I think if you can, breastfeeding is the best option for babe. I know this isn’t always easy, and for some not possible. I pass no judgement on those who decided not to breastfeed. However for me, I am trying my best to make it work. But I will be honest, this time around it hasn’t been easy, and I am a little bit over it at the moment.
It seems to start out well. Olivia latched right after birth. There was a bit of fussing (which was new to me, as the other two had great latches from the get go), but we managed. By the end of the next day my nipples where cracked and bleeding. She seemed to be latching okay, however it felt like her tongue was not coming forward enough and she was chewing on me. That night I noticed that it looked as if she was tongue tied.
The next day we had an appointment with some midwives who do the heal prick and hearing test. That morning my midwife called to check up on me, and I told her of my concern, so she joined me at my appointment. These midwives are also trained in breastfeeding, and they had a look, and it was determined that Olivia was very tongue tied, so the referred me to a doctor, and told me if the doctor refused to clip it to call them and they would tell him that it had to be done.
I was relieved that there was an issue and it was something easily fixed. Until I could get in to the doctor I was to use nipple shields to prevent any further damage. The next day we got into the doctor, and it was no question that she needed to have it clipped. Over the next week I continued to use the nipple shield to let my nipples heal. It was a very painful first week of breastfeeding.
I had a love/hate relationship with the shields. They allowed me to continue breastfeeding… they were a major pain in the ass. Especially in the middle of the night and they made nursing in public kind of awkward. Luckily I was able to get Olivia nursing without them. It took a couple of days, but we are nipple shield free at the moment.
Que in painful, red blocked milk ducts. There seems to be one small area that Olivia just can’t seem to drain in my right boob. Finally after they were getting really sore, and the area was getting really red and I was getting really worried that I would get an infection, I dug out my breast pump. This seemed to do the trick, and cleared that up.
Que in thrush… yep thrust… on both sides. Again more painful breastfeeding. This time milk coming through my nipples burned and felt like tiny knives. I think I now have that mostly under control. I had it with my son and the doctor suggested soda water in the babes mouth and my nipples. I don’t know why, but this seems to be working again. I have been cleaning my nipples with soda water throughout the day and the pain is going away.
Oh did I forgot the few days where Olivia thought it would be a good idea to just lick my nipples until I let down and let the milk fill her mouth, then would just slurp the nipples. SO frustrating!
I hope now we are on track again. I have managed to get her to stop licking and actually open her mouth and latch ( most of the time), I have seemed to have gotten the thrush under control.
Perhaps now we can move into that easy stage? Pretty pretty please….