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Old 09-30-2013, 10:31 PM   #1
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Term NICU baby won't latch

My baby was born at 38 weeks this last Tuesday and spent three days in the nicu before being discharged with us on Friday. Baby was hypoglycemic so was on IV glucose and formula to get him stabilized. I was having cardiac/BP problems and only got to attempt Breastfeeding twice but was able to pump. Now that we're home baby is getting my pumped milk and I have a well established supply. I use a Pump in style and am able to pump 4oz at a time (combined from both sides).

Baby has latched twice while in a side lying position laying down in our bed. And he will root around and search for the breast. But when he gets into position and tries to latch he just sort of bobs around, or makes a really shallow latch and then sucks a couple times, and then starts crying.
:-(

Has anyone else had similar struggles with latching and been able to successfully transition to Breastfeeding?

I have two older kids that I nursed for 30 months and 15 months. I'm heartbroken that this baby could potentially miss out on a Breastfeeding relationship and I'm overwhelmed by the prospect of full time pumping. :-(

I need some encouragement, mamas!

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Old 10-01-2013, 06:46 AM   #2
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Re: Term NICU baby won't latch

Get to a Lactation Consultant, ASAP. Sounds like nipple confusion and baby is going to need some help to learn to use the breast.
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Old 10-01-2013, 08:03 AM   #3
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Re: Term NICU baby won't latch

aww hugs mama!! I agree with the above poster. Get a lactation consultant ASAP! They can be extremely knowledgeable and helpful. Hope the best for you!
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Old 10-01-2013, 08:31 AM   #4
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Re: Term NICU baby won't latch

Don't be discouraged I did have similar issues my baby didn't latch at all until day 9 and even then it was not consistent. We had to use bottles by day four or five as she literally wasnt eating she would just bob around near the nipple and drenched in dripping milk. She latched three times total before I ended up working with a lactation consultant and started using a nipple shield. I know there's conflicting views on using them but its the only way she would latch and I'm convinced we would be using formula now had we not used the shield. I did transition her at 6 weeks and we did struggle for another few weeks but at least she latched and we were able to work out the hiccups of a poor latch. We're at three months now and going strong but I would have thought you were nuts if you told me it would work out this way.
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Old 10-01-2013, 09:58 AM   #5
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Thanks everyone. I'll see what I can do about getting to a lactation consultant ASAP.
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Old 10-01-2013, 11:29 AM   #6
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Re: Term NICU baby won't latch

Yes, call an IBCLC -- does your hospital have one?
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Old 10-01-2013, 02:46 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by birdinhand
Yes, call an IBCLC -- does your hospital have one?
I'm not sure if they are IBCLC. But the hospital does have a lactation department. And they're a teaching hospital. I feel like they rushed me through their visit they did in the hospital bc I'm a third time mom. I'm giving them one more shot to help me with the latch as positioning and if they don't help me there are lots of resources in our community and good IBCLCs so I have those as backup.
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Old 10-01-2013, 03:21 PM   #8
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Re: Term NICU baby won't latch

I have to recommend a Lac. Consultant too, but I wanted to add in that if by chance you do have to make the choice and pump full time I highly recommend a hospital grade pump. It will help you keep your supply up.
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Old 10-01-2013, 03:29 PM   #9
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Re: Term NICU baby won't latch

Get the medela calma nipple. These saved us. I was ready to give up on bfing because my daughter did not want to latch on. With the help of my amazing LC and this nippy I have been happily bfing for 9 months.
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Old 10-01-2013, 05:00 PM   #10
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Re: Term NICU baby won't latch

Was he a big baby? Is that why he had the sugar issues?
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