My LO is almost 5 weeks old. I believe I have an overactive letdown and oversupply.
I was pumping after a few feedings daily from early on (I know, bad idea in retrospect).... I have cut it down and only pump once every 3-4 days after LO gets a bottle of pumped milk because I'm sooo frustrated and in tears that I give up and warm up a bottle.
I have been block feeding for 4-6 hours on each side, and tried every position recommended for overactive letdown but LO still screams, sputters, and chokes on milk after about 45 seconds of nursing. I've tried unlatching him and letting the milk flow into a towel until it stops on it's own but when he latches again, a single suck gets it spraying 3 ft across the room like a firehose again for the entire nursing session (even if I lay flat on my back). Sometimes I don't catch it in time and milk sprays all over his face which seems to upset him even more.
The only time that he nursing him is pleasant is if he is in deep sleep, and I latch him on when he is not fully awake... This way he suckles so gently, that there is hardly any letdown and then when the milk does flow he just swallows and isn't really sucking at all. We get to do this about 2 feedings during the day, and 2 at night.. but he's usually not sleeping deeply enough for me to use this method with every feeding.
Most nursing sessions follow a pattern of Suck, Choke/Scream, Spray into towel, and repeat about 20-30 times until we both give up and I just rock him in my arms to comfort him.
I never wait until he is crying to feed him, and usually offer the boob before he's even showing early hunger signs to avoid him sucking too aggressively but even if he's calm when we start he's screaming and crying within a minute of nursing.
I'm getting so discouraged, and have burst out crying several times while trying to nurse him... It sounds so bad like I'm causing him pain by feeding him... I burp him several times while feeding, so I know he gets gas from sputtering and choking on the milk... but he still won't stay latched after burping.
I'm really considering going to exclusive pumping because it's so much less stressful when he eats from a bottle.... but I do want to nurse him so badly! I miss the quiet bonding that we had in his first few weeks, but this past 2 weeks have been horrible!
For the past 2 weeks I tried all the tips on kellymom for overactive letdown and oversupply, and it hasn't seemed to help at all.
I was thinking about nipple shields, and thought that it might control the spray of milk... I know that the risk is a drop in milk supply, but at this point I'm desperate.
Has anyone used a nipple shield for fast letdown? Even if not, do you think it would help our situation? I want to nurse him so badly, and am getting to the point where I want to cry just thinking about nursing him because he seems to hate it so much.