What if the baby doesn't latch on at the hospital, should I turn down formula and still try at home?
MOST HELPFUL POSTS
Melinda - posted on 06/08/2010
I didn't have trouble with latching until my son had a bottle. Then he wanted the bottle nipple and not my little ones which stuck me with pumping for the first year of his life which was AWFUL! I say no bottle no matter what.
Amber - posted on 06/10/2010
Another thing...I have a girlfriend that wanted to nurse and was impatient when it came to her milk coming in...the colostrum is sooo important for the baby, so don't rush the "milk"! The creamy liquid that comes out first is full of fats that the baby needs! If the baby nurses long enough and sucks good, your milk will come in just fine! So don't think you have to pump and try to hurry the milk flow or your baby won't be getting what he/she needs! Good luck again! And CONGRATS! Being a mommy is such a wonderful blessing!
Liz - posted on 06/09/2010
If you want to nurse, keep trying. If baby just cant latch on you will have to supplement baby with formula until the next feeding. Try at every feeding!! Remember, our breasts are made for this. It may take some getting used to, but you can do it!
***PS: If you're given a nipple shield PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE pump milk or make formula and give that to baby when he/she is done nursing. (Hopefully La Leche Legue will give you this info. I learned this the hard way!)
Nipple shields have fewer holes and a slower flow than the breast. So when baby nurses at the breast with a shield for 40 minutes, baby is only getting 25 minutes worth of milk. This can lead to failure to thrive. You must supplement with expressed breastmilk or formula to make sure baby is getting enough to eat.***
Abigail - posted on 06/08/2010
I must say I find it very strange that in the US you put your babies in a nursery. Studies have shown that being close to your baby helps so much with breastfeeding. You are more likely to notice their feeding cues before they get upset. If possible you should keep your baby in the room with you - never mind the midwives saying you need rest!
Breastfeeding comes from persistence and good support. La Leche League are the world wide experts in this so go to one of their groups.
Try not to give any milk (your own or formula) from a bottle before your baby is 4 weeks old (this goes for pacifiers too) as the sucking techniques for breast and bottle are completely different and you will only make breastfeeding harder to establish. I know this from experience as well as it being proven in studies. You are far better using a special cup designed for breastfed babies or a syringe if you feel you need to get some fluids into them.
Most of all keep at it, and don't be bossed around - the baby is yours and the decisions are likewise!
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Amber - posted on 06/10/2010
If you have problems with latch in the hospital ask to see the lactation specialist. If you still have problems once you go home call the hospital and ask for some #'s of the la lecha leage (I probably spelled that wrong), which helps women that are nrusing. There are places that are free to help, I'm sure the hospital or local dept. of human services can help. The first week or two are the hardest (usually)! If you can stick to it that long, then it gets easier. My first was easier than my second, but my second latched on good the first time and then had issues! The benefits to you and baby are so great! Good luck!
Samantha - posted on 06/10/2010
thats an awful thing to say with my last and 4th child i had to formula feed after 2 weeks of breast feeding as id cracked nipples and an infection....how dare you try to make mums feel awful for doing what they feel is right.. aimed at the mum who called formula poison well done to all mums who can breastfeed and yes it is the best very rewarding but if you cant then do whats best for both x
Ashley - posted on 06/10/2010
My son wouldn't latch on at first but if you keep trying then he will. If not I would say to pump and put the milk in bottles because one it is cheaper and to the say the it helps build your child's immune system. Also I have heard that if you breast feed that your child's brain development grows fasten then those who do not breast feed. I breast feed until my son was one years old.
Jami - posted on 06/09/2010
my oldest was 5 days old when my milk came in (tues-saturday) I lied. I told them he was feeding when he wasn't. it's normal for some babies to not want to nurse right away...I was actually pumping for his first bottle when my milk came in and I decided to try and he nursed well.
Kelly - posted on 06/09/2010
Any breast milk is good for the baby. My daughter was preemie and wouldn't latch on. I pumped and pumped for hours to save up milk for her. If the baby won't latch on at all, you might have to give formula as well, and once your milk dries up start giving formula all the time. But the doctors told me that ANY breast milk I could pump and give to the baby would be beneficial.
