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Reasons Why Your Baby May Be Experiencing Latching Problems

July 3, 2022

Filed under: Uncategorized — floridatongue @ 2:52 pm
woman and baby napping

Breastfeeding is a wonderful experience for mother and baby, but sometimes challenges can arise. If your baby is having latching problems in Palm Harbor, getting to the root of the problem can help. A lactation consultant is a great resource in this case – but doing your research before you get in touch with them can help you know how to describe what’s happening. Keep reading to learn more about some of the potential causes of a poor latch. 

#1: Fussy baby

It may be discouraging to hear, but sometimes a baby has trouble latching on because they’re in a bad mood due to being overtired, too hungry, or simply because it’s the infamous witching hour – or the time in the late evening when many newborns are fussy for seemingly no reason. To solve these potential issues, try to feed baby before they are too hungry, or move to a dark, quiet room and swaddle them for extra comfort. 

#2: Sleepy baby

Newborns love sleeping – and this can sometimes pose a challenge for nursing. If your baby is losing their latch because they are falling asleep at the breast, try removing all of their clothes before nursing, changing their diaper, or tickling their feet. Sometimes these little boosts of stimulation are enough to keep baby awake and ensure that they get a full feed. 

#3: Issues with the Breast or Nipples

While it’s a myth that women with smaller breasts have a harder time nursing, sometimes your nipple shape or size can pose a challenge for baby as they are learning how to breastfeed. A nipple shield may help – and ideally, after a while your little one should be able to latch directly onto the nipple as their mouth grows. Try to talk to a lactation consultant before deciding to go with a nipple shield on your own. 

#4: Tongue/Lip Tie

Finally, another one of the important things to investigate when you are trying to determine why your baby is having a hard time latching on is if they have a tongue or lip tie. This can restrict movement of their lips and tongue, making nursing painful for you and inefficient for them. Tongue and lip tie can cause slow weight gain, weight loss, and sore, bleeding nipples. Fortunately, a pediatric dentist can remove the tie with a procedure known as a frenectomy. 

To conclude, breastfeeding is difficult – but with the right resources, it can get easier. If your baby is having latching problems and any of these issues resonated with you, don’t wait to reach out to a professional like a certified lactation consultant or a pediatric dentist (in the case of tongue/lip tie). 

Whatever you decide, remember that you are doing a wonderful job and getting the help your baby needs to grow and thrive. 

Meet the Tongue/Lip Tie Expert

Dr. Maggie Davis is an expert in tongue and lip tie. Through her work at the Florida Tongue Tie Institute, she and her team have helped many babies and mothers reap all the benefits of breastfeeding by providing quick and painless surgical treatment for this common issue. To learn more about frenectomy in Palm Harbor or to book an appointment, call Dr. Davis at (727) 786-7551.

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