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Latched, but no sucking...

  1. #1
    LeahH is offline Registered User
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    Latched, but no sucking...

    Since birth (10 days ago) my baby girl is happy to go to the breast, but once there will not suck. she has a few little half hearted sucks then just lies there or falls asleep. I'm pumping at every feed and giving her expressed breast milk in a bottle (plus topping up with formula) but desparately want her to latch properly and feed from the breast. Her sucking reflex is fine as she can take the bottle and sucks a finger also. My nipples are normal, the flow is fine when pumped she just lacks the will to draw it in.

    The doctor can find no medical reason for this, the lactation consultants are stumped - has anyone had experienced anything similar??

  2. #2
    momofthree is offline Registered User
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    Smile

    I would say if she has been given a bottle already that she feels its just too much work to bother with suckling at the breast as its so much easier to empty a bottle.If you really want to make a success of the breastfeeding my advice would be to forgo bottles at this stage(my personal choice would be not before 6 weeks of age)Also you could try undressing her for feeds,rubbing her back and of feet so that she more awake and alert?

    Have you contacted someone from Le Leche?I would be surprise if they did not recommend something similar to address your problem.

    Good luck and enjoy this very special time!

  3. #3
    momofthree is offline Registered User
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    One other thing I remember hearing at a Le Leche meeting was that the first six weeks are crucial for making a success of breastfeeding.Something to do with the hormone receptors being build up at this time and regulating your supply and demand.Hence the recommendation to hold off on bottle or supplementing for the first 6 weeks.

  4. #4
    kashismum is offline Registered User
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    Agree that baby is too lazy. The flow from the bottle is different from the breast, and apparently easier.
    Try to speed up your let down by manually 'pumping', so that the milk is flowing well y the time baby starts to suck. If your baby gives up after a few sucks, put her on again...and again...and again. Persistence is key.
    Try giving EBM by spoon only and, only as a last resort. Babies have a need to suck, so if you are not providing an alternative, she will hopefully start to suck on your nipple.
    HTH.

  5. #5
    mintycat is offline Registered User
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    My baby was offered a bottle at about one week and she can switch between bottle and breast with no problem (she is now 3 months). Having said that, I also agree that she probably finds it easier with the bottle. Mine at that age, always fell asleep at the breast. I had to try every trick in the book to wake her up. Also due to jaundice, she had to have enough fluids to flush out the bilirubin in her body so we sometimes top up after a feed with breastmilk. I was worried about nipple confusion but fortunately that did not happen.

  6. #6
    LeahH is offline Registered User
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    Thanks all for the advice. We offered the bottle as a last resort once home as she'd lost so much weight and needed to get nourishment into her quickly (also to establish that she could physically suck). Now she's regained her birth weight I guess we need to remove the bottle to encourage her..... thanks again

  7. #7
    LLL_Sarah is offline Registered User
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    If your baby is not sucking correctly at the breast you need to find a lactation consultant who has experience with suck training. You need a method of teaching the baby to suck correctly at the breast.

    The first step is usually to stop bottles and finger feed with a tube from the bottle to your finger instead of using a bottle teat. Once the baby is sucking well this way move to the breast. If the baby sucks at the breast but no enough the best method is usually to use a lactation aid.

    See Dr. Jack Newman’s video at http://www.breastfeedingonline.com/newman.shtml under the heading of Supplementing.

    Try the following lactation consultants,

    Crystal at Matilda Well Baby Clinic
    2849-1595

    Yvonne Heavyside
    2530-1905, 9887-3235

    Wendy at Annerley Midwives
    2983-1558

    Mrs Chee at Everdawn Midwives
    2705 9322

    It might be a good idea to ask if you have expereince of suck training. Most lactation consultants should have this experience.

    Good luck with everything,
    SARAH

    (who is enjoying unusually lovely weather in the North West of England – sunny, warm and no rain!)

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