I wanted to share my son's tongue tie experience. It wasn't a simple at birth it was detected and cut. It took a month! One long month, his very first month in the world that was full of struggles because of his tongue tie.
I still feel angry at how long it took to get detected. If it had been detected earlier I believe our breastfeeding experience would have been a better one.
I told my midwife and my heath visitor that feeding wasn't right. They knew something wasn't right as he wasn't gaining weight at the rate a baby should. He was tiny, scrawny even and it was so hard to see.
As I had breastfed my eldest son I knew what breastfeeding felt like. And this wasn't right. Noah sucked his lip in and it hurt, a lot. I know it does to start with but this didn't stop hurting. I winced every time he went to latch on. I was scared for each feed time because I knew how much pain I was going to be in.
I had never heard of a tongue tie until Noah had it. He was never referred for one until exactly a month after he was born. Our health visitor was still visiting the house because Noah's weight gain was slow. She came to the house and I just broke down. I felt like the worst mother in the world as my baby was not gaining weight from the milk I was providing him with. I wanted to succeed but if it wasn't to be I wanted to know. I didn't want to keep on struggling. She checked for a tongue tie for the 3rd time but this time wasn't sure. She said she was going to refer us but it could take weeks.
She headed back to the office and made the referral. Within hours I had had a call saying they had a cancelation and could we make it that day. Obviously we could, found a babysitter for Finley and were off to the hospital an hour away. This was the closest tongue tie clinic.
I can remember the relief I felt when she said it was a tongue tie. That it wasn't me or anything I was doing to make feeding so hard.
They cut it there and then. It wasn't a pleasant experience and I cried along with Noah, even though I was told it wouldn't hurt him. But seeing my baby cry from being held down is one of the worst things I have ever experienced.
The first feed after the cut was incredible. How it was supposed to feel. How I remember it to feel. No pulling off, no tugging and no fighting to get milk. We were both happy and relaxed. Felt perfect.
It continued like this, feeding well but the weight wasn't going on as quickly as we had hoped. I didn't feel full after he had had a good nap and I didn't wake up feeling like they were going to pop from him sleeping all night.
My health visitor suggested supplementing, so we did, anything to make our little baby put on weight. And he did.
What had happened was my milk supply hadn't established properly. I just wasn't producing enough to satisfy his appetite and enough to feed him. Not going to lie I felt a failure. But he was happy and gaining weight with the supplementing so whatever my feelings were I needed to do what was right for him.
I managed to combine feed for 4 months but at the end feeding from me was just a comfort and his main source of milk was the formula. So I made the decision to stop. I had tried my best but unfortunately due to the tongue tie it was just not meant to be.
I truly believe a tongue tie should be checked for at birth. I know they aren't all the same and some aren't easy to notice but if he had been checked maybe things would have been different. I was told when Noah had his cut that tongue ties are more common than people realise.
|Tiny little Noah - 2 years ago|