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Breastfeeding, etc.

post #1 of 584
Thread Starter 

Someone please remind me how long it will be until this engorgement calms down.  I am pumping to donate as well so I know I'll be overproducing for a while, but ouch.  My boobs are huge (32 F) and it sucks.  The good news is I haven't sprayed anyone in the face yet.  Ha! 

Share your own breastfeeding woes here so we can encourage each other.  I forgot how frustrating it is in the beginning.....

post #2 of 584

It can be 2-3 weeks before your breasts get adjusted. Mine are starting to settle just a tad as of last night, but are making my back hurt they feel so heavy! I'm 5 days pp.  I have used cold compress on them a bit to help.

 

I have to say though that nursing for the 3rd time is pretty nice. I am enjoying feeling like an old-pro at it. For those of your who are first time moms- hang in there! I remember well the long weeks of adjustment and learning- it can be real hard but so worth it!!!

post #3 of 584
I've been consistently nursing from each breast every 2-3 hours around the clock and am not feeling much for engorgement; however they are heavy and boy, do my nipples hurt! They're both cracked and because they looked like they were starting to get infected, I hit them with both antifungals and antibiotics as well as nipple ointment. I've BTDT and had a horrible time for the entire 9 months that I nursed DD1. I plan to nurse this one much longer and won't let my nipples get me down! They are healing now. She has a vigorous suck like DD1.
post #4 of 584

I heard that your supply will level out after 6 weeks. Mine get engorged at night and DD then has a difficult time latching. She still cluster feeds for 2 hours straight at times during the day, signaling my breasts to PRODUCE, PRODUCE!! And then proceeds to sleep for 5 hours straight at night. I swear I'm not complaining about her sleeping that long, its wonderful. However, I'M waking up about 4 hours in with giant painful boobs. And I'll just lay there uncomfortably until she starts stirring. But I am just loving breastfeeding. She has a wonderful latch and makes the cutest noises and faces when she is hungry. Its so endearing. 

post #5 of 584

I'm 3.5 weeks PP and I've not yet been engorged - I've gotten VERY full and uncomfortable, but never had that rock-hard, super painful experience that I associate with engorgement.  My production varies still because DD's feeding schedule is not at all routine.  She's in the middle of a growth spurt (I'm assuming) right now and feeding a ton, then sleeping for big chunks which is when my boobs get giant and start to leak.  But she always manages to wake up and eat before my boobs hit their limit.

 

Now if only my nipples would stop hurting...

post #6 of 584

I am so excited to say my little one is now breastfeeding!

 

He is 11 weeks old and I have been faithfully pumping for him since birth and nursing here and there, but had latch issues and screaming issues ... but all of a sudden this week he started latching on easily and transfering milk! I am so pleased!

post #7 of 584
Quote:
Originally Posted by LunaLady View Post

I am so excited to say my little one is now breastfeeding!

 

He is 11 weeks old and I have been faithfully pumping for him since birth and nursing here and there, but had latch issues and screaming issues ... but all of a sudden this week he started latching on easily and transfering milk! I am so pleased!



joy.gif

post #8 of 584

That's great news!  I'm glad that you kept trying, sometimes it just takes some extra dedication, but it's so worth in the end.  Yay!
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by LunaLady View Post

I am so excited to say my little one is now breastfeeding!

 

He is 11 weeks old and I have been faithfully pumping for him since birth and nursing here and there, but had latch issues and screaming issues ... but all of a sudden this week he started latching on easily and transfering milk! I am so pleased!



AFM - It took my breasts FOREVER to regulate my supply after I had #1, something like 3 months.  After #2 it took 5-6 weeks, which was much more pleasant.  This time my milk has just come in and I'm starting to get uncomfortable.  Hopefully it'll just be a few weeks and things will calm down and stop spraying everything with milk.

post #9 of 584
Quote:
Originally Posted by LunaLady View Post

I am so excited to say my little one is now breastfeeding!

 

He is 11 weeks old and I have been faithfully pumping for him since birth and nursing here and there, but had latch issues and screaming issues ... but all of a sudden this week he started latching on easily and transfering milk! I am so pleased!


YAY!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Eowyn is my easiest nursling yet.  We are at three weeks and my blisters are all better, we've almost gotten the thrush cleared up, and she's a touch tongue tied, but it seems stretchy enough that I won't need to have it clipped.  I have a ton of milk, but that is to be expected for me.  

 

post #10 of 584


I am so proud of you and happy for you!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by LunaLady View Post

I am so excited to say my little one is now breastfeeding!

