We know, you want your milk to flow loudly and your baby to drink bloodily. But this is not always possible. Some conditions about you or your baby are preventing you from breastfeeding.
In this article, we talked about situations that cause breastfeeding problems. Let’s get rid of the problems!
1- Nipple cracks and sores
You may experience problems such as irritation, cracks and tenderness in the nipples due to choosing the wrong breastfeeding positions or your baby’s inability to grasp your breast well in the first weeks. The wounds and cracks that occur give you great pain during breastfeeding and the work may progress to the termination of breastfeeding. Since the breasts cannot be fully emptied, different problems may arise. To avoid these problems, it would be helpful to try the following methods:
- Let your nipples breathe. Leave your breasts open after a feed once in a while, let them air out a bit.
- Try to find the position where your baby can grasp the nipple correctly.
- Cleanse your nipples with warm boiled water twice a day.
- Leave the last milk on the nipple. This is called the “dry wound healing method”.
- Use nipple creams so that your problems do not become painful, do not progress to a break from breastfeeding, and your breasts will relax.
2- Wrong breastfeeding position
Pediatric Specialist Dr. Dr. Öznur Yılmaz Gondal says that babies may not want to breastfeed because they feel uncomfortable due to the wrong position. In such a situation, if you hold or try to press your baby’s head to feed, your baby will resist this and will avoid sucking. To avoid this, you need to find the right position.
If the baby takes the entire areola of the breast into his mouth, his chin moves rhythmically, does not make “tick-hook” sounds while sucking, and leaves the breast voluntarily, you have found the right position.
3- Pain in the entire nipple
Feeding your baby only by grasping the nipple can cause pain and burning in the nipple. Therefore, you can avoid breastfeeding or try to keep the breastfeeding period short. As a result, your baby does not get enough, wants to suck more and cries a lot. Thus, breastfeeding enters a vicious cycle. To prevent this;
- You must ensure that your baby takes not only the nipple, but also the nipple areola.
- To prevent further sensitivity, you should wait for your baby to stop sucking and not try to pull your breast from his mouth.
- If the pain and burning lasts more than 3 days, it exfoliates deeply, becomes red and itchy, fungal formation may be in question. You should seek professional help.
4- Small, flat or inverted nipple
Normally, when milk production begins, your nipples become more prominent and enlarged. However, sometimes things may not go the way you want, you may not be able to breastfeed your baby because your nipples are flat or turned inward. Because this makes it difficult for your baby to grasp the nipple. Moreover, since the milk production will be delayed a little and it will be secreted intensively in those who give birth by cesarean section, the probability of this problem is even higher.
Those with small nipples can do the following to facilitate breastfeeding:
- By pinching the nipple with your thumb and forefinger, you can gently pull it and give it to your baby.
- In the first weeks, you can do some expressing with a breast pump. Since these pumps will apply a vacuum, they make the nipple prominent.
- You can practice the armpit breastfeeding position.
5- Swelling and accumulation in the breast
If the milk in the breasts is more than the baby consumes, it will accumulate in the breast canals and therefore cause swelling. If this condition, called milk stasis, lasts for more than 2 days, it may turn into congestion and inflammation (mastitis) in the breast ducts and breastfeeding becomes difficult.
At the same time, the milk accumulated in the breasts may leak. This can trigger adverse conditions such as irritation, inflammation and moisture-related reactions. To prevent this, you should ensure that the milk in your breast is completely discharged and you should get help from the breast pads so that the leaking milk does not wet your underwear.
You can use the breast pads by placing them between your underwear and your nipple after gently cleaning the breast on which you are nursing your baby with only water. These pads are generally air permeable and do not sweat.
6- Congestion in the breast canals
Accumulation of milk in the channels and not being able to drain it causes clogging. In order to prevent this blockage, you should breastfeed your baby immediately after birth, feed him whenever he wants, learn to breastfeed properly and empty his breast completely.
7- Mastitis (Mastitis)
Mastitis is one of the most troublesome conditions that you can experience in your breasts and prevent you from breastfeeding. When the mammary ducts are clogged, bacterial entry from here or accumulation in the milk ducts causes inflammation of the breast tissue. These inflammations also give you the following problems:
- severe pain,
- Stiffness that feels like a knot,
- Fever radiating from under the arms to the chest,
- feeling of fullness,
- breast tenderness,
- A chilling chill.
