Breastfeeding Difficulties... Anyone Else? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 56 Old 05-15-2006, 04:56 PM
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I have no idea what size the breasts are right now....but even with an 8 pound baby (now upwards of nine) the boobs are still bigger than her head! And the worst part - we start the feeding in one position, and then as the boob deflates...we end up having to relatch because all of a sudden the nipple is in a totally different place!

Green poops seem to have subsided...unless she is in a snacky mood - otherwise we are back to yellow poops...nursing several times on each side. Thank goodness that worked. Now I just want her to get bigger so that she can deal with the letdown/fast flow a bit better. But for now - we are doing well. Midwives' appt. tomorrow - so I will know how much she wieghs. Which is strangely reassuring...

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#32 of 56 Old 05-15-2006, 08:22 PM
 
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Originally Posted by KerriAZ
So I will keep pluggni away with it!!

So, here's to all of us! Best of luck to us all and here's to hoping our little ones "get it" soon!!

Kerri
Kerri..do you have a LLL group near you? A great place to get hands on help and always huge support...

I think I would be crazy w/o my group! Meeting is rgis thursday..first time i get to show little one off!!

s
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#33 of 56 Old 05-15-2006, 09:14 PM
 
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#34 of 56 Old 05-16-2006, 08:40 PM
 
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Well, I had trouble from the start. Morgan refuses to suck from me. Talked to the doctor and she said that some babies are just that way. SO I now have to pump my boobs and feed him that way besides giving him soy formula. I'm so tired of this. But am tring to hang in for at least a month and then he can get formula instead.

I'm sort of freaking because one of my boobs is bigger then the other! Anyone else have this problem?

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#35 of 56 Old 05-17-2006, 03:15 AM
 
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Originally Posted by eilonwy


Bella was born a) with a tongue tie and b) much smaller than I expected. She was too small to open her mouth wide enough at first, then the tongue tie continued to cause us problems. Now that I've clipped the tie, she still has a bad habit of letting her tongue slide back behind her gums when she nurses, causing pain (nothing like the pain before, though!) and causing her to break suction, so she "clicks" when she nurses and doesn't always get as much milk as she wants. It's a real PITA, and I have no idea how to teach her to keep her tongue over gums when she nurses.
Rynna~
Clipping the tongue tie can def. help but if she nursed a certain way for several weeks it can take a bit to "retrain" her. Something we did that was helpful was suck training before *each* feed for a while (actually did this prior to clipping the frenulum just to try to relieve some of my discomfort until the dr appt).

If you haven't seen this done...use a finger that is similar size to your nipple, have her root and take in your finger (nail side down against her tongue) up to her suck spot on her palate (usually pretty far back, at the junction of hard and soft). Taking care not to gag her have her suck properly for a little while (you should not feel her lower gum on your finger). If she draws her tongue back you can lightly put pressue on the back of her tongue to encourage her to bring it forward again (just a quick downward pressure with your finger). If she's sucking well switch her to the breast...babies are smart, she'll get the hang of it, esp when she realizes she gets more milk that way.

Of course, switching to a crappy latch can also be a way of controlling an overwhelming flow of milk...my little rug rat does this!



Boovert~
Oh girl, is there anyone who is more bf friendly or knowledgable that you could see? It doesn't sound like your doc is up on bf info...any lactation consultants or LLL groups? Way to go on the pumping for your babe - that is so much work! Unfortunately some babies do have latching difficulties in the beginning (as in they refuse to do it), but this can generally be overcome if you would like to try. You *will* need someone who can give you a better answer than 'that's just how it is' - it would take someone with some knowledge, a few tricks, and who will be supportive. But, you could totally do it and it would be so worth it for you and your little one! And yup, totally normal to have asymmetrical breasts Most women do to a certain degree

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#36 of 56 Old 05-17-2006, 11:46 AM
 
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Not in your ddc but I struggled with nursing dd and now I'm doing as much research as I can in case I have problems with ds who is due in Aug. Anyway, about getting them to open up wide, if you gently squeeze the base of the baby's thumb (the fleshy part) it triggers a reflex that makes them open their mouths wide. My friend tried it with her baby after I read it and it did work. Hope that helps somebody.
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#37 of 56 Old 05-18-2006, 01:03 AM
 
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Someone asked if I was taking the mother's milk tea- yup, along with everything else. High doses of fenugreek made me ill and didn't work, however, and is a peanut allergy sensitizer (which I didn't know about, growl).

