Breast milk is your baby's personalised cocktail of vitamins and nutrients, concocted by Mother Nature, specifically for your little human. But when you have cracked and sore nipples from breastfeeding, sometimes you wish you could say, 'Sorry, we've closed the milk bar'. What do you do? We've outlined some smart tips to soothe and heal your much-loved boobies.
Firstly, let's celebrate the fact that breastmilk is like having an unlimited supply of free baby food for as long as you keep breastfeeding. No arduous trips to the grocery store. One flavour. No extensive ingredient lists to work your way through, and it is guaranteed to be in stock. Having breastmilk at your fingertips does have its perks.
Aside from the convenience, breastfeeding is also key to your little one's development. Breastmilk contains antibodies and other essential nutrients that give their immune system a head start. It prepares them for things like the common cold, which can be quite dangerous for a newborn if their defenses aren't yet prepared to deal with it.
The down-low on breastfeeding
A lot of new mums anticipate sore nipples if they choose to breastfeed. We're not going to sugarcoat it. They're going to feel dry and uncomfortable. The caveat is that if you don't breastfeed, your boobs will probably start aching. Either way, something's going to feel sore. While for some bigger boobs are welcomed, we're sorry to say; this set also comes with a price.
The science of boob soreness
A few days after the baby is born, your breasts start producing milk. As your stock builds up, your boobs become firm (with milk) and probably tender. Engorgement (don't worry, it's not as aggressive as it sounds) of the breast may be difficult if breast swelling is excessive, but the body will adjust itself as time goes by. You've just got to keep calm and offer the boob.
You may have found breastfeeding is a taxing cycle on your poor boobs. While breastfeeding your baby relieves tender breasts as you empty the supply, you may also run into other challenges. Here's what you can expect.
- If the baby isn't being breastfed frequently or fast enough, your boobs may become overly full and firm.
- At this point, latching could be more difficult as there may not be enough slack in the breasts for the baby to grab on and suckle correctly.
- Your baby may suckle extra hard to try and get more food—ouch!—resulting in sore nipples.
- Positioning the baby incorrectly may also be why your milk supply doesn’t empty fast enough.
- If your baby does latch on correctly, it may leave your nipples dry and chafed because of how often it needs to feed.
Sounds like a boobie battle you can't win, doesn't it? Fear not, we have some remedies for you!
5 Quick tips to prevent sore nipples and tender breasts
Tip 1. Make sure you encourage correct latching before your breasts become too firm—even if that means grabbing a handful of boobie to hand-express the excess milk.
Tip 2. Unfortunately, your baby isn't going to understand you when you say, 'Move your head slightly to the left, your latch will improve'. [Sigh] So you will have to experiment with positions.
Tip 3. If your poor breasts and nipples have felt better days, using a cold compress after feedings will bring down the swelling and reduce the pressure—thank goodness for the cold compress.
Tip 4. The refrigerated cabbage. Yes, you read that correctly. Then again, if you've mulled over other blogs, you've probably crossed paths with the refrigerated cabbage leaf trick. It's not a joke. It really does help!
Tip 5. Don't wear ill-fitted bras or overly tight body-con dresses. Trust us; they'll patiently wait in the wardrobe until the breast tenderness has gone away.
Our cracked boobies saviour
Over the last nine months, your boobs have been through one hell of a ride, and now it's time to give them bucket loads of TLC.
The Madre Boob Balm is your breast's bestie. It's formulated specifically with cracked, sore nipples in mind (ouch!). Made from 100% natural and 85% organic ingredients, it'll help to leave your skin feeling supple, hydrated and infused with boobie loving goodness!
Just massage a pea-size amount of Boob Balm onto the nipple and the surrounding area after each feed or pump.
Remember, keeping the girls hydrated during and after pregnancy is essential for skin elasticity because this is a period of fluctuations in breast size.
PS. While boob balm is great for breastfeeding mamas, it's actually suitable for anyone experiencing broken or cracked skin including lips, elbows and cuticles—or any other skin surfaces that need some extra lovin'.
PPS. Grab your Madre Boob Balm here and say goodbye to achy, sore nipples.