Breastfeeding is a crucial part of every baby’s new-born life, and is a natural process that’s been taking place since the existence of human life, although recent trends suggest not breastfeeding is growing in popularity.
There are various reasons as to why mothers do not breastfeed. These problems can sometimes not be overcome. It is essential for the mother, however, to ensure she stays healthy during pregnancy and at least try to keep the process as natural as possible.
There are many breastfeeding problems mothers are facing today, and they seem to increase every year. Here is a list of some common breastfeeding problems mothers experience, as well as solutions and tips on what they can do to improve or eliminate the problem.
Sore and tender nipples
Generally, cracked, sensitive, blistering nipples are signs of poor latching. When a mother feels she cannot feed her child through breastfeeding, she might become depressed and too discouraged to try. Obviously, this process is not a permanent one. The mother will always experience some kind of nipple soreness within the first 7 – 10 days of breastfeeding. This is normal. However, should the problem persist longer, she will need to have it checked out.
There are also ways of soothing the nipples before and after breastfeeding to ease the pain. Warm saline soaks are great for soothing nipple soreness. The nipple should be soaked for about 10 minutes, whereafter it should be air dried and if desired, covered in lanolin. Wearing hydrogel pads between feedings can also eliminate some of the muscle soreness.
Thrush, commonly known as a yeast infection, is bred in moist, dark environments. Yeast infection often also occurs within the genital areas of a woman. Thrush can also cause severe nipple pain and should be examined as soon as it is noticed, as it can be damaging to the child.
Treatment of thrush includes medicinal prescribed creams; fewer changing in nursing pads; rinsing the nipples after every single feed and wearing a clean bra every day – no exceptions.
Flat, retracted and inverted nipples
Women who have flat, retracted and inverted nipples can breastfeed. It might be a lot more difficult than women with normal nipples, but it is possible.
Breast shells, dome-like cups that put gentle pressure around the areola, can be worn to help pull the nipple out more. These cups also progressively train the nipple to protrude. Breast pumps are also a great solution to this problem.
Teething can be a little tricky when breastfeeding. When babies teeth, they tend to chew a lot because the pressure feels great on their gums; giving them something cold to chew before teething might save you some pain. Mothers can also reduce the pain by ensuring the breast is full of milk. The fuller the breast, the better the baby will latch, and the less pain the mother will feel. If all else fails, stay calm and try to get through it as best you can.
Some babies often find it more difficult to latch than other babies. There are so many possible explanations that it will be difficult to cover all of them. The best thing to do in a situation like this is for the mother to visit a Lactation Consultant so they can identify and deal with the problem correctly without being side-tracked by irrelevant problems.
While a mother might experience problems breastfeeding, they can be dealt with if they are identified at an early age and solutions are put in motion as soon as possible.