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Old 10-02-2007, 10:16 AM   #1
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Help for a desperate friend...latching

I have a friend suffering from severe ppd. Her baby is 3 weeks old and the main contributor to the mommy's feelings is that baby has NEVER latched on. She will gum at the nipple but that is it. She has been pumping and bottle feeding the milk but she desperately wants to bf. She has seen 2 LC's and attended LLL but nothing seems to work. To top it off, she has a mother who told her to "just suck it up." She read "the womanly art of breastfeeding" and now feels like a total failure. Any advice for getting a baby to latch on?

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Old 10-02-2007, 10:19 AM   #2
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Re: Help for a desperate friend...latching

Dang if two LLC's didn't help...I don't know that I could! Has she tried nipple shields? Could be the baby is having nipple confusion since it is regularly getting fed a bottle. I would think a nipple shield would help in this case. I'm sorry I can't be of more help! I wish her the best of luck!
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Old 10-02-2007, 10:33 AM   #3
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Re: Help for a desperate friend...latching

Possibly try a Lact-Aid or a Medela Supplemental Nursing System...for all feedings. Have her pump first and put it into the LA or SNS and use that for ALL feeds. Then eventually, hopefully she can wean off the LA or SNS and just go straight from the breast. Also, maybe try laying in bed with the baby with no distractions for several hours (if she has other kids, maybe someone could hang out with them in the living room for an afternoon, or she could wait until dh got home) and just keep the nipple right there in the baby's face ready to go (towel underneath though to soak up all the extra).
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Old 10-02-2007, 10:52 AM   #4
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Re: Help for a desperate friend...latching

Quote:
Originally Posted by mengmommy View Post
Possibly try a Lact-Aid or a Medela Supplemental Nursing System...for all feedings. Have her pump first and put it into the LA or SNS and use that for ALL feeds. Then eventually, hopefully she can wean off the LA or SNS and just go straight from the breast. Also, maybe try laying in bed with the baby with no distractions for several hours (if she has other kids, maybe someone could hang out with them in the living room for an afternoon, or she could wait until dh got home) and just keep the nipple right there in the baby's face ready to go (towel underneath though to soak up all the extra).
thats a good idea
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Old 10-02-2007, 10:55 AM   #5
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Re: Help for a desperate friend...latching

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leighznich View Post
Has she tried nipple shields? Could be the baby is having nipple confusion since it is regularly getting fed a bottle. I would think a nipple shield would help in this case. I'm sorry I can't be of more help! I wish her the best of luck!
Quote:
Originally Posted by mengmommy View Post
Possibly try a Lact-Aid or a Medela Supplemental Nursing System...for all feedings. Have her pump first and put it into the LA or SNS and use that for ALL feeds. Then eventually, hopefully she can wean off the LA or SNS and just go straight from the breast. Also, maybe try laying in bed with the baby with no distractions for several hours (if she has other kids, maybe someone could hang out with them in the living room for an afternoon, or she could wait until dh got home) and just keep the nipple right there in the baby's face ready to go (towel underneath though to soak up all the extra).

I think both of these are good advice, the nipple sheild would feel more like a bottle to the LO, something that helps with the nipple sheild is to have her express some breastmilk directly into itso that when the baby open her mouth she gets the same "instant gratification" that she would from a bottle, thus encouraging her to latch & suckle. Has mom tried stimulating a letdown and then offerring breast to baby once she is good & going?

also, how is the baby's fernum? My DD was tongue tied and we had horrible latching problems because of it and it was totally missed by the pedi & LC
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Old 10-02-2007, 11:01 AM   #6
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Re: Help for a desperate friend...latching

For the first few weeks of my DS life I used a nipple shield. My nipples were so sore and I couldn't take the pain. I used it for about 4 weeks and when I weaned him off of it he had no problems latching onto me by himself. I would definitely try the nipple shield that way it can still stimulate her instead of giving the baby a bottle.
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Old 10-02-2007, 11:12 AM   #7
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Re: Help for a desperate friend...latching

Have her try infant self-attachment, lying down or reclined, place baby on the chest and let the baby find her way (young babies obviously are not very mobile, place baby where she can bob around and find the nipple, but don't put the nipple in her mouth- she may struggle or cry a little finding her way). Babies have an instinct to find the nipple on their own that lasts at least weeks to several months- this technique can work when other things have failed for a long time. They know how to breastfeed better than we do, especially less experienced moms. See the infant self attachment video. A few things are accomplished with this technique that are recommended as proper positioning, such as the raised upward chin to allow for a larger mouthful, and the flanged lips. I tried this on the advice of a LLL leader after she attended a conference where ISA was highlighted as a way to help mothers with many different latch problems. It worked the first time, with some patience (mine, not hers! she was a little impatient!), and her latch was wider and less painful for me. We found our way after that, though I still put boobie and baby next to each other and let her latch herself. I can imagine that if this would work for your friend it would make her very happy, because after such a struggle to bf, watching the baby come to her in such a natural way would be all the more miraculous! HTH!
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Old 10-02-2007, 11:15 AM   #8
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Re: Help for a desperate friend...latching

This is interesting: http://www.llli.org/NB/NBJulAug01p136.html

I've heard of this before, but never encountered a baby that had this problem. There are a couple techniques in the body that might help. An IBCLC would be the best best; perhaps she could find one who specializes in in suck/mouth aversions.
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Old 10-02-2007, 11:31 AM   #9
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Re: Help for a desperate friend...latching

In my certification class to become a CLC we watched a video depicting a mother and baby who had a disfunctional nursing relationship. They had her sit in a warm tub, nude from the waist up, and skin to skin with her baby. The baby actually self attached within an hour. Perhaps your friend could try this. If anything, the warm bath would relax them both.

I also think getting her milk to begin letting down prior to latching the baby is a good idea. I think mostly her LO doesn't associate her breasts with food and simply doesn't know what to do with them. The nipple shield may help simulate the bottle nipple the child is used to.

Please reinforce to your friend the things she does that make her a good mother! A good mother does not have to breastfeed... it would be sad if that was all we had to do to be a good parent. Good luck to her.
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Old 10-03-2007, 07:47 AM   #10
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Re: Help for a desperate friend...latching

Thank you for all these tips! I am sending her the info now so she can try what works for her.
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