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Help! How do I help a friend with a bad latch?

413 Views 3 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Jennifer-Juniper
A friend of mine from work just delivered a baby girl a week ago. She's breastfeeding, but having a terrible time with it apparently. A mutual friend said she was having a rough time with sore nipples at first, but she just emailed me and asked for help because she said that her right nipple is very scabbed and that "it kills me every time I feed her."

She also is worried she's not producing enough milk, which I know is a common worry from first time moms (me included and I have OAL/oversupply). She said when she pumps she's only getting an ounce, so she's supplementing with formula. I'm going to suggest she stop pumping for now and supplementing with formula, because it can hurt her supply.

I am so worried that she'll give up, because she was not keen on BF to begin with, but was willing to try because it was very important to her mom, MIL, sisters, friends, etc. I gave her my home email and phone # and told her if she needed advice or an opinion other than that of her family's, to get in touch. Since she is reaching out to me, I want to help her be successful. The problem is, I never had any latch issues and I'm not sure where to start.

So, please everyone, what advice would you give? We're really just work friends, so I don't know how an offer to come to her house to help would go over with her. Also, we live about an hour from the city (although we both delivered there), so I'm not sure if I would suggest an LC, if she'd go for that.

I don't want her to give up! Help!

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Get her to get someone who can come and see her nurse- LLL. Also, if hte tips of her nipples get white and painful, it may be Raynauds, in which case taking a hairdryer to them and nursing in a warm room may help (that was my case- vit B6 was good too). Definitely recomend that she not supplement with formula (and just for the record- pumping an ounce at 1 wk pp is amazing!!!- i was gettin half if i was lucky!!). Blessed Thistle and Fenugreek (sp?) are options to help with supply too (i took the max. dose of blessed thistle for a few weeks and it really helped)

The best advice I ever got (after making sure hte latch was right and i wasn't causeing further pain/damage) was "that it's going to hurt"....made me stop waiting for a miracle feed and just make it through the pain of one feeding at a time. Things were a bit better by the 4th week, but the 6th was magical- it takes time, and a lot of it!

Make sure babe's lips are flanged out, not tucked in. That's all i can think of right now....i wish her luck and comfort soon!!

(She's not trying to nurse descreetly or anything is she?? when i tried that s**t hit the fan and i ended up with horribly sore nips...i had to see him to know what was going on)
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Originally Posted by Jennifer-Juniper
She said when she pumps she's only getting an ounce, so she's supplementing with formula.
When I had my 1st baby I pumped for a bit, too...and never got much!! I mean it would take like an hour to get a half ounce, but there was MORE than enough milk!! Sometimes babies are just so much more efficiant, so she shouldn't look at that as a reason to believe she has an insufficiant milk supply. I do hope she gets it worked out, after the initial "hurdles" BF is such a joy, noone should miss out on it, especially babies!!
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Thanks for the suggestions. I'm in the process of composing long email to her, with some good links to sites like kellymom, etc. It's just that even though early breastfeeding was challenging, I didn't have any latch issues, had very little soreness, was very lucky, I know, so I was unsure what to suggest.
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