Hope that helps!
Jodene - posted on 06/09/2010
I really wanted to breast feed, I feel it is the best thing for your child. I was not lucky enough to be able to continue giving my baby breast milk after 8 weeks due to illness. I had a c-section and my milk took a while to come though so my son had formula as well as breast milk. I had it in my head that I would be a bad mum if I didn't give it my all. I feel that there is way too much pressure put on mums these days to breast feed and now feel that expressing every 2 hours with a screaming baby was more harmfull to our relationship than formula would have been to his health. I would talk to your midwife about breastfeeding and they should be able to get you a lactation consultant. Things will be different for me next time round as I will not be worried about what everyone else thinks ... I will decide what is best for me and my baby. I wish you all the very best. Remember ... Mum knows best, follow your gut instincts!
Stacey - posted on 06/09/2010
When in the hospital my daughter had a hard time latching on. they gave me a nipple shield that i used and she would latch on to that. after her having juandice for so long they told me to put her on formula for 24 hours to see if it goes down. it did go down but after that she would go back to breast feeding.
Megan - posted on 06/09/2010
"When we (and the artificial milk manufacturers) say that breastfeeding is the best possible way to feed babies because it provides their ideal food, perfectly balanced for optimal infant nutrition, the logical response is, "So what?" Our own experience tells us that optimal is not necessary. Normal is fine, and implied in this language is the absolute normalcy - and thus safety and adequacy - of artificial feeding. The truth is, breastfeeding is nothing more than normal. Artificial feeding, which is neither the same, nor superior, is therefore deficient, incomplete, and inferior. Those are difficult words, but they have an appropriate place in our vocabulary."
Sarah - posted on 06/09/2010
my baby latched on and we thought we were doing great!! we go home and he is constantly nursing...like 24/7 so i go with it because i believe in giving the baby what he wants so i figure we are doing great i'm up all night nursing 15 to 20 mins on each breast every hour...night and day and he was still hungry but i persisted then we go to his follow up appt. and he has dropped 14%of his weight so we supplemented and my milk still didn't show up. i'd pump and pump and wouldn't even get an ounce. It is pretty depressing. My point is don't depend on others to make you feel ok about how you handle your baby. you are just as good of a mother no matter how you feed your baby, at least you feed him :). Good luck to you and yours.
Heather - posted on 06/09/2010
sometimes they will give you a nipple shield to elp latch. I hasd to use one.. my babys almost 4 months and just started latching properly without it.. she was around 3 months then :P so dont give up.. but definitely use formula if u need to.. or even better, do what i did and buy a pump and pump then bottle feed :)
Liz - posted on 06/09/2010
Andrea is referring to Lanolin. You can buy it at Walmart in the baby aisle. It's great for when your breasts are sore or cracked, and it doesn't have to be removed before you nurse. It's 100% natural and organic. I love it. I use it for super dry skin in the winter!
Andrea - posted on 06/09/2010
also! they have a nipple loation in the baby section at like wal mart and target i beleve, its purple and starts with an "L" but that helps with the sorness and keeps them kinda soft, my nipples got like scabs or something on them just because i never had someone sucking on them all the time but it goes away shortly! so dont worry :) i dont want to scare you!!
Andrea - posted on 06/09/2010
I had my son at home, but my mid wife helped me to get my son to latch on, if you are having trouble like i did at first, she said to smash it is flat as you can and try to "roll" it in to your babys mouth. from what i can tell all babys need to get use to it :) if you continue with it and your breast milk comes in a warm shower too loosen te milk up and come out a little will help so you can smash it. La Leche League is a great help! and you can look them up online.
i personally stay away from formula because i feel breast milk is made special or my little man, but every one is different. :) good luck to you!!
Breastfeeding is not easy in the beginning. Get in touch with someone who can help. The hospital should have a lactation consultant or look for a La Leche League leader in your area http://www.llli.org. Don't stress so much about it. Try breastfeeding as soon as you can after baby is born and leave baby skin to skin with you as much as you can in the first several days (or even weeks).
