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My newborn won't nurse

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I had a c-section on Friday and thought breastfeeding was going well. On day 3, the baby wouldn't nurse. She just cried and cried and wouldn't latch on. After several hours of trying to get her to nurse, I decided to give her a tiny bit of formula to take the edge off. It worked and she nursed. I did that again, one more time and she nursed well. The third time I began with nursing and she latched on and all went well. When we got home, she refused to nurse. I called the lactation consultant and she said that I had to feed my baby and to giver her 1 ounce of formula every 3 hours and pump every 3 hours to maintain my supply. I keep trying to nurse but she refuses.

She had an appointment with the pediatrician today and he told me the opposite. He told me not to give her formula and to make her nurse. He said when she is hungry, she will nurse. I tried all day to get her to nurse and she would not. I have been giving her the expressed breast milk instead of formula.

I made an appointment with another lactation consultant tomorrow. I hope she will be able to help with this problem. DD1 wanted to nurse so bad but she had a shallow latch. Even though it took her a few weeks to become successful, she never gave up and we had a wonderful nursing realtionship. DD2 can latch fine but doesn't want to nurse. I am in tears all day because I just don't know what is going wrong. Does anyone know what causes this or what I can do? I feel like a failure as a mommy.
post #2 of 13

you are not a failure as a mommy!!! you are doing everything right for this baby! i wish i could come give you a real hug. i hope the LC is able to get this straightened out for you tomorrow. in the meantime, i would spend as much time skin to skin with your baby as you can, and try different positions if you are able to. i would listen to the LC over the pediatrician. unless your pediatrician is also an IBCLC, he is probably not really trained in breastfeeding. if a baby gets too hungry, she can get too upset to be able to nurse properly. when you do supplement with the expressed milk, try to use a cup or a syringe instead of a bottle to avoid nipple confusion. avoid any artificial nipples including pacifiers. you are doing a great job and you will get this worked out!
post #3 of 13


You are NOT failing!!! The LC will have some answers for you. Breastfeeding after a c-section is TOUGH. Hang in there, keep pumping, and keep trying to nurse. Keep us posted!!!
post #4 of 13


Hopefully the LC can help! Don't be so hard on yourself mama! You can do this. I am sure that your babe is sensing your stress and anxiety too. Try to relax when you are attempting to nurse.

-Get her in the warm tub with you, dim the lights, and try not to stress if she doesn't get it at first.

-Make sure that you are getting plenty of water.

-Try nursing using different positions too. Perhaps she is having a little post-birth pain on one side making it difficult for her to nurse.

-Be sure that you are using a cup or try finger feeding her to avoid nipple confusion.

-Are you really engorged when you are trying to latch her on? This could be a problem too. Try hand expressing a little bit before latching her. Let her get a little milk on her lips.
post #5 of 13
You can do this, momma. And you are NOT a failure. DD was early and took forever to figure out how to latch. Keep pumping and giving expressed milk. Use a cup or syringe for now until you see the LC.

When you see the new LC, if things aren't looking good, ask about a nipple shield. They're a pain, but I swear they saved my nursing relationship. We used one for the first several weeks because she just would NOT latch!
post #6 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by nummies View Post


Hopefully the LC can help! Don't be so hard on yourself mama! You can do this. I am sure that your babe is sensing your stress and anxiety too. Try to relax when you are attempting to nurse.

-Get her in the warm tub with you, dim the lights, and try not to stress if she doesn't get it at first.

-Make sure that you are getting plenty of water.

-Try nursing using different positions too. Perhaps she is having a little post-birth pain on one side making it difficult for her to nurse.

-Be sure that you are using a cup or try finger feeding her to avoid nipple confusion.

-Are you really engorged when you are trying to latch her on? This could be a problem too. Try hand expressing a little bit before latching her. Let her get a little milk on her lips.

I had the exact same probleam as you, and I wish I had this advice. I'm guessing since you say you are pumping enough to feed her that your milk has come in? I also had a c-section, and I think it takes a little longer for your milk to come in if you don't go through labor. It takes your body a little longer to realize the baby has come. The timing on mine was the same too, day 3. I think if I'd had a VB, my milk probably would have come in then and relieved some of his frustration.
I had to pump for the first 4 months because after DS got used to the bottle, he would not nurse. If I had it to do over, I would not feed in a bottle. I would use a syringe, an SNS, finger feed, anything to keep him off the bottle. It was soo hard to get him back on, and I think if I had tried some of the advice from the PP, I would have had an easier time. My LC advised the bottle too, but as long as baby gets something to eat to keep up their strength, it doesn't matter how it comes.
Good Luck!
post #7 of 13
Oh, also, lots of skin to skin. This site has a good thing to try.
Baby led attachment-

http://www.breastfeeding.asn.au/bfinfo/bla.html
post #8 of 13
I hope things are going better! Here is a great site with lots of advice. You are not alone in this situation!

http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/...to-breast.html

Take good care of yourself, and try not to worry--it will work out.
post #9 of 13
I don't know why I want to suggest this but do you or anyone else think a chiropractic adjustment could help... and can't stop thinking it might... perhaps a minor birth injury...

keep in mind I haven't yet taken my son in but I have heard about interesting results...
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thank You Mamas. The appointment with the LC went great. She said DD has 2 problems. She is slurping (like a straw) and she is putting her tongue up to the roof of her mouth. She said sometimes when the milk comes in, the baby doesn't like the change in the nipple. She suggested a nipple shield and the baby latched on and started nursing again at the appointment . I am so happy and feeling so much better. She said there will be steps forward and backwards but is confident that everything will be ok!
post #11 of 13
wonderful news!!! i'm so glad that things are going better for you now!!!
post #12 of 13
Congratulations! I'm really happy that things are going better! NSs are a pain, but they are awesome when you really need one! I found the Medela Contact Shields to be by far the most comfortable... I used one for around 9 weeks... I would try latching without it every couple of days just to see how it goes and then start weaning off of it when LO is ready.

DD did the tongue thing, too. It hurts! I was advised to let her suck on my finger (nail bed down) and sort of gently push the tongue down and forward while they suck to teach them to hold it down. We also used a pacifier (flattened with a bulb at the base - like MAM) to help train her tongue to stay down when she sucked. I'll leave that up to you and your LC, though!

Good luck - I hope you have years of bfing ahead of you both!
post #13 of 13
You know, when i think about it my youngest went off nursing at first when my milk came in... I remember being SO engorged and he just wasn't at all impressed.. He did get used to it and it got SO much better. Glad things are improving now for you *hugs*
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