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Thread: Help! Preventing recurrent mastitis?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
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    70

    Default Help! Preventing recurrent mastitis?

    Hi ladies,

    I haven't been on this forum in a while, but with the arrival of our new son earlier this month, I'm back with questions! Here's the story:
    I never had mastitis with my first child. With my second, I had it twice when she was over six months old. Now my third is 17 days old. On Tuesday, I had all the symptoms: extremely sore area in left breast, feverish, and aching all over, including a killer headache. I did warm olive oil compresses on the breast and continued to nurse as usual (a lot ), and I felt all better within 24 hours. Now tonight it seems to be recurring. Same breast, different area. It's really sore, and I'm shivery and aching again.

    Ack! I've heard that mastitis is more common with subsequent children. Am I doomed to keep getting this? My big question: Has anybody successfully done anything to prevent this?

    The breast pain is bad, but the debilitating headache is worse. Life with three little kids is hard enough when I'm feeling healthy! TIA
    Amy
    Mom to Lewis John 6-26-08, Irene Grace 3-22-10, and Malcolm Thomas 2-6-12

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    21,120

    Default Re: Help! Preventing recurrent mastitis?

    Ouch! Sorry, mama! I think one reason why mastitis tends to be worse with subsequent kids is that a lot of mamas have more milk the second, third, fourth, etc. time around. Are you experiencing a lot of oversupply right now?

    I've heard good things about taking a soy lecithin supplement. But if oversupply is the root issue, I think fixing that will go a long way towards solving the problem.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    18,063

    Default Re: Help! Preventing recurrent mastitis?

    yup do you have trouble with cracked or bleeding nipples? that can let infection in.
    Kelly moms has a page with good info.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Help! Preventing recurrent mastitis?


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
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    Default Re: Help! Preventing recurrent mastitis?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*mommal View Post
    Ouch! Sorry, mama! I think one reason why mastitis tends to be worse with subsequent kids is that a lot of mamas have more milk the second, third, fourth, etc. time around. Are you experiencing a lot of oversupply right now?

    I've heard good things about taking a soy lecithin supplement. But if oversupply is the root issue, I think fixing that will go a long way towards solving the problem.
    Well, he chokes on the milk at the beginning of most feedings, so I think I have a strong let down. But my breasts are not hard or uncomfortably full.

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*andrea.wolford View Post
    yup do you have trouble with cracked or bleeding nipples? that can let infection in.
    Kelly moms has a page with good info.
    No nipple problems at all. But thanks for the link. This is standing out to me:
    Have you been very tired or busy, worried or stressed? Many times mothers who have recurring bouts of mastitis are not getting enough rest or are trying to do too much. Mastitis is often the body's way of telling Mom to "slow down."
    Because, yes, I have been tired, busy, worried, and stressed! Sigh...hard to take naps when I want to this time around.
    Amy
    Mom to Lewis John 6-26-08, Irene Grace 3-22-10, and Malcolm Thomas 2-6-12

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,597

    Default Re: Help! Preventing recurrent mastitis?

    Nurse frequently, avoid engorgement, and as soon as you start feeling run down or develop a plug, try to get someone in to help with your other kids for a few hours and go to bed with baby and nurse.

    Here are tips for dealing with and avioding recurring plugs, just fyi. http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...plugsblebs.pdf

    and mastitis: http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...atcanyoudo.pdf

  7. #7

    Default Re: Help! Preventing recurrent mastitis?

    I had mastitis 3 times the first 6 weeks with my son. An IBCLC came to my house, took one look at my breasts, and said "your bra is too tight!". I got new bras and didn't get any more mastitis. Having had 2 other babies, you probably know your bra size well, but maybe if you have more milk this time, your breasts are bigger, or if wearing an old bra perhaps it got too stretchy and is not fitting well. It sounds like most likely it's from stress and being run-down, but I just wanted to throw the bra idea out there.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    10,440

    Default Re: Help! Preventing recurrent mastitis?

    New bras. Your current bras may have pressure points and cause plugs that quickly lead to problems. The other thing...REST. I got mastitis several times with my subsequent kids because it's much harder to get enough rest once you get to babies #3 and up. I was cooking dinner when baby #3 was 12 hours old and I had several bouts when he was a newborn. I did figure out that as soon as I felt ill or chilled, I needed to take the baby and go to bed.
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Northern Cal.
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    Default Re: Help! Preventing recurrent mastitis?

    I had recurrent mastitis/clogs with my first (yikes, it gets worse with subsequent kids??!! ). After a while, I just got in the habit of block feeding, massaging my breasts while nursing and several times a day in a bath or a hot shower, and just basically watching them like a hawk. At the first signs of a clog I was nursing, pumping, massaging, etc. After my first bout with mastitis, I managed to prevent subsequent bouts from getting as bad through constant vigilance. At some point, you can let down your guard a bit (but I didn't completely relax until Joe was older than one ). You need to watch very closely for signs for at least the first four or five months, until your supply is really well regulated.


    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

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