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Breastfeeding Moms Breastfeeding Moms

Would not take the breast

Posted by on Aug. 19, 2009 at 1:43 PM
  • 7 Replies

Hi everyone.  I was wondering if anyone else has had this situation happen to them.  Yesterday evening I was trying to feed my little girl and she refused to take the breast.  I thought maybe it was the position so I tried the football hold, the side lay, and the cradle but she would just scream.  I knew she was hungry though.  She was only happy sitting up so I pumped some milk and she took it from a bottle right away.  She went to sleep for about an hour and woke up hungry again. The same situation happened.  This went on until she went to sleep for the night. I don't mind pumping the milk for her but my pump is not good at all and it takes twenty minutes to get only 3 ounces of milk.(and I know the milk is in there because I leak so much)  So she is screaming while I am trying to get milk to her.  Has anyone else had this happen? I almost gave her formula becuase I had a free sample in the cupboard but I really did not want to.  

Andrea
by on Aug. 19, 2009 at 1:43 PM
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Replies (1-7):
gdiamante
by Group Mod - Gina on Aug. 19, 2009 at 3:22 PM


Quoting iluvmyseaturtle:

Hi everyone.  I was wondering if anyone else has had this situation happen to them.  Yesterday evening I was trying to feed my little girl and she refused to take the breast.  

That happens. Was she giving hunger cues?

I thought maybe it was the position so I tried the football hold, the side lay, and the cradle but she would just scream.  I knew she was hungry though.  She was only happy sitting up so I pumped some milk and she took it from a bottle right away.  She went to sleep for about an hour and woke up hungry again. The same situation happened.  

Hmmm. Sounds like nipple preference. Best defense? Toss the bottles. When given no other choice they DO take the breast. Be sure to express some milk first.

How old? Teething is also a possibility. Any droolong or gnawing on hands?

This went on until she went to sleep for the night. I don't mind pumping the milk for her but my pump is not good at all and it takes twenty minutes to get only 3 ounces of milk.

That's not an only...that's a lot. Two ounces is normal output. She needs one ounce per hour of separation from you, and shouldn't get bottles unless she IS separate from you.

(and I know the milk is in there because I leak so much)  So she is screaming while I am trying to get milk to her.  Has anyone else had this happen? I almost gave her formula becuase I had a free sample in the cupboard but I really did not want to.  

Toss the sample so you're not tempted.

This is a pretty common problem, often caused by nipple preference or by teething. It's quite beatable but you have to get used to the idea that she won't be happy with you while you do it.

jagrus
by on Aug. 19, 2009 at 6:19 PM

try skin to skin contact get the baby completley stripped all but the diaper and then cover yourselves with a blanket and take your shirt off, no bras or tanks, or anything getting between you.


kclarsh
by on Aug. 20, 2009 at 2:06 PM

My daughter did this at 3 days old.  I pumped and kept trying for 5 weeks...and then she took the breast and we've been ebf ever since. 

Keep trying and take breaks if you get frustrated, or she gets too frustrated.  Try to just do a lot of skin to skin at non hungry times so that she gets used to them as nice and wonderful :)  I cosleep and it started to be she wouldn't want to fall asleep unless my nipple was right by her face...but she didn't want to eat from it yet. :)  I got a book called Bestfeeding or something like that from LLL and it has a section on relactating/getting baby back to breast.  You have to coax them :)

Keep trying and don't give up.  Go to a La Leche League meeting to get some inspiration :)

michelepulley
by on Aug. 21, 2009 at 8:01 AM

I would call La Leche League.  Get a lactation consultant.  Keep offering her the breast.  I would rent a hospital grade pump or get the medela pump in style pump.  I have used both these and can pump in 10 minutes.  Don't give up.  Baby will eat if she is hungry!  I had to pump for a year with my first baby.

Lavagirl
by on Aug. 22, 2009 at 3:26 PM

If all else fails....have you thought of getting a nipple shield?  One of my good friends actually used one for the entirety of her breastfeeding relationship, and her supply was great.  That's not always the norm though (it can affect supply).  Anyhow, I only suggest this because if it's the difference between just pumping/giving up on breastfeeding vs. GETTING BABY ON BREAST...then I'd choose the nipple shield.  It's essentially like a thin plastic sheath that fits over your nipple, but it gives the baby something substantial to grasp unto...similar to a bottle, but at the breast.  There are holes in the tip for milk to still come out. 

If you're using paci's....STOP.  That can definitely cause SERIOUS nipple confusion and deter a child from latching.  STOP using bottles.  Every bottle you give (this early in the game) will cause your infant MORE confusion and will encourage her to refuse the breast all the more.  She WILL eat if hungry. 

