LO was one month old yesterday. At his 2 week pedi visit, he had gained back his birth weight and then some. At 2.5 weeks I went to a hospital BF support group because I was still having severe nipple pain when he nursed. I learned there that he was only getting less than one ounce per feeding, and made an appointment with a LC. It was this same day that I started antibiotics for mastitis.
At 3 weeks, I had the LC appointment and rented a hospital pump. LO had lost weight - he was back a little below birth weight - and was constantly hungry. I started nursing, then pumping, and feeding LO whatever I was able to pump. This was often less than an ounce - he was still hungry, so I started making up the difference in formula. I am using a nipple shield due to the severe pain.
Now, I am over the mastitis, and still working with the LC. I am still pumping after LO nurses, in order to empty the breasts and give him whatever milk I can pump. My supply was severely tanked, but it is starting to come back. We've determined that LO has some degree of a posterior tongue tie that is preventing him from getting a good effective latch, and have an appointment next week to have that evaluated and corrected.
He also has a severely clenching bite, which is causing my extreme pain when he nurses (he literally flattens my nipples if I do not use the shield...and sometimes even with the shield on) and we have a physical therapy appointment the week after to address this. This and the tongue tie are also preventing him from effectively transferring milk, despite the fact that his suck is pretty strong. (I am doing some minor exercises with him in the meantime, as suggested by the LC, to try and help loosen his jaw.)
I am still having to supplement with formula - now that LO has gained back his lost weight, it seems like his 3 week growth spurt has come a week late and he's making up for lost time by eating more. My milk supply is starting to come back up, but it is taking its good old time doing so.
I had planned to exclusively ecologically BF, so this has been a *major* blow. (I didn't even plan on owning even a manual pump. I cried for days.) Has anyone else been dealing with anything similar? If so, how long did it take you to be able to exclusively BF once all the underlying issues were resolved?
I think I am looking at having to use the nipple shield and pump until LO's jaw issues are worked out, even if I can get my supply back up to where I no longer need formula. Does anyone have experience with supplementing? Do you think I will be able to stop needing the formula any time soon? Any tips for increasing my supply? The way things stand now, LO will be almost 7 weeks until we can get in to see the physical therapist, although I am #1 on the cancellation list for an earlier appointment.
I'm also guessing that I can kiss my dreams of BF-induced infertility goodbye and plan for a visit from AF in the near future?