Sunday, July 26, 2009

A Post About Boobs

See, I knew that would get your attention ;)

Okay, this is actually about breastfeeding. Breastfeeding woes, specifically. Finn and I are having issues. He's decided to go on a nursing strike. It all started when he bit me while he was nursing yesterday. Hard. He has four very sharp little teeth now: two on top and two on bottom, and he's working on a few more. When he chomped down on me, I involuntarily yelled out in pain, and that scared him. His little face crumpled up and he started wailing :( This happened a couple times. Now he's afraid of the boobs - or afraid of me - and doesn't want to nurse. Because of this, I spent a couple of hours last night working out a plugged duct - very painful.

I am not ready to wean him. I've nursed all of my babies well past a year, and I very much believe in the benefits of long-term nursing. I also believe that Finn will likely benefit even more than my other babies did. There's also the matter of him not drinking by cup at all yet, so all of his fluid intake is via breastfeeding. I've dealt with the biting phase with each of my babies, but none of them ever refused to nurse. I rocked him and rocked him a little while ago, and kept trying to coax him to nurse, but he woudn't have any part of it and I finally laid him down in his crib without nursing. He nursed twice this morning, and then after his afternoon nap he bit me again and I yelled again, and that's it for today.

I'm a little worried here. Any advice?

10 comments:

SunflowerMom said...

Ouch! That hurts! I haven't had to work thru full on strikes myself, but have had to find ways to work in nursing when baby wasn't interested. I find night/nap nursing is the easiest way to make up for missing feedings. I know you just got him in his own room recently, but maybe a night with mom would help him forget about what happened? Also, try latching on/nursing while moving (rocking chair, porch swing, even walking with him in a carrier) the distraction may help him sooth and latch.

It's hard not to yelp when you get nipped. I'm sure you and Finn will work thru it and get back to nice nursing manners.

Mel said...

What about having a bath together? Being nice and warm and relaxed together, and having a bit of a cuddle, and he might have another go all by himself?

Good luck :)

Kristin said...

I had the same thing happen with my first. I got him to start nursing again by laying with him in the pitch black room. Not sure why it worked but it did. Hope you both figure things out.

DownTownDan said...

I've got nothing for you.

MaggieMae said...

I agree with Sunflower Mom. I've been through exactly the same thing with both my guys (2 chewing on either breast) and they outgrew the fear of my yell AND the biting pretty quickly (in hindsight, that is). I explained exactly what he wasn't allowed to do (No biting Mommy's breast. No teeth! They definitely understood.) For the teething, I gave them sippy cups with rubbery straws so they chewed on those instead of on me. That way they left my breasts intact. It did take awhile and I lived with Lansinoh on sore breasts. But, we overcame. The trick, according to my lactation consultant is, "don't supplement". Once you do, he won't want it and you won't make it. That's the beginning of the end (which is not the end of the world but like you, I wanted to continue nursing).

Good luck!

Monica Crumley said...

Oh, my gosh! My heart goes out to you. I KNOW how painful that is. John Michael did the same thing at 11.5 months and I screamed involuntarily, like you said, and he cried. I gave it a go, bravely, a few more times, but same clenching down, serious pain, blood, screaming, crying, etc. I had to quit (or pump, but I didn't want to do it). I wasn't ready to quit either and he wasn't good at cups or bottles. So it was a rough go for a couple months. We started whole milk (ped. said OK) and used a straw cup or sippy cup to help him get liquids. I had to wean very quickly, which I prefer not to do either. So, I'm NO help. Just commiserating with you. I hope you find a way to get through it. You could pump to keep your supply up and hopefully he'll stop biting.

Brandie said...

I have to second the advice to nurse when he's sleeping/sleepy and try a warm bath together. Even if he doesn't latch just the extra skin to skin time may help him get more comfortable with the idea of nursing again. And I totally understand how worried it must make you when it is the only way he gets his fluids. You guys will be in my thoughts.

heidi marie said...

not sure if i introduced myself or not. i'm heidi and i found your blog through special k's blog! i cringed just reading this post!!! henry never took to the breast and i had to quit pumping after the supply decreased to practically nothing. so no help here. but hang in there! and don't beat yourself up either way.

Lisa said...

Does he take a pacifier? Maybe try a nipple shield (seriously). They are not really used to protect...but to encourage latching on...it might be worth a try anyway. Getting bit with razor-sharp teeth is...well, let's just say...not at all good.

Otherwise, sleepy could work, too. The bath just makes me laugh. At least you could wash the blood away quickly...

Dina said...

All I know is that I feel your pain. I thought Ozzie was done biting after the first two teeth came in. Now he also has 4 and just started the biting again. I'm so tense when I nurse him it's insane. I'll keep looking here for some advice :) Just know you are not alone in your pain!