Foremilk is the milk that comes out first. It has lots of sugar (lactose) in it and too much can cause a fussy/gassy baby. Hindmilk comes shortly after you feel a letdown and it's got fat in it. You want to make sure baby thoroughly empties the first side before you switch to avoid an imbalance.
Maria - posted on 06/09/2010
I agree that theres nothing wrong with formula. Breastmilk no doubt is great for your baby but not all mothers can do it. My mothers milk dried up after a few months when I was an infant and mine did the same thing. As long as your baby is getting what he or she needs to grow at a healthy rate. No one should be made to feel guilty about not being able to breast feed.
And Also to Alexandra M. - What is foremilk/hindmilk
Alexandra - posted on 06/09/2010
My son had some trouble latching on at the hospital, but I eventually got the hang of it, and was able to breastfeed at home successfully for about 6 weeks or so, until he started refusing the breast. I would have thought it was nipple confusion, except he'd never had a pacifier or bottle before. I still don't know what happened, but feeding him became quite the ordeal, and I was getting concerned that he wasn't getting enough to eat, so I started pumping and feeding him the breast milk in a bottle, and it was the best decision I have ever made for many reasons.
We are no longer fighting to get him to eat, meal time has become more relaxed and less frustrating, and I am able to let me husband feed him when I want/need a break, and so my husband gets to bond with our son as well.
There's also the issue of the foremilk/hindmilk. When I was breastfeeding, Noah seemed to be getting less hindmilk than he should have been, but when I pump I can completely empty both breasts and so I know he's getting both kinds of milk mixed together. His poop proves it!
I also have a better idea of how much he's eating- I could never gauge this when I was breastfeeding, but when he eats 8 ounces from the bottle, I know he's most likely not going to want to eat for another 3-4 hours, but if he only eats 5 or 6, he'll be hungry earlier.
I do have to give him formula as well, because when you pump your production will slow down a little bit, but I am taking domperidone to help increase the supply (my son's pediatrician prescribed it for me), there are also herbs you can take (blessed thistle and fenugreek) but I tried them and they didn't help me.
Breastmilk is best for infants, and I give my son as much as I can, but I don't feel bad because I have to give him formula as well. Bottle feeding him, in my case, is what's best for him. You just need to figure out what's best for you and your son.
Sarah - posted on 06/09/2010
there is nothing wrong with giving your baby formula. i struggled with breastfeeding so i ended up switching to formula and my 16 month old thrived on that.
however i do feel that if you want to breast feed try and get as much help and support from lacation consultants,midwives, your family etc.
they are all there to help so ask for some advice sweetie.
good luck with your decision.
Sharon - posted on 06/08/2010
Hi, my son wouldn't latch at all in hospital. i found out on the last night (after two nights of screaming) from am amazing midwife that i had flat nipples and he suggested i try nipple shields when i got home. they were wonderful but were frustrating. my son learn't to breastfeed much quicker than giving him expressed milk in bottles thouh coz the shields meant that he was still drinking straight from the breast so he got the idea of how his mouth was upposed to work. he's now four months old and screams everytime someone just shows him a bottle.
Nicole - posted on 06/08/2010
this is what my lactation specialist in the hospital told me. Babies if put on the bottle first can go to the breast it is a little more work to get them to latch but some bottle nipples like avent are designed to help lessen the confusion. you can even bottle/breastfeed too if you wish. you can bottle feed and switch at anytime before 6 weeks is up same with breast to bottle where is will be easier to ween or multi use. any time after that will be very hard.
from exclusively pumping expirence..it is alot of work you have to find a pump you like that isn't cheap. that will withstand the amount of use you will be using it for. i do not recommend the evenflo brand for that i have it and got it as a gift=/ i looked at reviews on them before it was even given to me and i would have gotten one by avent or mendla because many had their evenflos die or lose suction power. do your pump research. remember you will be pumping about every 2 hours for about 15-20 minutes longer if you only get a single pump. and that's just electric. if you have to manually do it that will take a bit longer even yet. then you have to pour the milk into storage bags or bottles then clean every piece of your pump and pump bottles before the next use. after you pump you need to know the guidelines for storing your milk as well...
milk bags can only be kept for 72 hours refrigerated.
bottles in the refrigerator 8 days max.
frozen bottles of milk 6 months
milk in bottles in a ice cooler 24 hours
they need to be labeled with the time and date so you don't forget when you pumped it either.
eventually i realized i wasn't making enough or the pump wasn't giving me enough and i ended up giving in and going straight to formula only as i was supplementing anyways for what i wasn't able to give to my baby myself.
