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Thread: Please tell me it gets easier!

  1. #37

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    Hey Twin Sister! Are you still hanging in there with the breast feeding? Sounds like a bit of a miserable time. If you think you do have thrush (and to me it sounds like you do) get some canestan or monistat to use on your nipples. My md said I could put it on twice a day for a week, right after nursing. You can take acidophilus (tablets or drops) to help prevent it from returning, or try BioK. (it's like yogourt, but with way more live bacteria. You can get it in the health-food section of the grocery store. Safeway?) Does your baby have a yeast diaper rash? (Bright red, maybe "bubbly" looking, and mostly painless. Pretty common with thrush.) If so, you can use monistat or canestan on that too. If your baby has thrush in his mouth, than you can get gentian violet OTC at the drug store. It is MESSY, but effective. Use a q-tip to swab his mouth with it twice a day, for 2-7 days. Also, if you have any soothers, pitch them and buy new ones after you start treating the thrush. I'm assuming that applies to any equipment that you use on your breasts - ie. pumps. Sterilize the living daylights out of them. My midwife said yeast is a bugger for coming back if it isn't totally wiped out.
    Anyways, I hope you get some relief! All the best.


  2. #38

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    Hoobley - I had an electric pump but it was so finicky I got rid of it and borrowed a good manual pump. I actually do get let down for it but I think by the evening (when I need to pump most as that's when he is hungriest) both breasts are kind of empty and so pumping is hard.

    I pumped first thing in the morning yesterday when I had full breasts and was able to pump quite a bit again, but that abilty diminished over the course of the day. I tried to save the morning's pumped milk for evening but as I was in so much pain by mid afternoon it didn't last that long.

    The saddest part of pumping yesterday was that I pumped 90ml for DH to give to DS while I ran a few errands and I came home and hour and a half later to find a screaming baby and frazzled husband. He had accidentally spilled the whole thing down the sink just minutes after I'd left (and he refused to give him a bit of forumula to tide him over until I got back)! Let me tell you that whoever coined the phrase "it's not worth crying over spilled milk" never spilled EBM cuz let me tell you I sure cried!

    Cricket - I don't know if it's thrush or not, but I think I'm leaning towards not as pumping is allowing my nipples to heal a little. I figured if I had thrush pumping wouldn't help very much. I'm pretty sure the pain is from his little toungue rubbing agaisnt my nipple. I just can't get it far enough into his mouth to avoid the toungue.

  3. #39

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    Hi TS, you really do sound down. Hang in there, this will get better and although every day seems like you're climbing a mountain, it will have a peak. And it isn't going to be that far away.

    Have you had DS checked for tongue tie? I don't know if anyone has mentioned that yet, but if that is the case it could be inhibiting your best efforts to get his attachment correct. I assume the LC consultant or GP would have checked or asked. How far can he poke his little tongue out when he cries?

    Huge {{hugs}}. Good on your DH for being so supportive. Mothers are many more times more likely to bf with a supportive partner and he is really thinking of what is best for bub and you, as are you.

    What are you using on your nipples to help them heal? And if he is taking a bottle have you re-tried offering him the breast using a nipple shield, or does that not help at all?

    Let us know how you're going. All the best! Here's to a nipple-pain-free 2008!

  4. #40

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    Aw thanks Jennifer.

    I've been looking for nipple sheilds but I havn't been able to find any. I have to order a replacement part for my pump online, so maybe they have some shields I can try as well. The LC doesn't recommend them but I'm willing to try anything to make this work. The pumping is going a little better, but phew what a lot of work! I feel like a milk factory.

    As for tongue tie, no one has mentioned it but I've read about it and he can stick his tongue out pretty far. We're use Jack Neuman's all purpose nipple cream as recommended by the Dr who delivered him as well as the LC. My regular Dr said to use lanolin but it's so messy and stains my clothes and breast pads.

