Silly new preemie mum question about feeding!

(11 Posts)
MultipleMama Fri 04-Oct-13 03:00:59

One of my preemie twins is in the process of latching. She's doing well on b/m through feeding tube and showing signs of wanting to latch.

I can't be there 24/7 as much as I'd like to be i.e night feeds etc.

I'm worried about when the time comes when she's feeding from the breast and I'm not there when she's hungry. Would the nurses introduce bottles? Can I say no to this? I really want to avoid bottles completely. If I can, how will she be fed, by tube?

I'm clueless and hesitant to bring it up with the nurses in case they look at me like I'm silly for even thinking of not doing bottles...

So, yeah. That really.

ljny Fri 04-Oct-13 03:30:34

I don't think you're silly at all. No idea whether the unit would be willing to continue tube-feeding when she's able to take a bottle.

If it helps, my premie DD1 went from feeding tube to special easy-to-suck bottles, then when her sucking got stronger, she had a few breastfeeds a day whilst still in hospital.

The first week home was a bit rocky, and a couple of times I gave her a bottle, but she adjusted in a week or so - and went on to be entirely breastfed, for about 9 months.

Guess I'm assuming you want to avoid bottles so she doesn't reject the breast - or do you have another reason?

Hopefully someone who knows more about current practices will be along soon. But please don't worry about the nurses thinking you're silly - you're her mum, you have every right to voice your concerns. She's your child - you're the one who will raise her.

And congratulations on your twins! Good luck.

Featherbag Fri 04-Oct-13 03:36:05

When my DS was at a point where he was actually hungry rather than it being 'time' for a feed, he was deemed ready to go home! I roomed in at the hospital for 48 hours to make sure he and I were able to bf well enough to feed him which didn't work but that's a whole other story and then I took him home! This was at 3wo actual, he was born at 32 weeks gestation and had been tube fed BM until then, with me bfing when I was there (usually 2-3 feeds per day).

JeneLew Sat 05-Oct-13 00:54:28

It's not silly at all. I didn't want my ds to be bottle fed so discussed it with the breastfeeding coordinator once we were in SCBU. They couldn't give a bottle without my consent so he had tube feeds during the night and on demand breast feeds through the day for a few days then I roomed into establish night feeds. He's been home 3 weeks now and is completely breastfed. The best thing I was told was to stick to my guns about it, depending on age it's easier for the nurses to give a bottle. If you don't have a breast feeding coordinator at the unit your in speak to the nurse you have the best relationship with. In my experience they want to help you be the mum you planned to be.
Congratulation on your early arrival.

PrincessScrumpy Sat 05-Oct-13 01:17:36

They gave up tube feeding dtd2 because dtd1 kept pulling the tube out but even with me being in the hospital 24/7 I couldn't get enough milk in her so she was cup fed by the nurse. We were in hospital for 8 days and I went on to breast feed for 6.5 months (with one bottle of formula a day). Good luck xx

laughingeyes2013 Sat 05-Oct-13 01:34:31

I had exactly the same situation with my prem baby. The only difference was that he isn't a twin.

I was in hospital with a girl who was also experiencing the same, and we were both given a bottle and told to try and feed to see how we get on.

I didn't want to bottle feed for fear of losing the chance to breastfeed, mostly because I was told they get used to and choose the easiest method of getting milk, and its easier to suck from a bottle.

The other girl fought hard (through spluttering and choking) to teach her baby to bottle feed. I gave it a half hearted attempt behind closed curtains and reported to staff that he couldn't tolerate the flow, it was too fast and making him choke.

For some reason they accepted this and waited for him to latch until he left the hospital. It only took 24 hours so I was lucky.

The other girl and I met up for coffee when out babies were a month old, and she still couldn't get her baby to switch from bottle to breast. She was trying valiantly and I really respected that, but she wast getting anywhere so I felt really sorry she had been so let down at the start.

The trouble is that when you're grateful for staff saving your baby's life, it's hard to complain about not being helped to breastfeed properly, but all hospitals have a duty of care to support women to be able to do this if they want to. Sometimes they just need reminding.

Mandy21 Mon 07-Oct-13 16:02:47

I think it depends on each unit but afaik, they wont introduce a bottle if you don't want them to. My DTs were given a cup feed if I wasnt there during the night, 1 DT was quite good and would take most of a feed that way (it was my expressed milk) but usually the other one didnt take very much and was tube fed. As others have said, roomed in when they thought they were ready, they actually lost a couple of oz each ( think they used too much energy taking all of their feeds from the breast) so they went back on the unit for a couple of days and then we tried again. B/f for 11 months. Good luck.

MrsCaptainJackSparrow Mon 07-Oct-13 23:15:03

The hospital continues to tube feed my ds over night and I was just expected to be there all day. I then stayed in the family room over the weekend when he got the gang of latching on and we went home on the Monday morning grin

I breastfed DS for the feeds when I was there at the hospital (9am - 7pm) while he still had his ng tube - when they were happy that he was taking enough that he no longer needed to be tube fed, they cup fed him overnight, then I roomed in for the next two nights before we took him home.
Do say to the staff that breast feeding is important to you and you don't want to bottle feed - you might still have to use them a little, we gave DS about 20ml a day in a bottle for his vitamins and iron - they should help support you. Ask to speak to the unit's infant feeding specialist if you want some extra support.
Good luck thanks hope you are taking your twins home soon smile

CMOTDibbler Tue 08-Oct-13 18:15:35

You can absolutely say that you want to avoid bottles as you don't want to do anything that might compromise bfing. The nurses can cup or spoon feed, or just continue tube feeds when you aren't there

Mama1980 Tue 08-Oct-13 18:18:00

Not silly at all. My ds kept his tube so he could be tube fed overnight but breast fed (when he was able to suck) during the day. I refused both bottles and formula top ups. I suggest you have a word with your nicu named nurse/contact but it should be possible.

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