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Thread: When is breastfeeding safe for my baby?

  1. #1

    When is breastfeeding safe for my baby?

    Hi, My baby is now 16 days old and I am having problems on breastfeeding.
    There are times that her poop seems watery and sometimes hard. I think there is a problem with my milk. Hope you could help me?

  2. #2

    I'm sorry to hear you are having some difficulties breastfeeding. There is so much to get used to when you have a new baby, as well as recovering from giving birth.

    I saw in your other post that you are mix feeding (giving your baby some formula and some breastmilk). Any breastfeeding at all will benefit your baby, however, it is better to exclusively breastfeed i.e. only breastfeed your baby and not give her any formula. Please could I ask if there is a reason you wanted to give her formula too? The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommend exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months of life. This means that you only need to give your baby breastmilk and no other food or water. It is best to breastfeed your baby on demand day and night i.e. feed your baby whenever they seem hungry or whenever they are unsettled. This is because breastmilk works on a supply and demand process; the more you put the baby to the breast to feed the more milk will be produced.

    As your baby is only 16 days old you should still be able to swap to exclusive breastfeeding if you would like to do this. However, it may depend on the ratio of breastfed feeds to formula feeds your daughter has been having. How many formula bottles has your baby been having a day? For how many days?

    If your daughter has been having more than 1 bottle of formula a day and you want to swap to exclusive breastfeeding then you could increase your breastmilk supply by pumping inbetween feeds. As a guide, you want want to get at least 9-10 good breastfeeding/ pumping sessions in every 24 hour period.

    Breastfed babies tend to have very runny yellow poos whereas formula fed babies poos are thicker and smellier. This is because formula is more difficult for the baby to digest. It may be that the poo you describe is changing depending on whether the last feed was breastmilk or formula milk.

    However, you also mentioned 'red mucous' in your baby's poos in your other post. This is not a normal poo unless it is actually a 'mini period' coming from a vagina which is light blood that goes away after 3 days (in newborn baby girls). This is due to the stopping of hormones that the baby has exposed to during pregnancy. If the bleeding lasts more than 3 days or is more than a light amount this would not be considered normal. Do you think the blood you describe may not actually have been in her poo but be from her vagina? Here is a photo of normal baby girl nappy bleeding. But if you do not think it is like this, because you described it as 'mucousy' then do see your doctor.

    Is breastfeeding comfortable? If it is not then it is likely to be that you don't have a good latch. Getting a good latch is key to successful breastfeeding. I recently discussed how to know if you have got a good latch in detail here.

    You say you are 'having problems breastfeeding' - please could you explain a bit more about how breastfeeding it going, how many feeds a day your daughter has, if she feeds from both breasts equally well at each feed etc?

    I know it can be really hard at the beginning. Many women, myself included, need extra support from: midwives, breastfeeding support groups, health visitors and lactation consultants. If you are able too, then I would strongly advise you get a lactation consultant to check your latch and give you some individual help with breastfeeding.

    Well done on persevering with breastfeeding. The benefits of breastmilk are huge and include improved brain development, less chance of childhood infections and less risk of obesity in later life.

    Please do post back and let us know if this helps and how we can support you further.

    Best wishes,

    Last edited by ljmarsden; 7th September 2013 at 06:31 AM.

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