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Breastfeeding Moms Breastfeeding Moms

Not sure what I can do...

Posted by on Jul. 2, 2013 at 11:37 PM
  • 13 Replies
So, my second kiddo is the only one so far I've been successful with bf up to a year. Looking back I really feel it could have been better, but only if my sensitive nipples could have been resolved. I literally could not stand to have him on me too very often... In the beginning I was okay but I still got frustrated a lot. The sensation was just too much for me and it both made me angry and sad.

Because of this I have been trying to figure out hat I could do to make the bf relationship with this LO better. At first I was thinking that I should use an infant sized bottle(the little ones like they give in the hospital) once a day just to give my breasts and sanity a break. I would be doing no more than that and if do it right from the start so my breasts would get used to that schedule. But the more I think about it, the less I want to do that. My husband will be gone a lot so I wouldn't be able to rely on him feeding baby for me which would make it harder on me anyways. Plus I really don't want to spend the money on it lol. I would have to have that size of bottle shipped here if I couldn't get our hospital to let me buy it off them which would be stressful and even more expensive. So, I was thinking maybe I could use nipple shields from the beginning...

What do you ladies think? I am just looking for some brainstorming help and ideas. I really want to breast feed this baby when it gets here, but I am so scared I will not be able to handle it. Especially since it doesn't seem like the sensitivity is going away or lessening.
by on Jul. 2, 2013 at 11:37 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Emilytrademark
by on Jul. 2, 2013 at 11:46 PM

I understand ... especially right now. I have never been one to enjoy any kind of nipple stimulation.. I don't like them being touched. When my DD nurses to just nibble it drives me CRAZY... it really feels like a violation. When she nurses to actually eat it's fine, almost relieving, but she comfort nurses way more than she eats.

I wish I had some advice for you. I've never used nipple shields. I may look into it... Good luck to you!

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Mrs.Pedro
by Bronze Member on Jul. 3, 2013 at 12:03 AM
1 mom liked this
There were so many times I found myself crying because I hated it so much! Good luck to you as well and thank you! It is good to know minor alone in my feelings.

Quoting Emilytrademark:

I understand ... especially right now. I have never been one to enjoy any kind of nipple stimulation.. I don't like them being touched. When my DD nurses to just nibble it drives me CRAZY... it really feels like a violation. When she nurses to actually eat it's fine, almost relieving, but she comfort nurses way more than she eats.

I wish I had some advice for you. I've never used nipple shields. I may look into it... Good luck to you!

Emilytrademark
by on Jul. 3, 2013 at 12:10 AM

I told my husband today that I felt like punching something. I would never hurt my baby but seriously considered punching the wall. It can be SO frustrating! And hard to explain.

Quoting Mrs.Pedro:

There were so many times I found myself crying because I hated it so much! Good luck to you as well and thank you! It is good to know minor alone in my feelings.

Quoting Emilytrademark:

I understand ... especially right now. I have never been one to enjoy any kind of nipple stimulation.. I don't like them being touched. When my DD nurses to just nibble it drives me CRAZY... it really feels like a violation. When she nurses to actually eat it's fine, almost relieving, but she comfort nurses way more than she eats.

I wish I had some advice for you. I've never used nipple shields. I may look into it... Good luck to you!


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gdiamante
by Group Mod - Gina on Jul. 3, 2013 at 12:24 AM
1 mom liked this

Check out d-mer.org. Sounds like you might have it.


Defining D-MER:
What It Is

Dysphoric Milk Ejection Reflex is a condition affecting lactating women that is characterized by an abrupt dysphoria, or negative emotions, that occur just before milk release and continuing not more than a few minutes.

Preliminary testing shows that D-MER is treatable if severe and preliminary investigation shows that inappropriate dopamine activity at the time of the milk ejection reflex is the cause of D-MER.

Dysphoria is defined as an unpleasant or uncomfortable mood, such as sadness, depressed mood, anxiety, irritability, or restlessness. Etymologically, it is the opposite of euphoria.

