Breastfeeding pain in the nipple is a very common condition that most women experience after child birth. After the delivery, nipples may become sensitive and the sore nipples specify a problem. Pain in the nipples after pregnancy is due to the improper attachment of your baby onto the breasts, dermatitis, thrush, eczema, and bacterial infection.
If you feel severe discomfort, you should get help to avoid additional nipple discomfort. There are various reasons that cause breastfeeding pain in the nipple, such as:
Improper attachment of the baby
Attaching your baby incorrectly to the breasts is the top cause of pain in the nipple during breastfeeding. A slight change in the baby’s position on your breasts can greatly help with the condition. Ask your midwife or lactation consultant about the proper attachment of the baby to your breasts.
Inverted or flat nipples
Women who have inverted or flat nipple should be more patient until the baby learns to breastfeed. Women with this condition can avoid the breastfeeding pain in nipple by following the below methods:
- After child birth, feed your baby in the first hour. Do it only when your newborn is alert and set to suck.
- Don’t use bottles or dummies as they can lead to sucking confusion
- Women with inverted or flat nipples can occasionally use a nipple shield to avoid the discomfort. If your baby sucks well, the nipple will be drawn out and then you can feed without the shield.
- Try to stretch the nipple with a pump or by your hands. If you are still struggling, you can feed the baby by extracting the milk into a cup or spoon.
You may experience this condition during the first few weeks after the birth. The symptoms of this condition are:
- Severe burning pain in the nipple. The pain will not go away even you correct the baby’s position
- Nipple color will change into bright pink and look shiny.
- Severe breast pain radiating from behind the nipple towards the back
- Thrush in your baby’s mouth
Researchers found that bacterial infection is most often confused with nipple thrush. This can be treated with antibacterial cream or a combination of antifungal or antibacterial cream.
This condition can cause severe breastfeeding pain in the nipple. Eczema can lead to skin inflammation and cause blister-like lesions. If you notice this condition, you should consult a dermatologist.
Skin irritation around the nipple
- Sometimes irritation is developed with the use of creams and ointments that you apply over the nipples.
- Using concentrated detergents to wash the undergarments can cause irritation
- Sensitivity to certain shampoos and soaps
- Reaction to the fabric of the bra