Breastfeeding webchat- Mon 17th May 12-1pm

Join us between 12-1pm Monday 17th May to talk all things breastfeeding, from successful latching on, to the best way to express, and how much and when!

Expert Geraldine Miskin will be joining us live to offer help, advice and support to b/f mums. Post your questions here.

Posts

  • My little one is two weeks old and I've been exclusivly breast feeding her since birth. She had a low birth weight (5lb 12 oz) and lost more than 10% of her birth weight after birth. I was advised to feed her every three hours through the day and night to help her catch up. She was weighed on Saturday and has regained her birth weight (and some).

    She feeds really well, but the time we're spending feeding has increased somewhat so she is feeding for 1 1/2 - 2 hours at a time. She falls asleep at the breast, but when I take her off she wakes and wants more, and the cycle continues. It is also taking nearly an hour to settle her to sleep after a feed. This is begining to take it's toll a bit, especially at night, as I then have to wake again to feed her.

    Is there anything I can do to:

    1. Reduce the amount of time it is taking to do a feed?

    2. Settle her to sleep quickly after the night feeds? Once she is asleep she sleeps well and I have to wake her for her next feed.


  • Welcome to today's webchat. Geraldine from Letsbreastfeed.com will be here shortly to answer you questions...
  • Hello everybody,

    Thank you for submitting your questions, I look forward to answering them for you.

    Kind regards,

    Geraldine
  • Dear Mrs Bear,

    Your little one is falls asleep at the breast frequently but is also feeding for long periods. You want to know how to change this so that her feeds are more efficient so that you can get her to sleep quicker.

    Firstly congratulations!

    Many little babies fall asleep at the breast, so this is not unusual and nothing to worry about. It can be a little frustrating when you are feeding all day or seem to need feed shortly after the last ended.

    Let's see if we can help you refine things a little.

    Little babies often run out of stamina when they are still really young, so ensuring that you have a deep latch and a good position are really important.

    This way your little one will be able to transfer milk realy well and easily and your feeds will be short and effective.

    With regards to timings, I recommend that mums look at the baby, rather than the clock furing the feed.

    The more your baby swallows, the shorter your feeds will be. The less your baby swallows, the longer your feeds will be.

    If your baby is suckling but not swallowing she may be there for ages but not really getting anything.

    Use breast massage or compression to help push the milk down into her mouth. Place your hand as far from the nipple as possible and then push in towards the body and hold for 15-20 seconds. Then move your hand to another part of the breast, compress and hold.

    Remember we want your baby to be gaining 20-30g each day. If your baby is gaining more than this, you can shorten the feeds.

    The trick with getting your baby to sleep easily, is to get her down soon after a good feed. A baby won't go to sleep on an empty tummy.

    I use the hour and a half rule. Your baby's tummy is empty an hour and a half from the beginning of the feed and your baby is overtired, an hour and a half from when she wakes.

    So if your baby wakes and feeds at 10am, she needs to be back in bed and going to sleep by 11.30am. If she is still feeding - her tummy will be empty and she wont go to sleep - which is why you can't settle her.

    I hope this helps a little. Do touch base with me if you need any further help.

    Kind regards,

    Geraldine
  • Hi Geraldine

    I am feeding my one month old baby for what seems like ages at a time and often, but he never seems happy or full, he sucks his finger when he cries and goes for the breast all the time. My mum has told me its because I'm feeding on demand and she was taught to feed every four hours and he'll settle with a routine? Am I doing it wrong? Should I supplement with formula or will that confuse him. He's a big boy, I don't know how on earth I will get him to last four hours! Please help I'm exhausted and saw!?

  • Whilst we have a minute, I thought I would just share some of my most asked questions.

    Does breast size matter?

    The short answer is NO and the long answer....

    The size of a mums breast will usually determine how frequently a mum needs to breastfeed. If a mum has a small cup size, she may need to feed from both sides at each feed from the start and may also find that her baby wants to feed more frequenthly than every 3 hours.

