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<p>They've been pretty much 100% nursing since last Friday. I started on Thursday and they were off all formula by Friday and off all supplemented breastmilk by bottle by Saturday. Which is great, although I am stressed out that they're getting enough. I'm taking them in for a weight check tomorrow morning. They had a little trouble transitioning from formula to breastmilk poop, oddly enough, but that seems to have straightened itself out. I'm actually not even pumping anymore, because they want to nurse constantly and I figure that's more efficient than any pump could be.</p>
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<p>However... I hurt so badly. I don't see cracks or blood but I feel like the babies are turning my nipples into hamburger. Molly sucks like a hoover. I have been keeping her on the right side because that hurt the most and she seems to do the least damage. Usually it hurts at the beginning of the feeding and gets better. Matthew does some weird thing with his tongue and tends to slide off the nipple. I keep trying to unlatch him and try again to get a good latch, but it hurts so badly the whole time. I've actually thought maybe I should pump and bottle feed and give myself time to heal, but that seems counterproductive. I have nipple shields, but I don't know that they would help. And I can't remember how much pain is normal.</p>
 

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It may very well be that they picked up some bad suckling habits from the bottles. Don't feel bad about that, please-- I didn't say it to make you feel bad. But it may be that they need some time to work on a better latch, if they've been bottlefeeding for their first few weeks. If it's that, it's probably something that will work itself out as they gain a bit more experience at the breast. Because it might be that, I wouldn't pump and bottle feed to get a break from the pain-- I know it's easy for me to go saying that, since I'm not the one with ground round for nipples, but I really think it might make it worse. My kids were FAMOUS for their tendency toward nipple confusion and nipple preference and so I'm really tuned in to those kind of problems.<br><br>
Nipple shields are a real pain in the neck to wean from, from what I recall. I might try it though if I were you, if you feel like you're at the end of your tolerance. I would try that before I'd go to bottles.<br><br>
Otherwise-- have they been checked for tongue-tie?<br><br>
I remember only minimal pain in the early weeks, with my twins, but a LOT with DD1. She was my tongue-tied baby.<br><br>
If you do discover their weight gain isn't what it should be, make sure and do a before-and-after weight check while you're there, if you can get some cooperation from your health care provider-- I found those really reassuring. If they're transferring milk, then you can relax on a lot of counts and give it more time.<br><br>
Have I mentioned that I think you're doing an awesome job, after all you've been through, to have them nursing again so soon. I am deeply in admiration of you, and I hope that you get some relief soon. I'll be thinking of you.<br>
 
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If he's sliding off the nipple, his latch is too shallow, hence the pain. Work on getting a deeper latch, and I second the tongue-tie question as that "falling off" thing was the big tip-off for me with DD2's tie. We did end up using a nipple shield to work on the deeper latch (and bottle feeding as part of the therapy, as well), so I wouldn't necessarily discount them as tools in your bag to help get things on the right path.<br><br>
FWIW, weaning off the nipple shield for both babies was way, WAY easier than getting them to nurse correctly in the first place, so IMO it's well worth it IF that's the tool you need to help them get the hang of things.<br><br>
Also, if you don't have any of those gel soothies, GET SOME! Oh they are heaven, and they may help you figure out if your nipples are regular, "something is sucking on this all day long and that hurts" growing pains or "the latch isn't right and there's actual nipple damage" pain.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
<p>Thanks. <span><img alt="redface.gif" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/redface.gif"> I am feeling a little less desperate. It's completely counterintuitive, but instead of sticking a boob in their mouth as soon as they stir, I've been trying to keep them to every 2 1/2-3 hours. It seems to really be helping to give my nipples a chance to heal and also makes me much less stabby because there's not someone sucking on me 23 out of 24 hours a day.</span></p>
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<p><span>Molly seems to be doing fine. She's even eased up on her sucking. With Matthew, I think the trick is just to correct latch issues right away. When they were on bottles, he would suck the nipple in half or do this weird thing where the nipple ended up inverted. So I suppose it should be no great shock that he is having latch issues.</span></p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
<p>I have an appointment with an LC tomorrow at 1.  I don't think he's tongue tied, but I will definitely have her check.</p>
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<p>Thanks everyone. <3</p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>annettemarie</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1285678/the-babies-are-nursing-but-owie#post_16119096"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>I have an appointment with an LC tomorrow at 1.  I don't think he's tongue tied, but I will definitely have her check.</p>
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<p>Thanks everyone. <3</p>
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<br><br><p>this is all super news!  well, except the <span style="font-family:'times new roman';"><span style="font-size:12pt;">excruciating</span></span> pain, of course!</p>
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<p>Nursing hurt more than I thought it would w my guy (my only).  At about 5 days pp my friend gave me lansinoh and it was soooooooo comforting.  2 weeks and we were all good - and that was a singleton home birth with none of the craziness you all have been through!  I second Llyra's eloquent expression of admiration!</p>
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<p>Not sure what meds you are on, but do remember that pain relievers like ibuprofen or acetominophen can help too, if you can take them.</p>
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<p>Hang in there - one feed at a time.  It will get easier.  <span><img alt="hug2.gif" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/hug2.gif">  It has too - the babies are growing and you will have LC help, and you are already exclusively breastfeeding!  You Rock!</span> <span><img alt="bow.gif" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/bow.gif"></span></p>
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<p>Also, your babies are yummily adorable!</p>
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I've heard so many times, from mamas of boy/girl twins-- "oh, DD nursed so well, we had such an easy time, but DS had a really hard time!" That was our story, as well. I think boys just struggle more than girls, in the early months, in general.<br><br>
Glad you're going to get some help. Our LC is a dream, and I was so grateful for her in those first two months.
 

