Breastfeeding not satisfying my baby: Hi there! I am... - NCT

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Breastfeeding not satisfying my baby

Ka03 profile image

Hi there! I am breastfeeding my 4 weeks old but it doesn’t seem to satisfy him, he stays on my breast for about 30mins each time then falls asleep and when he wakes up 20mins later he wants more and the cycle goes on. He is gaining 25g per day, but is not sleeping enough during the day (only short naps). He also vomits after a feed, not just the usual spit up. I have now tried to complement with formula and it works for him, no vomits and sleeps for 3h straight. I just don’t want to give up on breastfeeding but apparently formula is best for him at the moment. Anyone else been trough the same?

10 Replies

Feeding more often when breastfeeding is completely normal. It's much easier for their bodies to digest as it's designed for them it's not a sign they arent getting enough. The only real signs that you are doing well with breast feeding is putting on weight and wet and dirty nappies. My 2nd was vomiting after feeding breast milk, it seems to be because she is greedy and tries to eat more than fits in. Now her stomach is bigger at 5 and a half weeks she has stopped doing it (most the time). Also she was learning how to feed as well. Any formula feeds will alter your supply so can become a cycle. You produce less formula feed more and so on. 4 weeks is hard with breastfeeding it gets easier.

This... Babies cluster feed, all very normal.

I would 100% agree with this.

I had a similar experience with my 3 week old. He would fall asleep within minutes of starting to feed with me and then wouldn’t be interested in latching on again but was upset and still hungry so we were having to top him up with formula for each feed as this seemed to satisfy him. This would happen every couple of hours. We made the decision to switch to formula as one day he fed less and less with me and we took him to the hospital as he didn’t seem himself (doc said everything was fine) but giving him formula means we know exactly what he is having everyday and he’s getting the right amount. He is much happier now and is on a three hour routine, four hours between feeds at night. We spoke to the midwife about our decision and she agreed as it suits him more and he is putting on the right amount of weight now.

Gracem90 profile image
Gracem90 in reply to Gracem90

Should say he’s been checked for tongue tie which he doesn’t have and he latches on properly

At four weeks old baby is still regulating your supply by feeding lots and by feeding little and often. If you're getting lots of wet and dirty nappies and weight gain, then sounds like you're providing everything you need to do.Sleep is so individual to each baby, my daughter hardly slept and didn't do anything that she was supposed to do and everytime we thought she was getting into a routine, the following day she'd switch it up.

I personally think there's nothing wrong with formula feeding or combination feeding if that's what works for you, but if you wanted to continue to breastfeed its good to be aware that because milk works on a supply and demand basis, the more formula you give the less milk you will produce. Baby will also find it easier to drink from a bottle and can end up rejecting breastfeeding because it's harder work for them to do.

I would always recommend reading up about cluster feeding, pace feeding bottles and top up traps. To get a good knowledge about the different feeding issues. I found La Leche league websites, Kellymom and a Facebook group called UK breastfeeding support great places for information.

I honestly found the first few weeks of breastfeeding and parenting so hard, but after about 8 weeks it just seemed to get easier and easier. I don't think we talk enough about how hard those first few weeks are and how much we doubt ourselves that we're producing enough or doing the right things. Good luck with it all and congratulations on your baby xxx

Have you asked your health visitor or breast feeding councillors? Also try infacol if he's bringing up milk before feed

It’s really tough in the first few months - with my first child I found it so challenging. Now I’m on my third- he’s now 6 months. Sometimes at the beginning, I would be feeding for an hour and a half - have a 10 minute break and then be straight back feeding again for another hour and so on. Sometimes this would go on all evening from 4 until 10 when he’d have a two and half hour nap and then back on again and so on.

It’s hard work but really really normal and establishes demand and supply pattern - the more formula you give, the more you will continue to need to give formula as your supply isn’t being demanded often enough to produce enough.I think the perception is that we should be able to put newborns down for hours at a time and get on with things - but that’s not the case really - that’s just what formula milk enabled humans to do because we don’t let mums be what they need to be in the beginning which is just totally the

the for the baby really and not have many expectations for anything else.

Formula milk is a different composition and consistency also - breast milk has the thin milk in the beginning which is watery for a drink, and then the fattier hind milk comes in after they’ve had a drink and so this all takes longer - it’s a whole process really to encourage bonding and keep them close in nature. And then in a few months it gets less and by 6 months they start eating and it gets even less and before long you look back and think it was only a few months of my life and now I miss that time.

Good luck, I hope you get through it ok.

Have you tried to expressing your milk and save into breast milk freezer bags in the freezer? I found this helps because my 3 months old son was excatly like yours so was always tired and lack of sleep was causing me problems. I started to express from 4 weeks didn’t want to do it early because I wanted to know my son has established how to latch on my nipple before I introduced a bottle. I can tell you it has been the best decision I have ever made because I know excatly how much he eats and he still likes to feed from my breast too.

Have you read about cluster feeding? When I started to breastfeed no one told me about it, I found a helpful fb group who explained. I did nearly end up using formula (not slating formula in anyway) because I didn’t think my baby was getting enough but after feed days of fussing he settled down. This is also happens when they have developed growth and growth spurts. I would say if baby having lots of wet nappies and gaining weight baby getting plenty ☺️ xx

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