Sore Nipples on your Breastfeeding Journey

By Kaleigh MacDonald-Tremblay

December 2, 2018

I am a mom of two beautiful children, Adelia and Alister and two dogs Audrey Hepburn and Kevin Bacon. My husband and our children live in Hammonds Plains, NS and my Mama Coach Territory is Halifax.

The breastfeeding journey is one that can lead to many unexpected twists and turns. During your pregnancy you may not have even thought about breastfeeding or what that would look like. Now you have delivered your baby and you have a whole new skill that you have to master. The Mama Coach believes in the benefits of breastfeeding and we offer support packages to help you reach your breastfeeding goals. Many women assume that breastfeeding comes very naturally to a mother and to her baby. The truth is, it’s often a struggle. There is so much happening during the postpartum period. This includes a whole new realm of sleep deprivation that you probably didn’t imagine. Breastfeeding can feel overwhelming, especially if you are struggling with pain during feedings.

Persistent nipple pain is one of the leading causes women cite for deciding to stop breastfeeding. Over 1/3 of breastfeeding women will still have nipple pain after the postpartum period. Usually, with the proper support, this is something that can improve over time with practice.  It is important to know that you and your baby are both still learning this skill. Before delivery, as a first time mother, you would have never experienced anything like this. Getting support, persistence, and practice is key. The Mama Coach is here to provide that support.

 

Treatment for Sore Nipples

 

Optimally, the best treatment for sore or tender nipples is prevention. Mama Coaches are all Registered Nurses qualified to assess for a proper latch, effective sucking and assist with positional difficulties for the nursing mother. It is important that when watching your baby feed you are observing big sucks and swallows and that the baby’s lower lip is covering more of the areola than the upper lip but both lips should be visible.

However, if you are experiencing pain and cracked nipples there are some are some things you can do to help with this. Firstly, breast milk is filled with antibodies and can be used as a healing tool for many things but especially with your nipples. After feeding your baby, leave your breasts to air and hand express some milk. Apply that milk to your nipples and continue to do so after each feed. From personal experience, I know this can dramatically improve and promote healing of the nipples, but it can also take some time.

 

 

Dr. Jack Newman, is a pediatrician in Toronto, specializing in breastfeeding. He designed a recipe for cream in the treatment of cracked and sore nipples by combining several different compounds often used in the treatment of sore nipples. This cream is called “All purpose nipple cream” or APNO. This is, by far, the best cream for sore nipples and it is 100% safe for your baby.

In order to obtain this cream you must request a prescription from your Doctor. Take the recipe to your Doctor and have them write a prescription for the following:

   

  1. Betamethasone ointment 0.1%: 15 grams
  2. Mupirocin ointment 2%: 15 grams
  3. To which is added miconazole powder to a concentration of 2% miconazole

Total: About 30 grams combined.

How to use the ointment

Dr. Newman recommends that the ointment should be applied sparingly all over the nipple and areola after each feeding and that it should not be washed or wiped off even if your baby wants to nurse sooner than expected. He also recommends that if you still require the cream after two or three weeks than you should seek help to investigate the underlying cause.

 

If you are struggling with breastfeeding and or are experiencing pain with nursing reach out to a Mama Coach in your area and she will be more than happy to help you in the comfort of your own home.

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