If anyone has trouble pumping, I have some hints and tricks, most of which I got from kellymom, which have made my life MUCH easier. One is to put all the equipment in the fridge between pumping, then you only have to clean it once a day. (Well, with the thrush I'm cleaning it more often, but normally, it helps soo much to do it that way). Handsfree also helps a lot, with the ponytail holder trick.

Bra size? I think I"m probably like 46 G or something. IT's sick. -j
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#38 of 56 Old 05-18-2006, 01:45 AM
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Oh boovert! It sounds like you are having a rough time.

I agree - find someone who is more BF friendly, and can give you some pointers. A doc saying some babies just won't nurse - is kind of silly really...I mean, a baby who won't nurse wouldn't have lasted long prior to formula being available right? It sounds like you are having a tough time, and need some input on how to make things work a little better. Supportive guidance makes all the difference in the world!

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#39 of 56 Old 05-19-2006, 08:59 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wittyone
If you haven't seen this done...use a finger that is similar size to your nipple, have her root and take in your finger (nail side down against her tongue) up to her suck spot on her palate (usually pretty far back, at the junction of hard and soft). Taking care not to gag her have her suck properly for a little while (you should not feel her lower gum on your finger). If she draws her tongue back you can lightly put pressue on the back of her tongue to encourage her to bring it forward again (just a quick downward pressure with your finger). If she's sucking well switch her to the breast...babies are smart, she'll get the hang of it, esp when she realizes she gets more milk that way.

Of course, switching to a crappy latch can also be a way of controlling an overwhelming flow of milk...my little rug rat does this!
I tried this yesterday, and it didn't work; putting pressure on her tongue didn't cause her to move it back over her gums. She just sucked harder and then when my finger was all the way back, she used the back of her tongue to keep it there. Shortly thereafter, she began shrieking for milk.

I don't think she's doing it to control my letdown; the milk comes pretty quickly but when it does, she drinks as fast as she can. I just feel like she's hungry all the time, unless I offer her a bottle of pumped milk after she nurses; then she takes anywhere from 1 to 6 ounces and falls asleep, calm and happy.

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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#40 of 56 Old 05-19-2006, 03:01 PM
 
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Rynna! Does your WIC have LCs that you could see? Sounds like she's learned some funky tongue moves and that's got to be murder on your nipples!! I wish I had more tricks for you...someone posted about playing sticking out the tongue games with her when she's awake - will she play? Matthew still can't stick his tongue all the way out but he works so hard to mimic us, it's so cute!

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#41 of 56 Old 05-19-2006, 07:31 PM
 
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My older kids played that game from birth, but I don't think that Bella can see very well (a whole different issue). I've tried sticking my tongue out at her, though (I do this whenever I play with babies-- a habit, I suppose ); she doesn't seem to notice and prefers when I talk or sing.

I'll take her to LLL next week and see if I can get some help... crappy latches totally blow!

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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#42 of 56 Old 05-20-2006, 12:54 PM
 
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Jenny G, I'm in the low supply club - although I would be so grateful to be able to pump enough to make up half of Akiva's food. I may have gotten bad advice in the beginning. He wouldn't latch at first and got pretty jaundiced and I had to give him formula to keep him out of the NICU. Now he latches great but it's been over 2 weeks and I still can only pump about a teaspoonful. I'm seeing a lactation consultant who put me on mother's milk drops and fenugreek and I'm either pumping or nursing once an hour (I was actually getting more milk in the pump before I started all this, btw). But even the LC is starting to sound less than confident that I'll be able to do this.

I nurse him and then fill him up with formula from a cup. So I can't really leave the house because there's no portable way to feed him. So that's one reason why I haven't been to LLL, but the real reason is I'm afraid they'll yell at me for giving him formula.

