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Extreme fussiness while breastfeeding

Forum: Breastfeeding


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February 12th, 2018, 10:11 AM
Join Date: Feb 2018
Posts: 1
I'm a first time mama of a nearly 3 month old sweet boy. He was 3 weeks early and we had some trouble at the start but at about 2 weeks in we were exclusively breastfeeding! I was so happy. However as soon as he was past the sleepy newborn stage, trouble began.

He latches enthusiastically but after the initial let down and a few of minutes of good swallowing, he quickly gets VERY frustrated with the flow of milk and cries/pushes and pulls on the breast/throws his head back and forth/tries licking the nipple etc - and doesn't sustain the effective sucking. He either continues to fuss like that for the whole time at the breast or resigns and falls asleep. He rarely seems fully satisfied after the feeding (unless he's asleep at the end). However, he's been putting on decent weight (he's on the smaller side, but the pediatrician is not worried) and has about 4-6 poops a day still and plenty of wet diapers. I feed him 8 times in 24 hours and the nursing sessions are from 30 mins to an hour, as I try to make sure he gets enough in this very inefficient way.

I had a home visit with lactation consultant who did a pre/post feed weight and he took 3oz that time (but I usually keep him on longer than with her), she said his latch is great (and I've no pain), she looked at my freezer stash and said she doesn't think I have a low supply and that he's perhaps going through a growth spurt or has a fussy few days. But this is an ongoing issue.

I'm employing a lot of breastfeeding tips from Kellymom blog, La Leche League already. I take fennel, fenugreek, blessed thistle, brewer's yeast and drink lactation tea. I eat well, drink water and nap during the day. I play relaxing music when feeding him. I check his latch which is good. I massage and compress the breast while feeding. Early on I pumped a lot to increase the supply - I stopped pumping during the day now because he was getting even more frustrated because my breasts were emptier and he had to work even harder. But I still do a long power-pumping session after he goes to sleep to keep up my supply.

I thought if there was anything else that could be causing the fussing but I really do think he doesn't like my slow flow. I think he is an impatient eater because when my husband tries to pace the bottle-feeding to mimic the breastfeeding, he also gets frustrated and cries. Btw, we give bottle extremely rarely so he doesn't get a preference and we use Playtex Nurse which is very slow-flow. So it might be his very impatient nature and I don't know how we can change that.

I'm not sure what else I can do, but the way most of the feedings go is not sustainable. The baby seems in distress, he hyperventilates and cries and it's terrible to watch.

Because of his decent weight gain, I think there is just about enough milk, it's just that the delivery method is very problematic. I don't think this is being a good experience for him or me. I'm also restarting work tomorrow and although I'm working from home and was very excited to continue breastfeeding, I don't know if I can handle the stress. I'm considering exclusively pumping although I know is a tough thing to do long-term.

I'm so hoping someone has some advice. Thank you!
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March 10th, 2018, 05:21 AM
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: North Carolina, USA
Posts: 377
You may check him out for thrush, Iíve had it with all of mine and it makes it hard for them to stay latched. Beyond that, Iíve had lazy and impatient eaters and sometimes you just canít do a thing about the personality but they get used to nursing by and by.
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