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Breastfeeding Advice
Old 01-03-2009, 12:51 PM
 
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My son is almost 8 wks. old and I have been breastfeeding him and occasionally supplementing with formula. Since yesterday he refuses to breastfeed. He will arch his back and flail his head back. There were a few times I did get him to latch on and the whole time he scrunched his face up and making very unhappy noises. I know he was hungry bc he had his fist in his mouth and was just sucking away. I finally just gave him a bottle bc I don't want him to starve!

I can't figure out why he's doing this all of a sudden. I have been sick with sinus problems the past couple of days. Could this have anything to do with it?

I'm just so upset and can't quit crying. I know he's just rejecting my breast, but it feels like he's rejecting ME!! I feel like such a failure bc I really wanted to breastfeed at least through the summer. Anyone have any advice?


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It'll be okay!
Old 01-03-2009, 01:03 PM
 
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Could it be anything you've eaten just recently? I know that when my first child was breastfeeding she went through a spell like that. It turned out it was due to the cole slaw I'd eaten that made my milk taste funny and gave her gas on top of it. I had a good friend who was a lactation consultant and she clued me in to the fact that what I ate affected how the milk tasted. I would call your O.B. or pediatrician because it could be a sign of something but it could be something very simple too. It also may be that your baby has just decided the formula is easier and prefers that. Good luck and just try to stay calm. If he's taking formula then you know he's getting what he needs and he's not going to starve. My prayers are with you.
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Old 01-03-2009, 01:03 PM
 
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Do you plan to go back to work before the summer? If so, you may have problems because he will have to have a bottle while you are gone. Some babies have no problem having both breast and bottle, but it seems to me that most get used to one and that's all they want. I think you should keep trying though.

If you are NOT returning to work this school year, then I would only nurse since that is what you primarily want to do.

Why are you supplementing with a bottle? Has he not been gaining weight or is it so others can help feed him? Just wondering. Please don't think I am judging.

I nursed all three of my kids, but didn't give them a bottle until they were several months old, but that is what worked for me and my babies! I wasn't working and we were really broke so it saved us money by not buying formula! Good luck
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Nipple confusion
Old 01-03-2009, 01:15 PM
 
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I agree with Daisy it may be nipple confusion. My kids could not do both the bottle and the breast even with breastmilk in the bottle it was a struggle. Thankfully they couldn't handle the bottle so I just breastfed exclusively and like Daisy I didn't work either we were just POOR!
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It'll be alright!
Old 01-03-2009, 01:19 PM
 
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I agree with heddyb. It could very well be something that you've eaten. I once ate chestnuts and my son would not have anything to do with nursing for a couple of days! Did you take anything for your sinus problem? That could also play a role. The main thing to do is stay calm. More likely than not your little one will resume nursing!!! Hang in there and I'll say a prayer for you too!

BTW, do you have a La Leche League anywhere near you? They can be a tremendous help to nursing moms! Check your local yellow pages.


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Old 01-03-2009, 01:27 PM
 
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heddy--I've been trying to think if I've had anything unusual in the past couple of days and really all I can think of is that I've had 1 jalapeno pepper. Do you think that could be it? It's the first one I've had in a LONG time, so I'm hoping that's all it is.

Daisy--Yes, I'm starting back to work on Monday. I was planning on bfing in the morning and in the evening and just letting him have formula during the day. I was just about to go buy a pump to use at school, but I hate to spend the money if he's not going to bf. If he is having nipple confusion, do you think he would have had it before now? We've been doing both bottles and breastfeeding since he was about 2 wks. old.

I guess I started supplementing so my husband could help with the nightly feedings. I was getting exhausted and just felt like I was at my wits end. And we would give him a bottle when we were at my mil's house just bc I felt kind of uncomfortable bfing over there.

So if it is nipple confusion, is there anything I can do or is the damage already done?
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Old 01-03-2009, 02:15 PM
 
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My mom says that the baby will like the bottle better if you give it too much because the milk comes out easier so the baby doesnt have to work as hard.
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I agree
Old 01-03-2009, 02:44 PM
 
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Kiwil Lemon's mom is correct. Babies don't have to work as hard with the bottle and will start to prefer the easier milk. If you plan to breast feed you need to do that more often than the bottle, and use the bottle only in emergencies until he is older. Keep trying -( it could be the food also or any medicine you've been taking)

PS. Even if he eventually does prefer the bottle -it's not the end of the world. One of my sons preferred the bottle early the other breast fed for a year. They are both ok. Bottle feeding is also a bonding time if you are holding him-- it is also wonderful for your husband to have that chance for bonding while feeding. It can also give you a little freedom. Soooo don't feel like a failure- remember your own kids are going to be different and individuals- just like the ones in your classrom. You are NOT a failure.
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Pump not just for the baby!
Old 01-03-2009, 03:06 PM
 
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I'm betting the pepper may have had something to do with it.
Were you taking sinus meds? That could be a factor. Be careful with meds when nursing, because you're both getting medicated!
Also babies can sense your stress so try to relax first before you try nursing.