 

He is 11 weeks old and I have been faithfully pumping for him since birth and nursing here and there, but had latch issues and screaming issues ... but all of a sudden this week he started latching on easily and transfering milk! I am so pleased!



 

post #11 of 584

My experience was that the near constant engorgement only lasted maybe a few days after my milk came in, but I could still get engorged if feedings got spaced out for several weeks.  Full regulation has taken me 6-7 weeks with my last two.   My solution was to fully empty both breasts after a feeding.  I only had to do that 2-3 times in order to relieve that rock hard, awful throbbing feeling.  If you're pumping to donate I imagine it could be difficult for your body to figure things out for a while unless you constantly are pumping between sessions- then at night I bet they fill up quickly.

post #12 of 584
Quote:
Originally Posted by jbk21 View Post

Someone please remind me how long it will be until this engorgement calms down.  I am pumping to donate as well so I know I'll be overproducing for a while, but ouch.  My boobs are huge (32 F) and it sucks.  The good news is I haven't sprayed anyone in the face yet.  Ha! 

Share your own breastfeeding woes here so we can encourage each other.  I forgot how frustrating it is in the beginning.....



haha I haven't done that but i hugged DH goodbye for work today and leaked milk on his work shirt. lol

 

post #13 of 584

I'm almost 5 weeks out and while I'm rarely full on engorged anymore I am still letting down severy time he squeaks and leaking through everything. My biggest complaint is the sticky, stinky milk everywhere. He will latch on and then pull off and get sprayed in the face or he will fall asleep on the boob and then smile in his sleep and the milk just pours out of the corners of his mouth and down my side. 

post #14 of 584

I need a pep talk.

 

I'm doubting my ability to keep up with breastfeeding more and more each day. It's bringing me down. I had the worst evening yet for like 6-7 hours unable to make the baby happy. From 5:00pm to midnight it's just so hard almost every night! I don't get it! She had her usual nighttime latching difficulties but on a grander scale and I broke down crying unable to take any more. I had to lay down in bed to have my meltdown and let things pass while DH held Sora crying for a bit. I felt like the worst mom ever. She was nursing for over an hour at a time(!) and doing the whole sucking/pull away/re-latch super painful thing she does. I couldn't have possibly had any milk left in me during most of the time she was nursing last night so I felt like a human pacifier! (someone else on here used that analogy and it unfortunately perfectly describes how I feel these days...) If she fell asleep and I tried handing her to DH or setting her down for a second, she woke up crying and would just nurse even more -- and repeat. I just don't get it! I don't think it's an engorgement issue causing the problem because I've tried letting out some milk before feeding her and it doesn't help. I've only gotten engorged once; my breasts feel the same at night as they do earlier in the day when she eats just fine. She does seem kind of frustrated like she wants to fall asleep but can't, though... Like she'll nod off and then wake right up like she's fighting to stay awake. Maybe that's a "competing" need that she's battling with while hungry. I don't think I ate enough yesterday either... Maybe my milk production slowed down at night. I don't have much of an appetite most of the time anymore. Eating just feels like too much work and I've ended up eating foods I shouldn't be with my food sensitivities. I feel guilty and run down, unable to dedicate any decent amount of time to preparing my GFCF meals. DH can only help so much. It takes a lot of effort and planning to keep up with that way of eating and I didn't know breastfeeding would be this much more frequent and difficult than the whole "newborns eat every 2 hours" crock of **** I was always told. crap.gif

 

When do infants start eating faster and less frequently? Is this just a newborn phase that passes within a few weeks? My friend was over a few days ago with her 3-month-old baby and she said her baby eats her fill in 5 minutes. FIVE MINUTES! Apparently she's always been a fast eater. Jealousy doesn't even begin to describe how I was feeling in that moment... mecry.gif

 

I think tonight I'm going to try feeding Sora in different places around the house and really concentrate on the breastfeeding session between us without distractions. Maybe that will help. FX that she just wants my undivided attention. I do tend to try multitasking too much at night, especially since that's my only time with DH and we'll watch movies or TV together and I'll be on the laptop quite a bit. I mean, I hold the baby all the time while I'm doing that other stuff, but maybe she senses my focus isn't on her. I don't know.

post #15 of 584

It's been almost 5 weeks here and I only had a couple of days of uncomfortable engorgement right at first. Otherwise it's been pretty good. She just went through a growth spurt last week though and was attached to my boob non-stop for 2 or 3 days. I've definitely been producing more milk since then, but then she suddenly started sleeping a really long stretch at night, so I'm leaking like crazy in the middle of the night. I had to start sleeping with a bra on again so I could wear nursing pads. I'm really enjoying the 6 hour stretch of sleep, but my boobs are crazy full by morning. I've been nursing her on one side first thing in the morning then pumping the other side. I get about 3 oz pumping on just one side at a time, pretty successful if you ask me! I'm getting a pretty good stash in the freezer already for when I go back to work.

