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Breastfeeding Experiences

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  • Breastfeeding Experiences

    Hi, thought I'd start a new thread where we can share our breastfeeding experiences

    My girl is now 2 weeks old and I am aiming to totally BF her for up to 6 months if it's possible.

    I started BF in the hospital about 6 hours after delivery. The nurse thought me how to get her to latch on and the first few times, I was really clumsy in holding the baby. Fortunately, she latched on ok and I did not have to fumble with that. I BF her at 4 hour interval in the 3 days I was at the hospital. They monitored her to ensure she urinated enough to indicate she was getting enough fluids from my colostrum.

    My milk came on the 4th day after delivery. I could tell as my breasts started to feel swollen and hard, and hurt a bit. By that time, I had sore nipples already. But it does go away, not totally though. The soreness tends to come and go, sometimes alternating between breasts :roll:

    I'm currently BF her on demand, her schedule in the first week at home was pretty messed up. There'd be times during the day where she'd want to feed every hour. Then she'd sleep through 2-3 hour intervals. Sometimes after one feeding, she'd doze off for 10 minutes before waking and making hungry noises again, these sessions could go on for a few hours....which is utterly exhausting for me!

    I had few nights where she wouldn't sleep properly and I spent virtually the whole night jumping in and out of bed feeding her. I was then advised to pump my milk and ask someone to help bottle feed her if I was too tired. However, from a book I have, it says not to start bottle feeding until 6 weeks old, to prevent nipple confusion.

    I did try to pump a few times but only managed to pump 1 oz each time. Guess I need more practise. My MIL bottle fed her a few days ago and my girl did not take to the bottle well, although she did manage to drink about half oz. Her demands have more or less settled down now, and her night day rythmn seems to have improved. I'm feeding her on 2 hourly intervals at night and during the day may go on 2 or 3 hour intervals.

    Oh, I have had to resort to formula at one stage. When she was about 5 days old, she had to stay in the hospital for one day for jaundice treatment and doctor advised to supplement with formula to make sure baby got alot of fluids to help flush down the jaundice. I did lodge overnight to BF her but the nurse also gave her formula in between my 4 hourly feeds.

    BF duration tends to vary, between 15 minutes to 1 hour! The 1 hour feeds are when she dozes off in the middle and then wakes up 5 minutes later demanding to be fed again.

    By the way, I found that a good BF pillow really helps. I was using the normal pillows at the hospital and it was quite uncomfortable. I am now using "My Brest Friend" pillow and it's very good, apart from the noisy velcro which tends to wake the baby up!
    Last edited by mogmick; 14-09-2004, 09:03 PM.

  • #2
    Hi Mogmick It's so nice hearing about your breastfeeding experience. Though its not easy but i am sure its all worth it for the best of your lovely daughter.
    I didnt manage to breastfeed my daughter after i came home from the hospital. i should have presevered but well, its over now.
    But reading your story make me determined to make sure i breastfeed should i have another child again.
    Meanwhile cheers to you & rest well~


    • #3
      Hey, thanks for your detailed sharing, very interesting and informative for me! I have some questions, but do answer them onyl when you're free- can imagine how tired you must be, esp with the nightfeeds and all.

      I guess she roomed in day and night with you at hosp so that you can BF her at the 4 hr intervals? You said your milk came in only on the 4th day, so what what was she drinking before that? Only pure colostrum? But I thought colostrum amounts are supposedly really little- ie, few teaspoon a day?

      Currently, how many weeks old is she? Is she drinking from bottle regularly? If so, how many feeds a day is she drinking from bottle?

      Can I say that once you successfully latch the baby on, it means that your BF would be successful (presuming of course the milk came in, which it did)? As in the baby won't 'forget' how to latch on during another feed?

      Lastly, have you had proper undisturbed deep sleep (without having to wake up to BF) since the minute you delivered? Or have you been BF at regular intervals all the way from then till now?

      Oh, and yeah, I've seen the 'brest friend' pillow, looks really useful indeed!

      Rest well, eat well!


