View Full Version : Newborn not settling between feeds
Our 12-day old will rarely settle between his daytime feeds and cries an awful lot. I wouldn't mind if he was awake and happy, but about half an hour after the end of his feed he wakes up and wants comforting. Sometimes he gets so distressed that he goes purple and holds his breath.
During the day I keep him out in the living room in his rocker as he won't be left in the cot in his room and also we're trying to teach him the difference between day and night. When he cries I try to leave him for a bit, but eventually he needs some sort of attention (dummy, patting and picking up).
He's a big boy (10lb 9 at birth) and seems to have already outgrown the Tomee Tippee newborn variflow teats we bought, so his feeds are very quick. Can anyone give any suggestions on slower-flowing teats so that we can draw his feeds out to the 20-30 mins advised by the Child Health Helpline. At the moment he's wolfing his bottle down in 10 mins, which is probably contributing to being unsettled.
We still have a few days to go before we get to see the Child Health Nurse for his first checkup, so I just need a few suggestions to get be through the next couple of days. Can anyone offer any help?
Firstly - I know how tired & stressed you must be feeling right now - NO ONE warns us about those first weeks, how hard they are, how helpless you feel and how sheer exhausting it all is.....how you don't know what to do and everyone gives you conflicting "advice".....it's all so confusing :( .....thinking of you and believe me it does get better so hang in there ;)
Well - IMO - your baby is very young and I don't believe old enough to start getting night and day sorted out - so perhaps don't worry about that yet? It will happen by itself - honestly..........I reckon the best thing for this is taking bub outside for an afternoon walk every day - helps you feel better too!
Teats - well - I started with the Avent system, but found the teats "leaky" - although flow rate was okay - so went on a bit of a "look-see".......I'm now using some called Infanti brand and they seem really good for my bubs........however, I was recommended by many people to use Pigeon Peristaltic teats. The only reason I haven't is that I wasn't sure if they were compatible with my Avent bottles (apparently you CAN use them together if you get the wide necked ones) and the Infanti ones seemed quite similar looking and cheaper and have served our purpose........my bubs is now 4 months and still on the slowest flow teats - i've tried to go up to the faster ones, but she gets really windy and unsettled as well........I think this is probably what's happening to your bub too.....?
I have some variflow teats but didn't like them - they seemed to either flow really fast - or not at all!!
All I can suggest is to get another type of teat - screw the lid on the bottle quite hard to slow the flow and perhaps use some Infacol - we found it pretty good + do lots of burping - stop him a few times and burp through the feed........
Another thing to try is massage & deep baths - massage clockwise gently but firmly around the tummy to push the air through & I found doing this in a deep bath best........
Also - beware of overstimulation of your bub! If I have another baby - I will not make this mistake again :o We tend to underestimate how much stimulation we give baby's - they really do need very little extra stimulation then is around in a quiet house with a few people..........TVs, radios, cars going by, wind on their skin, colours and shapes adn movement.....etc....etc....etc - it's ALL stimualation to them and can be overwhelming for young baby's. I would suggest you create as quiet a space as you can - perhaps being in the living areas in the rocker is just too much for him?
When we first got home with bubs - we had music playing in the nursery adn in the lounge, TV on, radio going......I was certain that she should get used to "normal household" sounds..........well - we paid for it!! She really was quite unsettled etc and not until I read Secrets of the Baby Whisperer (can't recommend this book more highly - it's saved my sanity!!) when she was 6 weeks old did I realise how over-stimulated environment we had her in........once I made an effort to create a quieter env - she settled down heaps.
I found that in actual fact my baby preferred to be in her nursery in the peace and quiet - just with a bit of mild background noise - we found the split system airconditioner was the most soothing thing.......I have friends who used to put the vaccum cleaner on in the room next door for the "hum" factor and it worked a treat on all 3 of their kids!!
Good luck - hope some of these suggestions help a bit.......you will find that as the weeks go by and bubs gets used to "outside" he will be easier to care for - that first 4-6 weeks is the most demanding - then it certainly improves........
It really is an awfully stressful & tiring time, even without a new bub crying all the time. I think Tannie has given some good advice regarding the wind and trying different teat systems. Burping is an art, it took me a while and some good help from a midwife to figure out how to get Chloe's wind out.
It must be horrible listening to him cry when you try to leave him for a bit. And honestly, if you're doing it so as not to "spoil" him or because you've been told that he'll learn that he's in control, then you can relax a bit. A 12 day old bub cries because he needs you for something physical. If you want to go and give him a cuddle straight away then do it, and likely he'll calm much faster with a quick cuddle and burp than if you leave him to cry for a bit.
I found that as a newborn, Chloe didn't enjoy her bouncer. She didn't have enough motion to get it moving and so it didn't soothe her at all. Some bubs love it though. You might try a swing instead, or a baby carrier that straps to your chest. Your son may be soothed by your constant motions and your hands will be free for small tasks.
Our little bub is 10 days old now too and we are going through the same thing from about 5pm or so in the afternoon we have a baby who sleeps on and off till about 10pm and does some crying in this time as well as just generally unsettled. She also spends a fair bit of time awake too which I don't mind if she is content.