    The great thing is that when your breasts are empty, they just refil and the more you empty and refil, the more your body begins to produce and the more milk your baby gets.

    Restricting feeds to one breast per feed or only feeding every 3 hours, will slow down the empty and refil cycle and will reduce milk production. (with small breasted mums)

    Keep an eye on your baby's output and weight gain. Provided your baby's poos are yellow and your baby is gaining between 20-30g each day, he is getting the hind milk and you are producing more than enough milk!
  • have you got any tips for getting breastfeeding established with 2 young children (one of whom has a disability) dashing around and demanding attention. I found it impossible last time round, but really want to give it a proper try this time. Baby no.3 due in 3 weeks!!
  • Dear Clare G

    Your one month old baby is feeding for long periods and you are not sure what to do, as he still seems hungry. So routine or no routine?

    I am sorry that you are having a tough time. Without seeing a feed, I can't give you a clear and simple answer, but let me show you how I go about working out the possible problem.

    The easiest way to know whether your baby is unsettled because he is hungry or for another reason, is to look at his weight gain. If your baby is gaining 20-30g a day, then he is getting enough food and he may be unsettled for another reason.

    A month old baby weighing in the region of 4.500g will usually feed from both breasts at each feed roughly every 3 hours (20minutes on each breast)

    Whilst breastfeeding, you do need to keep an eye on the little fella and ensure that he is swallowing - not just sucking. If he is not swallowing, you need to compress the outer edge of the breast to create a manual let down - this will just push milk into his mouth.

    So to summarize:
    Check his weight gain - if he is gaining more than 30g a day - it is not necessarily hunger. It may be overtiredness or indigestion or wind. Speak to GP/HV about introducing infacol (wind) or Colief (indigestion)

    Consider visiting a cranial oteopath for baby.

    Make sure you are feeding enough and that he is swallowing whilst nursing - rather than just sucking.

    Feed from both sides at each feed.

    Use your breast compression to push milk into his mouth.

    Feed every 3 hours starting from one feed to the beginning of the next.

    Put him down for a sleep as soon after the feed as possible.

    Try this for now and then touch base with me if you still need a little help.

    Kind regards,

    Geraldine
  • Dear Alio123

    You are looking forward to the arrival of your new little one, but already have your hands full with two active little ones already. You need tips to help you breastfeed successfully whilst keeping things in order.

    Juggling so many things can really feel overwhelming and often mums find they simply don't have the time they did with the first baby, to get breastfeeding right.

    I would suggest that you get yourself onto a good breastfeeding workshop before your baby arrives. Knowing how to breastfeed (without developing sore nipples or feeding for hours will set you up for great breastfeeds)

    Get some help - so that you have time to sit down and nurse. I usually tell mums to post an add on MNT maternity nanny training for girls who have completed the course and need a little practical experience to add to CV.

    Once you have established good breastfeeds - look to introduce a bottle feed at the craziest time of the day. You can express instead at this time - so your baby still gets expressed breast milk.

    As you are a third time mum, you should have a lot of milk, so if you find expressing and bottle feeding during the day easier, and breastfeeding in the morning and evening more doable - this is another option and one many mums have found worked for them and their family.

    Think clearly about what you hope to achieve. Be realistic about your busy life and remember that any breast milk is really valuable.

    I wish you all the best and touch base with me if you need any further help.

    Kind regards,

    Geraldine
  • That concludes today's live chat. Thank you to all the mums who posted questions.

    If you need any further help, or want to join a breastfeeding workshop, please visit my website www.letsbreastfeed.com for lots of practical information and a collection of eBooks to help you resolve breastfeeding problems.

    Kind regards,

    Geraldine
  • Thanks to everyone involved in today's chat, and thanks to Geraldine for her informative answers. For more information about Geraldine and her breastfeeding advice services log onto: http://www.letsbreastfeed.com
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