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Baby screaming during latch-on/pulling off breast

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
My dd is now 3.5 weeks old. We've had (are still having) a LOT of nursing problems along the way (see below), but dd has always been an eager nurser. She always latched on well and nursed happily. Now, it takes 20 or 30 tries to get her to latch on. She opens her mouth, latches on, then screams and pulls off. Once she's on, she usually stays there for a decent amount of time, but eventually she'll start screaming and pull off again and we go through the whole thing many times each feeding. This is breaking my heart--through all the problems, I've at least consoled myself that dd liked to nurse and was thriving. Now I feel like I'm failing at the one thing I could do that was guaranteed to comfort her. Please help!

Run-down of our problems:
*bleeding/cracked nipples early on--this healed, although my nipples seem a little bruised now; not sure why...her latch looks textbook-perfect and 4 different LCs have said it's fine; she does have some minor mouth issues (slightly assymetrical; somewhat high palate), but nothing that should cause major problems
*thrush: we treated with 2 weeks of Diflucan for me and 2 weeks of Nystatin for her; was supposed to stay on the Diflucan for 2 more weeks, but I developed an allergic reaction to it, so we had to go off; Nystatin did nothing for her--we did three days of gentian violet, which seems to have cleared up the thrushiness in her mouth; I'm on an exteme sugar elimination diet (no wheat/gluten/flour, sugar, processed food, dairy, fruit, etc.). We're both taking probiotics. We tried GSE for over a week, with little success. I'm also taking garlic supplements.
*vasospasm...trying to treat this with cal/mag and EPO supplements. Not sure if either is working, but we're giving it some more time. Hard to tell if the discomfort I still feel is from the this or the thrush

We've seen, as I've said, 4 different LCs (finally found one we really liked).
post #2 of 7
try hand expressing a few drops prior to the feed and doing some compression of the breast at first to help get some milk moving, your baby might be a little too hungry to wait or frustrated.
post #3 of 7
Is she getting any bottles at all? It's likely that it is nipple confusion or reflux.

Also, is the thrush still bothering you? When you used the gentian violet, did oyu only use it in her mouth or did you put it on your breasts as well?

Nystatin is horrible and does little to nothing (it's in a glucose base and since yeast thrives off of sugar, it's quite obvious why it sucks so much).
post #4 of 7
could it be reflux or bad gas? I remember when ds was little sometimes he would pull off mid way through because he needed to burp.
post #5 of 7
We went through something similar to that. My DS always knew where the nipple was and latched on correctly. The problem was staying latched on. After nursing for a bit he would back off the nipple then move his head back and forth with his mouth wide open. When I tried to give him the nipple he refused and then sorta cry in frustration. So I would burp him and change sides, nothing. but sometimes, during his refusal, he would latch on and start sucking again. I was afraid that he was having nipple confusion and wasn't getting enough milk. But at a baby wellness check-up he was gaining weight so that gave me some confidence. I also took away the pacifier and let him suck my finger instead and I instantly saw some improvement. I also changed my breastfeeding routine. By other website's advice, I was giving him one breast however long he wanted per feeding (for hindmilk). I started doing each breast per 10 minutes for each feeding which worked well for awhile.

At 3.5 months we are back to one breast per feeding but I can't remember when we went back to 1 breast. Also, it was at 2 months before my nipples stopped hurting when Simon would latch on each time he nursed.

Don't give up hope! You are doing a great job! I think it just takes a bit to figure out what works best for your baby at that moment
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
No bottles or pacifiers at all. I posted an update--and not a good one--in a new thread.

We used the GV on both of us.
post #7 of 7
Just an idea....are you relaxed and in a quiet place when you are nursing? They can pick up on tension... Yesterday, DS for the first time, wouldn't latch on because we were surrounded by a lot of kids and there was music playing. He was overwhelmed. As soon as I went to a quiet room he had no problem.

You might also try kangaroo carry for a day or so.
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