You will probably need to pump milk during the day! Pressure builds and can hurt and there can be leakage! Also the less you nurse, the less you can nurse. Production goes down. I'm with you on the plan to nurse longer. Knowing the health benefits I can't see why anyone would choose not to nurse as they can.

I nursed all three of my kids and they did fine with expressed milk from a bottle when it was given by someone other than me! In fact we lived so close and DH's schedule was such that he would sometimes drive to the school and we'd have a lunch chat during "lunch".

I was able to lock my classroom door and pull the blinds when the kids were at lunch, but you might need to find a private room you can close.
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Old 01-03-2009, 03:15 PM
 
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My guess would be the pepper. My babies were always sensitive to what I ate. Whenever I ate something they didn't like I'd have to pump and throw that milk away. I did, however, supplement with bottles and formula after 3-4 weeks old and they never had any problems with nipple confusion. I did pump during the day after I went back to school with my first baby but the last 2 I nursed them in the morning, after school, and bedtime. My body adjusted, the babies adjusted and it worked great for me. Don't take it personally, don't quit, and enjoy holding your baby


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Old 01-03-2009, 03:29 PM
 
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my first thought--- your son is teething. I went through almost identical things with my sons (not my daughter, interestingly enough!) when they started teething. All three of my kids got teeth really early, so it was hard for me to realize that's what it was with the first one. The fist in mouth, sucking away, etc, makes me think he might be teething. It's a little early (one of my kids started this at 2 weeks!), but if either you or dh teethed early, it's very possible. It took about 2 months from this sign for my kids to break through the first tooth.

The thing that worked for me was to walk around singing to my son and putting him on the breast as I was walking (don't ask, took a long time to come to this!). Once he was latched on and feeding, I could sit down again and he'd be fine. I think he needed some sort of distraction from his teething pain before he'd settle to nurse.

I don't know if that's it at all, but it's worth a shot, right? Good luck!

Last edited by GraceKrispy; 01-03-2009 at 04:47 PM.. Reason: I meant my child started teething at 2wk, not months
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Old 01-03-2009, 03:52 PM
 
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you're not a failure, and I know how disheartening it can be and how it is to feel this way. You're trying to do the best thing for your baby.

Maybe your flow isn't as much as the bottle flow. have you tried pumping and feeding him breastmilk through a bottle? After 6 days of being in excruciating pain, I started to pump. In emergencies I'd breastfeed DS but he was so used to the bottle nipple that he'd have a really hard time latching on and he'd get frustrated. Maybe your DS prefers the breastmilk through a bottle.

I pumped for 4 months, if you want him to have the breastmilk, it's worth a shot.

also, if you've taken sudafed for your sinus issues, it dries you up a bit....that's what I used to help stop breastfeeding, maybe you're not producing enough to fill him up. Don't be discouraged about any of this....you're doing great.
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Old 01-03-2009, 04:35 PM
 
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Thanks guys for all of your advice and kind words! It's nice to have people listen who understand where I'm coming from. My husband isn't very sympathetic and doesn't see what the big deal is.

I haven't taken any sudafed because I wasn't sure about taking it. The only thing I've taken is some nose spray. Think that could be the problem?

I'm not sure when my husband and I got our first tooth GraceKrispy, but I'm going to be finding out!

I had a pump that someone had given me, but it just died! I was going to go out and buy a new one tomorrow so I can pump at school. And you're right Miller, even if I have to exclusively pump from here on out bc he prefers the bottle, at least he'll be getting the breastmilk. In retrospect, I should have been pumping all along and building up a supply. But DS has been very needy and it was hard to find time while I was home alone.

Again, thank you all for your kind words and advice! I'm feeling much more hopeful about this whole situation. I guess I always just thought something as natural as breastfeeding, would come a bit more...well...naturally. Guess that's not always the case!
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