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Snip solves Kate's breast-feeding

Kate Richards
The latest news on ten week old Ben is that he's started to wake only once in the night. This is a fantastic development, but I'm aware it might not last - I've
read about something frightening called "sleep regression" which can happen at any time, with four months being a common danger zone.

Another big challenge of early parenthood for many Mums is getting the hang of breastfeeding. Due to World Health Organisation guidelines, breastfeeding is recommended for the first six months of life. This translates as quite significant support/ pressure from midwifes and nurses, starting well before the actual arrival.

I found breastfeeding quite uncomfortable at first, so after about a week I went along to an NHS support group, run by the local midwives. One of them noticed that Ben had tongue-tie, and made us a hospital appointment. The specialist told us that tongue-tie is when the flap of tissue under the tongue extends too far forwards, preventing the baby from latching on and sucking properly.

Ben had a very quick and easy operation where the skin was snipped with blunt-ended scissors, after which feeding him was much more comfortable and took less time. It's now down to ten or so minutes each time, any more than that and I suspect he's fallen asleep.

In fact, back onto sleep again, feeding him was my top method of sending him to sleep in the first few weeks. Luckily he can now go off to sleep by himself, as long as he's swaddled.

Not so luckily, he's refusing to drink expressed milk from a bottle, meaning that I have sole responsibility for the night feeds and can't leave him for more than two hours. I'll keep trying though, with all the different shaped bottles I can find, before giving up!

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