First time attempting at Breastfeeding. Help appreciated!!

Danielle - posted on 09/02/2012 ( 3 moms have responded )




Hello Ladies,

I am in need of some serious help!

My son was born almost two weeks ago, and I have been trying to breastfeed. I have run into some problems that have made the decision to breastfeed increasingly hard.

After almost two week, my son has not yet gained any weight. He has lost over the typical 10%, and in fact, he is still loosing weight almost at an alarming rate. We have a lactation consultant and nurses coming into our house to check the weight of our son every two-three days.

It was determined that because I have PCOS, and needed fertility treatments to conceive that it could be a hormonal issue affecting my milk production. My doctors have put me on medication to improve my milk supply, and I am starting Fenugreek and Blessed Thistle.

My son is always so hungry, and it scares me that he is never satisfied. He would feed so hard that he leaves big blisters on my nipples. He will feed for 20 mins on one side, burp, fall asleep and then wake up frantic for more. For the first week I would spent all day switching breasts.

As advised my the consultant and doctors, we have started to supplement formula through syringe and feeding tube while he is at the breast. The tube is inserted in the corner of his mouth while he is latched at the breast so he is pulling and stimulating the breast, but pulling the formula for nutrition from the syringe.

Now, unfortunately, I have run into another issue.

Due to my son being breach, and gestational hypertension, he had to be born by C-section. This morning when I woke up, I noticed that the incision had re-opened and I was bleeding pus and blood all over the floor. After spending the majority of the afternoon in the hospital I am put on I.V antibiotics (Clindamycin). The I.V is in my wrist which makes it increasingly hard to move it, let along hold and feed my baby.

From what I've researched this medication can decrease milk supply (something I have very little of), and can affect the taste of my milk (making it less desirable), and can have some diarrhea side affects in my baby. I am now very concerned that this will be the end of being able to breastfeed. I am extremely concerned with him getting dehydrated if he this is a common side effect.. especially with him having troubles gaining weight to begin with.

What should I do?!

Does anyone have any advice with antibiotics and breastfeeding?

I am afraid that he will loose the desire to breastfeed if he is given a bottle for a week, or possibly longer depending on how fast I can recover.

Does anyone have any advice with hormonal issues and a lack of supply? How can I increase my milks nutrition and calories so he can gain weight without formula?

(The consultant said that he is burning the calories he is getting from my milk while feeding which is why he is still loosing weight)

Any encouraging advice will be appreciated.

I am starting to chicken out a bit. As much as I wanted to breastfeed I want my son to be healthy and content!


Felicia - posted on 09/09/2012




I'm so sorry that you are having some trouble. My daughter had some trouble putting on weight when she was born. she lost almost a pound in the 2 days we were in the hospital because I was nursing her. They say that nursed babies tend to lose more weight in the beginning because your milk has yet to come in. Did your milk fully come in yet? They sell a pill, I'm unsure of what it is called but I was told by a consultant that it was perfectly safe to use and is supposed to help your supply. If your son latches well already I don't think you will have much of a problem with him nursing and using a bottle while you recover. I know you want him to be healthy and get the milk but you also need to take care of yourself so that you don't get sicker I know a few people that had their incision re open and they ended up in the hospital for days. So you need to care for yourself so you can care for him of course. I would pump if u are able too. and give him formula. It will pay off in the end. For you so u can get rest and for him so he will gain some weight. They say if you pump between feedings then that will help your supply go up as well because they say you make as much milk as the baby needs. So if you pump your breast is going to think you need more so it will start making more for him. Its the best thing to do; breastfeed. In time you will have it down no problem and he will have it down. Best of luck to you and congrats on your baby boy!

Lori - posted on 09/03/2012





I'm so sorry to hear you're having such a rough start to breastfeeding.

I have heard that some women who have trouble getting pregnant, do end up with supply issues due to hormonal issues. But with proper support and help you should be able to breastfeed your baby. I'm glad you have a Lactation Consultant that you are working with. If you feel that she is not offering enough support for you, or has given up on you please find a new one. Find an IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant).

My first suggestion was to try a SNS - but on re-reading your post it sounds like the LC has you using one of those already. Keep at it.

Also, please keep in mind that the first 6 weeks are generally the hardest. After that it should get easier. If you can make it that far, you can probably keep going. And rule number 1. FEED YOUR BABY. Yes breast is best... but if you do have legitimate supply issues, then please don't feel bad about needing to supplement. Keep working at it, and you may be able to get to a point of being able to nurse exclusively. but even if you never nurse exclusively, every little bit of breast milk that your baby gets is good for him.

As for the antibiotics. The website attached below is great for looking up info on medications and breastfeeding. However it sounds like you already have that info on the antibiotic that you've been given.

My take on the info on this antibiotic is that you should continue to breastfeed even though you've been given this antibiotic. If your baby does develop diarrhea then you may want to take a 1 day break.

And if you find yourself needing to give baby a bottle, there are methods to get baby back to the breast.

A really good book about nutrition for breastfeeding moms is Mother Food by Hilary Jacobson. She addresses all types of food concerns, and good basic diets for breastfeeding moms.

According to this book in the chapter about PCOS "two herbs recommended in the week after birth are nettle and dong quai. The latter is given in China if the mother lost considerable blood during birth. Taking foods such as steamed fennel and carrots, millet, rice, hummus, dark green leafy vegetable, plus breakfasting on oatmeal, will further help establish the chemistry of lactation.

User - posted on 09/03/2012




Breast feeding is the best thing you could do for your baby at this age. I love every minute of nursing my baby. I to had the same issues as you did in the begining. My issue was that she would not latch. Do not give up! If you give your baby a bottle you will loose your milk supply. You will also not be able to produce the antibodies that your baby needs to increase his immune system. Formula fed babies get sicker faster and more frequently than breast fed babies. How much water are you drinking? What does your diet look like? Do you own a beast pump?

I went through this fear that you are having, but you must try your hardest to not give up! You will be so thankful that you tried hard when he is smiling and cuddling your breast at 6 months. I would love to talk more about this... do you have facebook?


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