Parenting after 35

Inefficient eater - will it get better?

My son is 4.5 weeks old and has become better at removing milk from the breast, but still needs me to pump and supplement, otherwise his weight gain comes to a stall (we experimented with nursing only for a few days, and there's no mistake - no supplement, no weight gain; going back to the supplement, and he gets back to the 1 oz per day gain).

He has had his tongue tie released, and we've learned to latch better (not 100% perfect yet, but much better than before). Efficiency is slightly better, but he still nurses for 5-10 minutes on one side, then falls asleep and tickling, etc. does not work to wake him.

Will he get more efficient as he grows more? Or should I resign myself to always having to pump and supplement with bottled breastmilk?

I'd be super grateful to hear from those of you with older kids or STMs!

Re: Inefficient eater - will it get better?

  • I wish we could give you an answer, some babies improve and some don't. I would just say keep trying, it's still early. I do think there is hope. It sounds like you have reason to be optimistic. I ended up having to exclusively pump and also supplement with formula. It wasn't what I wanted but it was the best we could do. Pumping was hard, very hard on me, but I did it and I made it to 9 months. I would have gone longer but my supply disappeared.

    Hugs mama, and whatever happens you will do the best you can!
    Me:41, DH:41 Positive for MTHFR mutations- one copy C677T, one copy A1298C. One daughter born on Thanksgiving in 2013. Six losses.
  • marijaa333marijaa333 member
    edited June 2015
    Thank you @Guennie! :) It's amazing that you made it to 9 months with EP!  

    I think we're a little better this morning than yesterday (a 20-min nursing session with lots of consistent gulps, *after* being given 2oz of breast milk by bottle). Fingers crossed the trend continues.
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  • Good! Keep at it and hopefully you will continue to see improvement!
    Me:41, DH:41 Positive for MTHFR mutations- one copy C677T, one copy A1298C. One daughter born on Thanksgiving in 2013. Six losses.
  • You have really had some challenges with BFing! Strong let down, clamping on nipples, pumping, inefficient eater, mastitis.... My hat is off to you for continuing to work at it. You're still early in your LO's life and everyone's adjusting, hang in there. I think I read before you're already working with a lactation consultant? They're amazingly helpful in my experience.

    I can only speak to my own two kids and my own personal experience. I had/have a strong let down and oversupply with both kids and they have both reacted the same - pull off the boob sputtering and gagging. And I'm left spraying them in the face and every object within a 5 foot radius of me. It's messy. Plus with DD I got mastitis from a clogged duct. At the advice of a lactation consultant, I let my boobs empty a little into a cloth diaper or towel and then try to get DS to latch again. If I feel really engorged I pump an ounce or two, just to prevent clogged ducts and mastitis. With DD my milk did regulate and as she grew she got better at BFing, but it took maybe 2-3 months or more. I'm expecting the same with DS and I'm not as worried about it as I was with her. They also both conk/conked out on the boob. I got in the practice of getting them naked and changing their diaper to wake them up, then put them back on the boob. Or tickling their feet, tickling their cheek, there are a million tricks to keeping them alert.

    At any rate, I don't know how much is/was what I do/did and how much is just the way my kids are. I'm confident you'll both find your groove. Hang in there! You're doing great.
    Me: 38, DH: 35
    Lilypie Third Birthday tickers
    Lilypie First Birthday tickers
  • supersarah77  Thank you! Yes, whenever someone mentions a problem related to breastfeeding, I feel like I can say I have *that* too! I produce around 28-33oz per day on days I exclusively pump, so I don't have a huge oversupply (and never spray or leak unless I'm hand expressing/massaging), but the fast let down does seem to be an issue.

    He is improving from day to day but in very very very small increments. 

    Thanks for your encouragement and sharing your experience - it means a lot!
  • It sounds like he's a rester! I have one too. Google "newborn nursing personality types." There's some very cool research in the area. There's essentially 5 nursing styles - barracuda, rester, gourmet, procrastinator, and excited inefficient. All newborns have one, or a combo of two. It isn't cultural or from a certain generation. It is ALL newborns. A baby's nursing style predicts what sorts of challenges mom will have. I really think you'll feel better reading up on how other resters behave and how moms coped with it. I know you've had a long, frustrating journey. I've kept up with reading but haven't commented much. I promise it gets easier though. He'll get to be a better eater.

    **siggy warning**

    Current Age 35, DH 33

    Married 9/2011

    BFP 8/2012, Miscarried 9/2012

    BFP 9/2012, DS 6/2013

    BFP 6/2014, Miscarried 7/2014

    BFP 7/2014, DD 4/2015

  • Just a little update for anyone in a similar situation: we are doing a million times better now, and although it still takes a while to get through a feeding, he is much much more efficient.

    But now we've run into another problem - silent reflux - which seems to be helped by Zantac. Onwards! :)
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