Maria - posted on 06/08/2010
My son never was good at latching on. I tried endlessly, but ended up just pumping all my milk.
Also, I took the formula that the hospital offered just in case. which ended up being a life saver, because after only one month of breast feeding I got mastitis (infection in the glands from breastfeeding) which made my milk dry up. so thank god for that formula. theres no worse feeling then knowing your baby is hungry and you not having anything to feed him or her
Whitney - posted on 06/08/2010
i would continue to try when you got home before giving him/her a bottle..keep trying before every meal and maybe he will latch on.. if not then if he takes a bottle then u can pump and feed your milk through bottle so that way your baby is still getting the wonderful nutrients from your breast milk!! goodluck :)
Monica - posted on 06/08/2010
there will be nurses there to help you!! they always make sure your baby is latching on properly and will def help you right away!! but don't worry, alot of babies are just natural pros at it!! If you want to breastfeed and can pump, that is def best AND FREE!!! lol. but i'm sure you'll be fine w/the latching on. there are groups for breastfeeding lots of support and such. My second had trouble latching on and the two first weeks were very hard, but after that she did great, i never had to pump or anything!! Good Luck i hope you stick w/your decision to breastfeed!!
Wendy - posted on 06/08/2010
My daughter wouldnt latch on. I tried for days at every feeding. she just wouldnt do it. I pumped and bottle feed her that way - she got formula on a very rare occasion, when i couldnt pump for whatever reason (ran out of milk while out of the house). I "breast feed" because I could, however there is nothing wrong with formula. Do what is right for you and your baby. You will know
Tanith - posted on 06/08/2010
It took my son 4 DAYS to latch properly. He wouldn't open his mouth and when he did he would only suck on the nipple instead of the areola too. The nipple kept slipping out his mouth. I really struggled. My breasts became extremely engorged and it was impossible for him to latch on as my nipples were almost flush with the rest of my breast. I had to hand express in a hot shower to get my breasts soft enough for the nipple to be exposed enough for him to latch onto. I cried and almost felt like giving up.
When he was too hungry to even try latch, I expressed a little into a medicine cup and allowed the nurse to feed him from it, that took the edge off his hunger so we both felt a little more relaxed, and I'd try breastfeed again.
My son is 9 months, still breastfed and not once have I given him a bottle/formula.
I never gave up and nor should any one else.
Sara - posted on 06/08/2010
i was in the hospital for 2 days and my son wouldnt latch on, he barely got anything to eat. The Dr's said that can be very normal. So when we went home we just kept trying and did all the difarent positions untill we found a way that worked. I gave him a bottle with formula in it once a day, but we just kept trying and within a week and a half we were pros. I could feed him anywhere. It just takes persistance. You should read up on difarent positions and tecniques to try and only you can choose what you want to do. My husband kept telling me "it's okay, we can just give him a bottle, you dont have to do this." but I didnt give up and I breast fed my boy for 8 1/2 months.
Hope this helps and good luck :)
Codi - posted on 06/08/2010
they don't latch on in the hospital because new borns do nothing but sleep until they're really hungry THEN they wake up to nurse. thats what a very wise old woman who was a nurse told me.. I wish she would've had the same talk with the younger nurses who made me stay up all night trying to nurse a sleeping baby! my baby is 6 1/2 months old and has never had a bottle but went straight to a sippy at 4 months no trouble at all
Marisa - posted on 06/08/2010
My name is Marisa
I breast fed all four of my children until they were 1year old
Please dont give up on breast feeding. it is difficult trust me but it does get easier make sure you use lanolin on your nipples after every feeding that way they dont crack and bleed... If the baby dont latch on right away then pump or ask the nurses for a breast shield... Make sure to put a notecard in your babies crib in a bright color telling the nurses no formula and that you want to be notified eveytime your baby is hungry when it is in the nursery.. and no sugar water sometimes they give the baby sugar water when they think that the mom needs to rest.....and if you are not adiment about the breast feeding then they will try and talk you into switching to formula....but trust me the baby will latch on it might not be the first time or the first day but keep trying.. if you have to make sure you squeeze your nipple enough to fit it into the babies mouth...
