Saturday, March 17, 2012

No Milk for You

Mine and Mason's breastfeeding journey has came to an end...almost.

Before Mason was born, all I read was that babies with Down syndrome could not breastfeed. That due to their low tone they simply could not breastfeed. We were actually already planning on Mason needing to be tube fed.

When Mason was born almost 6wks early, He was kept in the NICU for 11 days. He was given bottles of pumped breast milk while he was there. If he didn't finish a bottle, it was given to him by NG tube. We tried so hard to get him to drink all 55mls of milk. We rubbed his back, undressed him, tickled his feet, ect...ANYTHING to keep him drinking that bottle! Our golden ticket out of the NICU was Mason taking all his feeding without the use of the NG tube. We tried breastfeeding several times in the NICU but since he was so sleepy still, Cory and I made the decision the just do the bottle till he was home.

Finally Mason was able to take all of his feeding and we were able to take our bundle of joy home. Only problem was, he was still on a bottle. It took us about a week and a half to trasition him from bottle to breast. His only real problem was sleepness. He had a good latch. It was that he had no stamina. Add in the fact that he was in heart failure... he just needed the most milk possible in the easiest way possible. And for Mason, that was breast feeding. He got better and better at it ( it didnt hurt that I was DETERMINED) that he was going to breast feed. He could nurse and be done in 15 min or take a bottle and take 30-40min. It was a no brainer. Soon he was only breastfeed. Even after heart surgery, when they finally wanted to give him something to eat. The nurse made a bottle and I kept telling her he wont take it.... 20 min later ( and no milk from the bottle) she let me nurse him...and he did great. Actually he did AWSOME, he could out nurse other babies in the breast feeding clinic. He could take in 8+oz in 15 min. The boy was good!

Then our journey took a wild turn. Through a trial of yogurt...We found out Mason is allergic to Milk protein. He cant have Milk, Dairy, Soy, or anything made with Dairy. We even tried goats milk, and that ended in tummy aches and throwing up for a few hours...

So since we were drawing close to the 1yr mark, we talked to Masons peditrican about what to move him to when we wean. So they sent us home with some samples of formula. No Luck.

He got tummy aches from the 3 samples the gave us. I was really starting to worry that I was gong to have to breastfeed till he was 7! Then finally the hospital diatician got in touch with us and gave us two sample of amino based formulas (non dairy and non soy) and Mason did well on them. And it couldnt of happened at a better time!!!

My supply was starting to dwindle... and we started givnig Mason a few oz of formula before bed. Then Mason got sick for a few days with a nasty bug. He didnt really eat for those 3 days. If you know anything about breast feeding.... its all about supply and demand. And my body had no demand, then no supply. Our attempt at making it to a year was slipping through my fingers. I only had 6wks left.....

But I was handling it well. I had been dairy free for almost 5 months. ( Mason's sensitivity was so severe that even I couldnt have dairy.) I thought I would be happy to get to enjoy icecream again...but I was also sad about not making it to 1 yr.

So we comprimised... Mason still nurses every morning. Why? Because Im too lazy to get up and make a bottle. And because I love our special time together.

So I "Kinda" may make it to a year!!

Take that bad internet information! Yes babies with Down syndrome CAN breast feed.


  1. Glad you found something that works! His tummy aches and throwing up sound just like Daniel when we tried formula with him. What ended up working for you? It was Similac Alimentum for us. The Enfamil Nutramigen did not work. We were prepared for him to not be able to take cow's milk, but interestingly enough, he seems fine with it. He eats yogurt like there's no tomorrow! Way to go for making it as far as you have with breastfeeding!

  2. That's such an awesome story. Way to go Mason & Momma!!

  3. Heather: He is on Elecare. It smells a lot better then the nutramigen!

  4. This is an awesome story! So glad you found something that worked for you.


We love to hear from you!