Clarifying D-MER:
What It Is Not

D-MER is not a psychological response to breastfeeding.

D-MER is not nausea with letdown or any other isolated physical manifestation.

D-MER is not postpartum depression or a postpartum mood disorder.

D-MER is not a general dislike of breastfeeding.

D-MER is not the "breastfeeding aversion" that can happen to some mothers when nursing while pregnant or when nursing older toddlers.

Summing-Up D-MER:
What It Does

  • The dysphoria a mother feels comes on suddenly before letdown and leaves within 30 seconds to 2 minutes. 
  • She feels the dysphoria before she feels the letdown sensation in her breasts (though not all mothers feel a physical letdown sensation). 
  • Often by the end of the first letdown she feels fine again, the dysphoria is gone.
  • She may or may not have dysphoria with letdowns when pumping and before spontaneous letdowns, this also is dependent of the intensity of her D-MER.
  • D-MER is like a reflex. It is controlled by hormones and can not be controlled by the mother. She can not talk herself out of the dysphoria.
  • D-MER has nothing to do with nipple contact or with irritation with the sensation of nipple tugging. The mother does not even have to be thinking about breastfeeding (for example with spontaneous letdowns) for the dysphoria to happen when a milk release is triggered.
  • To understand the reflex you must know that when a milk release is triggered prolactin levels begin to rise even before milk has begun to flow through the breasts. Dopamine helps control the secretion of prolactin and so dopamine levels must lower briefly for prolactin to rise. Once prolactin has begun it's slow climb, dopamine stabilizes. This happens to every lactating mother.
  • Dopamine is known for having an effect on moods and in a mother with D-MER dopamine is behaving somehow inappropriately in its drop. It is in this very quick and immediate drop that a mother with D-MER feels her dysphoria. As dopamine levels restabilized, the dysphoria is gone. 
  • The experience of D-MER is variable and a mother will have either despondency D-MER, anxiety D-MER or agitation D-MER. Her dysphoria will fall on it's own place on the emotional spectrum, ranging from homesickness to anger.
  • There are three intensities of D-MER that included mild, moderate and severe. These intensities are determined by the mother's interpretation of intensity, how long the D-MER takes to self correct, how many letdowns per feeding she feels the dysphoria and other criteria.
frog643
by on Jul. 3, 2013 at 12:50 AM
I also had the problem with sore nipples. I Introduced a breast sheild during week one and have been using it since (week 6). My nipples don't hurt and baby nurses very well with it. I would at least give the sheild a try.
Mrs.Pedro
by Bronze Member on Jul. 3, 2013 at 5:15 AM
That is exactly how I felt! I ended up slowly weaning my son after he turned a year old. It was okay as long as he didn't start falling asleep or comfort nursing, but when he did I could not stand it!

Quoting Emilytrademark:

I told my husband today that I felt like punching something. I would never hurt my baby but seriously considered punching the wall. It can be SO frustrating! And hard to explain.

Quoting Mrs.Pedro:

There were so many times I found myself crying because I hated it so much! Good luck to you as well and thank you! It is good to know minor alone in my feelings.



Quoting Emilytrademark:

I understand ... especially right now. I have never been one to enjoy any kind of nipple stimulation.. I don't like them being touched. When my DD nurses to just nibble it drives me CRAZY... it really feels like a violation. When she nurses to actually eat it's fine, almost relieving, but she comfort nurses way more than she eats.

I wish I had some advice for you. I've never used nipple shields. I may look into it... Good luck to you!


Mrs.Pedro
by Bronze Member on Jul. 3, 2013 at 6:24 AM
I don't think I have this. It doesn't happen with let downs. It happens mostly at the end when baby starts falling asleep and the sensation changes, or when baby is comfort nursing rather than nutritionally nursing. It's the physical sensation that brings on the feelings.

Quoting gdiamante:

Check out d-mer.org. Sounds like you might have it.


