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A couple women have told me that they couldn't nurse because they had Cesarians. I had a C, but had little trouble nursing, so I am confused by this. I'm wondering if it is common to have trouble nursing because of a C-sec, and, if so, why. Thanks for helping me understand.
 

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I had a c/s and we're still nursing at 7mo but we had hell for about the first 4 months. dd wasn't exclusively bf until 16 weeks. dd roomed in with me in the hospital from 5 hours old. But that was a bit of a joke at times because I couldn't move and wasn't allowed out of bed for 48 hours - was tied to IV and catheter. So at times I could see my awake newborn rooting around but couldn't reach the call button to call the nurse, it kept falling under the bed. When the nurse did appear, my dd had gone back to sleep... I was groggy from the pain meds, there was no clock, couldn't find my watch... at one stage the nurses put a chart for timing feeds on the bedside table - but I couldn't reach it and I had no pen. So they'd come in and ask me when dd had fed and I had no idea. dd was born Fri morning and the LCs didn't work on the weekends. It was worse after we got home cause I couldn't get out of bed unassisted. It turned out they'd trapped a nerve in my sutures so the pain I was having was on the extreme end but I didn't know that - everyone told me I'd be in pain.... It was only after about 3 weeks when it wasn't getting better that I realised something else was wrong.<br><br>
So after the rotten start we had, I can understand women who say they couldn't BF after a c/s. They probably mean that the c/s caused them many nursing management problems and that without intensive support, bf failed. My dh had 2 weeks off work and if he hadn't been at home helping me, I doubt I could have continued BF. I literally couldn't move.
 

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Just having a c-section is not reason enough, but it can make things harder.<br><br>
If the due date was wrong or the doctor wanted to take the baby early (I am amazed at how many doctors do that!) or the baby is premature, they may not have good sucking relexes yet.<br><br>
If the recovery is difficult the mom may have trouble holding the baby, it may be painful, and nursing very frequently can be physically overwhelming to an exhausted post-op mom.<br><br>
Hospital staff, ITA, is the biggest obstacle! They may give pacifiers and bottles without mom's consent, to "let her rest" and she may not be informed that artificial nipples interfere with latching, or that formula supplements interfere with milk supply.If she is not informed, she may welcome this "help" if she is in pain or exhausted.<br><br>
Pain relief mom takes may sometimes make baby sleepy, too sleepy to nurse often enough.<br><br>
If you ask each woman, you may get a different answer.
 

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Yes, I think hospitals and their staff can really affect things. I had a c-section for my baby boy's delivery and within a couple of hours of my section, the nurses were putting my baby at my breast. I was really out of it because of the drugs but they put the baby at my breast every 2 hours and literally manipulated my nipples and put them in the baby's mouth. I was so overwhelmed at the time but now I realize it was for the best because the baby learned how to suck and was nursing on his own by the end of the second day. If the staff hadn't helped me I am sure it would have been much tougher on me.
 

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i have had three sections and have nursed successfully each time and still nursing my third 15 mos later....as far as a section *causing* problems from a physical standpoint that is just not so... lactating occurrs from a hormonal response of the absence of a placenta. so whether your placenta came out during a vaginal birth or a section it does not matter. you breasts will respond to the absence of that placenta...your breast/body don't know whether the placenta was removed in a vaginal manner or abdominal manner, all it knows is that it is no longer there and it's time to make milk. now women vary greatly in the time it takes for their milk to come in but that is NOT dependant on whether she had a vaginal birth or a section. my milk came in on the second or third day after my first and the very next day with both of my other two...some women take as long as 5 days which is as normal and acceptable as the next day. i too don't get why women think that the act of a cesarean will inhibit the physical ability to produce milk...anyway, that is what i tell moms who think they won't be able to nurse if/since they had a section.
 

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I had a c-sec and did have trouble, but not really due to the c-sec. I was able to nurse within about 30-40 min of delivery, however, I had flat nipples and it was very difficult. He could not get latched on. During my hospital stay the LC's tried very hard to get it to work for me, but the best way was to pump to them to come out, then nurse. My milk didn't come in till day 5 and he had lost too much weight the doc said he had to have some formula before he left the hospital. Of course I was VERY upset by this, but didn't want to be starving my baby either!! So we gave him formula and the little bit of colustrum I had in a bottle. I thought for sure bf was over. But 5 days later when my milk came in, he took to it like a champ! Now we've been bf'ing for almost 9 months!!!<br><br>
Oh, also we got thrush, they say probably from the antibotics with the c-sec.
 

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I had a c-section and had the most terrible time with bfing. MY lactation consultant said that she sees more problems with c-section mamas than vaginal births. FIrst, I didnt see ds until he was 3 hours old. Then, I was soooo out of it, I couldnt really concentrate. Then, he didnt latch....at all. I was so emotional about it and cried my entire hospital stay ( yes, I had PPD). He was so lethargic, and slept constantly. My LC said it was a nuerogical defense mechanism on his part. The labor and delivery was so traumatic ( 22 1/2 hours of labor and then a c-sect) that he was coping by shutting down and staying asleep. It makes total sense to me. ANyways......I was totally stubborn, and I finger fed him pumped milk ( My milk was in almost immediately, and I never got engorged...never have, and I dont feel letdown...ever...) and on his 14th day, he decided to stop fighting me and latched. We still had problems into the 4th month or so....reflux, and always popping on and off. But, we are a success story. Ds is now 18 months old and nursing more than ever!!LOL I swear, he nurses more than he did as a newborn!!<br><br>
But, I do think that having a csection can hurt things when it comes to bfing.<br>
edited to add : That he got thrush too from the antibiotics given during labor cuz my water had been broken for almost 24 hours (ugh total intervention birth, grrrr) and post op antiobiotics
 