Jenny G, I haven't heard of all the medications you're on but I'd be willing to try anything. I'm totally stressed out and distraught over this and I know that isn't helping my milk come down! Any advice from anyone would be welcome.
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So that's one reason why I haven't been to LLL, but the real reason is I'm afraid they'll yell at me for giving him formula.
Oh Citykid!! if they yell at you you call and tell me!! The most important thing is babys health. It does sound like you got some bad advise at the first, but do not give up! You can nurse him exculsively!! Go to your LLL meeting and get some support! There are many many moms who have supply issues due to bad doctoring/hosital info. The moms there will have some great ideas!

Hang in there and keep asking for help and information! We are here for you and quite a few have nursed lots of combined babies!
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#44 of 56 Old 05-20-2006, 09:09 PM
 
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CityKid-- Oatmeal really helps. The other thing is staying relaxed; I know it's difficult, but when you tense up you pump less. I've had sucess with Rescue Remedy in the past, just to help me calm down. A beer can help, too; beer is not only good for your supply (seriously!) but it can help you to relax, which aids your letdown reflex. Leave the baby on your breast for as long as you can manage; this is easier if you can nurse with a sling.

What kind of pump are you using?

I actually broke my Harmony yesterday; I'm really using it a lot more than handpumps are meant to be used. I know that I can get another one from WIC, but it's still functional so I'm still using it. It's very comfortable.

As to pump washing-- you really only need to wash a pump once a day. Breastmilk is not only fabulously healthy, but it has antibacterial properties. As long as nothing but milk is touching the parts of the pump that touch milk, and you cover the horn (the part that holds your boob) when you're not using it, it'll be fine. I wash mine at least once a day, but only more often than that if BooBah touches the pump, because she'll stick her fingers in there. I cover the horn with aluminum foil, though, and it's fine.

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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#45 of 56 Old 05-21-2006, 10:50 PM
 
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to all with bf issues. Reece literally nurses all day long. My poor nipples are so sore. it doesnt help that he erupts at least half of it back up all the time. He seems so miserable most of the time.
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#46 of 56 Old 05-22-2006, 01:03 AM
 
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:..it doesnt help that he erupts at least half of it back up all the time. He seems so miserable most of the time.
Isn't that frustrating? It's like, darnit, I just spent 3 hours making that and 30 minutes feeding it to you!
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#47 of 56 Old 05-22-2006, 10:20 AM
 
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to all with bf issues. Reece literally nurses all day long. My poor nipples are so sore. it doesnt help that he erupts at least half of it back up all the time. He seems so miserable most of the time.
: That's Bella, too. On the up side, they grow really quickly when they keep nursing like that. It's depressing to know why (they learn quickly that actively nursing holds the pain at bay), but Bella is my biggest 2 month old, despite being my smallest baby at birth.

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#48 of 56 Old 05-23-2006, 12:07 AM
 
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I know it makes me sad hes hurting. Hes a whopping 10 lbs 6 oz. We saw the ped. today and they dont want to ido anything for him because he is not failure to thrive. Rhen she tells me he should be eating less often to only feed him every 2-3 hours that he is comfort nursing. ummm OK, lets make him a failure to thrive baby and take away his comforting activity . Time to find a new dr.
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#49 of 56 Old 05-23-2006, 03:23 AM
 
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Jenny G, I'm in the low supply club - although I would be so grateful to be able to pump enough to make up half of Akiva's food. I may have gotten bad advice in the beginning. He wouldn't latch at first and got pretty jaundiced and I had to give him formula to keep him out of the NICU. Now he latches great but it's been over 2 weeks and I still can only pump about a teaspoonful. I'm seeing a lactation consultant who put me on mother's milk drops and fenugreek and I'm either pumping or nursing once an hour (I was actually getting more milk in the pump before I started all this, btw). But even the LC is starting to sound less than confident that I'll be able to do this.

I nurse him and then fill him up with formula from a cup. So I can't really leave the house because there's no portable way to feed him. So that's one reason why I haven't been to LLL, but the real reason is I'm afraid they'll yell at me for giving him formula.

Jenny G, I haven't heard of all the medications you're on but I'd be willing to try anything. I'm totally stressed out and distraught over this and I know that isn't helping my milk come down! Any advice from anyone would be welcome.
There is a LOT of info on the "low supply tribe" thread in the breastfeeding forum: I suggest reading the entire thing.

