Struggling to breastfeed my newborn
My little one is only 2 weeks old and we have been struggling with breastfeeding the entire time. He was born at 36 weeks, 5 days so technically he was premature. Because of this, he was taken to the nursery immediately and I didn't get to attempt to breastfeed him for the first time until he was 2 1/2 hours old and tired. The first attempt he would latch on, but not attempt any sucking & would eventually fall asleep.
The next two days in the hospital were more of the same. I'd put him on & he would not suck, just lick or lay there with his mouth open. The nurses/lactation consultant tried a number of things and the only thing that would work was using a shield. He was doing pretty well with the shield and we are making progress towards eating without it, however, we had to introduce a bottle when he was 3 days old.
He had a high level of Jaundice shortly after birth, so we were told to have him finish one side, then offer formula to help with the Jaundice & I was told to pump after every feeding. He did great going from bottle to breast & back and last weekend we got the ok to go back to strictly breastfeeding. The last couple of days I have been weighing him before & after a couple feedings to see how much he is eating & I notice he is only eating about an ounce from me before he is full. There is more milk, but he stops at 1 ounce, either on his own or because he fell asleep. I pump after so I don't lose my supply and I always get a few mL out of each side.
Then at night he seems to require 4 ounces and I end up feeding him for 2, sometimes 3 hours almost continuously and he still acts like he is starving. We end up getting to the point where he is sucking, but I am empty so I end up giving him an ounce of pumped or formula & pumping for 20 min. He is also more & more frequently just chewing on the shield instead of sucking. I offer him the bare breast & sometimes he takes it, otherwise I just keep trying. I'm worried he is not getting enough during the day because of these frantic cluster feedings at night, but he is still getting an average of 10 wet diapers per day. Anyone have a similar situation? I'm trying not to resort to using a bottle, but after 3 or 4 hours of continuous feedings I am running empty & he is getting frustrated. Any advice?