Angela - posted on 06/08/2010
My advice would be to have an open mind. I am a recent first time mom and I was dead set on breastfeeding exclusively. My son was born and latched on perfectly! unfortunately my milk never came in properly so we had to suppliment formula.
Also most hospitals have a lactation consultant that should be available to help you get your baby to latch on well and to make sure they are getting what they need.
Good luck to you!
Brandy - posted on 06/08/2010
my son would not latch on at the hospital either. so i was giving him formula every time after i tried to breastfeed. he had trouble with the nipple on the bottle too, but eventually got that down. When we got home he still couldn't latch on, i think its because my breast just became so engorged, which was severly painful. I did pump for 2 weeks though since he would take it from the bottle, i just wanted to make sure he did get some breast milk. He is a handsome healthy boy 4 months old now.
Carlene - posted on 06/08/2010
Try to breastfeed if you can, it is so good for you and your baby and it promotes a great bond between the two of you not to mention it is cheaper then to having to buy formula. You will both have to get the hang of breastfeeding, it could take a little bit of time but don't give up easy. Plus you can always talk to a lactation nurse ( which will be a the hospital) and they can help you. I just had my first child 2 months ago and breastfeeding is the way to go, plus you loose the weight really fast when you breastfeed too. I have lost 29 lbs of the 33 I gain in my pregnancy. So give it some time and don't give up.
Krystal - posted on 06/08/2010
After my son was born he was ready to eat with in hour after birth. I had trouble getting him to latch on but they can give you a silicon nipple which all it is,Is a nipple that sucutions to yours. It really helped me alot after that he had no problems latching on at all. Pumping isn't good cause your baby doesn't get all the nutrients from the breast milk anyways thats what the doctors told me. Good luck
Megan - posted on 06/08/2010
My midwife told my husband and I never to give up if you want to breastfeed... babies are meant to do it. I am lucky because my son latched on minutes after he was born, however I know the worst thing in the world is to have a hungry baby and they are having trouble latching. Keep trying and don't give up. Formula is fine, however breastmilk is incredible for many reasons. If you have to pump and give by bottle, that works too. My husband and I do both since I have to go back to work in just a few weeks... I can go from breast to bottle in the same feeding. Also, your husband or significant other should act like a coach. They need to understand breastfeeding and how to help create that latch. I know when I get frustrated and my husband knows what a good latch should look like and helps me reposition him or whatever it seems to work. Ask for help, and if needed TALK TO A LACTATION CONSULTANT! :)
Rachel - posted on 06/08/2010
Hi there, My baby took 1 - 2 months to latch properly. I ended up using nipple shields for a while. They helped with the sore cracked nipples & also taught her to open her mouth abit more which eventually turned into latching properly. Good luck
Right i feel strong on this.My daughter once born wouldnt latch,i tried and the nurses tried.She would latch for a few seconds and not suck then and come off it.She never looked to be fed at all.She became jaudice,and got blood in her nappy due to dehyration.She went a day and a half without breastmilk.I wanted to do as i was being told,as i know no better and breastfeeding was what i wanted to do.
I had enough the next evening and asked the nurse why wont my baby latch and drink,she said keep trying and i said shes got blood due to lack of fluids,still told keep trying.
As a mother to my first baby i wasnt having it,i was in bits and i went dispite the looks off the nurses and fed her a 30z bottle of milk and for a newborn she drank the full 30z.
I still tried to b/f and she just would not do it.I expressed and she wouldnt drink the breast milk.I went home after the 2nd day so its not like she was very used to the formula milk but she did refuse the breastmilk.My milk supply didnt come in,so i couldnt express in the hospital.