      • #4
        Question for the experienced BF (or those who had BF their baby) mothers: I was just wondering- I think we all know how tired and zapped a mother would be after the delivery. And we also know that its best to latch baby on and start BF regularly as soon as baby pops. So how to ensure that the mother gets enough rest herself so that her health can be restored properly? Since she is supposed to start BF on demand right away for at least 2-3 weeks (cause if intro bottle will supposedly risk nipple confusion)? Or is this an expected sacrifice?

        Is there a way out of this- mother is able to get required rest but baby is on TBM? I know mother is supposed to sleep when baby sleeps; but new babies dont sleep for more than few hours in a row, and the mother's sleep will still be disturbed if she needs to wake up every few hours (considering that she is already weak and tired after birthing to begin with)?

        Any way to work around this so that a new TBF mum can get the rest she needs?


        • #5
          The confinement lady that i engaged told me that she'll help with feeding the baby EBM using a cup/spoon on occasions that i need rest. She is of the view that I should not introduce the bottle to baby so soon.

          Mango, i share the same concerns as you. As much as i would like to totally bf baby myself, i know i'm one who needs uninterrupted sleep for at least 4 hrs at night. I'm hoping that i'll be able to adjust upon baby's arrival.


          • #6
            Oh yeah, can feed with cup or spoon, how can I forget LOL. Okay, that's great, cause it means I'll be able to catch up on my sleep if I really have to. *whew*
            My immune system is usually very weak when I dont get enough rest, and when it goes down, I usually get a flu or develop a cold/cough. And if it happens, I imagine that I wont be able to care for my baby properly. So am kinda worrying how I'll cope with the sleep part.


            • #7
              Mogmick - congratulations on bfg! It's so heartening to read this and see how you're perservering despite the exhaustion!

              A few things to comment:

              1. Jaundiced babies do NOT need formula - it utterly irks me when doctors say they do. In fact, Asian babies tend to be jaundiced anyway, and apparently jaundice is good for the babies (and expected). If it's a severe form of jaundice, it will be detected at birth. The best thing to do is simply nurse, and nurse. For a paed to tell a new mom to break the nursing is irresponsible imo.

              I was confronted with a rude nurse during my first birth, who almost intimidated me into giving formula but in the end I nursed my baby through the night - not allowed to keep baby with me because of the C Section but I simply did not return my baby, on the pretext that he is nursing. Plus I couldn't bear to part with him! His jaundice went away naturally after a week or so.

              2. Bfg can be SO tiring in the beginning, I know I was extremely exhausted when I had to bf after a C Section. What helped was:

              a) hubby passing baby to me, instead of me getting up and down.

              b) napping in the day when baby slept.

              Helped a bit albeit still tiring, until baby fell into some semblance of a pattern, and sleeping more in the night.

              The best solution but I understand the trepidation (I was hesitant too with my first) is:

              c) Sleeping with baby - to cut down on the hopping in and out of bed. If you sleep with him/her you'll have the same sleeping aptterns and you would likely, actually wake WITHOUT realising when baby cries. It's hard to do this though as a first timer, so you might want to wait till the baby is older before trying this.

              d) If the mother is truly exhausted, I think one or two expressed milk feedings can't hurt. To avoid nipple confusion, can try feeding with a spoon or cup. Don't pump too much though (i.e. over-rely on expression) - you may upset your hindmilk/foremilk balance.

              The extent of breastfeeding sessions helps to establish a milk supply so do try to perservere, mommies! Babies suck (alot/long) to make more milk for themselves

              mogmick, thank you for's lovely to see a mother try so hard because she wants the best for her child!


              • #8
                An informative link re: Jaundice & Bfg


                • #9
                  One more question: Can a bf mother bf when she is actually sleeping? I was discussing this issue with my hubby, and he said, if I need to sleep and baby need to drink, he could bring the baby to me and latch her on me, and he will hold/place her such that she can drink while I continue to sleep, then when she is done drinking, he'll just clean up/burp/do whatever necessary, all the while without waking me up. this really possible (with some practise of course), seriously ?


