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Thread: 4 weeks of sore breasts.. ive tired it all!!

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Oct 2007
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    Default 4 weeks of sore breasts.. ive tired it all!!

    Hello everyone.

    My darling little man has sucked my nipples till they bled every feed. Ive tried it all.. seen my doc.. seen the people at my local Health Centre. Nipple shields.. creams.. The list goes on and on. Last thursday I went into meltdown. My DH was on nightshift and the little man managed to put tears in my eyes yet again. I HAD IT!! I was SOOOO sick and tired of dreading the feeding. Dreading the pain..crying during the feeding ect ect. I called my mother overseas and cried and cried.

    After a long chat with her, I decided to express milk till I saw my doctor the next day at least. The doc took one look at my nipples and she said to express for as long as they need to heal. Then decide to either try again on the boobies or continue to express with formula if needed.

    So far the expressing is going great. Ive been loads happier and got a little routine sorted. The little man is too hungry for me to build up a few extra bottles though.. which leads me to think that im not producing enough to keep him happy the whole time. For example.. I will get after 4+ hours almost 100+ mls out of 1 boobie. But any less time passed and then im struggling to get 100 mls in total.



    Ive tired the boobies during the past week. Got a blister!! NICE!! Yesterday we had a great boobie feed which is motivating me to try more boobie today. With the plan to increase boobies every day it stays good.

    I feel bad for considering formula.. OR expressing 100%. But I know that my state of mind is also very important.. (GREAT CHAT WITH DOC HELPED TO REACH THAT CONCLUSION) I do feel that the pressure to Breastfeed is HUGE .. and although we all know why.. and totally agree.. it can make us feel like failures if we cant provide in one way or another.

    The stories ive read have been inspirational to give it another go. I hope anyone feeling down about BF will feel supported and at ease with their OWN decision!!

    Just one last question... IF this breastfeeding does not work out for me and my son..and I express.. will my milk supply run out or stop increasing?


  2. #2

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    I'm not sure about your supply & expressing - I'm sure someone else will be able to advise you there.

    But, I wanted to encourage you about the breastfeeding thing. My DS is 10 weeks old & BF'ing only stopped hurting last week. (I know, 9 weeks seems like ages away - but it's gone really quickly!!). Firstly, with the bleeding nipples, it would be a good idea to see a LC & check that your attachment is correct etc. Once you know that everything is working properly, it's easier to ride it out - knowing that it will get better (sometime around the 8-12 week mark - according to the experiences of my other BF'ing friends).

  3. #3

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    Tascha, have you seen a LC who can check your attachment? Four weeks of painful bfing is not a pleasant experience I'm sure and not something you should have to deal with!

    It won't last forever, if it is an attachment issue your bub's growing will fix that in the end, but a good LC can hopefully do it a lot sooner. Your milk won't 'dry up' if you are expressing, but your bub can get more milk out of your bbs than a machine will so you will need to bear that in mind.

    Have you tried the ABA helpline? They have some great tips on taking care of sore nipples.

    Their website is http://www.breastfeeding.asn.au to find your local helpline number.

    My advice on helping your nipples heal in the meantime is to air them as much as possible. I found also that lanolin worked wonders on mine. Expressing some bm on the nipple helps, but the 'stickier' effect from the lanolin worked for me too. Just make sure you aren't putting it on under your favourite maternity bra!

    Good luck! It will get better...

  4. #4

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    I was a lot like you when I had my first bub. I would keep going with the pump until you feel that you are healed enough to give it another go. Its fantastic that you've had some more boobie feeds and that you've felt good about doing them. Maybe once you're healed you will be more confident to keep plugging along with it knowing that the 'next feed' isn't going to open the cracks again kwim?

    As for how much you get when expressing, some women just don't have a lot of success with pumping and getting a lot out as babies are far more efficient at getting milk from the breast than a pump is. But it does seem like you are doing well with it. Another thing is when bubs is at the breast, we can't see how much they are taking in, but when they are given EBM or formula, we can see exactly how much and even 100mls doesn't seem like a lot, but at his age thats about all he would be having anyway. So you're producing more than enough for him.

    Don't feel bad for contemplating formula either. It is so tempting and seems like an easy solution when you are are your wits end with a crying, hungry baby and sore boobs - I've been in your shoes and yes, I did go down that path, but it isn't easy at all. Maybe if I had more support it would have changed the outcome and I would have been BF for longer, but I don't know that so don't dwell on it. The main and most important thing is that you're seeking help and advice and you KNOW that you want to keep going with it and for that you should give yourself a pat on the back because it isnt easy, and there is no way of knowing how long it will take to get past this stage, but you WILL get there.

  5. #5

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    Thanks everyone for the great support. Just had a SUCCESSFUL BF!!! After all the positive reading I gave it another go!! PHEW!! What a relieve to know WE CAN DO IT. I am considering a LC if I end up in more pain. But fingers crossed we are on the right track now.

    Thanks again everyone!!!

  6. #6

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    Woohoo and well done on the successful BF!!!

    Now you know you can do it you can remind yourself of that when times are tough. What a great example you are to other mums!!

  7. #7

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    Great work, i really hope the rest of your breastfeeds are like this one.....I found the first 12 weeks of every one of my girls hard with breastfeeding....infact with #3 i got mastitis when she was 9 weeks old....I look the first 12 weeks as the 'getting to know you stage' and we're allowed to cry, scream, rant and generally just feel like giving up....but its now, when you get to 5,6,7 months, b/f gets really easy. I find i know what Sam wants, she knows how my boobies work,and we just fit like a puzzle.
    Its worth persevering, it really is.
    Hang in there...

  8. #8

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    Thanks again for the great words of encouragement!! I wish I could tell you the BF is still going good. Its been ok. I have blisters on my nipples.. compared to the pain of before.. this is a minor step back! Its got me a little down. Attachment is obviously not perfect yet! I have seen someone to help me. And it has improved it.. but I guess im still learning.

  9. #9

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    Hello Again... Blister issues have gotten me looking for more help.

    Ive contacted the Australian Lactation Consultants Association. Ive been recommended a few ladies who can help me in my own area.

    My question is - How much do they charge for their service?

  10. #10

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    Barb can probably recommend a good LC in your area and give you an idea of what they charge. I know a gf of mine used a LC and said it was worth every penny.

    Good luck Tascha, I hope you get some answers soon and stay strong - you did it yesterday and you'll be back to that again soon!

  11. #11

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    Thank You Jennifer... !!!
    Ill try and contact Barb now. Gotta try it all .. so that I know ive done EVERYTHING!!!

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