first week of nursing — The Bump
Breastfeeding

first week of nursing

my little one just finished her 2nd full day of nursing. She is starting to get the hang of it and my nipples are extremely tender. She likes to nurse for a loooooong time. I'm talking an hour on one breast!  My milk hasn't even fully come in yet so I don't understand how she can nurse for so long. Is she just using it more as a soothing suck?  Should I just continue to allow her to suck for over an hour on one side?

Re: first week of nursing

  • No matter what your nipples are going to be sore in the beginning! Get some lanolin, that helps some. Mine bf for a long time on each side too at first. It gets better. I'd say if you can take it, let her. If you are too sore during that session, switch her to the other side. But yes sore nipples are unfortunately to be expected at first! You can also try ice packs in between sessions.

    Letting her suckle is good for her comfort and good for your supply, if you can deal with comfort nursing, it can be beneficial to your breastfeeding longevity. It can be toe curling pain at first but as long as her latch is good and you don't have nipple & oral thrush creeping in (I was sore for weeks and this was why!), it should improve slowly but surely! And don't be afraid to as for help from a consultant sooner rather than later if you need one. Good luck and keep it up mama!
    wintersong
  • My pediatrician told me not to let my LO nurse for more than 20 min/side before my milk came in.  Any more than that and he was just burning calories.  But he also lost a ton of weight in his first 3 days, so they were concerned about that.  If the weight issue isn't a problem for you, it might not be such a problem.
    klirwin82
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  • Just had my little one the 21st, been using a nipple shield and lanolin. I just keep switching him back and forth on sides per feeding so far, longest he nursed was about an hour on and off, shortest about ten minutes. And yeah my nipples already hurt, you just got to be careful and know your own limits.

    Lots of bowel movements though (4 or 5 since 7am yesterday) and a couple of just wet diapers so all my nurses seem impressed.

    All babies are different, just see what gets your baby what they need. If you have questions contact your doctor, a nurse or a lactation specialist and tell them your concerns and what your baby has been up to - behavior and diaper counts.

  • If it is extremely uncomfortable, don't be afraid to unlatch and give yourself a break. But some babies really do nurse all the time, even at first. 

    Nipples will feel tender at first. Your baby is so little, he may be having trouble getting your whole nipple in his mouht. Make sure it is really shoved in there!

    Lanolin didn't really help me, but I used coconut oil to great effect! I let my nipples air dry between feeds and then applied the oil. No need to wipe it off or anything. To be honest, parts of the day I just let my nursing top hang down to let my nipples be in the free air. My husband laughed, but whatever. 
    BabyFruit Ticker
  • Realistically, how long can I expect the initial latching to hurt? My LO is 11 days old and I expected my nipples to feel better by now. 

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  • I'd say it was a month for mine to feel better, but I also had nipple thrush. But it doesn't surprise me that you are still sore, but hopefully you should be making slow but steady progress. Can you go visit the LC at your hospital to make sure you are headed in the lright direction? 

    PS-my babe is 6 months and I still have sore days. Nothing at all like the beginning but it comes and goes, particularly if she's really fussy and nurses a lot. Totally tolerable though! Anything for her!
    DrillSergeantCat
  • We have an appointment with the pediatrician Tuesday and they have a LC on staff so I was planning on talking to her again. 

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  • My son had an okay latch...but his mouth was so small, and my nipples so big, it just took some time for him to grow into them. If say some time between 6 and 8 weeks it was much better. I didn't even notice when, I just thought one day, "Hey, this hasn't hurt in awhile!" 
    BabyFruit Ticker
  • Realistically, how long can I expect the initial latching to hurt? My LO is 11 days old and I expected my nipples to feel better by now. 
    Day 11 was my lowest point and it stayed bad til day 14. At week 3, I was on my way. 

    On day 9, I asked a friend the same the same question that you asked. She told me 3 weeks, and I didn't think I would make it - but I did, and now we are at 9 months and it's been easy since the end of the first month and well worth the difficult start.

    I hope you're feeling better and it's going better for you!

  • Day 11 was my lowest point and it stayed bad til day 14. At week 3, I was on my way. 

    On day 9, I asked a friend the same the same question that you asked. She told me 3 weeks, and I didn't think I would make it - but I did, and now we are at 9 months and it's been easy since the end of the first month and well worth the difficult start.

    I hope you're feeling better and it's going better for you!

    Definitely feeling better! I'm actually enjoying breastfeeding now. 

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    tarheelgirl8Nickiochwintersong
  • Hydragel pads. Omg those things were my favorite the first few days!! Lanolin didn't do a thing for me, but these pads felt wonderful. My nursing staff suggested refrigerating them before and between use (good for 24 hours)
    DS1 born 2/28/16
    DS2 due 12/12/18

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