What Is Up With These Breasts?!
Pain, redness, and sometimes even a lump can appear when your lactating breasts have a clog! Plugged ducts can happen at any time in your breastfeeding process. It can happen two days after that little munchkin is born, or 18 months later.
Generally, though, plugged ducts are the result of an increased milk supply with nowhere to go. This can happen when your bundle of joy is growing, and in need of more milk, or when they are starting to taper off, such as when they start sleeping through the night (hallelujah, right?!) In order to keep those clogged ducts from turning into something more serious, namely, mastitis, you need to kick breastfeeding into high gear! NO, this does NOT include sticking a needle through your nipple! (YES, people have actually
Get That Milk Out
Whether you nurse on demand, or pump at work to feed your baby, you need to absolutely get that milk out! The affected breast’s milk flow needs to be pulled through on a consistent basis to help loosen what is plugged, as well as avoid further clogging! The best way, of course, is to settle into your Glider for a good long breastfeeding session. Babies naturally have THE BEST suction for your breasts. Since that isn’t an consistent option for working mothers (who by the way ROCK for breastfeeding while working full-time!), pumping more frequently is critical. Keeping up with the flow of your milk supply will help avoid clogged ducts.
Warm It Up
Warm compresses can be a life-saver when it comes to clogged ducts and impending mastitis. Soothing compresses, like these Nursing Cozies
, give those boobies some time to relax, and loosen up. Just like warming up butter, the heat aids in slowly reducing the size of the clog, if not clearing it out all together. I had to use these throughout the first year of my little one’s breastfeeding journey
, since he wasn’t pulling out enough milk in the beginning. Once we figured out why (upper lip tie), he started eating like crazy – which, of course, led to more clogs due to the massive increase in milk demands!
Watch For Signs
As long as you aren’t having any of the classic symptoms of mastitis, such as fever, chills, or continued redness on breasts, then nursing and warming should work extremely well!
Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional, and all information on this site is strictly opinion. If you aren’t sure about your situation, please seek professional medical advice from your doctor. This post contains affiliate links, which allow me to obtain compensation on products that visitors purchase.