Engorgement at 7 months postpartum on one breast
I'm new to the forums, but I am in terrible pain and if someone can help me that will be wonderful.
My 7 month old baby has nursed wonderfully until now. Yesterday he started to get fidgety when I offered him my left breast. From my right breast he continued nursing normally, but the left one he just refused. There was no change to my diet and to my nursing schedule. Due to his refusal to nurse from that breast, it got terribly engorged but he is still refusing to nurse from that side. I tried pumping but it didn't help too much. Can anyone please help?
Re: Engorgement at 7 months postpartum on one breast
Welcome to the forum!
Aside from the engorgement and discomfort, are you having any additional symptoms? Things like a red patch of skin, or red streaks on the breast skin, or fever, chills, aches and pains, flu-like feelings? If you are having all or many of those things, then what you're experiencing is likely to be mastitis and you need to a) empty that breast as much as possible as often as possible, and b) talk to your midwife or doctor about antibiotics.
I would express some milk from the engorged side and do a taste test. If it's watery and salty, then no big deal. If it tastes kind of thick and nasty, that would be another indicator of infection. I would also strive to empty that breast as much as possible, using whatever works. Pump, hand expression, even having another human being suck out the milk if you can find a willing partner. A lot of women have had to resort to having their husbands empty the breast when the baby absolutely refuses. I've actually had to do it myself- luckily I'm just flexible enough!
You should also try offering the engorged breast frequently- offer it when baby is really hungry and therefore less picky, and offer it when he's partially satisfied and therefore more mellow. Just offer, offer, offer! You may also want to make sure he's feeling okay- sometimes a baby with an ear infection will resist being held in a certain position because the pressure hurts his already painful ear.