Breastfeeding Mums: How To Prevent Sore Nipples (Part One)

Nipple tenderness is normal when your baby first arrives and begins to breastfeed, as the weeks roll by however, breastfeeding should become more comfortable. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. Apart from feeling some slight discomfort when your milk starts to let down or when your baby latches on to your nipple area, the tenderness of the breasts gets worse, and nipples can become painfully sore with some mums.

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Sore nipples are a common problem of breastfeeding and can develop for a number of reasons including a poor breastfeeding latch, an infection, or an incorrect use of the breast pump.

Once your nipples get sore, let-down can become difficult leading to low supply of breast milk, or early weaning.

So, it is only natural that breastfeeding mums want to try to stop the concern of sore nipples before it even starts.

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Here are eight ways to prevent sore nipples.

1. Make Sure Your Baby Is Latched Properly

A proper breastfeeding latch is one of the keys to effective breastfeeding, and it also helps to protect the nipples from getting sore.

When your baby latches correctly on to your breast, your entire nipple and a good part of the surrounding dark area (areola) is in his mouth.

If your newborn latches only on to your nipple, it will cause you pain as he tries to suck, and you may eventually become sore in the area.

2. Adopt  Breastfeeding Accessories 

Your breastfeeding position should be comfortable for you and your child, and also encourage a proper latch.

Breastfeeding accessories such as a nursing pillow and a nursing foot stool  lift your lap and bring your child up to the level of your breast.

That way, it is easier to get into a good breastfeeding position when you raise your baby up since you don’t have to lean over, which is uncomfortable, and can strain your back, arms, and neck.

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3. Alternate Your Breastfeeding Positions

Alternating the breastfeeding positions that you use at each feeding can be most effective for preventing your nipples from getting sore.

Breastfeeding in the same position all the time causes your baby’s mouth to always put pressure on the same spot on your nipple.

But, if you rotate through the different breastfeeding holds, it can help to prevent one area of your nipple from getting all the rubbing pressure of your baby’s latch.

4. Express Excess Milk To Soften Your Breasts

When your breasts are engorged as a result of missing a feeding time, the overabundant supply of milk can make your breasts hard.

Before you suckle your child in this case, be sure to express out some of the milk , so that the breasts are lighter and softer, and therefore easy for your child to suck.

The easier your child finds sucking at your breasts, the less likely your nipples will be sore or bruised.

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