Biting, nursing strike, or early weaning

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-13-2007
Biting, nursing strike, or early weaning
10
Mon, 07-06-2009 - 10:21am

My son is almost ten months old, and, after successfully (and quite easily) breastfeeding up until now, we've been having troubles lately that I fear may mark the end of this special time for us.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 07-25-2006
Mon, 07-06-2009 - 12:20pm

((HUGS)) mama!


Can you let us know what teething remedies you've been using (if any) in addition to the teether...teething tablets, pain reliever, etc? Any of those helpful?


Have you done anything to try and

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-13-2007
Mon, 07-06-2009 - 1:41pm

Thanks for the response - I really appreciate it.


For teething relief, we haven't done teething tablets (any one you'd recommend) but we have done Tylenol and Motrin (not on the same night!).

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iVillage Member
Registered: 01-22-2006
Mon, 07-06-2009 - 9:19pm

My 7 month old is a similar style biter to your son!


I have found that he almost always bites when he is not terribly hungry and/or when the milk takes a while to come in. As soon as I have a letdown, the biting ends. He will sometimes bite at the end of a feeding when he is done as well and gets bored.


It sounds like your son is also biting before milk comes in and perhaps when he is not as hungry. I wonder if you tried to pump for just a minute for your milk to come in if he would nurse without biting.


I would definitely nurse before the solids- I would think after would make the biting worse since he would be less hungry and interested in eating vs. playing or comforting gums.


We only have 2 teeth in and it is so painful. I know how much it hurts and how frustrating it is- it certainly takes the peace out of nursing!


I would also encourage you to stick with it. My guess is that it will improve as his gums feel better. Are both top teeth completely through now?


Cathy

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-13-2007
Tue, 07-07-2009 - 11:06am

Both top teeth are completely through.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 08-13-2007
Tue, 07-07-2009 - 8:10pm

I tried pumping a little first before what would have been his pre-bed nursing session, but since he won't latch on, it didn't matter that the milk would have been instantaneous. Now, to add to the problems, my supply in the evening is dwindling. In the past, if DH gave him a bottle (I have evening meetings once a month), I got 7-8 ounces when I pumped. Now it's 3. I guess his not nursing before bed is taking its toll.

Anyone have any suggestions for getting him back to the breast and/or increasing my supply, or should I just assume that this is the end?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 07-25-2006
Tue, 07-07-2009 - 10:06pm

Wow, you were getting 7-8 ounces in a pumping session? Woo boy! Definitely sound like you had massive, massive oversupply and that baby is just not appreciating the 'regulation' of your supply. To put it in persepctive, most women only get between .5-2 ounces in a pumping session...that's the total for BOTH breasts combined.


Sorry I didn't respond yesterday...I was prepping for a colonoscopy that I had today. Along with my 18-month old running a fever of 104.5!!


A few things I suggest:


* Do drop back on the bottle flow or maybe even try a sippy cup.


* He is getting a LOT of solids if you want to continue nursing. At 10 months, we suggest 2 meals a day. And, a meal being 2-3 tablespoons of food. http://www.mother-2-mother.com/samplemenus.htm


If baby is given a lot of solid food, he/she will be less hungry when it' time to nurse. Decreased nursing (quantiy/frequancy/quality) will decrease your supply...whch can lead

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-13-2007
Thu, 07-09-2009 - 9:20pm

Thanks for the response. I hope the colonoscopy went well and that your LO is feeling better!

Harry is now on day 2 of the slow flow nipple and doesn't seem to notice the difference. Maybe we'll try the sippy cup tomorrow when I'm home with him if he continues to refuse to nurse. We also cut back on his solids several days ago. His day care provider says he cries for more food at lunch now, so she's been giving him some veggies that the other kids are having to supplement (the others get food she prepares; because he's a baby, he eats what we send). Dinner and breakfast have been cut way back. No effects yet (i.e. he still bites instead of nursing) but we'll see. I haven't tried a nursing necklace before but will do so.

I also increased my fenugreek intake and added a pumping session while at work earlier this week. Thus far, my supply has actually gotten worse -- I'm getting less every day, despite more fenugreek and more pumping.

I'm honestly just feeling completely worn out, exhausted and rejected. Since I went back to work after being home with him for 6 months, I was able to get over some of the guilt of being away from him all day by coming home and having this time that was just for us. But now instead of finding me comforting he bites me and today has begun to cry when I hold him. It's just painful, physically (from the biting) and emotionally. Here I am, an overeducated lawyer at a big law firm, and I cry myself to sleep at night because I feel (irrationally, I know) like my son doesn't need or love me any more. I just want there to be a solution, a way to get back to where we used to be, but I'm starting to realize there just may not be one, and I just feel so sad.

I'll keep you posted on how things go. Thanks for the help.

Kathy

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iVillage Member
Registered: 07-25-2006
Fri, 07-10-2009 - 2:23pm

The colonoscopy went well (healthy-woohoo!) and dd is feeling much better. Thanks!


It can take a bit to see the increase from fenugreek. I was an unusual case, but it took about 10 days for me when I used it with dd. When you smell like maple syrup, you are taking enough ;0)


Is it possible that AF is making a return? That can cause a dip in supply. Have you replaced any of your pump parts at all? If not, try to replace the valve membranes.


((HUGS)) to you, mama. I can totally hear your frustration. Are you doing lots of skin to skin with no pressure to nurse when you're home? Taking baths together? We don't want to force him to nurse and start causing negative feelings towards the breast. You might take a break for a day or two (pumping to keep up your supply) and give it another try in a few days?


And, again, I want to reiterate the option of pumping. Is it ideal? No. But, that can be a good 'halfway' point. He gets the benefit of your milk and it may be less emotionally draining for you.

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-13-2007
Fri, 07-10-2009 - 3:37pm

So, the strike appears to have ended (knock on wood!). Hooray! We did a dream feed last night instead of pumping before bed, and he nursed fine. He then nursed this morning upon waking, again when he got up from his morning nap, and again before his afternoon nap. It was as if the last ten days hadn't happened. I'm not sure if anything (or combo of things) I did helped, or if he was just done striking, but I'm glad it's over and hope it doesn't happen again.

I'm not sure if it is coincidental or related, but I did get AF today. I bled lightly for one day last month (after not having AF since '07) -- we'll see if this one is longer. So that may have been part of the reason why my supply was declining. (I don't think it was the reason for not nursing, or at least I don't think the taste alone was, since he gladly took pumped milk -- fresh, not rotated from the freezer stash.) As for the pump parts, I actually ordered new tubes and membranes online last week but they have gotten lost in the mail and the post office isn't calling me back. I have some extra membranes in the house somewhere, so I'll probably start using those tonight if I can find them.

I really hope it's actually over and that it never happens again!

Thanks for the advice and the support!

Kathy

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iVillage Member
Registered: 07-25-2006
Fri, 07-10-2009 - 3:52pm
What a great update...I hope things continue to go well!