Worried about reflux again :(

Stevie - posted on 08/12/2011 ( 5 moms have responded )

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My oldest son had acid reflux as an infant and was on liquid zantac (which was a nightmare to try to give him) from 2.5 to 7 months. My newborn son who is 2 weeks old is doing some of the same things my first son started doing such as fussing/crying at the breast pushing me away but then chewing on his hand and spitting up right after eating and right after being laid down. My older son was a month and a half before he started having these problems but was not as easy to burp as my new baby is. I always get a good burp out of him and have been pumping if he sleeps for more than 2 hours or just if I feel full. When I pump I can EASILY get 6 ounces per breast in under 5 minutes so I know I have a crazy letdown. I don't block feed because I worry about one side getting over full sometimes I'll even offer him both sides. I don't want to have to pump before every feed because I think that would just make me produce more milk? How can I help him nurse better?

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[deleted account]

I forgot to add, the reason for block feeding is that the foremilk is basically sugar, whereas the hind milk is fat. When we have a huge supply, it takes longer to reach that hind milk. So switching sides only gives the baby sugar milk on each side, with little fat, which causes severe stomach pains. Maybe you've noticed him pulling up his legs or having a lot of gas? When you block feed, after that initial feeding, the rest is hind milk for the rest of the 1.5 hours. The baby is much happier and plumps up nicely too. :)

[deleted account]

I've had the same issue with all 4 of mine. By the 3rd baby, a friend shared that maybe he was sensitive to my drinking dairy. Things did improve GREATLY when I came off of cow's milk - which included yogurt, cheeses, ice cream, etc... I was eventually able to add in *one* dairy item every 3 days and he could handle that.

By #4 though, things were still terrible at 2 weeks - even watching dairy. (We had switched to goats milk) Another friend suggested overactive milk supply, which I had never heard of. When I googled it, he had all of the symptoms, many of which you named. He would throw his head back, gag, fight nursing, etc...

Basically, the ideas are: you have strong let down which is too strong for them to handle. You also have an overabundance of milk (very true, I could nurse and still pump of 6 to 8 extra oz!). Block feeding is what saved us! I would nurse that one side as often as he wanted to nurse for an hour and a half, then switch to the other side the next 1.5 hours.

Strangely enough, all of the milk supply/ demand problems I had had with my other children were gone. My body adjusted very quickly and there was a huge difference in how my body was able to stay balanced. I would highly recommend block feeding - it was the most wonderful thing anyone ever shared with me.

BTW - Our oldest was on Zantac for 2 years! What I didn't realize until years later is that you are only supposed to take it for a max of around 6 to 8 weeks. After this, the stomach kinda forgets to do what it's supposed to do, since the meds do the work. Food then begins to sour in the stomach, and a lifetime of issues begins. I am still upset that no one warned me of the risks of this, and thankfully with block feeding and avoidance of dairy on my part, we were able to avoid meds with #4. Oh, a nursing shield is something I also would use to help control the flood gates when my milk let down - you might could try those.

Cara - posted on 08/13/2011

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just a thought...... maybe it's more an over active let down thats the problem, my daughter had exactly the same symptoms and my let down was crazy too, when my milk slowed down she was far more settled.
I would suggest you stop pumping or only pumping enough to make you feel comfortable. If you are pumping to store milk, try pumping before putting baby to breast, you may need to alternate so baby and stored milk get best of both hind and foremilk. Again, only pump if you really need to, if not reduce the amount of pumping over the next week or two, so you dont get engorged.
I hope this helps, also if you can pls visit a breast feeding advisor.
Good luck and remember it gets so much easier with time.
:)

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Mia - posted on 08/14/2011

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I agree maybe your letdown isn't the only issue! I'm in the same boat as you, my 3rd baby is a month old & at 2 weeks was showing the same signs as his older brother (who had crazy rotten reflux from 5 weeks). I have an active letdwon also but even when I try to do things to help he is still in a lot of discomfort and showing all the same signs as your baby. I tried gravity feeding but it is too hard for me, same with laying in bed to feed, I try to pull off before the let down or even express a little at the beginning of the feed but that didn't help (that is hand express just a tiny amount, not pumping as I agree can make you produce too much), I've tried spacing the feeds closer to avoid him over feeding and that hasn't helped either. So we've had to go down the meds line & it has helped a little bit. I nurse him on one side only as my supply is enough for him at the moment but of course that may change as he gets older. I have a great baby nurse/lactation consultant that I go to regularly for advice & support, is this available to you?? My bub is burping better now as he's getting older and since being on the meds & he wasn't as easy to burp when he was born.

I'm not sure i've been much help, but I guess letting you know you're not alone & yep I'd be reviewing your bubby regularly with your paed & baby nurse!

Stevie - posted on 08/14/2011

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Yesterday I started block feeding I try to go about 2-3 hours or 4-5 sessions per side before switching. He doesn't nurse for a long time usually between 5-10 minutes. I have also been taking him off the breast any time he starts fussing and letting the milk spray into a receiving blanket until it slows down even if I have to do it 3 times in a feeding lol. I've also stopped pumping and am trying to get him to take the milk I've got stored so I can cut out a feeding a day and get my supply under control. It's been 28 hours and hes already throwing up less, thanks for your good advice ladies :)

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