Mastitis is a very common breast feeding problem experienced by nursing mothers.Mastitis is caused by the bacterial infection of the mammary glands.
If your nipples are sore and cracked, then there is a very high chance of occurrence of bacterial infection in that area.Improper nursing techniques also increase the risk of mastitis.
Mastitis leads to the inflammation of the breasts.The breasts may appear tender and red.An examination will reveal the presence of lumps, which are actually milk ducts that are clogged and infected.
Fever, chills and fatigue usually accompany mastitis.If you have acute mastitis, then you may experience yellow pus like secretion from the nipple.In this condition your physician will clear out the blocked milk ducts by draining the abscess.
In normal cases doctors prescribe antibiotics as a treatment for mastitis If so, then the mother may have to take a break from breast feeding the baby, until her medication is complete.
But even then, you will be asked by your doctor to express milk daily so as to prevent engorgement of breasts.
Many women also develop side effects and allergies due to antibiotic treatment.There are also many other natural methods by which you can counter the problem of mastitis.
Try to nurse your baby as much as possible.This will be painful in the beginning, but it will help very much in reducing the swelling of the breasts.
While breastfeeding, massage your breasts gently from the base towards the nipple.This will help in the opening of the plugged milk ducts and will thus restore the flow of milk.
While feeding the baby, hold him in such a position that he is able to latch on properly to the breasts.Otherwise, there will be a chance of formation of cracked and sore nipples.
Apply moist heat packs 10 minutes for every few hours on your breasts.You can also subject your breasts to alternating treatments of warm and cold compress.
Have a very healthy diet and always drink plenty of fluids If allowed by your physician, then have a daily dose of Vitamin C supplements. Vitamin C will help to boost the immune system and will thus help to fight infections.
Do not subject your breasts to extra pressure or cause irritation by wearing tight clothing.Wearing cotton bras will allow the skin to breathe properly.
Thus by proper care and attention, the problem of mastitis can be tackled successfully.