Good morning and happy Tuesday =D I can’t believe that my little baby angel is already 1 month 1 day old. It is difficult to describe the strength of the infinite happiness that I feel every day with him. As long as he is healthy, it is impossible to have a bad day anymore.
This has been a big month for Paulie. He came out of the womb determined to lift his head and has been building strength each day during tummy time, breastfeeding, and burping time. He has been able to roll over onto either side since 3 days old. He lost his umbilical cord at 19 days old, and he took his first bath at 26 days old. When he is awake, he studies the environment to learn about his world. Matt and I spend this time reading, talking, and singing to him. Paul loves to look at mommy and daddy, and he tracks us when we walk across the room or towards him. Today, Matt and I got to share a very special moment together. Paulie had his first real smile. Daddy was tickling his feet, and his entire face just lit up. It was beautiful.
A major reason that this has been a big month for Paulie is because we have had a lot of difficulty with breastfeeding. Breastfeeding is something that I thought would come naturally, but it has been, for me, the most difficult part of being a parent. I find that there are two components to breastfeeding, the emotional and the physical. Emotionally, I have an innate desire to nourish my baby with my milk from my breast, so when I was faced with the necessity to both supplement with formula and pump my milk and feed him with a bottle, I felt like a complete failure. Then, there is the physical component where I just want my baby to be nourished, even if the nourishment does not come from me. I just want what is best for my son.
Matt and I met with two lactation specialists during the two days that we spent at the hospital after Paul was born. We had issues with latching from the beginning, which caused my baby to lose 10 ounces during our hospital stay. Both specialists said that he had a posterior tongue tie as well as a lip tie. The lip tie was preventing him from opening his mouth wide enough to latch on correctly and the posterior tongue tie was preventing him from maneuvering his tongue correctly to efficiently remove milk from me. The poor latch caused breastfeeding to be painful and he would try to drink for up to 4 hours at a time every 30 to 60 minutes because of his inability to remove milk from me.
The lactation specialists presented me with three options. I could continue trying to breastfeed with the lip and posterior tongue tie, I could get the tongue tie released with a laser by going to see a dentist, or I could get the lip and posterior tongue tie released with scissors by going to see an ears, nose, and throat doctor. I tried to continue breastfeeding with the ties, but after 3 weeks, I felt defeated. He was constantly hungry, I was in pain, and my ducts were always clogged which as a result prevented my milk supply from increasing. We found ourselves supplementing with one to two bottles a day and I had to pump directly after breastfeeding to unclog my ducts. Since his appetite was increasing and I was already unable to satisfy his hunger, I decided to make an appointment with the ears, nose, and throat doctor.
Going into the office, I was very hesitant about the procedure. The doctor spent a lot of time with us during the consultation explaining everything we would need to know and answering our questions. We felt comfortable with her, so we decided to get the procedure done. She did not use any anesthetics. The procedure lasted about 3 minutes. She cut the lip tie, and she made four cuts underneath his tongue. To me there was a lot of blood, but he stopped crying almost instantly. The doctor then spent time with us working on his latch, and there was an immediate noticable difference. For the first time, breastfeeding was painless, and I heard him chug! It has been exactly a week since his lip and tongue tie were released, and the only regret I have is that I wish I had made the appointment sooner.
Recovery was a little tough for him. After every feed, we have to massage the area to ensure that it does not heal back into the tongue tie. I am so relieved that today is the last day we need to massage the area.
If you are having difficulty with breastfeeding; if its painful, if your bleeding, if your ducts are clogging, if your baby is never satisfied, he may have a tongue and/or lip tie. There are different types of ties, but they all impact a baby’s ability to eat efficiently. I highly recommend taking him to an ears, nose, and throat doctor who can perform a frenulectomy.
Contact me if you would like the information for the ears, nose, and throat doctor or the dentist that were referred to me. My doctor was fantastic.
A few pictures =D
Thank you so much for reading! I hope you have a wonderful day! <333