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Old 05-09-2011, 08:01 AM   #1
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bfing a squirmy and fussy newborn - HELP!

My DD is 18 days old today. I've been bfing her since day 1 and she was latching on poorly at first and hurting me in the hospital but i didn't know she was doing anything wrong so i ended up with some cracking and bleeding and a lot of raw soreness the first week and half. the hospital LC showed me how to watch for her latch and helped me get her to latch on correctly so that helped some. the first week and a half or so i was in agony and cried every time i had to feed her. even though her latches were better, my nipples had not healed.

my nipples are healing now. still somewhat sore but really only hurts some when she latches, not when she's drinking.

but here's my real problem: she fights me when its time for her to eat. hands swatting at my nipple, screaming, puts her hands in her mouth when i'm trying to bring my breast to her... its awful. i'm currently using the cross-cradle hold bc i can hold her neck to bring her to the nipple with this hold. i've tried using the cradle, clutch and side lying position and she screams even louder when i put her in those positions. i eventually am able to get my nipple in her mouth and she's latching on fairly well but it is REALLY hard to unlatch her and relatch her unless shes just really latched on poorly. she's gaining good weight and has normal diapers so i'm not too worried that she's not getting enough plus i can hear and see her drinking. she stays on once she's latched but getting her latched is just awful. it has brought me to screaming tears many times and i do not want to yell at my sweet baby : (

has anyone else had this issue? she's a squirmy baby anyway - was in the womb too! so that certainly has a lot to do with this. its just so hard because i am committed to breastfeeding her but when i pump and give her the bottle she is so much more chill and seems to enjoy it more and that makes me tempted to give up completely because it is stressing us both out.

any advice or words of encouragement is MUCH appreciated.

oh and this is at every feeding. it is worst for the bedtime feeding (930) and the early morning (630) but its pretty consistent for every feeding. and its whether shes already awake and crying bc shes hungry or i wake her to feed her (i feed her every 3 hours).

Last edited by arhodes728; 05-09-2011 at 08:04 AM.
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Old 05-09-2011, 08:17 AM   #2
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Re: bfing a squirmy and fussy newborn - HELP!

Does she mind being swaddled? You can try to swaddle her before feedings, then you don't have to worry about her hands. But at this age, their hands aren't really under their control yet, so just because she's pushing you away doesn't mean she doesn't want to nurse. She might want the opposite- she's hungry, and is trying to get food, and is flailing around because she's mad.

Also, it sounds like you are feeding her on a schedule, if you feed her a little more often, she may not be as worked up when you go to feed. GL!
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Old 05-09-2011, 08:40 AM   #3
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Re: bfing a squirmy and fussy newborn - HELP!

Yup she's TOO hungry, feed her more often. Schedules with newborns are, by my opinion, useless. Especially when its from someone else's experience. My DD fed every 1-2 hours for the first 6 weeks, It was exhausting but she was a grazer and would get too hungry, fuss to much and end up with BAD gas
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Old 05-09-2011, 08:41 AM   #4
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Re: bfing a squirmy and fussy newborn - HELP!

I would try to feed her every 2 hrs thats what I did with all 4 of my kids, it will help so she won't be so worked up when she feed's. When I went 3 hrs every once in awhile with my DD she screamed and fussed like yours. So I just made sure to wake her before it was that long between feeding's. GL
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Old 05-09-2011, 09:48 AM   #5
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Re: bfing a squirmy and fussy newborn - HELP!

Mine was like that. She still gets that way sometimes,too. I will have to hold her hands and she also has a shallow latch that I have to fix often.
Yes she is also a grazer, and will only sometimes eat a huge meal.
I spent the first few weeks just constantly feeding her. It is so much better. And she will get excited (at 6 weeks) when she sees my nipple. Its so cute.
Keep going its so worth it. That first month is a learning period for you both.
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:42 AM   #6
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I also agree with feeding more often. Schedules with newborns are counter productive. Only go beyond 2 hours overnight. Also get rid of the bottle until you have the breast feeding figured out. The bottle CAN (not always) sabotage the breastfeeding relationship. Good luck and try and relax and just keep putting lo to breast.
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Old 05-09-2011, 11:12 AM   #7
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Re: bfing a squirmy and fussy newborn - HELP!

1st thing first DITCH the bottle... at least for a few more weeks. My DS had the exact same issue and it got worse after he had a bottle. Babies dont have to work as hard to get milk from the bottle. Every time I would try to nurse him it was a nightmare to get him to latch on. What worked for me 1. Ditch the bottle 2. nurse more frequently 3. LOTS of patience. In a few weeks you will both be pros
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Old 05-09-2011, 01:33 PM   #8
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Re: bfing a squirmy and fussy newborn - HELP!

Ok I agree with the others...it sounds to me like she's just very hungry...she doesn't have good control and she smells ur scent and goes crazy... she's prolly not meaning to push u away...but babies almost by instinct use their hands to push into breast to try and bring milk down...kinda like u see puppies do(<--sorry for puppy comparison lol)...when her hands end up in her mouth its bc she's trying to get the breast to her mouth and the hands just get there first...my DD did this.

So first things first...calllmm down...I know that's easier said than done but she can feel how upset u are and she's upset bc she's hungry ....this is all new to her too...she's used to having all her food come down a tube to her automatically in the womb. So be calm for both of u!!!

Second....get rid of bottle for now...it can give her nipple confusion and that will only make this worse...also eating from bottles can make babies lazy eaters...their latch can lose strength and they can get upset about having to work hard to breastfeed when it comes so easy from a bottle. If u do gotta use bottles please invest in breastflow type bottles...the nipple is shaped more like real breast and they make baby not just have to use suction to get milk but suction and compression just like they do when they breastfeed.

As far as squirming..I agree swaddling may help or once u start feeding more often than 3 hours she may not be so desperate to eat...I had to feed my DD every hour and a half...I was like constantly feeding her the first few months...also remember they also need u for comfort too

Just stay with it...I know people always say this but its so rewarding. I did NOT have an easy time breastfeeding so trust me this is coming from someone who really understands!!! Im so glad I stuck with it!!! Pm me if u need to talk and vent!!!

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Old 05-10-2011, 06:49 AM   #9
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Re: bfing a squirmy and fussy newborn - HELP!

My DS squirms because my letdown is too fast and strong, how is yours? My son is now 6 weeks and will still squirm quite a bit, but my milk supply has not yet adjusted. My breastfeeding support group assures me that around 12 weeks things will settle down and DS will be happier at the breast. I understand how frustrating this can be, but hang in there!
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Old 05-10-2011, 06:38 PM   #10
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Re: bfing a squirmy and fussy newborn - HELP!

thanks for your responses, moms.

i tried feeding her more often, in fact like on and off all afternoon today - nothing changed. she squirms and screams whether she's just eaten or not. her latch looks right and i've tried relatching her many times and it doesn't change anything. i don't know if my letdown is too strong. how would i know this? it doesn't seem to be a problem. i stopped pumping too.

i'm just at my wit's end with it. i know breastfeeding is best, but i really don't like it. i have tried not to be stressed but it is driving me to screaming tears multiple times a day. i know that's not good for her or me. i don't feel a bond with her when i nurse her. i feel way more at ease and bonded with her with a bottle because she's calm and i know she's getting enough.

with that said, i'm going to talk with my husband and pray over this some but i'm really considering switching to formula. and please - no judgement. i already struggle with guilt over the thought of not breastfeeding, but i think its a personal choice for each mom as to whats best for them.

thanks again for the advice : )
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