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Sorry I have been completely absent. The first month of new motherhood has been a real kick in the pants. Little Miss A is healthy and well, so nothing out of the ordinary, I'm just not finding myself a natural for this stage of life. The one thing in our favor was her great feeding -- even if it's driving me a little batty to be attached to her nearly 24-7. But then the last week happened...
Reposted from the breastfeeding forum, in search of any advice or links you can suggest. Thanks, ladies. And I'll try catch up and be more responsive when I feel like half a human again, hopefully sometime soon.
DD is 4 weeks. She has always been a sucker -- a pacifier has been a life-saver because this kid likes to suck, all the time. She would feed as much as she could get from me. She has done her job of steady weight gain, born 8 lbs and now up to 8 lbs 13 oz.
But this past week (week 4 of her lovely if exhausting existence) we've run into all kinds of problems. She has always been fussy, so that's not new. But to this was added a bit of blood and diarrhea in her stool. So the doctors checked her out and Mom is off dairy for three weeks. A day latet and her stool is green, sometimes "foamy" or at least definitely more liquid. So this has me thinking it could be a foremilk/hindmilk imbalance in addition to/instead of the dairy intolerance. Add to this the fact that I clearly have one under-performing and potentially one over-performing breast (significant size difference between the two). Oh, and my nipples are killing me after doing just fine for the previous coupe of weeks.
I tried to pump this morning for the first time. In addition to falling into tears because the ****** tube adapters don't fit the machine, the manual attempt was an epic failure involving pain and milk getting stuck in the horn and then running all over my chest and the couch. (I'm guessing a softer and smaller horn will be needed to have any hope of working.)
Wow, ok, so thanks for staying with me through that diatribe. If anyone has any experience or links with suggestions from dealing with dairy intolerance, under/over performing breast problems, foremilk/hindmilk inbalance...and trying not to cry when the ****** pump instructions inform me that I'll be a better nurser if I'm not upset ... I'd be most appreciative.
Ok- dairy- I am off it too. Very common. Sometimes you have to avoid it for a long time before you see a differance.
Blood in the stool- definate allergy not just intolerance and dairy is the best place to start.
Green poop- My baby has that too. He is just like yours. He sucks so much my milk supply is insane so I never have a chance to get sort of empty and I think that for me we have a hind milk imbalance (even though when I did my lacation certifaction training they taught us there was no such thing as hind milk and that is an old wives tale but I think there is some truth to it).
Under proforming- you are doing what you can. It is all about supply and demand. The more you nurse/pump the more you will have. You can try all those nursing teas too if you want.
Cruz was having green stool, too, but it was what I was eating. I juice a lot of green veggies and it was making his poop green. So, if you're eating a lot of greens, that'll make her poo green, too. I had stopped juicing so I could find out if that's what it was or the hindmilk/foremilk thing but, lot's of green food won't hurt her.
If you're having pain and other issues, I would suggest a lactation consultant. One visit for me was so incredibly helpful!
If you know your latch is good but your baby just sucks hard...try the gel nursing pads. Love them.
Or you can rub your own milk on your nipples (it is healing) and try to let they air dry for a while too.
I am sorry you are having a hard time. Did you get new tubes? A good pump makes a world of difference. You could look into the local le leche league? They have lactation consultants you can talk to. Hugs momma, I hope it gets better.
I'm headed to a breastfeeding meeting tomorrow, and i'll get new horns and tubes for the pump while there. Also go to the ped tomorrow so will call today to see if i can also see the lactation consultant again there.
I know I'm late to this, but I wanted to say that I'm sorry the BFing has been so hard. I'm off dairy too, so I understand that one. After 4 weeks off we are still getting very frequent (nearly every diaper) liquid and frothy poops, so I'm sure my little guy has another allergy of some sort beyond the milk protein. It can take 2+ weeks to get all the dairy out of your system, so hang in there - you might yet still see improvements. In regards to the color: how long is miss A typically nursing for at each session? If she's a short, frequent feeder, you could try repeatedly putting her to the same breast (2-3 feedings) to make sure she's getting to the hind milk. I do definitely notice a difference in color (goes from yellow to green) when my son has a few short feedings in a row.
Two weeks of dairy free now and the only change has been no noticeable blood in the stool. (This is a good thing, of course.) But the poop is still very green...except...we started supplementing with a soy-based sensitive formula (I just did not have enough in me--milk or mentally--to feed her every hour for 40-minute sessions.) Her poop is always yellow after she has formula, but right back to green with the breast milk. It is still very, very liquid. So I'm not convinced we've figured it out just yet. She is also very, very gassy still. And I know I have trouble digesting soy, so this poor kid might just be screwed until her digestive track matures. But at least with the bottle where she can take in a good amount (maybe she's a lazy sucker?) she actually takes a nap during the day. That is a small piece of bliss for me.
You should have seen the student doctor's confused face trying to digest the words "hindmilk" and "foremilk" when I brought it up at the Ped. (I also hate that at each visit I have to go through the list of problems to the nurse, then the pretend doctor (student), maybe a NP or PA and then the doctor...such a waste of my time and theirs.) I have been trying the one boob at a time method. (I was also trying to get my right breast to increase production by doubling that one, but no effect so far, it's still lagging and nearly half the size.) The docs are really not at all helpful with any of this.
The best success I've had is with the pump. I can get a decent amount out and know that I've emptied the boob, so hopefully am giving her hindmilk. I am so grateful for a good pump. But without the formula, I'd never have a chance to get on the pump.
I'm back to the lactation consultant this week to see what she thinks, and to create the best plan for the supplementing. I actually cried on the way to the store to get the formula. I absolutely support anyone who uses formula, but somehow couldn't forgive myself for not getting this right. I'm slowly getting over this, but hoping that I get support from the lactation consultant and am not made to feel bad about this.
I really think that she's simply not getting enough from me -- either because I don't produce enough or enough at the right time or she can't get it out efficiently enough. Although her weight was in acceptable percentiles (thus the doctor just dismissing my concerns and issues) I think she's probably supposed to be a bigger kid because she was simply never satisfied when nursing alone.
I am so, so, so grateful for her little smiles and coos that have just begun. (Not that the practice smiles in sleep aren't adorable.) It makes the trying times a little easier. My little buttercup, or I guess right now, my little dairy-free-cup.
My DD had the green poop sometimes that coincided with periods of extreme gassy pain I figured out that it was a result of forceful letdown and foremilk/hindmilk imbalance. So what I've been doing is pumping a bit first thing in the morning if I have a chance and anytime I feel really full. Also, I will nurse her on only one boob per feeding and use the same boob for the next feeding as well, to make sure she gets enough hindmilk.
On another note.. I thought poop was supposed to be pretty liquidy? It's certainly not supposed to be solid at this point I thought.
I hope the consultant can help you. And in any case don't feel guilty over giving her formula, you have done all you can and have gone beyond!
- 03/28/10 09/'10 06/'11, D&C July 20 Apr/'12