You MUST get your thyroid and your prolactin tested. I'm on both synthroid (a higher dose than earlier) and domperidone to try to increase prolactin. I'm also taking my metformin, which I should probably have taken throughout pregancy. The advice from the midwives, to REDUCE both the thyroid and metformin medications, was DEAD WRONG. The thryoid issue could have made me and the baby ill, in particular. Even if your "TSH" is still in the normal range. (I have both mild hypothyroidism and PCOS). When they test thyroid, ask them to test total T4, free T3, free T4, and TSH. Also, you can aim to be in the middle of the "normal" ranges. I tested "normal" which I then found out was the BOTTOM of the ranges, and increasing my meds anyway decreased my symptoms (I had hypothyroid symptoms other than lactation problems).

Oatmeal, tea, etc, .. none of that is going to help a seriously bad supply problem, I think. If your prolactin isn't working, you won't lactate. So see a real doctor and get that all checked out, first thing!!

Also, I assume you're using a double electric pump? If not, it's time to get one.

Don't feel bad- ALL YOU CAN DO is what you are doing. I was a freaking wreck about this initially, a total crying basket case. It's much better now, even though we still have to give her 1/2 formula. My milk supply has increased a bit, but also, she's eating more!!

One nurse said something to me that made me feel a lot better. "At least you're lucky enough to have formula". And you know what? She's right. If this were before formula days, it would be dextrose water. So at least they can get a suppliment that is WAY BETTER than what they used to get!

p.s. I'm handsfree pumping RIGHT NOW
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#50 of 56 Old 05-23-2006, 12:04 PM
 
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Originally Posted by kyle98sean02
I know it makes me sad hes hurting. Hes a whopping 10 lbs 6 oz. We saw the ped. today and they dont want to ido anything for him because he is not failure to thrive. Rhen she tells me he should be eating less often to only feed him every 2-3 hours that he is comfort nursing. ummm OK, lets make him a failure to thrive baby and take away his comforting activity . Time to find a new dr.
: ask for a referral to a pediatric gastroenterologist; your doc is totally *wrong* to think that the only problems reflux can cause in an infant involve FTT. when boobah had her pnuemogram done, the woman who set the test up said that she rarely sees the sick, ftt babies, especially among breastfeeders. the ones with the worst reflux are more likely to be the gigantic, 22 pound 4 month olds, even if they only weighed 6 pounds at birth. they still need help; all that acid can damage their little throats and set the stage for major feeding issues down the line. my nine year old niece had severe reflux as an infant (and was, in fact, ftt for a while) and to this day is picky about her food. she is very, very skinny (about the length of a ten, the waist of a 4 slim), and when she's ill or the slightest bit upset, she stops eating entirely. she's actually spent her entire life either anorexic or on the border, because she learned to associate eating with pain very early on. it's horribly depressing to look at her sometimes.

anyway; it's more common for a breastfed baby to be among the moose because even in the ten minutes it takes for them to toss it back, some of the milk is digested. bella is up to at least ten pounds now; it may not seem that big, but she was just 5lbs 10oz when she came home 8 weeks ago. she is, like I said, my biggest 2 month old despite being my smallest baby at birth; my kids generally take the scenic route when it comes to growth. right now, she's puking all over my shirt; as soon as that calms down, she'll try to nurse again. I don't feel at all badly about asking the doctor for zantac; if it means we have to do the pneumogram, we have to do it. hopefully he'll either just prescribe it or make her an appointment to see the p.g. so that *he* can prescribe it, because with two older children I really don't have the energy for a pneumogram. i'm debating about not discussing her puketastic apnea with him.... if i mention that, we'll almost definately have to do the test. I dunno yet, we'll see.

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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#51 of 56 Old 05-23-2006, 12:13 PM
 
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I just wanted to mention that everything Rynna says about reflux is spot on. Things can get much worse and more complicated to fix. If your ped is being clueless, then YES, find someone else who takes it seriously and can offer some real help. There's a thread on infant reflux right now in Life with a Babe, FWIW...
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#52 of 56 Old 05-23-2006, 05:52 PM
 
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i dont dare try to read all this-- brady gets fussy if i am online too much-- irony of ironies-- but i thoght i'd shoot out a couple things that helped me---

i'm alergic to echinecha, which means i'm alergic to mother's milk tea. great.