  5. #41

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    TwinSis, lots of women find that by evening their supply is challenged (re being able to express) - drinking extra water and having an afternoon lie down (I know I know, in an ideal world...LOL) can help with that. One strategy you could try if you're worried about your supply when pumping, and to build up a frozen store, is to pump later in the evening once bub has gone down for the night and you've had a chance to sit down and rest a bit (even tho it's not a regular feed time). I also remember reading somewhere that the hormones that stimulate BM production peak around midnight so if you're going to put him to the breast then that's a good time to do it (in terms of boosting supply).

    Have you tried alternating feeds and pumping, rather than feeding for half the day and pumping the other half? Just a thought...I'm wondering also whether the feeds are getting any more comfortable yet? When we turned the corner it was quite sudden, ouchy one week then all of a sudden I realised it wasn't hurting and hadn't hurt for a couple of days! I'm hanging out to hear you get there!

  6. #42

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    Hi TS, you sound a little more in control of yourself and hopefully that has something to do with the fact that the healing has begun!

    I know lanolin is messy, but it worked wonders for me. Try buying a few inexpensive maternity bras (Target has some that are quite comfortable) that you don't mind getting a little messy while you're using it. Or walk around topless with it on! LOL

    I second what Marydean suggested once your nipples have healed as far as alternating feeds. I guess if he can stick his tongue out then tongue tie probably isn't the issue, but if you go to the dr or GP you can always ask them to check, just in case.

    I think a chemist is the best place to go for nipple shields. Barb can probably give better advice than I on the best way to use them and when!

    Good luck and a Happy New Year to you and your new family!

  7. #43

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    TS - HUGS sweety. I know how you feel, I went through a similar experience with DD1 and I ended up giving up bfing at 6wks. I still regret it to this day, although I did have a happier baby when I started her on the bottle. I got to the point where I could not stand the thought of putting DD on the breast anymore. Unfortunately I did give up just when I think we may have been turning the corner iykwim.

    My main issue with bfing DD1 was attachment and she feel asleep constantly. This time around I was determined to get some help with the attachment issue. It only took one comment from a health nurse and I think I have got the attachment issue down pat now. I will try a describe what she told me to do:

    When attached the tip of your nipple should be pointing towards te roof of bubs mouth. Before you attach position your nipple parallel with bubs mouth and nose. When bubs mouth is open bring his mouth onto the nipple. You are aiming to get bubs bottom lip in line with the bottom of your areola and bubs top lip is to go just over the nipple. I hope this discription is helpfull. For some reason this worked for me.

    My new bub is 3wks atm and there are times when I just want to chuck it in, although this bub is better with attachment and feeds for longer. My issue this time is that she wants to feed constantly and I am so drained atm. I have comp feed her but only when I was so exhausted that I just couldn't do it anymore.

    Good luck Twin Sister, let us know how you go.

  8. #44

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    Thanks so much for all your continued support.

    It's been a frustrating few days, Cameron has been soooo fussy at night that from 8:00 pm until midnight he wants to be on the boob almost constantly. He'll drink and entire bottle (100-120ml) and want more, so I'll give him another whole bottle and he'll STILL want more. By then though I just can't pump anymore so onto the boob he goes where he camps out for the next several hours (he'll feed for 20 min, nap for 5-10 then want back on). Talk about draining! We had to give him a bottle of formula a few nights ago as I was so sore and crying and just couldn't do it anymore. I felt really guilty but at least we were both able to sleep after that.

    I think we *MAY* be turning a corner. Once las tonight and once this monring I managed to get him on ok. It didn't last very long 9he wriggles and spits out some of the breast after a few minutes) but it was really encouraging that I was able to get him on properly if even for just a few minutes. Fingers crossed!!!!

