Like I mentioned in my last article – Common Breastfeeding Problems, with breastfeeding come a whole lot of issues. These issues are best addressed by continuing breastfeeding. However there are times when these issues need an external intervention.
This means remedies apart from the breast feeding alone. I say this because a lot of times when you are suffering from problems like sore breasts, cracked nipples etc. continuing to breastfeed can be bothersome, especially for the mothers. This may only lead to more problems for you. So, in order to give you some relief during such a time, I have gathered a list of home remedies for common breastfeeding problems to try when you have any of the problems associated with breastfeeding. Most of these home remedies are personally tried and tested so I know they are effective.
Sore or cracked Nipples
This is one of the advises that my lactation expert gave me. Did you know that your breast milk has anti-bacterial and healing properties? In a lot of cases, breast milk comes in handy. Sore nipples are one of those cases. Whether it is for a bleeding, cracked or sore nipple, apply your breast milk over the affected nipple and let it air dry.
If that doesn’t work for you, you can always try warm compresses. All you have to do is take a cloth, dip it in warm water and apply it on the affected breast. It really does wonders.
Blocked milk duct
First, try to breast feed if possible. If not, then take a hot shower and gently massage the affected breast with warm coconut oil. Warm compress helps relieve the tissue stiffness.
If possible try to use organic coconut oil because even if the baby gets the oil in the mouth, it won’t harm him. Also, to make sure it doesn’t form an infection, take a clove of garlic and gulp it down with water every 2-3 hours.
The best treatment for engorged breasts is breastfeeding. Nothing helps relieve the engorgement better than breastfeeding itself. Apart from that, you could try using the leaves of the green cabbage on your breasts after freezing them in the refrigerator.
These cold compresses will give you a lot of relief. Yet, another thing you can do to relieve engorged breasts is pumping. This will not only help you relieve hardness of the breasts but will also make sure that your milk supply does not get affected.
Breast infection or mastitis
You can have a breast infection for a number of reasons. One being mastitis and the other your breast being exposed to bacteria. This can happen because you have either a bleeding or cracked nipple and the bacteria enter your breasts from there.
No matter the reason for infection, apple cider vinegar comes to your rescue. ACV has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties and it helps prevent infections from spreading.
In half a cup of water, add 1 tbsp of ACV and a tsp of honey. Drink this mixture at least 3-4 times a day until your infection has been cured. Also, you can apply this mixture to the infected breast for more relief.
I cannot stress enough the fact that for any problem relating to breast feeding, please make sure that you do not stop breastfeeding. Continue to do so even if it hurts. Personally, I breastfed my baby when I had a cyst on my nipple.
I cannot even begin to tell you the pain I went through. I even stopped breastfeeding until the cyst went away but it only lead to engorged breast and even worse pain.
So the best thing you can do to relieve yourself of the discomfort is breastfeeding. But if that doesn’t seem like possible, then try these home remedies for quick relief.