I personally used a nipple shield for this very reason...it was the difference between bottle feeding or breastfeeding.  I only used one for about the first 5-6 weeks (with my 1st son).  I have VERY flat/inverted nipples, so I had difficulty knowing how to properly draw out my nips out/latch my son on at first.  The nipple shield gave my boy something to latch unto, and it also helped to draw out my nipple.  After getting him oriented with eating at the breast for a few weeks, I'd sneak the shield off (halfway through a feeding) after my nipples were sufficiently pulled out.  By 6 weeks, I wasn't using the nipple shield any longer, and I managed to "wean" him off of it just fine.  I have to say it...if it weren't for the use of that nipple shield, I fear I would have been exclusively pumping/bottle feeding...and we all know what that can lead to.   It takes a STRONG and DETERMINED mother to exclusively pump.  In my opinion (and experience), with that same amount of strength and determination, mom and baby CAN get the breastfeeding relationship down.  Get a lactation consultant to come to your house!  You can do this mama!  You are encountering a difficulty that most of us have....you just need a stronger will than your baby's.  She WILL figure it out.  You will too....but only with determination and getting rid of the bottles/pacis.

Quite honestly, alot of this has to do with mom figuring out how to breastfeed too.  Breastfeeding is natural, but it DOESN'T come naturally!!!  I didn't encounter ANY of the same issues with my 2nd son, even though I have the same flat nipples.  I didn't even use a nipple shield the 2nd time around.  By then, I knew how to effectively latch a baby on.  You'll get this mama, I promise. :-)

Medela nipple shield.  Babies R Us.  Get one!  Your baby WILL latch on with the use of this wonderful contraption.  I don't suggest it as a crutch...if you can get baby on boob without the nipple shield, that's the best.  IF, however, you're at your wits end and you're thinking of resorting to a bottle of formula (which you DON'T need...throw it out...you have TONS of the good stuff right where baby needs it!!!).....just send hubby out to get that nipple shield NOW.  Good luck hon!!!

mom22girls_09
by on Aug. 25, 2009 at 3:55 PM

I went through this with my first daughter. When she was born, she was severely jaundiced and weak and could not get the hang of bf'ing. We had to give her a bottle of formula b/c she was getting dehydrated and even more sick. After we got her jaundice under control (after about a week) I tried to re-introduce teh breast, but after a week of bottle feeding she wanted NOTHING to do with the boobie. We worked with a lactation consultant and she gave me a nipple shield which sort-of worked, but my stubborn little one just would not eat off the breast because she had gotten used to the ease of the bottle. Reluctantly, I gave in and pumped and we continuted to fed her from a bottle.

Here is my advice for you from someone who has "been there, done that" with a little one that did not like to BF: Give it a good try, go out and get a nipple shield to see if that helps. BF'ing is something both mom and baby have to learn to do and you CAN do it. It may mean that you have to go through a period where you and baby are frustrated and feel like it's not going to happen for you, but it CAN happen. Find a Le Leche League mtg in your area and take advantage of them - they are an awesome support. Most of all, if you are committed to BF'ing, maintain a positive attitude while you and your little one adjust.

All that being said, if you try and try and try and it just doesn't seem to be working out it is OKAY to bottle feed (pumped breastmilk or formula). If you decide to pump, rent a good, quality unit from your local hospital. I won't lie to you - pumping and then bottle feeding is tedious, but you eventually get a schedule down and it isn't so bad

Best of luck to you!

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tabi_cat1023
by Group Mod - Tabitha on Aug. 25, 2009 at 3:57 PM


Quoting gdiamante:


Quoting iluvmyseaturtle:

Hi everyone.  I was wondering if anyone else has had this situation happen to them.  Yesterday evening I was trying to feed my little girl and she refused to take the breast.  

That happens. Was she giving hunger cues?

I thought maybe it was the position so I tried the football hold, the side lay, and the cradle but she would just scream.  I knew she was hungry though.  She was only happy sitting up so I pumped some milk and she took it from a bottle right away.  She went to sleep for about an hour and woke up hungry again. The same situation happened.  

Hmmm. Sounds like nipple preference. Best defense? Toss the bottles. When given no other choice they DO take the breast. Be sure to express some milk first.

How old? Teething is also a possibility. Any droolong or gnawing on hands?

This went on until she went to sleep for the night. I don't mind pumping the milk for her but my pump is not good at all and it takes twenty minutes to get only 3 ounces of milk.

That's not an only...that's a lot. Two ounces is normal output. She needs one ounce per hour of separation from you, and shouldn't get bottles unless she IS separate from you.

(and I know the milk is in there because I leak so much)  So she is screaming while I am trying to get milk to her.  Has anyone else had this happen? I almost gave her formula becuase I had a free sample in the cupboard but I really did not want to.  

Toss the sample so you're not tempted.

This is a pretty common problem, often caused by nipple preference or by teething. It's quite beatable but you have to get used to the idea that she won't be happy with you while you do it.

I agree with this..my son who is now 28 months did this same thing...around 4 months or so when he was getting bottles when I worked.

OH and 3 oz is a GREAT amount btw...perfect for a bottle.  BUT if this keeps up and you keep giving bottles you will have to pump every 2-3 hours for a while...thats even at night

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