                  • #10
                    Chris, what an interesting idea from your hubs! Why not?! CAN TRY! Of course we're talking about nursing baby lying down, right? So you must practise bfg in the lying down position.

                    For me, I often wake without realising. There have been many times I found baby latched on without remembering him latching on!


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by mango
                      One more question: Can a bf mother bf when she is actually sleeping?
                      Chris, bfg while sleeping is possible. I did that with my daughter in the begining. I mean there were afew times where I was bfg her while lying down and I just passed out zzzzzz. lol.

                      And like what makeupmag said, it's good to have the baby sleep next to you and try to encourage similar sleeping patterns. Try to nap when baby naps. That way, even if it's just one or two hours, it's better than nothing.


                      • #12
                        Good, good! So now, not only I have to learn how to latch the baby onto me properly, my hubby also have to learn how to latch the baby on me by himself so that our little plan will work LOL. I'll get my LC to teach him after I pop.


                        • #13
                          Ooops, makeupmag, looks like I DEFINITELY have to switch my paeditrician then! So formula not crucial during jaundiced treatment eh

                          Mango, baby roomed in with me but not 24 hours throughout my stay in the hospital. Sometimes the nurse took her back to the nursery to check her and helped changed her dipaers and probably cleaned her up too. During the nights, it was a small relieve to have her back in the nursery for a couple of hours so I could catch up on my sleep.

                          Hmm, I don't know how much colostrum I was producing since baby seemed contented to just suck away. The nurses just monitored her urine and poo frequency.

                          Yeah, I've also nursed her lying down and I have fallen asleep this way. It's not too difficult if your baby can latch on well.

                          To be honest, my longest sleep since delivery (2 weeks ago) is only close to 4 hours. Anything more than 3 hours is actually a luxury for me now

                          I think baby will settle in a more proper rythmn after about 10 days, the first week at home was quite bad since I didn't know her timing and I was quite stressed about the whole new baby routine. So I wasn't smart enough to nap properly. Ended up totally exhausted. Now, baby is 16 days and I'm feeling much better, more energised

                          Oh, I've only used the bottle with my EBM once. Since she's more regular in her demands, I've gone back to totally feeding from the breast. I think I'll start expressing and bottle feeding occasionally from 6 weeks onwards.

                          Now I await the day where I'm out of confinement and can go out for leisure!!


                          • #14
                            Thanks so much for sharing with us your bfg experience, mogmick! It was encouraging for me to read what you went through and it gave me a rough idea what to expect. I was especially relieved to hear that your baby did well drinking only colustrum for the first three days

                            I was talking about this with hubby last night and he offered (without me asking) to fetch the baby for me and put her back to the cot when it's time for feeding. He even said that I'd fall asleep while nursing for sure and when that happens, he'll make sure that the baby is returned to the cot. What a great hubby I have huh?

                            I am not that worried about sleep deprivation although I sleep a lot normally. Right now, I try to sleep as much as I can to make up for the lost sleep that I will get once the baby arrives

                            For mothers returning to work after their confinement: a book I have advises mothers to start introducing bottle feeding (with expressed milk) two weeks before you return to work to get the baby used to it. But you don't have to do this all day long for two weeks. A few times will be enough. And if the baby does not take well to this, it may be because she's learnt to associate feeding time with being close to mother so perhaps you have to get another caregiver to help feed her with a bottle to reduce fussing. This is because if you are the one who bottle-feeds her, she may not want to drink from the bottle since you're there.


                            • #15
                              Some more questions for you, mogmick. Sorry to bombard you with so many questions so only answer them in your free time, ya?

                              Today when my MIL reminded me to get a thermos flask, I told her that I won't need one since I don't plan to formula-feed the baby, hence no need for hot water. But she said that I might have to supplement with formula or even feed the baby water (for hydrating the baby) even when I am breastfeeding. I told her no. My books say that breastfeeding alone provides the baby enough hydration so the baby will not get dehydrated (or 'over-heated') when we are breastfeeding.

                              So my questions are:

                              During the first three days, did you feed the baby water at all? What about now? Do you feed the baby water besides breastfeeding her?