Clothes & Accessories
Mastitis & Blocked Ducts
Aches & Pains
If you have any tips on preventing or curing aches and pains due to breastfeeding, we would love to hear from you! On this page, I talk about my own struggles, positions, pillows, and exercises, and invite you to share yours. Read what others have said too!
You are feeding so often in the early days of your baby's life, it is no wonder you develop aches and pains. I have a long body and short legs, so chairs are not that comfortable for me in general. My breasts are big and need holding in place, so I have developed mild RSI in my thumb. At home I can experiment with different feeding positions and locations, and can use as many pillows and cushions as I like, but when I am breastfeeding out and about, it is much more difficult to get comfortable.
I really struggled to breastfeed my first baby and developed incredibly sore nipples, mastitis and aching back and shoulders. I attempted different feeding positions to relieve my deep cracks and blocked ducts, but my nipples were so sore, I was genuinely scared of my baby latching on and hurting me even more.
I successfully combination fed my second baby for four months. As well as using nipple shields and nipple creams for every feed, I experimented with different feeding positions to relieve sore nipples as soon as cracks appeared, and also to allow my aching back and shoulders a rest.
They tell you to sit upright in the hospital, but my long back makes this extremely uncomfortable. A lactation specialist suggested leaning back on a mountain of pillows to feed and I find this much more comfortable.
Put your baby on his/her side on a pillow high enough to reach your nipple. I found this position really useful for allowing cracks caused in other positions to heal.
You can prop your head up on your elbow to do this, but I found that my wrist quickly got tired so I put my head on a couple of pillows and had my arm resting above my baby's head. This position was really good for relieving tension in my back and shoulders and for any cracks in my nipples caused by other positions.
A lactation specialist suggested I should be careful about the way I held myself when I walked with my buggy so I looked into exercise classes and stretches. I went to Buggyfit classes as often as possible, and used yoga stretches to help my muscles to relax.
Please share any stretches, ideas for classes, pillows and more!