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4 weeks old- sleep problems

(9 Posts)
Smith31117 Thu 02-Mar-17 06:33:02

My 4 week old seems to have developed wind/ colic over the past few days. Crying starts early evening and can go on until 2am. During this time she screams, cluster feeds, we wind her and then repeat! Eventually she falls asleep while feeding and that lasts approx 4 hours and she wakes for a feed. Last night this all started around 4pm and she fell asleep at 11pm, exhausted I forgot to set an alarm to b'feed her and she didn't wake. I woke at 5:30am and gut her up for a feed. I'm really worried this is a long time for a bag to go without eating? She's fed well this morning and had a wet nappy on waking and another midway through her feed. Should I be concerned or grateful? She lost weight after birth and is gradually regaining it. She breastfeeds around 7-9 times a day and is topped up with 30ml formula every second feed as per Midwife's instructions. Any advice any one? Thanks

teaandbiscuitsforme Thu 02-Mar-17 07:35:45

Crying and cluster feeding is really normal. It's tough but very normal.

Have you been told by a healthcare that she needs to wake during the night to feed? If not, I wouldn't set an alarm and just enjoy. If she's a typical BF baby, it probably won't last too long and she'll be on a different pattern next week! I would just offer her a feed as often as you can during the day and not set an alarm if you haven't been advised to.

Do you want to carry on topping up or are you trying to drop that? I just wanted to make you aware (in case the MW didn't tell you) that if you're topping up, your breasts won't know that she's having milk from another source and therefore will never make enough to meet her demand. If you're happy to combi feed long term then this isn't a problem!

Gladiatorsready Thu 02-Mar-17 08:03:46

I agree with the pp I wouldn't worry to much unless your midwife suggests otherwise. It sounds like baby is calorie loading before bedtime, which is a good thing - enjoy the sleep!

My LO had colic I completely sympathise with you, it's awful but it does pass and gets better.

Semaphorically Thu 02-Mar-17 08:33:16

It's probably not wind (and colic just means "unexplained baby crying" it's not really a single thing).

It's more likely to be over-stimulation or cluster feeding to boost your supply. I wouldn't bother winding for ages as it might upset her if she's hungry, just sit her up from time to time during a feed and the burps should come on their own (babies don't have very strong sphincters to hold the gas in).

When the crying starts try feeding her in a quiet dark room, don't talk to her or look at her just let her calm down and feed. See if that helps her with the crying, as it helps babies settle when they're over-stimulated.

Writemove Thu 02-Mar-17 08:36:17

I stopped setting an alarm to feed at around four weeks. As long as they are putting on weight you can trust them to wake when hungry. I know I wouldn't want to be woken! Also, if you want to ebf you might not need the formula. (depending on what your midwife says). All that cluster feeding and skin to skin is your child putting the order in for the next milk delivery. So if you put in a formula top up it can affect your supply.

FATEdestiny Thu 02-Mar-17 09:34:56

She lost weight after birth and is gradually regaining it

Is she back to birth weight yet?

Smith31117 Thu 02-Mar-17 10:09:57

Thanks everyone! I'll give those things a try.
She lost 14% of her birth weight so we were readmitted to hospital for a couple of days. I'd been ill pre and during labour (c-section) so my milk hadn't come through properly. She's now a couple of oz off her birth weight. At the end of last week they advised I could start to reduce the amount of formula she gets as my ideal is to phase this out and just feed her myself. I'm off to a breastfeeding group this afternoon where a health visitor has offered to show me some baby massage for colic so am hoping that's also useful. I'll ask them then too about last nights long sleep! She's feeding a good amount this morning and Is very alert! Thanks again-as a new anxious first time mum it's nice to hear from other people smile

teaandbiscuitsforme Thu 02-Mar-17 12:02:20

You definitely need to consult medical advice about waking to feed in the night as it was quite a significant weight loss.

However, healthcare professionals don't always have access to good training re. breastfeeding, so if you're not happy about something they say or some advice that they give, it's ok to ask for an explanation or clarification.

And keep posting! There are some real experts on these threads.

FATEdestiny Thu 02-Mar-17 12:38:04

Things do relax once baby is back to birth weight and gaining. But at just 4 weeks old and still not back to birthwewight its really important you follow the medical advise.

The advise to wake and breastfeed in the night will have the aim of prolonging and supporting your hope to exclusively breastfeed. As well as for your baby's health.

It is important you do not allow long gaps between feeds, especially ar night.

Night feeds are said to be best to increase milk supply. And frequent feeds day and night will increase your supply. Both these will help your bf journey.

But also your DD's health. A newborn not getting sufficient calories can be the definition of an "easy baby" - sleeps big chunks and not demanding it terms of asking for feeds. These, in a low weight newborn, or read flag bad news signs, not good things. It can mean baby is becoming too lathargic to even feed.

Try to keep you feeds frequent over 24 hours, especially until back to birth weight and gaining weight well.

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