 

We gave her her first bottle just the other night and she took it from DH no problem. In fact, she seemed to tolerate it even better than the breast. I have a really forceful letdown on one side that she struggles to keep up with. Poor baby sputters and spits and chokes trying to keep up with it. I had the same letdown with my first, but she was a pro at keeping up with it. Greta would like to be a little lazier about eating and take her time with it, but this letdown just won't let her. Is there any way to help that or slow down my letdown some how?

post #16 of 584
Quote:
Originally Posted by birdhappy85 View Post

I need a pep talk.

 

I'm doubting my ability to keep up with breastfeeding more and more each day. It's bringing me down. I had the worst evening yet for like 6-7 hours unable to make the baby happy. From 5:00pm to midnight it's just so hard almost every night! I don't get it! She had her usual nighttime latching difficulties but on a grander scale and I broke down crying unable to take any more. I had to lay down in bed to have my meltdown and let things pass while DH held Sora crying for a bit. I felt like the worst mom ever. She was nursing for over an hour at a time(!) and doing the whole sucking/pull away/re-latch super painful thing she does. I couldn't have possibly had any milk left in me during most of the time she was nursing last night so I felt like a human pacifier! (someone else on here used that analogy and it unfortunately perfectly describes how I feel these days...) If she fell asleep and I tried handing her to DH or setting her down for a second, she woke up crying and would just nurse even more -- and repeat. I just don't get it! I don't think it's an engorgement issue causing the problem because I've tried letting out some milk before feeding her and it doesn't help. I've only gotten engorged once; my breasts feel the same at night as they do earlier in the day when she eats just fine. She does seem kind of frustrated like she wants to fall asleep but can't, though... Like she'll nod off and then wake right up like she's fighting to stay awake. Maybe that's a "competing" need that she's battling with while hungry. I don't think I ate enough yesterday either... Maybe my milk production slowed down at night. I don't have much of an appetite most of the time anymore. Eating just feels like too much work and I've ended up eating foods I shouldn't be with my food sensitivities. I feel guilty and run down, unable to dedicate any decent amount of time to preparing my GFCF meals. DH can only help so much. It takes a lot of effort and planning to keep up with that way of eating and I didn't know breastfeeding would be this much more frequent and difficult than the whole "newborns eat every 2 hours" crock of **** I was always told. crap.gif

 

When do infants start eating faster and less frequently? Is this just a newborn phase that passes within a few weeks? My friend was over a few days ago with her 3-month-old baby and she said her baby eats her fill in 5 minutes. FIVE MINUTES! Apparently she's always been a fast eater. Jealousy doesn't even begin to describe how I was feeling in that moment... mecry.gif

 

I think tonight I'm going to try feeding Sora in different places around the house and really concentrate on the breastfeeding session between us without distractions. Maybe that will help. FX that she just wants my undivided attention. I do tend to try multitasking too much at night, especially since that's my only time with DH and we'll watch movies or TV together and I'll be on the laptop quite a bit. I mean, I hold the baby all the time while I'm doing that other stuff, but maybe she senses my focus isn't on her. I don't know.



hug2.gif Is she gassy? She might be having gas pains and to a newborn, it feels like they are hungry, so they'll eat eat eat and also leave them unconsolable until they are no longer needing the burps out of them.

 

post #17 of 584
Thread Starter 

Sorry Joanie!!  I know how frustrating it is.  One thing that has helped me this time is to try to soothe D without nursing FIRST to be sure that his need is truly to be fed.  A crying baby isn't always hungry- even if they will nurse (eating is a reflex for them, so if you brush their cheek or put a nipple in their face they are going to act hungry.)  But often he just wants to be swaddled, or he is pooping which makes him really pissed, or he is gassy or just tired and needs a second to cry before he passes out (literally he cries for 3 seconds and then it's lights out.)  With my first son I just fed him every single time he made a noise.  He then would vomit a lot and I wondered why (DUH J! HE WAS OVEREATING!)  With D I recognize that he has other needs as well and him being fussy after a feeding usually means he is pooping or uncomfortable. You may already be trying other things to soothe her.  Different positions also help.  But she might just be cranky at that time (witching hour!) and not hungry?  Maybe she is pulling off/relatching because she doesn't want the milk and just wants to suck (pinkie binky?)  Maybe she is falling asleep and startling herself awake and is just not in a cozy position?  (my boys are particular about their sleep position, and D needs his arms tucked in so they don't startle him awake.)  