  9. #45

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    Hi,

    My hat is off to you in admiration for still sticking in with it. I hope you have made it round that corner!
    Evening fussiness, the "arsenic hour (s)" or "drinks and nibbles" is almost universally described. (and doesn't finish at babyhood - school aged children come home from school and eat non stop for several hours.) We don't know what it is with babies, but almost certainly it's not hunger. So as you've experienced filling him up doesn't really help - he keeps coming back for more. If you can arrange things so you are well fed, have a drink, can be as relaxed as possible, just let him rest feed, you will get through it. Usually after that he will zonk out for a long sleep, no formula needed
    Warm Regards
    Barb

  10. #46

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    TS - good on you for persisting and I hope you are right and you've turned a corner!

  11. #47

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    Hi TS

    Just wondered how you and your DS were going? Hope everything is well.

  12. #48

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    TwinSis I've been thinking about you and wondering how you're getting on, saw you've been online today, let us know how you're doing! Hope all's well. x

  13. #49

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    Aw thanks for thinking of me. Things are going a little better. It still hurts but it's a lot more tolerable and so we're pumping less and breastfeeding more. My routine is to pump two bottles in the morning (one from each side) when my milk production is highest, and put them into the fridge for later. If we go out running errands or my nipples are really irritated he gets one bottle in the afternoon. Then when I go to bed at 10 or 11pm after feeding DS, DH usually stays up for a bit and gives him a bottle before he comes to bed. This time varies depending on when DS eats again but it's usually around 2 am. Then I get up early with DS while DH sleeps in a little (he has flexible hours at work so he can do this). If DH goes to bed early I give him the bottle just before I turn in so I know he has a full belly and won't wake me in an hour. I'm hoping over the next few weeks we can go from tolerable to pain free.

  14. #50

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    Hi,

    I now have a lot of great LC contacts in Canada, thanks to following up a request from Carmen. Can I suggest a contact for you? Most of the LCs I know by reputation if not personally. You are doing a great job, but it shouldn't hurt you like that
    Regards
    Barb

  15. #51

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    I've actually been seeing a LC, it just hasn't really been helping. Things seem ok when she's here but as soon as she leaves we struggle again. If only she coould help me at EVERY feed LOL

    I'm going to visit friends/family in Vancouver next week though and my girlfriend is taking me to one of her La Leche leage meetings so I'm hoping they may have some different suggestions as to why we're struggling so much.

  16. #52

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    Hi,

    How did you go with LLL? I have been thinking of you are wondering - it shouldn't be so hard for so long? I wonder what your baby's birth was like? That can sometimes give clues as to why baby is having so much trouble latching on.
    Warm Regards
    Barb

  17. #53

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    Barb - I posted his birth details in one of the earlier posts in this thread, if that gives you any ideas...


    So the girls at LLL could not figure out what I was doing wrong. They said it looked like I was doing everything right (positioning and maneuvering) and so they were stumped. They suggested more pillows to make him higher and suggested leaning back more to prevent him from slipping (he pulls his head back a lot) but I don't think it has really helped much though my back is more comfy.

    Turns out my DH's cousin is a doula and recently a LLL leader as well, so I had a chat with her. She suggested the same things as the other LLL leaders, and then she checked his tongue. Although he does not have tongue tie he can't stick his tongue out as far as some babies can which is probably why I can feel his tongue rubbing. Things are slowly getting better on their own though so we're just plodding along.

    A girlfriend of mine who is BF showed me how to BF lying down which was great as i get soooo tired in the evenings BF it makes it that much harder. This position was a godsend on Saturday when I had the stomach flu and could not get out of bed. DH wasn't feeling well either as he was attached to my nipple for 12 hours. It wasn't any easier on my nipple but it wasn't damging either so we managed through.

    So things aren't perfect yet and still a little bit painful, but we are no longer pumping or giving formula (unless I go out I pump) and we are definately past the point of giving it up.

  18. #54
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    Oh WOW hun what amazing news! You are superbrilliant for getting through all this to now and keeping at it.

    Little DS can't thank you so i will do it for him - THANKYOU for being such a wonderful, tough, determined, loving mummy. Giant pats on back and small but loud boobie-parade for you!

    Loves!

    Bx

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