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Thread: Bruising under nipple

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
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    41

    Default Bruising under nipple

    I posted a thread the other day about a plugged duct (or two or three) that I'm dealing with in my left breast. I've been nursing LO a lot on that side, and it hurt a little bit and today when I got undressed for my shower I found out why -- bruising under my nipple!! He clamped on badly the other day (he's 10 weeks old and has enough neck strength he'll sometimes pull himself off into the air, then fall down and clamp on again, but unfortunately this time he clamped on very painfully), so I think the bruising was caused by that. It just stinks that it's on the same side that I have to nurse on so frequently right now because of the clogged duct.

    I'm going to try to change positions so he doesn't hit the bruising as much, but it'll be tough. My question is -- is there any risk of trauma or further damage by continuing to nurse while there's bruising?

    Thanks!

  2. #2

    Default Re: Bruising under nipple

    Is it possible latch has been ‘off’ on that side for a while? Because an off latch can lead to plugs as well.

    It should not matter that baby is nursing a lot, a bruise or other nipple/areola injury either indicates a poor latch or a bay who is biting or clamping.

    As far as if it is ok to nurse with an injury, yes, assuming the latch is ok so there is no further injury.

    But I do think it would be very helpful to change nursing position so baby is approaching the breast from another direction.

    When my baby bit me and I had a cut and bruise under the nipple, it was excruciating to nurse in our usual position. Here is what I did.

    I lay almost (but not quite) flat on my back and brought baby over my shoulder so she was approaching my breast almost completely "upside down." (I have also seen over the shoulder done with mom sitting more upright, it depends on size of baby. My baby was pretty big at this time.) Being almost upside down reversed her usual latch so now her lower jaw was on the top of my breast. It made nursing almost pain free and I healed quickly.

    You may not have to go to that extreme, of course. Just a slight change in angle may well do the trick.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
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    41

    Default Re: Bruising under nipple

    I just remembered that I also used a hand pump for a few minutes the other day when I hadn't been able to get baby on the plugged breast in a few hours. I suppose it's possible the pump could have caused the bruising too? It's never done that before (I've just used it a few times to help soften breast when baby had a little trouble latching early on)--but it's probably been 6+ weeks since I've needed it, so maybe my breast is shaped differently now and it fit weirdly? I noticed it wasn't totally comfortable (previously it was), but I don't know if that's because the pump was causing the bruise or because I already WAS bruised!

  4. #4

    Default Re: Bruising under nipple

    Absolutely. Pumps can cause breast injury for lots of reasons. So if you need to pump again be take careful not of how it feels and how it is suctioning. A bruise might be caused by the pump 'sucking in' too much areola. And since breasts do change size and shape pump 'fit' can change.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
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    41

    Default Re: Bruising under nipple

    I got more bruising in another spot on the same side, when I hadn't used a pump at all, so it looks like it must be baby. Every time this has happened, it seemed to be overnight when we were nursing side lying. The latch is slightly pinchy and uncomfortable in general (sometimes its comfy, sometimes not), so maybe it's time to find a lactation consultant who can check his latch for me? It seems to look okay from the outside, but it just doesn't feel quite right. And obviously, it's causing bruising.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    436

    Default Re: Bruising under nipple

    Is it possible baby is accidentally latching onto areola in the middle of the night, or missing your nipple? My LO used to sort of get frantic to latch when she was younger, and if I was sort of sleepy and not helping her, she would latch onto the side of my nipple. Owwwww.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    41

    Default Re: Bruising under nipple

    He has accidentally chomped onto my nipple a few times (while eagerly trying to get the boob), but that's so painful I break the latch immediately. This is more like a tolerable but unpleasant pinchy feeling. Like he's somehow not getting my breast quite far enough back in his mouth, even though his latch seems to look good. The times he bruised me were at night, so I'm not totally sure what happened with those... I was half asleep. One time it was a perfect little line bruise, shaped exactly like baby gums! The other two were larger more general bruising.

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