Nursing her seems to be the solution so far but that only works on and off for a bit of the time as as soon as she goes to sleep we put her down and she is generally awake within 10-20mins.
We find this same thing happens during the day from her first morning feed at around 8 or 9 am and she will stay awake on and off till about 11-12 when I do her next feed.
Im surprised on how alert she is for the length of time she is.
I expected that a baby of her age should have only really small amounts of awake time but she can stay awake on and off for 4hrs.
I just don;t know what to do.
I was thinking about the bathing thing but each bath we have given her so far she has screamed through so Im not sure how soothing it would be.
Im finding Im not getting much done.
I think there's an excellent case to be made for "confinement" of a woman after a birth. Not to protect everyone else from any supposed contagion like might have been done in the old days. But to give mum and bub a chance to relax and settle in together without the stress of every day life and worries. It's hard, and I made the same mistake of trying to get stuff done, but really you need to just drop as much as you can and concentrate on you and bub. Put your foot down to hub that he's GOT to help out and enlist as many friends and rellies as you can.
I know it's hard, but most mums find things settle down around the 6 week mark. Nearly every bub has an arsenic "hour" in the evening, when they're grizzly and unsettled. There's not much to do. If baths don't help (and some bubs hate baths) then maybe a walk, some gentle dancing together, baby massage. If the weather's too bad for a walk then a tip is to put bub in the pram and just go back and forth over a bump in the house - the edge of a carpet for example, or one woman I know used her shoe.
June - some bubs are really wakeful. But some will be wakeful only because they need some help getting to sleep. Some bubs get so used to falling asleep against mum or dad that they wake up as soon as they're moved off mum, or won't sleep anywhere else. There are tips to help break this pattern, or you could try a front carrier that will keep him against you.
Persevere... those first smiles will be appearing soon and will light your heart!
My little girl is now 11 months old and I can really relate to what you are going through. We struggled for about 6 weeks with constant crying and very little sleep! We then took her to our Pediatrician who diagnosed reflux and lactose intollerance and started her on medication. The improvement started immediately but it was still along hard road getting her on the right dose and as a result she is still a poor sleeper at night as she has never learned to sleep properly.
If you are noticing any of these symptoms it might be worth checking with your doctor or child health nurse if there may be some reflux:
Irritablility soon after feeding and feeding frequently,
Crying when laying flat and wanting to be held upright on your shoulder alot
Waking soon after being put down for a sleep (15-30 mins later)
Swallowing alot and grimicing expression (the acid coming up in the back of the throat but not throwing up)
Explosive and runny bowel movements with lots of wind
It is hard enough coping with the adjustments of a new baby without pain being thrown into the mix. If you need help coping ask!!! I made the mistake of trying to deal with the propblems without help and put myself through alot of unnecessary stress. Always remember that you have been given the most precious gift in the world (hard at 2am when the baby has been screaming for days and you have had no sleep!) and this does not last forever.
If you want to asl any other questions please let me know.
I also had a baby that was not settling during the day at 10 weeks and very wakeful during the day. I was literally pulling my hair out not knowing what to do. I read a lot of books more books I read the more confused I was. Then I found my life saver Sleep Rescue, Gabrielle is Melbourne Victoria Australia based, though she does telephone consultations for overseas and interstate clients. Sometimes she attends Qld.I found her to be great. I have recommended her to all my friends and they all have had great success and found her to be pleasant and very helpful. She is the most caring person that you can find. I like the way that she has a booklet and information, she knows her stuff inside out. She is hands on and she took me step by step with the process. I was an emotional wreck and she supported me all the way. Some of my other friends have used other consultants and have been very disappointed, the other consultants have not left them any literature and have not had any success and than I have referred them to Sleep Rescue and they have not stopped raving her praises. I recommend her to anybody, she is patient and caring. :kiss: Once again I totally recommend Sleep Rescue she saved my life and my marriage. If you are reading this Sleep Rescue Thankyou, Thankyou, Thankyou
to everyone out there experiencing anything from restlessness to colic or reflux to teething or anything else "Infants Friend" is the answer! I was told about this a few weeks ago and my baby has slept through the night for at least 7 hours at a time since! My baby boy is 3 months old. This product is available at most chemists and comes highly recomended from numerous friends. I cant believe i wasn't told about it sooner. Good luck.
Just wanted to say I think this is totally normal for such a young bub. As others have said, the first few weeks are so so hard and there is little you can do as your bub is so new to everything, and crying is their only means of communication. Everything is new and scary and they prob just want to be back in your womb where everything was comfy and secure! I remember my DS doing a fart and screaming his head off as he scared himself... Lol... They are so sensitive! If you can find a teat that works for you and persist with burping etc any wind problems should settle down, but honestly most newborns act similarly you are not alone, and it will improve! Make sure you get help from family and friends, take a break when you can, fresh air etc and don't get too caught up in sleep times, routine etc it really is too early and you will just end up frustrated.
You are going a great job your bub is just too young to let you know that!
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