Defining D-MER:
What It Is

Dysphoric Milk Ejection Reflex is a condition affecting lactating women that is characterized by an abrupt dysphoria, or negative emotions, that occur just before milk release and continuing not more than a few minutes.

Preliminary testing shows that D-MER is treatable if severe and preliminary investigation shows that inappropriate dopamine activity at the time of the milk ejection reflex is the cause of D-MER.

Dysphoria is defined as an unpleasant or uncomfortable mood, such as sadness, depressed mood, anxiety, irritability, or restlessness. Etymologically, it is the opposite of euphoria.

Clarifying D-MER:
What It Is Not

D-MER is not a psychological response to breastfeeding.

D-MER is not nausea with letdown or any other isolated physical manifestation.

D-MER is not postpartum depression or a postpartum mood disorder.

D-MER is not a general dislike of breastfeeding.

D-MER is not the "breastfeeding aversion" that can happen to some mothers when nursing while pregnant or when nursing older toddlers.

Summing-Up D-MER:
What It Does

  • The dysphoria a mother feels comes on suddenly before letdown and leaves within 30 seconds to 2 minutes. 
  • She feels the dysphoria before she feels the letdown sensation in her breasts (though not all mothers feel a physical letdown sensation). 
  • Often by the end of the first letdown she feels fine again, the dysphoria is gone.
  • She may or may not have dysphoria with letdowns when pumping and before spontaneous letdowns, this also is dependent of the intensity of her D-MER.
  • D-MER is like a reflex. It is controlled by hormones and can not be controlled by the mother. She can not talk herself out of the dysphoria.
  • D-MER has nothing to do with nipple contact or with irritation with the sensation of nipple tugging. The mother does not even have to be thinking about breastfeeding (for example with spontaneous letdowns) for the dysphoria to happen when a milk release is triggered.
  • To understand the reflex you must know that when a milk release is triggered prolactin levels begin to rise even before milk has begun to flow through the breasts. Dopamine helps control the secretion of prolactin and so dopamine levels must lower briefly for prolactin to rise. Once prolactin has begun it's slow climb, dopamine stabilizes. This happens to every lactating mother.
  • Dopamine is known for having an effect on moods and in a mother with D-MER dopamine is behaving somehow inappropriately in its drop. It is in this very quick and immediate drop that a mother with D-MER feels her dysphoria. As dopamine levels restabilized, the dysphoria is gone. 
  • The experience of D-MER is variable and a mother will have either despondency D-MER, anxiety D-MER or agitation D-MER. Her dysphoria will fall on it's own place on the emotional spectrum, ranging from homesickness to anger.
  • There are three intensities of D-MER that included mild, moderate and severe. These intensities are determined by the mother's interpretation of intensity, how long the D-MER takes to self correct, how many letdowns per feeding she feels the dysphoria and other criteria.
gdiamante
by Group Mod - Gina on Jul. 3, 2013 at 10:50 AM

The other thing that occurs to me is that baby's not even here yet, and my observation is that it's different for every baby. You may be anticipating things that don't even happen this time around. Your expectations will be different (I daresay more realistic) because you now know babies aren't really bundles of joy but rather bundles of NEED.

It's OK to dislike breastfeeding. Or to actively hate it. I did.

jjchick75
by Silver Member on Jul. 3, 2013 at 1:12 PM

I'm not a fan of the feeling either. I don't like my breast touched even by my husband. I get through nursing my distracting myself. TV, computer, the other kids, a good book or something like that. I always viewed it as something that has to be done and just suck it up and do it. I can't pump so that's out and I refuse to use formula, so there isn't another opition. A bottle shouldn't be given with you around. If you are there baby should be on the breast. So my advice is just distract yourself. 

MommyO2-6631
by Leslie on Jul. 3, 2013 at 1:25 PM
I would check out the site that Gdiamante recommended. Also look into the problems that can occur with a nipple shield. There can be milk transference issues. They're also a pain to keep on and when they come off they give you a sticky milk bath.
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