8- Insufficient breast milk
- Using the wrong breastfeeding position
- Giving your baby formula immediately after birth
- Baby’s mishandling of the breast
- Short breastfeeding time
- Improper nutrition and poor quality of life causes a decrease in milk supply and the inability of your baby to be satiated. When these conditions do not improve, your milk is cut off and breastfeeding is no longer possible.
9- Low birth weight, premature baby
A premature baby may have difficulty grasping your breast, and the energy expended while suckling may be much more than the energy he receives from his milk. In such a case, it will be more beneficial for your baby to express his milk with a bottle or with the help of small spoons until he reaches the ideal weight and completes his development.
But while performing these, you should not break skin-to-skin contact. In this way, the baby will not forget your breast and the milk will not be cut off.
10- Health problems of the baby
It could also be his own health issues that are preventing his baby from sucking. Child Health and Diseases Specialist Dr. Ece Şule Aslan stated the diseases that cause it as follows:
11- Getting used to bottle feeding
You may have to bottle feed your baby for a while due to various problems. However, in such cases, it is a common problem for the baby to get used to the bottle. As such, you may have trouble getting your baby back to the breast. Therefore, despite the breast problems you experience, feed your baby with the bottle closest to the mother’s breast so that it is easy to return.
Of course, the bottle you use in this process should have features such as providing your baby with an efficient suction performance, being free from chemicals, providing ease of feeding and adaptation, and preventing gas formation.
12- Mother’s health problems
If you are going to take heavy drugs because of chemotherapy or a health problem; If you have diseases such as AIDS, hepatitis B, tuberculosis, it is inconvenient to breastfeed your baby.
If you have to be separated from your baby due to a surgical procedure, you should express your breasts every 3 hours to prevent milk production. Once the medical reasons are gone, you can continue to breastfeed.
In the meantime, situations such as colds and flu do not prevent you from breastfeeding your baby! Because in such cases, breast milk starts to produce antibodies and changes its structure so that the disease does not pass to the baby. You can only wear a mask while breastfeeding so that the disease is not passed on to your baby by breathing or saliva.
13- Fast or slow flow of breast milk
Slow delivery of milk prevents you from breastfeeding your baby. At the same time, because the baby will not be satisfied with this milk, he gets angry and wants to feed more. When breast milk is secreted excessively and rapidly, it fills the baby’s mouth or makes it difficult to grasp the nipple due to the density. You can empty the excess milk by expressing it, so you can make it easier for your baby to suckle. After expressing your milk, you can store it in milk storage bags.
Let us give you a little information. With milk storage bags and containers, you can store the milk you express at room temperature for 3 hours, in the refrigerator for 3 days, and in the freezer for 3 months.
14- Malnutrition of the mother
According to Lactation Specialist Lisa Marasco, constantly consuming ready-made, spicy, bitter, flavored foods, taking caffeine, smoking both affect milk production and change the taste of milk. In such a case, the baby may not be able to feed enough and may stop breastfeeding because he or she will not like the taste of his milk.
15- Overweight mother
If you have a weight problem up to obesity, your milk production will either stop or be almost non-existent. That’s why you should lose weight, if you have difficulties, you should consult a specialist.
16- Separation of the working mother from the baby
If you have to go back to work shortly after giving birth, we know it’s not always possible to breastfeed your baby. However, you can express breast milk regularly and ensure that your baby is fed during the day, milking machines provide great convenience in this regard. E little lamb should not be deprived of breast milk!
17- Type of birth and age factor
There are many reasons that can make you feel stressed after giving birth. Not being able to find enough support from your spouse or relatives, being tired due to the care of your baby, and undesirable developments in your life put you under stress and this reduces or stops milk production. It also makes your baby feel nervous.
It is important that you overcome the postpartum stress. This stress can turn into postpartum depression in the later stages. That’s why you should not hesitate to ask for help and always voice your problems.
19- Irregularity of breastfeeding hours
20- New pregnancy
If you become pregnant again while breastfeeding your baby, the taste of your milk will change due to hormones. The baby may not want to breastfeed because of this milk taste that he is not used to.