Here is a follow up:
My boy is now six weeks and I want to share the ongoing story. Maybe it will help someone?
At three weeks he was ONLY 6 lbs 6 oz. At this point, my pediatrician insisted that I supplement with formula. I cried and told him that would be like giving him Twinkies. This after, sleep deprived me, nursed him 24-7 for the first three weeks of his life. My nipples hurt so much that I would tell my husband that they felt like they had a knife sliced through them. I think I had nipple blanching or vasospasm? They would turn white after nursing and looked/felt like they were run over by a truck.
Hence, the day after the three week pediatrician visit, I hired a lactation consultant. She told me that my son had "tongue tie". I had never heard of this and found out that it is when one has a tight frenulum under the tongue (for more look at: http://www.kellymom.com/babyconcerns...onguetie.html)
. Because of his tongue, my poor baby wasn't able to productively drink my milk.
She also told me to feed the supplement through "lact aid". Lact Aid is like a baggy attached to a thin straw which you tape to the breast. The baby drinks from the straw and the breast. This way there is no nipple confusion and the breasts are stimulated to deliver and produce more milk.
Also, we rented a pump which I used often after feedings (if my breasts weren't too sore).
Between Lact Aid, the pump, and sore nipples, BF was hard and miserable. I longed for it to be the warm connective experience I thought it would be.
We had another pediatrician appointment the following week (to check his weight) and the doc. confirmed the LC's diagnosis. He said that my baby had a slight tongue tie and didn't know if a specialist would clip it. He also said this was not his expertise.
Also, my boy gained a lb due to the formula supplement through Lact Aid.
Meanwhile, the LC recommended a pediatric surgeon who was doing research on tongue tie. We chose her. She did an ultra sound to see how he drank. Then she clipped both the lower frenulum (tongue tie) and upper one (for a nice story and info. see: http://www.lalecheleague.org/NB/NBSepOct00p161.html)
. I didn't know anything about the upper frenulum. As it turns out, the doctor said the upper frenulum would later cause a gap in his two front teeth that could not be corrected with braces.
The procedure was simple. Five minutes after the cuts, my boy was drinking at my breast. Also, my nipples no longer hurt when he sucks!! Now, I am trying to increase my milk and wean him from Lact Aid.
So far it looks like the problem is solved.
I wanted to share this story because I know that many pediatricians are not familiar with BF difficulties due to tongue tie. They wont look for it or recommend that it is clipped. I can now say from experience that taking care of the tongue tie makes a big difference.
Moreover, as a foot note, as a Greek American I discovered that in the old days Greek women would clip the baby's frenulum or push down on it. The old generation was wise.