Continuing our conversation with International Board Certified Lactation Consultant and RN, Dewlene Broyles, with Mom Support in Weatherford, Texas and Dr. Michelle Parker that is also an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant + Board Certified Pediatric Diplomate from the Academy Council of Chiropractic Pediatrics with The Chiropractic Place for Mommy and Me in Aledo, Texas, we are chatting about some simple ways you can help your baby during their nursing strike.
1. Try to feed them when they are calm. It sounds easier said than done, but if they are sleepy, they are less likely to argue about eating. This is where dream feeding can be done successfully.
2. Taking a warm bath together. Embrace the time they need to be bathed while you do too and emerge yourself in some warm water with baby lying on your chest in a safe position. Sometimes the warmth of the water can make them feel cozy and relaxed just enough to get them to eat.
3. Pull in the help from others. If you are feeling tense with them being upset or not wanting to eat, then try handing them to your partner or friend to help get them relaxed and then hand back to you to feed them.
4. Skin-to-Skin. This honestly should be the #1 thing to implement when a baby seems to be in a nursing strike. Try hanging out with their skin contacting your skin, also known as skin-to-skin, as much and as often as possible. Skin-to-skin contact is a great way to connect with your baby.
5. Be comfortable with shorter feeds at this time. If you can get baby to nurse, then they may not want to do a full feed or will feed less times a day during this phase.
6. Cut out as much stimulation as you can. Staying at home, as much as possible is huge. Decreasing the noise, the sounds, the sights can often times help de-stress and de-stimulate your baby to become more relaxed.
7. Realize that nursing strikes typically last 3-5 days. If they have just started rolling over, sitting up or are really working hard on crawling, then their little brains may be preoccupied with wanting to master that new skill than feeling the need to eat.
8. Pump or hand express. If your baby typically eats 8-12 times a day and you are only able to get them to latch on and feed maybe 3-4 times a day, then you will want to make up those missed feeds by using an electrical pump or hand expressing to keep your supply up.
9. Contact IBCLC. If you have tried these recommendations and baby just still seems not wanting to eat, then reach out to an IBCLC, International Board Certified Lactation Consultant, to pull in the professional support and help to get this figured out.
10. Schedule a bodywork session for baby. Sometimes babies can be uncomfortable due to tightened or tense muscles and need some bodywork consisting of gentle craniosacral therapy and/or myofascial release to get their body moving better. To find a Pediatric Certified Chiropractor in your area, click on “Find A Chiropractor” at www.ICPA4Kids.com for professional support near you.