I would say mom do what you feel,i am glad i did.The signs my baby was showing me told me to feck what i was being told by doctors and nurses and do what was best for my flesh and blood,my baby.Good b/f support is what you need,looking back i feel a nipple sheid is what could of been needed for her to be able to latch and drink.Best of luck to you.
It was clear after my second childs birth my first had a problem as my second latched no problem and fed so well and on demand.:-)
Saren - posted on 06/07/2010
First the facts of babies don't need a full meal for the first 3 days of life. They do just fine on your colostrum alone, which is the stuff that comes in before your breast milk. Also keep in mind that babies (will/can/normally) lose weight those first days because they are born very swollen from your hormones. Nurses: some good, some not so much. Some nurses are not so encouraging, some lactation specialists are not so patient. No one likes to listen to a crying baby.. they may pressure you to bottle feed.
Yes, I agree with most of the ladies here, do what you feel is right. If you want to breast feed then go for it! Remember that babies are not born knowing how to latch on.. they learn with you. Tips for success: don't wait til baby is starving.. if the baby is already crying it has been hungry for a while. That's not a good time to try to teach him something new, right? So, keep a close eye out for the "rooting" motion. That's when the baby is like looking for the nipple, shaking his head with his mouth open. Once you notice your baby's signals that he's kindda hungry you can catch him early and practice latching on. Notice I say now you can practice, lol.
While I was in the hospital with C-section, my milk didn't come in. I told everyone I was going to breast feed and not to give him a bottle. I didn't know the 3 day no meal thing (for the baby) and the nurses kept asking if I wanted them to give him a bottle. Over and over. I gave in to the pressure because I was so out of it with pain killers.. I didn't want him making everyone miserable. After that the lactation specialists came by a couple of times and helped me try to latch but, looking at it now, it was half-assed. I didn't get it so I bottle fed.
I kid you not, as soon as I got home, my milk came in by the gallon. I started pumping and bottle feeding, kept trying to latch. I was losing my mind (with frustration and lack of sleep) so, I turned to my local La Leche League branch. I went to a group meeting (free) and someone referred me to an awesome lactation specialist who apparently held all kinds of baby groups at another hospital.
I called the next day and they asked me to come in... she sat me down in a chair, gave me a "breast friend", and taught me how to latch. IN 5 MINUTES the baby latched on and was drinking happily. Seeing this gave me so much hope! We did it twice and it worked. I tried at home and still failed. I kept going back until I got it and in the mean time kept pumping. It was all very exhausting, frustrating, tears were shed, screaming was heard. I bottle fed and breast fed until I got it.. even used a nipple shield for a couple of days because he got used to the bottle this whole time!
In total took about a month to get it all breastfeeding. It was very rewarding when we finally got it but, I kept bottles too because sometimes I couldn't breastfeed while out, etc.
Get a NIPPLE SHIELD ($5) ahead of time for the hospital... could help you breast feed in the mean time although it might be painful (was for me) if you're not latching on correctly. Still point is baby gets your milk and the feel of your breast.
Breast Friend: More firm than boppy, very helpful with newborns.. they're so small.
No fancy bottles! Recommended by lactation specialist, playtex baggy bottles (drop-ins). Remember don't microwave breast milk.
And, if they give you soothie pacifiers in the hospital, take tons cuz they're between $3-5 in the store!
Remember: lactation specialists are like any doctor or therapist.. if you don't like one then try another til you find the one that works for you. Don't give up! You'll find a good match. Look for groups in hospitals near you.
Because she is so amazing, I will give you her info. I kept going to baby groups with her until he was 7mo old and I moved out of state. When I go visit every 3mo I go see her and she gives me huge hugs.
She's in FL but, if you want to talk to someone who knows what they're talking about, call. Maybe she can refer you to someone she knows is good near you.
Denise - posted on 06/07/2010
i had a little trouble for my daughter to latch on at the hospital but the nurse was very helpful. I say you should try to continue to have him to latch or it that doesn't work then you should pump and put the milk in the bottle. Good luck hope everything goes well
Brianna - posted on 06/07/2010
everyone has problems at first exspecially if its your first baby. But dont be discouraged you just gotta keep trying. I think that most new moms wanna give up the first week but if you just keep trying im sure you will get it.
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