Baby won't stay latched and fusses - what to do?

29/05/2011 at 12:02
Hello all,

I had my ds on Monday and we have been bf since then. I have found it really difficult getting the latch right. I feel I am better now though still not great. I have large breasts (J cup) and small flat nipples. The midwives have been good in helping me but I still struggle at times. This afternoon I have been at my wits end with ds. He woke up so I tried to feed him about 12.30. Despite trying several positions he would not latch or stay latched onto my left breast. So I tried him on the right (tho that was the one he had last fed from). Same problem on that side. Would latch and suck only a few times before getting really impatient clawing at the breast and pulling away and crying... Well this went on for well over an hour. In all that time I reckon he may have fed for only up to 10 mins. I could see he was very tired and still very hungry so in desperation I gave him a bottle of formula.

He is now sleeping but I'm dreading him waking up and struggling to feed again. He normally feeds every 1-2 hours for 5-20 mins at a time. I'm worried now that I'm not producing enough milk. So I just expressed on the left side as it's kind of missed a feed and got hardly anything! Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated. I just want to do the best for my ds and it was heartbreaking this afternoon seeing him so hungry and not being able to get him to feed from me :cry:
29/05/2011 at 12:25
You are doing a great job and this is quite normal especially as your milk has not long come in and will still be adjusting to baby.
It could be that your let down reflex is a bit fast for baby at the moment so he pulls off. I also had this problem in the first few weeks and was told it might help to hand express a little off before latching baby on.
Also don't worry about not getting much milk when you express, its quite normal to only get 1 or 2oz of milk even if your boobs feel full. Baby is the best one at getting the milk.
In the early days i found the easiest position to breast feed was laying on my side in bed and i could relax more like this.
Breast feeding is really difficult in the first few weeks and things should settle and your milk flow adjust. It wont hurt to give baby the occasional bottle of formula if you need to. Best of luck hope things settle soon xx
30/05/2011 at 05:08
Dont stress about what is being expressed, baby is much better at getting milk and at the moment your body is still adjusting. I also have big boobs and small flat nipples, I found squeezing the breast between my thumb and forefinger when she was latching really helped because it wasn't like she was trying to suck a beach ball. You are doing a great job try to stay calm, you will both get the hang of it. If you are near a breast feeding group go along, they are really helpful with practicality and confidence. I really struggled and my daughter had to have formula here and there but she is now solely breast fed at 6 months (obviously other than the weaning )
12/06/2011 at 03:53
Hi hon,
Congratulations for breastfeeding and making it so far - it is really hard, stressful and trying in the beginning so please be very proud of yourself.
Every baby is different but I have learnt that my little boy Daniel who's 11 wks, tends to fuss and hit me if he has a wind so you might try burping? Also it might be that you have a fast let down do perhaps try reclining so the gravity is less and the milk Doesnt flow as fast.
Keep going hon! What got me through was just to take it feed by feed and then day by day.
Hugs x x
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