Breastfeeding is the time when you bond with your baby. It is the time when your baby begins connecting with you, your touch and your voice. It is the most beautiful phase in a mother-child relationship, yet at times it is fraught with difficulties. However, most of these are just minor problems and once you understand them, you will be able to breastfeed your little one without hassles. Below are some breastfeeding problems and solutions:
If you find white spots in your little one’s mouth that you are unable to wipe out, chances are it is thrush. While the exact reasons of thrush are unknown, there are certain factors which contribute towards its development.
- Administration of antibiotics during C-section
- Stickiness due to the dried breastmilk around the nipple and inside a baby’s mouth
If your little one has developed thrush, the chances are he might pass it on to you during breastfeeding. You in turn might develop any of the below symptoms:
- Sharp pain in the breast while feeding
- Burning nipples
You can get in touch with your healthcare provider or your baby’s paediatrician, who would prescribe a treatment which would consist of:
- Antifungal ointment for your nipples
- Painkillers to ease the pain
- An ointment like Nysatin for your baby to get rid of the white spots
Cracked or Bleeding Nipples
During initial days of breastfeeding, your nipples might feel a little sore, but always remember that cracked or bleeding nipples for a prolonged period are a sure shot indication of an underlying problem. The causes of this problem might be:
- Thrush in your baby’s mouth
- Improper latching
- Skin problem such as severely dry skin
- Improper use of breast pump
After consulting your lactation consultant, you might try the following remedies:
- Position your baby off-centre so that the major portion of the areola below the nipple is in your baby’s mouth.
- Apply compresses on your breasts. It will help alleviate pain to a some extent.
- Apply modified Lanolin and Hydrogel dressings to fasten the healing of your nipples.
Sometimes, your baby might not want to nurse at all. It is his silent way of telling you that he is not well. Nursing strike in the baby might be due to any of the following reasons:
- Ear infection
- Stuffy nose
- Strong odours, fragrances coming from your body
These can be remedied by:
- Visiting your little one’s paediatrician to rule out medical conditions
- Nursing your baby when he’s ready to sleep
- Rocking your baby while feeding
- Changing nursing positions
- Avoiding heavy fragrances while nursing, and feeding in a room which is calm, clean and ventilated
Sometimes during the course of nursing, you might develop fever and persistent chills. This might be caused by mastitis, and you might need to meet your healthcare provider to start an early treatment of the infection. Mastitis is an inflammation in your breast tissues. Some of the causes of mastitis are:
- Retention of milk in the ducts causing an inflammation of breasts
- Damaged nipples which allow infection into the breast
- Stress and fatigue in new mothers
Mastitis is often treated with a combination of any of these:
- Application of moist heat
- Surgery, in case of severe infection
Knowing and understanding your breastfeeding problem is the first step towards solving it. Nurture and nourish your little one through breastfeeding and watch with delight as he develops into a sprightly, happy child.