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Breastfeeding & Pain: Engorgement, Clogged Ducts and Painful Latch

Dana C.
DANA C.
Lactation Consultant
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No matter what you've heard, feeding baby shouldn't hurt! Join the conversation and get comfortable, once and for all. Led by Tinyhood Lactation Consultant, Dana Czuczka.

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DANA ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Clogged duct and blister
COOL, PARENT OF 2 YEAR OLD

Hi, my left breast has a clogged duct and looks engorged. I feed my baby often and pump the excess but still my breast is so heavy and Fuller. To worsen this, I have got a tiny white blister on my nipple. It hurts real bad when bub sucks my nipple while feeding. Should I stop feeding until the blister goes away? Please help how do I get rid of the blister and breast engorgement. Thanks

CARRIE

My expertise comes only from having been in your shoes. The blister is called a “bleb.” If you look that up you should find all sorts of suggestions including epsom salt, warm compresses etc. Don’t stop feeding though. Your baby is the best tool you’ve got for getting rid of it and if you stop you’ll probably clog more. Sadly, I never found anything to make the actual nursing more comfortable until the bleb was gone.

Dana
DANA

The blister is likely related to the clogged duct. Treatment = warm moist heat + massage + frequent feeding. I wonder if the feeding plus pumping is perpetuating the engorgement. I would recommend trying a lot of hot showers and massage in the shower (you can put olive oil on your hands to help). Try feeding and skipping the pumping. If you need more relief pump or hand express only for comfort not to empty. When massaging think about “clearing a path” for the clog - start massaging I’m front of hard spot and move forward toward the nipple. Then go back and work on the clog.

COOL

Thanks Carrie and Dana!

DANA ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Bad latch
HEATHER, PARENT OF 2 YEAR OLD

My baby is 3 weeks old today. She just started latching this past week after numerous visits with IBCLC, chiropractor visits, and cranio-sacral therapy sessions, all because she couldn’t latch. She was tongue tied, but still struggled even after she had her frenulum clipped. She has shown tremendous improvements in the last couple of weeks, but now her latch hurts so bad that I could cry when she latches on. Tried numerous holds, I do the “U” shape hold on the breast, I bring her to the breast, I try to get her chin positioned correctly, but it is still very painful. Any tips on how I can improve her latch?

Dana
DANA

So glad things are improving but I’m sorry it’s painful! Sounds like baby is still not deep enough. Once baby gets latched try putting your index finger on baby’s chin and gently pulling mouth open even more. Think about bringing baby to you versus trying to put your nipple In baby’s mouth. Try teasing your nipple on baby’s upper lip - this should also help entice babe to open nice and wide. It takes practice! I’m hoping it improves ASAP!!

DANA ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Milk supply
FIORELLA, PARENT OF 2 YEAR OLD, 2 YEAR OLD

Before my baby was sltaking naps for 1.5 2 hrs woke up feed him, play nap again it was awesome... now he is 8 weeks and his naps are 15min 3p min tops (unless i keep holding him) so he is awake more and so hungry more, or so i think.. today he ate hinestly every single hour on the dot... and i am starting to think my milk is not enough... is this possible? Should i start with formula? I am exclusively bf now and woukd love to keep doing it... or what should i do to increase my milk supply

Dana
DANA

If your supply has been good for first 2 months, It’s very likely this is just a growth spurt.all this extra nursing will help your supply increase naturally! Make sure you are well hydrated too. I bet it passes after a few days! Let me know. Happy holidays!

DANA ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
4 hour schedule
CARRIE, PARENT OF 2 YEAR OLD

Hi Dana, it’s Carrie, Maggie’s mom. She’s almost 6 months now. I’m wondering about moving Maggie to a 4 hour nursing schedule. I seems like there is at least once a day she isn’t that hungry on the 3 hr schedule and her sessions seem to be getting shorter. She sleeps through the night until 5 or so, when I feed her and then she goes back to bed until 7 or 8. She is currently eating solids 3 times a day and loving it. I’m trying to keep lunch on the smaller side to make sure I’m not replacing too much milk with solid foods. (Also, I continue to clog all the time despite trying all the remedies we talked about, including Lecithin and ultrasound.) Are most 6 month olds ready for a 4 hr schedule?

Dana
DANA

Hi Carrie! You can definitely try it! Follow her lead. Her sleep is awesome so you just want to make sure she gets those calories in during day so she co tiniest
To sleep at night!! Happy holidays!

DANA ADDED A NEW COMMENT!
Tingly pain
JENNY

Hi
I wanted to know why when my baby feeds from one nipple the other nipple has a tingly pain feeling? Is that normal?

Dana
DANA

Yes, it can be! You are probably feeling a “let down” on the other side.