A mother in Bowling Green, Kentucky is warning parents about lip and tongue tie issues after her newborn’s alarming weight loss.
Jordan and her husband, Aaron Talley, were overjoyed when their second child was born on April 9th of this year. At 6lbs 4 oz, little Lucy Eleanor was everything the couple dreamed of.
“She was perfect,” Talley told People Magazine. “My entire pregnancy, I had that worry that I wouldn’t be able to love a second child as much as my first. But when she was here, none of those worries mattered anymore. Everyone told me, ‘Your heart just grows in size’ and it sounds cliche, but it really does!”
Unable to breastfeed her first child due to a stressful Neonatal Intensive Care Unit stay, the 25-year-old mother was determined to breastfeed baby Lucy.
However, while in hospital, Talley was experiencing pain with each feeding that continued after she returned home, “I thought, maybe I was just a wimp and it’ll go away.”
Talley says Lucy began eating “all the time” and the pain persisted, and a doctor’s appointment revealed that the baby had dropped weight.
Although newborns typically lose a percentage of their weight after birth, they tend to gain it back within the first two weeks. For Lucy, she had dropped a pound in less than a month, and her physical appearance was changing quickly.
“She had a very thin face and no longer had that full, chubby-cheeked baby face,” Talley remembers. “Her eyes were dull and sunken in.”
Confused by her daughter’s weight loss, Talley went to see a lactation consultant. The consultant was able to determine that Lucy had both a tongue and lip tie, in which pieces of tissue keep a portion of the baby’s lip or tongue together, greatly impacting the baby’s range of motion during feedings.
“I was relieved that we had an answer,” Talley said. “Lucy had to work really hard to get milk out… which explains why she was nursing so frequently.”
The consultant had Talley switch to bottle-feeding using breastmilk from both Talley, and a breastmilk donor and doctors performed the non-invasive procedure to correct the ties.
The baby began gaining weight immediately, which for the worried new mother, was a huge relief.
“I felt like I could breathe again,” Talley said. “When we took her back for a weight check after the revision, Lucy’s doctor was thrilled with her progress.”
Talley is encouraging all frustrated breastfeeding mothers to visit a lactation consultant if they are having problems breastfeeding.
Remember – a healthy baby is happy baby. Always do what is best for both you and your child. Consult your doctor about your feeding options to formulate a plan that works for you and your baby.