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Mastitis & Blocked Ducts
Aches & Pains
I really struggled to breastfeed my first baby and developed extremely sore nipples, blocked ducts and mastitis. During the fifth week, I decided to exclusively express for a few days to allow my injuries to heal. Unfortunately, I wasn't very good at expressing and stopped letting down, probably due to all the stress. I tried to put my baby back on the boob but she wasn't intested. I had no choice but to stop breastfeeding by going 'cold turkey'. I spoke to a breastfeeding counsellor in a terrible panic, wondering what an earth was going to happen to me, because you aren't given any information on stopping breastfeeding. She told me that it would take a couple of weeks for my body to adjust and to stop producing milk.
My breasts were incredibly lumpy and painful, so I researched as much as possible into remedies to help get me through the next couple of weeks. Here are the things I tried:
- Sage tea, to help dry the milk up
- Savoy cabbage leaves, cooled in the fridge, then scrunched up to release the juices, which apparently help to dry the milk up, before putting between boob and breast pad, also a great remedy for mastitis
- As little contact as possible with warm showers or baths - I would sit in the bath with my bra on!
- Alcohol and caffeine to help dry up your milk
Please share your own tips below and read others' too!
I developed IBS when breastfeeding my first baby, probably because of the stress. It got much worse when I went 'cold turkey', and I developed a anal fissure, which was agony for several hours a day. I spent months trying to heal it with treatments from the doctors, but the fissure always came back with my period. Eventually I came across Dr. Wheatgrass Superbalm, which promised to cure it and it did. I went on to use this cream to heal my sore nipples with my second baby and combination fed for four calendar months.
With my second baby I combination fed from week 2 and gradually dropped breastfeeds. It takes about 8-10 days for my body to adjust to a dropped feed. Slight engorgement has caused sore nipples, but they have quickly healed with the methods I share on my Sore Nipples page. Mild IBS has lasted about 3 days with no injuries. I stopped breastfeeding altogether at four calendar months due to mastitis. Read more.
Tips on how to lose weight during and after breastfeeding. Read more...
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