is the most natural thing for every
mother. It is a unique experience to
be cherished. Sometimes certain simple
problems faced by mothers result in
stoppage of breastfeeding or giving
of supplements of animal milk/commercial
infant formula to the baby. Problems
may be like flat nipples, inverted nipples,
breast engorgement, swelling, sore nipples
or not enough milk etc. These problems
are preventable if due care is taken
from the pregnancy period to prepare
Some of these problems relate to shape
and size of the nipple and other's relate
to breast tissue as a whole.
length of the resting nipple is not
important for breastfeeding. However,
the areola embedded in the breast tissue
beneath should be able to be pulled
out to form the teat. The nipple is
just a guide to show where the baby
has to take the breast. Having flat
nipples should not worry you.
if your breast nipples are working for
your nipples and try to gently pull
it. If your nipples stand errect , they
are working for breastfeeding. This
is called the "Nipple Protractility"
that does not come out errect and on
trying to pull out rather it goes deeper
into the breast is an inverted nipple.
Fortunately, true inverted nipples are
very rare and usually during pregnancy
the nipple becomes normal and protractile.
If they remain inverted, these can be
treated in consultation with your doctor.
long nipple may be a common problem
as the baby may suck on the nipple only
and may not take enough of breast tissue
into his mouth. To help, the baby should
be brought closer to the breast to enable
him to take more breast tissue into
nipples and cracked nipples
most common cause of sore nipples in
the first few days of feeding is the
incorrect position/attachment of the
baby at the breast meaning that your
baby sucks only at the "nipple".
If feeding continues in the poor position,
it may lead to cracked nipple and later
to mastitis and breast abscess.
it pains during breastfeeding, you should
wait until your baby releases the breast,
or put your finger gently into the baby's
mouth to break the suction first, so
as to avoid injury at the nipple. Then,
again start to breastfeed in a CORRECT
POSITION and if your child is attached
properly it will not cause pain to you.
should be continued on the affected
breast as sore nipples usually heal
after correcting the suckling position.
cracked nipples, treatment consists
of feeding in correct position, washing
the nipple once daily only with water
and exposure of nipple to air and sun
as much as possible, and application
of a drop of your hind milk on the nipple
after each feed and continued breastfeeding
creams are best avoided as they may
worsen the soreness and draw away
the attention from the crucial issue.
and engorgement of the breast
of the breast is a frequent problem.
Milk production is continuous and, if
enough milk is not removed, engorgement
of breasts may result. The engorged
breast is tight, shiny and very painful.
common causes of engorged breasts are
feeds given before starting breastfeeding
starting of breastfeeds
intervals between feeds
removal of the baby from the breast
and any other restrictions on breastfeeding
breast is engorged the baby is not able
to take feed properly due to poor attachment
, inadequate emptying which further
leads to decreased production . Engorgement
of the breast can be prevented by avoiding
other feeds being given before breastfeeding,
keeping the baby always with the mother,
unrestricted and exclusive breastfeeding
on demand, and feeding in the correct
engorgement occurs expression of breastmilk
should be done to relieve breast engorgement,
reduce pain and make the mother comfortable.
the baby does not suckle well on a particular
segment of the breast, the thick milk
blocks the milk duct leading to a painful
suckling/ position - the baby should
be fed frequently on the affected
breast and in different suckling
positions so as to improve the emptying.
Massaging the lump towards the nipple
to promote emptying of the breast.
and wearing loose clothes.
of the breast
the blockage of the duct or engorgement
continues, infection may supervene.
The breast becomes red, hot, tender
and swollen (It is called mastitis).
An abscess may form or swelling may
occur, associated with fever.
the milk frequently and continue
Warm water fomentation may also
help alleviate pain.
Consult a doctor for pain .Incision
to drain the abscess may be necessary
Restart breastfeeding from the affected
breast as soon as possible.
of milk from the breast
leaking is usually the result of an
active ejection reflex during first
few weeks of lactation. It commonly
occurs when it is time for a feed or
when intervals between feeds are increased
and when you have loving thoughts about
remain reassured that this is due to
normal oxytocin reflex.
in the milk
mothers notice a little blood in the
milk, even in the absence of a nipple
fissure. It is usually a harmless and
self-limiting condition. You should
is possible to continue breastfeeding
the baby after returning to work. Working
outside the home is often cited as a
reason for the decline in breastfeeding
rates around the world because breastfeeding
and working outside are seen as mutually
exclusive activities. But it has been
observed that many working mothers have
breastfed their babies successfully.