Breastfeeding struggle bus…

Wow… it’s good to know I’m not alone on the struggle bus to breast feeding 🚌🤱🏻… toot toot.

I had so many of you reach out with tips and tricks or just to say, “hey momma, we struggled too” which is insanely encouraging at 2am!

Here are all things I’ve rounded up the past few days.

1. See a lactation consultant! #done… thankfully the hospital we go to has one-on-ones available. They weigh baby before and after feeding to see how much they are eating, watch you feed, check baby’s latch and answer questions! Definitely recommend! We went for our first appointment and found out just how shallow Freeland was latching. The nurse helped me correct it and gave me tips to try at home.

2. Go to a group support meet-up. The hospital we go to has these also and not only have they helped me track his weight gain, helped me see the consultant regularly (although the one-on-one was more beneficial for us), it’s also been good mom to mom face time. I know the Le Leche league hosts support groups as well.

3. Have their tongue tie checked. So many people have told me that after a few months they found out their baby had a tongue tie and once corrected things got way better. Freeland’s was checked first thing in the hospital along with his sucking reflex so I knew that wasn’t the problem however if you aren’t sure, it’s probably worth asking about.

After seeing the consultant one-on-one we were able to tell he is just latching really shallow. He is getting plenty of milk so getting him to correct has been a problem. Why fix something if it’s working for ya, right 😉? Except it’s not working for me! So as we work on correcting that we will also be trying to heal some already damaged nipples. Here are a few things we have been told to try.

1. Obviously not everyone needs extensive healing so for the simple nipple cream fix, I recommend the Motherlove brand I shared in my last post. You can find it on Amazon or Target.

2. All Purpose Nipple Cream- this is a steroid / antibiotic that I was told can work wonders when applied between feedings or when taking a pumping break to let the nipples heal. It does have to be prescribed so I will be asking about it at my upcoming appointment.

3. Salt water rinse / air dry. This seems the easiest at-home remedy. Simply soak the nipples in warm salt water for 1-2 minutes, then apply expressed milk and let air dry. I started this yesterday and it seemed to be making them feel better (although I got lazy last night between feedings because 💤).

4. Another recommendation I received which was interesting was warm Lipton tea bags applied to the damage between feedings. I haven’t tried it yet but I might just to see if it works.

5. Other options included cooling gel pads (if they just need a little numbing before nursing), nipple shields (which really aren’t recommended by a lot of lactation specialist), and changing the nursing position / correcting the source of the problem.

If you have any other “my mom/ sister / aunt / friend recommended this…” feel free to add below. And to anyone else who needs to hear it…you are not alone!

One thought on “Breastfeeding struggle bus…

  1. He is soooooo darling!! Don’t worry, nursing can be hard to figure out for most of us the first time around! Thankfully the next time it’s usually easy 🙂

    You’re doing all the right things, including the lactation consultants and support groups (I went to La Leche League meetings which were super helpful). And I gotta say those cooling gel pads are super comfy. I had massive pain for about 5 months, and it wasn’t until I got all purpose nipple cream prescribed that the pain subsided, so definitely look into that (having a doc who understands breastfeeding and your desire to keep going is so important). I think Kathryn used the all purpose cream too, and it helped her.

    I hope the shallow latching gets better soon! Have you tried the “breast sandwich” approach to helping him latch more deeply (and it has to be “asymmetrical”)? That usually helps a lot. And yes different positions can help, but sometimes babies protest them, ha! They have personalities even now. Taking a pumping break can help you heal. He’s old enough now that shouldn’t cause confusion. But also agree, the nipple shields can cause more harm than help in the long run.

    So sorry you are having this trouble! But most likely it will soon be cleared up and you will be in your mother-baby groove. Message me if you have any other questions. You’re doing such a good job sticking with it. When it gets easier, it will be sooooo worth it. Such a special bonding time for mama and baby. You will love it!

    Also, you look well-rested even if you don’t feel it, so that’s something!


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