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Believe it or not, breastfeeding pain is not uncommon among breastfeeding mothers. Moms always talk amongst themselves and share stories about their experience on breastfeeding pain. This will keep you wondering, if you are a new mom. Sometimes, it could be a more pressing matter if it’s your first time to experience this.
Does breastfeeding really hurt? Is it normal to experience breastfeeding pain? What causes the experience?
Let’s walk together through the questions and answer them to feed your curiosity or consultation.
Is It Normal to Experience Breastfeeding Pain?
It is not a new topic among mothers. Breastfeeding pain is a common topic among groups. Breastfeeding is also some of the mothers’ dreaded moments in raising their little angels.
Breastfeeding pain can be caused by many factors. Some of the causes may be manageable, some even have easy home remedies. It is important to know that it is normal to feel some pain or discomfort during breastfeeding.
This circumstance is especially common for mothers that breastfeed their babies who are starting to grow their teeth. It is important to keep in mind that, sometimes, the pain of breastfeeding may be normal.
When it is too unbearable to handle, this may be a totally different case.
What Are the Causes of Breastfeeding Pain?
There are certain causes of breastfeeding pain such as the following:
- It is not uncommon for lactating mothers to experience engorgement. Engorgement is when your breasts are getting hard because of being filled with milk. While the thought may seem harmless, it is a painful process.
Engorgement, on the other hand, happens when the body is trying to adjust to the supply of milk that the baby would need. Once the body is well adjusted, the milk supply will always be manageable.
- When your baby is starting to grow teeth and latches, there are tendencies that the baby will bite and pull at the nipple while breastfeeding. This may cause the nipple to get sore and even bleed.
Tip: When it is becoming too painful, gently use your clean finger to put between your baby’s teeth to unlatch their grip on your nipple. Make sure that you clean the sore. As a reminder, avoid putting any external creams on your nipple since you are lactating.
These two are the normal and common reasons why breastfeeding would hurt.
There are other reasons that breastfeeding pain may be felt such as lumps in the breasts, dry and brittle nipples, lumps that come with fevers and abnormal pain even after the latch of the baby is adjusted. Some cases may include having clogged or blocked ducts.
On a more serious note, these are cases that you have to monitor. If possible, set an appointment with your doctor as soon as you can.
There is an infection at the breasts called “Mastitis”. It is when dirt enters your milk ducts, causing an infection, and it can be very painful for the breastfeeding mother. Eventually, you may get a fever, red and swollen lumps may occur when you have mastitis.
Your doctor can prescribe you with antibiotics that are baby-friendly, so that you may continue to lactate and breastfeed your baby.
When Do I Know If I Can or Cannot Continue Breastfeeding?
You can continue to nurse your baby since it does not harm your baby. Breastfeeding continuously also helps prevent the inflammation in the breasts, as the ducts are consistently used.
When the milk ducts of the breasts are not continually used through breastfeeding, there are tendencies that the milk ducts get clogged or blocked. This is why continuous breastfeeding pain occurs.
Home Remedies for Breastfeeding Pain
Warm baths and warm compresses can help in soothing the pain and the blocked milk ducts in your breasts. Warm compresses can also help in killing germs that are causing the inflammation.
You can also use cold compresses to reduce the pain you feel, numbing the sores after breastfeeding.
Make sure to avoid touching the sore area of the breasts. It could cause further infection, especially if your hands are not clean or have been on to other surfaces.
As for painful latching of the baby, it would be a good idea to guide the baby gently when they latch. Make sure your baby does not latch on to your nipple in the middle of your mouth, as the positioning and adjustment of the baby may hurt your nipple even more.
Note: Remember that you can always consult your doctor when the breastfeeding pain is too unbearable. There may be certain causes or effects that are not known. It is best to receive advice from a specialist.
Incase of Emergencies
When it has been a while of breastfeeding pain, make sure you have your thoughts together and do not panic. Set an appointment with your doctor as soon as you can.
Take note of when the breastfeeding pain started, and when it began getting worse. Make a mental note of the symptoms and signs you have been experiencing. Why should you do this?
This is to help your doctor have a more detailed and accurate diagnosis of what you may be going through. Always keep in mind that you can be honest with your doctor, and you have nothing to fear.
Were we able to help you with your concern? What do you think of this post? Let us know your opinions on breastfeeding pain. Comment below!