which boob she fed off last so I don't disturb her, but she's 15 weeks and has been in a cot (at the foot of the bed) from around 7 weeks. Before that we had her in the bassinet part of the buggy as didn't see the point in buying a separate basket as it all adds up. I had it on a stand next to me and then at the end of the bed because the constant thrashing about was driving me mad.

Gro snug is different from a swaddle because you can zip their arms in and they can't fight out of it. I could get on with swaddling either!

It does get better. And when they start smiling at you when they wake up in the morning you forgive them for shitty nights!

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