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I had sections with both of my children and I had no trouble when it came time to nurse them. With ds I had general anesthesia and with dd I had an epidural. I, of course got to feed her right away while ds waited till the general wore off. I had more trouble changing diapers the first week than I did nursing. Sitting up to change those little behinds was painful. I was even able to feed my dd though I had a bad infection in the top of my incision. I just made sure to hold her so that she was not putting pressure on my stomach.<br><br>
Ginger
 

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Wanted to say that I, too, had no problem nursing after my c/s. In fact, the biggest impediment was (sadly) the LC at the hospital. She kept insisting that I use a pillow to hold DS in order to nurse, without even asking (or looking at me to see) if it was necessary. It wasn't. My incision did not hurt. It hurt more when she shoved a pillow into my belly.<br><br>
Of course, this is the same woman who claimed my nipples were inverted (they are not - not even close - don't know whose breasts she was looking at), and tried to get me to use a [forgot the word - that fake nipple thing you put over your own so that the babe can nurse - it's supposed to help draw your own nipple out - sorry, just can't remember the proper term right now] . Basically, she was an unasked-for worthless hindrance who billed insurance for time she didn't even spend w/me or DS.<br><br>
Oh, she also suggested I give DS formula b/c my milk was "taking so long to come in". Ummmm....I was wretchedly engorged the third day after DS was born....seems pretty normal to me<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/rolleyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="rolleyes">:<br><br>
So, in conclusion, the only way the c/s negatively affected our nursing was to somehow trigger the LC from hell to come "help" us (as I mentioned before, we had no problems and did not request her dubitable "assistance").<br><br><br>
If I thought it would do any good, I'd write a letter to the hospital. But I feel confident it would be a big waste of my (diminishing) brain power.
 

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my son was born by csection in feb '99, he weaned himself right before his 4th bday. he was 4 hours old before i saw him. i was under general anesthesia & very out of it the first night. my BIL intercepted a nurse who was headed to joe's bassinet with a bottle... GRR!~ & my BEST FRIEND who had nursed her 3 kids came to the hospital that evening to latch joe on. she basically did it all for me, i was really zonked. but the next day was fine, joe did great. the nurse said my colostrum was so rich~ liquid gold, she called it.<br><br>
if not for my bil & friend, who knows.
 

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My first baby was born surgically. After 36 hours of labor, finally, morphine to rest, then pitocin. No food or drink for me the entire time.<br><br>
I dilated to 9 cms, they "let me" push, for an hour. Decided it had been over 24 hours since water broke, my time was up. They called it CPD, but I know that wasn't true.<br><br>
( I know now I shouldn't have had her in the hosp as I do not trust drs, but I did not know about homebirth.)<br><br><br>
After I was stapled together and in recovery, my dh told me to nurse. I was so tired, I forgot I wanted to do that. Well, dd latched right on and did a great job, and nursed aoubt every 2 hours for 2 yrs.<br><br>
Since I was in the hosp for 3 more days, they knew I was their puppet and scared me into giving her an oz of sugar water. I was ignorant, this was 18 yrs ago. It mostly dribbled down her front. Useless.<br><br>
When we got home she would nurse for 45 mins, take a 15 min break, fussing and being walked by dh, then nurse again. She was born 10 lbs and doubled her weight in short order.<br><br>
(next 2 babies, born at home VBAC!)
 

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i had a c section and din't even try to nurse dd until almost 6 hours later. I was TOO out of it and tired to even want to. But we got some help from the LC and were off to a great start.<br><br>
I did have a problem with my milk supply almost disappearing when I went back to wrok at 8 wks. I very firmly believe it was because I was so exhausted from recovering from the csection for weeks, and then took too much on when I did go back to work.<br><br>
But good news is that dd is nursing well now at 10 months and we are happy with the relationship.
 

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My twins were born via c-section seven months ago, and have been exclusively breastfed (though we are now starting to introduce solids). I definitely think the c-section made nursing harder--although perhaps it was the epidural more than the c-section itself. My babies were never separated from me, and I was awake the whole time. . . but after the c-section was over, my breasts were still completely numb for a couple of hours (IMO, they gave me way too many drugs). I wasn't interested in nursing the way that I had thought I would be. It was very hard to not be able to move. When my babies would cry, I would want someone to take them from me because I thought others would be better at comforting them since I was so trapped physically. Luckily, I was dedicated enough to breastfeeding that I still persisted and kept putting my babies to breast even though they weren't really interested and it all felt so awkward. It took several weeks for me to really feel comfortable nursing.<br><br>
I feel sad when people on the street tell me that they couldn't nurse b/c they had a c-section, but I definitely understand where they're coming from. Had I not been so dedicated to bf, I certainly would have quit in the early weeks.<br><br>
Lex
 

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I only had minor problems getting started--the staff was very helpful and supportive, and bfing really helped me get over some of the disappointment of the cesarean delivery. It was hard to find the right hold in the hospital, though.
 
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