Unfortunately, latching on was not my only dilemma during breastfeeding. I was actually starting to feel confident about my breastfeeding skills when all at once, about one month in, Ella was crying and seemed hungry all the time. I was working on a three hour schedule (Ella was eating, for example at 1:00 and then again at 4:00), but for some reason, at one month, she was wanting to eat all the time and once she was through, she was still unhappy. So, I fed her, sometimes every hour (what else was there to do!?) and things weren't improving, not to mention, my nipples were sore as ever!
What was I to do? Answer: call the lactation consultant. She told me that Ella was probably not getting enough hind milk, which is the good stuff that keeps a baby full and nourished. Most likely, she was only getting the fore milk. This was not nearly as filling and thus, leaving her hungry and crying a majority of the time. The reason she wasn't getting to the hind milk was, well, two reasons: not enough pumpin', and not enough stayin'. Let me explain.
Let's remember back to my first post when I mentioned that when my milk came in, there was a whole lot of it, so much so, that Ella couldn't keep up. So, when she did eat, which was probably enough, she was still only getting to the fore milk and not the hind milk because there was so much milk to be had. The solution to the problem then, was to pump more, especially right before her feeding. Check.
But, that was not the only solution, I also needed to learn to keep Ella on one breast for one feeding. Many times I would change breasts throughout the feeding and she was not "finishing up" on one breast. So, my rule of thumb from then on was to allow her to have one breast per feeding and sometimes I even stayed on the same breast for the next feeding just to make sure. Check. Check.
So by making a call to the lactation consultant, I was able to remedy the problem in a week's time. At first, I was embarrassed to be calling her some much, but after awhile, I got over it and realized she wanted to help me and she was there to make my breastfeeding journey a success. I'm here to try to do the same for you too! And to remind you that there are no stupid questions to me (because believe me, if you've asked them, I probably have too). Just remember that breastfeeding is a challenge, but it's well worth it. And once you're baby is seven months old you'll look back at that first month of challenges and laugh because breastfeeding will be a breeze!
|Ella after a good meal. Look at those rosy cheeks!