Breastfeeding Problems

Breastfeeding is agreed to be incredibly important for you and your baby for at least the first six months. Yet more often than not there are more struggles that you did not calculate for like breast pain. Here are a few common problems and ways around them for easier sailing.

Breast Pain from Engorgement

Breastfeeding hurts if done incorrectly! The new child will be feeding frequently so you may find it more painful than you initially anticipated. Within the first two to four days as your milk comes in your breasts will feel full and heavy. If you find your breasts feeling hard and uncomfortable you may be experiencing what is called engorgement. This is usually because of inadequate draining and milk removal, which could be due to your baby not nursing often enough or long enough.

These things cause your breasts to become overfilled. You can treat this by pumping to remove excess milk from your breast. Taking a warm compress or a heat pad as well as taking a warm shower can help encourage milk flow. If that is not enough speaking to a lactation consultant can help you find a solution, there are also companies that create supplements and breastfeeding tea. 

And before you even experience engorgement you can avoid the problem by feeding your baby frequently which is approximately eight to twelve times a day thus ensuring your breasts are being emptied. Most breastfeeding tea helps with the mothers and the baby’s immune system, as well as it offers both of you the extra nutrients you need in this vital period.

Sore or Cracked Nipples

Many mothers can experience sore, cracked and bleeding nipples which makes wanting to continue breastfeeding a bigger feat than originally anticipated. Nipples are more sensitive during the pregnancy and the period shortly after and experiencing suction and saliva can cause more pain than anticipated as it is all new on your body especially if you are a new mother. As your baby gets more and more used to feeding, they will learn how to latch on properly and your nipples should heal.

To guide the latch, you have to aim the nipple to the roof of the baby’s mouth, the nipple should be towards the back of the baby's throat to avoid pressure from the gums and tongue. While feeding, you should hold your baby close to your body with their mouth and nose facing your nipple. If you feel any pain, gently pull your baby away and re-adjust their latch and try to re-adjust your position as well. You should also make sure you switch which side you are feeding your child. Moisturize the cracked nipple with breast milk after each feeding and take care of it as you would cracked or dried lips, breast milk is high in antibiotics and helps avoid nasty infections. Gently wiping away excess saliva and making sure the area is clean using a soft cotton pad is vital to keeping the area healthy.

Hopefully you have found these tips to be helpful on your breast-feeding endeavors. If your problems persist, contact a professional at once. Always remember there is no better teacher than trial and error, trust in yourself and create a support system to help if things feel like they are going south.