Jackson has been having a hard time staying latched these past few days. He seems very fussy and continues to gnaw on his hand and not take my breast. The shooting pain in my nipples is back (though they aren't cracked anymore thanks to lanolin) and I now have a burning sensation as well. I looked online and diagnosed myself with thrush, which is a yeast infection that is passed back and forth between mom and baby's mouth. Apparently thrush is much more common in nursing women who received antibiotics during labor and delivery, which I definitely did due to Group Strep B. Sure enough, I checked and Jackson has white patches in the back of his throat and gums. It also explains the diaper rash he has. (We use all natural detergent, cloth diapers, and let his behind air out as much as possible during diaper changes so we were perplexed what was wrong.)
I called Jackson's doctor at 8 a.m. Unfortunately the office is closed for Good Friday. I called my family physician but their office was also closed. Jesse called the Minute Clinic but they don't treat newborns. I called my OB office and was on the phone back and forth with various nurses for 45 minutes. Their final verdict was that I may or may not have mastitis so they called in a prescription for antibiotics and told me to fill it if I had a fever. I sent Jesse off to Vitamin Shoppe to get Grapefruit Seeed Extract, a natural remedy that is safe for Jackson and I. I was also able to call our family friend, the lactation consultant. After a series of detailed questions she confirmed that we likely have thrush. She is also a registered nurse so she called in a prescription for Nystatin. (Both oral drops for him and cream for me)
We swabbed Jackson's mouth with the diluted extract mixture before he ate. He spit up repeatedly, so much. Jesse and I decided we would try the Nystatin drops next and keep using the extract on me. It's so tricky because it can take two weeks to clear up and you have to make sure you treat both baby and mom, otherwise you'll keep passing it back and forth.
Today is Jan's 50th birthday. We had the in-laws over for dinner. Jackson and I baked a birthday cake for her while my sister-in-law came over to decorate our house. Jesse grilled hamburgers and hotdogs. Jan was so happy and I am glad we were able to help her feel special on her birthday.
Since Jackson is two weeks old (or will be at 4:28 a.m.) we decided to introduce the pacifier. It is one of those "soothie" pacis that the hopsital uses and is shaped like a nipple. Jackson just keeps sucking on his hand and getting upset even after he's eaten for 30 minutes. If he keeps eating he just spits up. He took the pacifier for a solid 10 minutes after we gave him his medicine and he seemed so content. I don't want him to be dependent upon it, but I am relieved to offer him something other than my breast.