1. AVOCADO. B's ped prescribed me one a day, and since then, knock on wood, we've been great.

2. cranial sacral therapy-- i've heard it can help with reflux. B didnt have that, but he did pitch fits on the boob-- cry like mad, and pop on and off-- which can also be a sign of alergies, acording to our ped-- but the cs helped with that.

3. gripe water. when he's not nursing well, i dropper one or two drops on my boob, and he sucks like mad.

4. schnuggeling while nursing. if i try to do too much while hes nursing, he gets fussy-- but if i stroke him and talk to him, he's great.

HUGE HUGS TO ALL!!!!!
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#53 of 56 Old 05-24-2006, 04:28 PM
 
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How on earth did the human race survive if breastfeeding is this hard??
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#54 of 56 Old 05-24-2006, 04:59 PM
 
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How on earth did the human race survive if breastfeeding is this hard??
No kidding!! But in reality there are a lot of subtle things that can create stumbling blocks in bf. In traditional cultures where girls grow up seeing other women bf a lot of the hand skills and positioning tricks become second nature...they are very prepared to nurse a baby in a physically skilled way that most of us are not. Also, the are many, many ways that we mess with labor and birth that impact bf...difficult births, very long or very short labors, inductions, meds, c/s, assisted deliveries, early separation (even just breaking that skin to skin contact bet'n mom and babe for a few minutes before the first feed), bright lights, loud noises, not allowing/encouraging mom and babe to just take each other in and learn from each other, suctioning babe, etc, etc, etc.

Please know that I am NOT trying to blame anyone here for their difficulties (I've had plenty of my own and my birth was in a birth center that is very aware of practices to support optimal bf), but to make the comment that when we mess with birth we mess with bf too. There's a book that goes into great detail about this subject called "The Impact of Birth Practices on Breastfeeding."

Now, having said all that I realize that a lot of times interventions are necessary for the safety of mom or babe, and bf is also a learned skill so we can overcome most of the bumps in the road Thank goodness!

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#55 of 56 Old 05-25-2006, 02:13 AM
 
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No kidding!! But in reality there are a lot of subtle things that can create stumbling blocks in bf. In traditional cultures where girls grow up seeing other women bf a lot of the hand skills and positioning tricks become second nature...they are very prepared to nurse a baby in a physically skilled way that most of us are not. Also, the are many, many ways that we mess with labor and birth that impact bf...difficult births, very long or very short labors, inductions, meds, c/s, assisted deliveries, early separation (even just breaking that skin to skin contact bet'n mom and babe for a few minutes before the first feed), bright lights, loud noises, not allowing/encouraging mom and babe to just take each other in and learn from each other, suctioning babe, etc, etc, etc.

Please know that I am NOT trying to blame anyone here for their difficulties (I've had plenty of my own and my birth was in a birth center that is very aware of practices to support optimal bf), but to make the comment that when we mess with birth we mess with bf too. There's a book that goes into great detail about this subject called "The Impact of Birth Practices on Breastfeeding."

Now, having said all that I realize that a lot of times interventions are necessary for the safety of mom or babe, and bf is also a learned skill so we can overcome most of the bumps in the road Thank goodness!
:

I've been thinking about this recently. I think I'd be doing much better if my LC could have come and lived with me for 3 days or so and help me get dd (when she was born) and ds latched on every time. I'd probably have it by now! But as it is, most of us are doing this by ourselves, with no day to day help, kwim? And no one in my family breastfed. I have friends who did, but they struggled in the beginning, too. Oh well.
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BeanBean and I got off to a rocky start nursing; his birth was very, very difficult. BooBah was born by emergency c-section, but she was the "latest" of my babies (39w1d) and the surgery was easy, fast, and uneventful; nursing her was a breeze. Bella's birth was between BooBah's and BeanBeans as far as difficulty and recovery, but nursing her has been so difficult. I think that it may have to do with her being a bit earlier than the other two, as well as the tongue tie; she just seemed so undercooked.

Which makes me wonder if it doesn't have a lot to do with gestational age. Bella wasn't that early, but 50 years ago she may have been thought of as premature. I don't know; what I do know is that my "oldest" baby was by far the easiest to nurse.

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
eilonwy is offline  
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