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The first three weeks it really hurt. I was on paracetamol and those homeopathic drops around the clock. And I still screamed out in pain sometimes, especially in the beginning of a feed. Let-down certainly hurt, and the nipples got quite chafed. I used Lansinoh on them after every feed for at least three weeks, and for the first week at least, let them air dry (the bra hurt too much to wear). Nothing was wrong with the latch, DD just fed all the time, and my nipples needed to get used to it etc. (We saw an LC for supply issues) Then it just suddenly got better.
 

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<p>Well, I've only been doing the mom thing for 8 weeks, but I've found that the pain seems to come in waves. My daughter has been a champion nurser from the beginning, but boy, have I had some painful days! However, I've just kept nursing through it, and the pain tends to go away, so long as I'm making sure that her latch is good. Honestly, I'm not sure that taking a break from nursing by bottle feeding would be all that helpful. I'd imagine that the pain will subside in a few days. I've actually suspected that I have a nipple vasospasm, so I wonder if that could be the issue with you. It might be helpful to get some heat on your nipples in between feeds because this eases the pain a bit. Anyhow, I'm not sure if that's helpful, but good luck and kudos for sticking with it! :)</p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
<p>A couple of updates.</p>
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<p>First, the babies are doing wonderfully! They've both regained their birthweight plus a little bit extra (as of last Friday they hadn't) and are really thriving on breastmilk. I know it sounds silly, after successfully nursing four other children, but I was really stressed out about it.</p>
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<p>The LC at the WIC office was wonderful. She weighed them each before and after a feed. Molly took in 2.5 ounces and Matthew took in 2.1!</p>
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<p>She also checked out the boychild. He's not tongue tied BUT he does have a bad habit of flicking his tongue up instead of under, so I think it will just be a matter of patience and correcting bad habits. She also gave me some suck training stuff to try with him.</p>
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<p>I also switched from the Earth Mama Angel Baby Nipple Butter to Lansinoh. I like the EMAB better, but I'll admit the Lansinoh seems to be working more effectively.</p>
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<p>I can't thank you enough for all the cheerleading. This has been so outside the realm of what I wanted or expected and I honestly don't think I would be doing nearly so well without all the support, both online and IRL.</p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>annettemarie</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1285678/the-babies-are-nursing-but-owie#post_16121644"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br>
 <strong>Molly took in 2.5 ounces and Matthew took in 2.1!</strong></div>
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<p>WOW!  That's awesome!  And just a little bit amazing - that's a lovely amount of milk <span><img alt="love.gif" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/love.gif">  Again, you rock!</span></p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
<p>The babies are just wonderful.</p>
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<p>I got good news and bad news today.</p>
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<p>The good news is I was reading on a peripartum cardiomyopathy board and learned that moms who are breastfeeding tend to recover more quickly from this than moms who don't. So yay!</p>
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<p>The bad news is that I had bloodwork done yesterday and my BNP is still somewhat elevated, so I can't go off the diuretics yet. I am wondering if this could possibly have anything to do with the galactologues I was taking (fenugreek, blessed thistle, and milk thistle). I am trying to wean off everything but the milk thistle, which I am taking to help with my PUPPPS rash. The nurse said something about breastfeeding should be acting a diuretic as well, but I was too taken by surprise to ask more questions. I go back for more bloodwork next week and I see the cardiologist as well. Hopefully I will get good news for Christmas.</p>
 
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