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NICU Baby, pumping, but not on breast?


Forum: Breastfeeding

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  #1  
August 20th, 2008, 04:16 PM
Third-child's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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At the moment Avery (born 5 days ago, at 34 weeks and 2 day) is not really intrested in the bottle let alone the boob.. They are getting the food in him.. mostly formula with the little milk I have. He rather sleep than eat.

How and when do I try him on the boob? I have no energy to go to most of his feedings, let alone try him on the boob there, when he only has such a small window to eat.

I rather him eat from the bottle, then mess around on me, learning at this point. The sooner he eats, the sooner he comes home.

Is this a bad thing??? Will it be harder to get him on the boob once I am home etc..

I have so many questions.....

I only get a small amount out of both boobs, I have been pumping for 3 days now. The small amounts I take to him for them to feed via bottle. I am just worried that when I get him home try him on the boob, he won't take it, and won't get the food he needs...


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  #2  
August 20th, 2008, 05:02 PM
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Congrats... and welcome

It may be harder to get him on the boob as he is going to getting used to the faster flow of the bottle. But NOT impossible.

As for the pumping, you are still in the early stages and a baby can get more from you than a pump. With practice though you may start to be able to pump a lot more.

I know I am not much help, but I havent been in this situation. I am sure someone on here will have some better help for you.

Hang in there though.
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  #3  
August 20th, 2008, 05:49 PM
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I wanted to say good luck and I hope he can come home soon. Is it an option to attempt BF after he gets his bottle-that way he would still be getting everything the docs want him to, but it could also help stimulate your body. What kind of pump are you using?

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  #4  
August 21st, 2008, 05:56 AM
Third-child's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I am using the hospital pump is a Medlea... (Sp?)

I am getting some milk out now.. I am thinking tomorrow when I go tot NICU, maybe having someone help me try to put him on boob for even a few minutes, and then they can bottle feed him my milk.

I am so stressed he won't take the boob, cause I was unable to even bee with him for 3 days, let alone pump.
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  #5  
August 21st, 2008, 06:53 AM
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I know it's hard. My baby was in the NICU for 36 hours and I couldn't get much out with the pump. They didn't feed her at all for the first 24 hours because she had to work on her breathing. Then they bottle-fed her several times before letting me breastfeed. It still took a whole week to get her to accept the breast after we went home, but I was successful because I took away the bottle completely and we fed her with the syringe, as well as the Medela lactation aid. An SNS helped me too.
I would recommend that you set an appointment with a lactation consultant in the NICU for your baby's next feeding. That's what I did and the LC helped get the baby to the breast.
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  #6  
August 21st, 2008, 09:46 AM
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Being a preemie mom and having pumped for him when he was in the NICU, my suggestion is to have a lactation consultant help you start getting him latched and see if he will nurse for a little bit before he gets a bottle. Have him weighed first before attempting to BF and after about 5-10 minutes of nursing I'd have him weighed again to see how much he took. After that offer him the bottle. JMO.
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  #7  
August 21st, 2008, 09:59 AM
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I agree with the above ladies - work with an LC! A lot of hospitals have them, and many NICUs have their own specific LC to work with moms on pumping and teaching a NICU baby to go to breast when the time is right.

My second son was in the NICU for 2 months. In the early days, I absolutely obsessed about how much milk I was pumping, or rather, how much I wasn't. The LC said that by 2 weeks you should aim for pumping one ounce an hour (ie, 3oz every 3 hours) total between both breasts. I only pumped maybe a quarter of an ounce for the first 5 days before my milk started to come in, and then I would only get an ounce or two per session. Baby absolutely gets more milk from you than a pump does! The entire time Danny was in the hospital, they had to supplement with a little formula because I could not pump enough.

If you can't put him to breast yet because he isn't ready, at least do some kangaroo time with him (skin to skin) and maybe let him just sort of root around. It will help stimulate your body. I was unable to do this for a couple weeks because of Daniel's health early on, but they gave me one of his blankets to keep close while pumping. Looking at pictures of your baby can help increase your pumping supply, as well as massage and warm wash clothes to stimulate let down.

Once he starts to feed well, put him to breast as often as you can, but don't stress if that isn't very often! I was only able to do one nursing session a day with Danny while he was in the hospital because I had to be home for my toddler as well. I found that the first time I pumped after putting him to breast I got double what I did any other time; the natural suckling motion stimulates milk production like a pump can't. Work with your LC when he does go to breast, you'll get tips for best positioning for preemies, latch, ways to encourage him, everything.

When he comes home, focus on breastfeeding for the first few days. Keep him close, and offer breast whenever he wants it, any time he was hungry. At first, that was very often, and it would take about 5 minutes for him to settle and accept my breast. BUT, he got the hang of it. Hungry babies will eat. I only would give him a bottle right before bed for the first week, no other time during the day - he had to figure out breastfeeding. We struggled a lot in the hospital with latch on one side, but he figured it out fairly quickly with some patience and persistence on my end. The second week, we went no bottles at all, and we have now been nursing at home for 3+ months.

Good luck, hon! I know you can do it, though I won't lie - it's a tough thing to do. IF you have any questions, need support, etc, please let us know. I hope your son's stay in the NICU is a short one and that he comes home to be with you soon!
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  #8  
August 22nd, 2008, 06:17 AM
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Thanks! I am headed to the hospital today to see what we can do. Hopefully it works out. I am still getting very little out of the pump, but something is better than nothing.
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  #9  
August 23rd, 2008, 08:19 AM
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I thin all the offered advise is great, and I don't have much more to offer. I just wanted to say good luck. Come back and let us know how yesterday went.
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  #10  
August 24th, 2008, 03:59 PM
Third-child's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Well I seem to get him on the boob for about 2 time a day. Yesterday was ok nothing great. But we had a good feeding today, and the 2nd was the worst of them so far. But at least he is getting some time on the boob.

He needs to take in 40ml and he is still only eating 30 ml.

Now if I could get my supply to boost up. Any hint on this?
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  #11  
August 25th, 2008, 10:45 AM
Moldovandish's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I am glad you are getting to breastfeed! That is awesome. Just keep on pumping, try fenugreek (or the more milk blend from motherlove.com), eat lots of oatmeal and drink a good amount of water. My supply initially went down, but I was able to get it back up. I rented a hospital grade pump as well and I think everything together brought my supply back up.
By the way, I noticed you are in NC? What city?
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  #12  
August 25th, 2008, 02:14 PM
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I am over in Southern Pines, near Ft Bragg.. We are not military tho..

Just bought the FenuGreek and will start taking it tonight. Hopefully it works.
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  #13  
August 26th, 2008, 11:15 AM
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Oh okay, I'm in Raleigh. Good luck!
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