I'm just throwing out ideas... not sure what you've tried.  

 

If she is really acting hungry, just give her a good long feeding session until she is asleep or unlatches from satisfaction.  Then know that she won't be hungry for at least 90 minutes because her belly is full.  It might take 30-45 minutes for her to get that good feeding in, but hopefully she will be satiated after that!  Whenever D cluster feeds I just let him have it for a good long time and then he's fine.  

 

I probably didn't help at all.  I'm sorry.  Those are just the things that work for us.  

post #18 of 584

Joanie - nursing nearly 24 hours a day at this age is totally normal! Especially the evening. Most NBs cluster feed in the evenings, and since it often coincides with their fussy period, many moms feel like they aren't making enough milk. Not true! She needs to nurse as often as possible - even if that's nearly constantly - to regulate your supply. It can take a good 4-6 weeks for that to happen, especially with your first. My first was one of those babies that nursed for 45 minutes, slept for 15, and started over again. Jack nursed for the first 36 hours STRAIGHT, lol. The every two hours things IS a crock of shit. I always say if you  can survive the first 6 weeks, you can BF as long as you want. With my first, every day I'd end up at some point just saying "I'll nurse her the rest of today, then tomorrow we'll see." By around 6 weeks, I realized I hadn't said that in a while. It just naturally gets better at some point, I promise! Everything you're describing sounds very, very normal. It's really frustrating, especially as a FTM, I know, but it's normal, and it will get better!

 

If she won't settle enough to nurse, try walking around the house nursing her. My first two both needed me to do that for a few weeks in the beginning. Or bounce on the birth ball, if your bottom is feeling up to it. (Bonus points if you can nurse her in a sling/wrap.) The motion helps them calm down. It's annoying, but some babies just can't sit still.

 

(((HUGS))) I know it's frustrating, but I PROMISE it will get better.

post #19 of 584


 

Quote:

Originally Posted by birdhappy85 View Post
From 5:00pm to midnight it's just so hard almost every night! I don't get it! ...

 

I feel guilty and run down, unable to dedicate any decent amount of time to preparing my GFCF meals. DH can only help so much. It takes a lot of effort and planning to keep up with that way of eating and I didn't know breastfeeding would be this much more frequent and difficult than the whole "newborns eat every 2 hours" crock of **** I was always told. crap.gif

 

When do infants start eating faster and less frequently? Is this just a newborn phase that passes within a few weeks? My friend was over a few days ago with her 3-month-old baby and she said her baby eats her fill in 5 minutes. FIVE MINUTES! Apparently she's always been a fast eater. Jealousy doesn't even begin to describe how I was feeling in that moment... mecry.gif

 

 

Evening is a fussy time for so many babies. If she becomes colicky it is likely to be evening. My guy is almost 5 weeks and he spends much of the evening nursing. 

 

Some babies nurse a lot. If you can't handle nursing for a while and you know she has a belly full, putting her in the sling is nice. If she's gassy try to keep her head nice and high and her legs balled up. If anything is touching her cheeks she will be more frustrated. 

 

Popping on and off the nipple, in my experience, means that her belly isn't happy. Perhaps she needs to burp or potty or might need a change. If you're already frustrated in the evenings I wouldn't try taking her to the potty, but holding her thighs up against her belly could help her relieve herself faster so she is comfortable again. 

 

For the pep, she will only be this small for a little while. Your milk is giving her the best start and holding her do much is growing her brain in ways we don't yet understand. You ate giving her a great start and feedings will get faster and easier and she will be excited about other things soon. 

 

post #20 of 584
Thread Starter 

Another thing- this is SO WEIRD but our old pediatrician recommended this if they seem uncomfortable- she said they can't figure out the muscles they need to use to poop so she said to take a q-tip and put vaseline (yuck- maybe find a petro-free alternative) and rub it around their, uh, sphincter.  I KNOW IT'S WEIRD but my first son would almost IMMEDIATELY poop.  He really just needed those muscles "stimulated".  Now we just give a kind of vigorous wipe in that area.  Be ready for a mess though, for real. But it really seemed to help him to feel much more comfortable!

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