Breastfeeding challenges and product fixes for common problems

Breastfeeding 22 May 24 By

Mother holding newborn
(Image: Getty Images)

Breastfeeding can be difficult, but thankfully there are products available to help.

Breastfeeding is a natural process, but it doesn’t always come easily. Many new mothers encounter challenges such as latch issues, low milk supply, engorgement, and sore nipples.

These challenges can often leave new mums feeling overwhelmed and frustrated so it’s important to remember that every breastfeeding journey is unique and seeking support from lactation consultants or support groups can be helpful.

There are also several products now available to help new mums overcome their breastfeeding issues.

By understanding the cause of the issue and learning to deal with it effectively, the sooner you can get back to enjoying the experience of breastfeeding your baby.

We take a closer look at some common breastfeeding issues and the products that offer relief and support.

Products to help with breastfeeding

Help to soothe and heal sore nipples

One of the most common complaints from breastfeeding mothers is sore and cracked nipples. The initial days of nursing can be uncomfortable as both mother and baby adapt to the process.

Most nipple pain can be attributed to the latch or attachment of your baby. It may take a little time to get this right.

Using a nipple balm or nipple shields can provide relief by soothing and protecting the delicate skin.

GAIA Skin Naturals Nipple Balm, RRP $12.95

GAIA Skin Naturals Nipple Balm, a nourishing balm to moisturise, soothe and protect your sensitive areas. The balm is made from natural ingredients meaning there is no need to rinse before feeding.

Silverette original nursing cups support breastfeeding

Silverette Nursing Cups, The Original Nursing Cups, RRP $85 – $96

Silverette Nursing Cups, The Original Nursing Cups are made from 925 silver that has antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal AND antibacterial benefits. The can be worn between feeds to naturally prevent, protect and soothe soreness, irritation or cracked nipples from breastfeeding or expressing milk.

Try this to relieve engorgement

When milk production exceeds the baby’s demand, breasts can become overly full, hard and painful. In addition to the pain associated with being full, engorgement may also cause your nipples to flatten, making it difficult for your baby to latch on properly, which can lead to the pain described above.

Massaging the breasts, applying warm compresses, and using breast pumps to express milk can help to alleviate this discomfort.

Multi Mam Compresses

Multi-Mam Compresses Sore Nipples 12 Pack, RRP $19.99

Multi-Mam Compresses help alleviate breastfeeding discomforts such as nipple pain, swelling and sensitivity. The compress supports the natural healing process and has a direct cooling and soothing effect on sore nipples.

Get rid of blocked ducts

Blocked ducts or ‘clogged’ milk ducts occur when the flow of breast milk is obstructed within one or more milk ducts, causing milk to back up and accumulate in the affected area.

You may feel this as a sharp pain, and may notice a lump or a red patch on your breast.

Clogged milk ducts are painful and make feeding and pumping unpleasant, but it’s essential to address a blocked duct as it can lead to mastitis if it’s not cleared quickly.

To alleviate a blocked duct keep feeding from the affected breast, and gently massage towards your nipple as you feed. Applying some heat to the area can help as well.

Adding a breast pump to your new routine is an excellent way to assist you to continue to collect and express milk gently and effectively.

Welcare Nuture Wearable Breast Pump, RRP $99.95

Compact, portable & lightweight, the Wearable Electric Breast Pump fits discreetly in any well-fitting nursing bra for hands-free, wireless pumping. 

The pump has three modes to choose from including massage, suction and expression and nine adjustable suction levels.

Ways to allieviate the pain of mastitis

Sometimes a blocked duct may become infected – this is called mastitis.

The most common cause of mastitis is hyperlactation or an oversupply of milk. This oversupply of milk causes your milk ducts to narrow because the surrounding tissue puts pressure on the ducts. 

You may have a swollen, red area on your breast, a high temperature, and feel really unwell. See your GP as you may antibiotics, but don’t stop feeding from the affected side.

It is really important to keep the milk moving in that breast, either by the baby feeding and/or expressing or pumping.

Lansinoh TheraPearl

Lansinoh® TheraPearl 3-in-1 Breast Therapy, RRP $30.95

Lansinoh® TheraPearl 3-in-1 Breast Therapy offers two re-usable hot or cold breast therapy packs. Use it cold to help relieve pain and swelling caused by engorgement and mastitis. Use it warm to encourage let down and to stimulate milk flow and reduce time spent expressing with a breast pump.

For more information or help seven days a week, call the National Breastfeeding Helpline on 1800 686 268 FREE or visit the Australian Breastfeeding Association website.

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