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Thread: Am I being too impatient? Will it stop hurting?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    Angry Am I being too impatient? Will it stop hurting?

    I have been EP-ing for 6 weeks now, and my nipples are still pink, raw, sore, tender, etc., and the first few minutes of each pump are painful even on the lowest setting. (After about 5 minutes I can start slowly start turning it up.)

    I say "still" because I've been telling myself to just hang in there a little longer, that eventually they should "toughen up" or "get accustomed to it" or something. For the most part they feel like they're sunburnt, and heaven help me if something brushes against them, such as every time I change my bra or shower or THINK about something brushing against them, cuz OW!!!

    It even hurts to carry LO sometimes, especially in the burp/shoulder carry ...

    I am using a Medela PISA with the XL Pumpin Pal flanges plus olive oil, and I pump every 3-4 hours (in anticipation of my return to work in 2 days, when I'll only be able to pump every 4 hours if I'm lucky).

    So ... is there hope? Or is this just the way it is for EP-ers?
    FTM to Dante
    Birthday: June 15 2008 (Father's Day!)
    Birth Time: Crack of Noon
    Birth Weight: 8 lbs 4 oz


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    250

    Default Re: Am I being too impatient? Will it stop hurting?

    I have been pumping for two years now - although only once a day these days. In the beginning it was uncomfortable and sore, but I did get used to it. But you seem to be experiencing quite alot of discomfort - could it be thrush? But in my case, I hung in there and we've been going strong ever since.

    Well done mamma - hang in there and check with the clinic to check for yeast infection.


    Mother to Zayne 19/8/06 2.56kg


  3. #3
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    Apr 2007
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    Default Re: Am I being too impatient? Will it stop hurting?

    ouch! It shouldn't hurt that much! Two things I can think of - thrush or maybe your flanges are too small or too big.

    Check out those links to see if anything sounds familiar. Hope you get some relief soon!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Am I being too impatient? Will it stop hurting?

    At 6 weeks my nipples were pretty sore. I remember vividly because that's when I had my 6 week check up. It hurt to shower and everything you are describing. It got a lot better from there though. I have never tried olive oil, have you tried lanolin? That worked really well for me.
    Beth

    Exclusively pumped for Lance Oct 07
    Nursed until just before he turned 3 Levi Oct 09

    Do you have extra milk? Consider donating!
    http://www.hmbana.org/:

    "So I was welcomed by the consolations of human milk; but it was not my mother or my nurses who made any decision to fill their breasts, but you who through them gave me infant food, in accordance with your ordinance and the riches which are distributed deep in the natural order." -St Augustine

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Am I being too impatient? Will it stop hurting?

    It does sound a lot like thrush. I had to pump exclusively in the beginning and it never hurt like that, but the thrush did.

    The lansinoh will help a lot if it just soreness and cracking.

    Good luck mama! Keep it up!
    I'm Hillary
    Wife to Gualberto
    Mom to Nolan
    Born at 32 weeks-3lbs/10oz
    11-25-2007
    Our precious early angel


    Remember, you are not managing an inconvenience; You are raising a human being ~ Kittie Frantz
    Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth ~ Albert Einstein
    First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi
    Looking for more information about vaccines?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    Default Re: Am I being too impatient? Will it stop hurting?

    My LC instructed me to lubricate the inside of the breast shields with lanolin. That helped me.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Am I being too impatient? Will it stop hurting?

    I soooo hear your pain! I have been pumping since 7/13 and my nipples kill me! They have gotten somewhat better, but pumping is still painful when I start and my nipples hurt like yours do. I used lanolin and that didn't really help. I have every flange size by medela and I don't know that it makes a difference. Maybe I have to consistently use just the 36mm one. I am going to try lubing up the flange, so maybe that will help. I just wanted you to know that I FEEL YOUR PAIN, literally!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
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    Smile Re: Am I being too impatient? Will it stop hurting?

    I had the same problem around the 5 week mark. It shouldn't hurt that much! We're at week 8 now and are doing much better. Here are the things I changed:

    - After I pump, I walk around without my bra on to completely dry my nipples. I put the milk away, make bottles, freeze extra, etc. while shirt and bra-less to make sure they dry as much as possible. This isn't always possible (sometimes there are people here who don't want to see my nipples! ) but I try as much as I can.

    - Make sure your bra is comfortable and large enough (and of course, no underwire). I bought two bras - 38C and 40C with a bra extender for the 38. I thought that would be good enough, but within a few hours of wearing the 38, my nipples start to hurt. So now I wear the 40 (and go bra-less while it's in the wash!) only.

    - I went to the doctor at the 5 week mark and they prescribed nystatin oral suspension for use on the breast 3-4 times a day. It's mainly for use in babies mouths who have thrush; the pharmacist looked at me funny when I got the prescription filled, but it makes a difference. Just last night my nipples were getting red so I dabbed it on topically with a cotton ball and by the next pumping the nipples were better. The doctor gave me this because the test for thrush was negative, but it's an anti-fungal, so just in case something is starting to grow.

    - I also use the grapefruit seed extract. Mix with distilled water and dab that on a few times a day after pumping (remember to dry completely). That seems to help too.

    - I do NOT use any lanolin though. I found that this seems to trap the moisture in (for me) so I stopped.

    The lactation consultant at the hospital said there is also a nipple compound you can get made that may help - it's a combination of an anti-fungal, an antibiotic and an anti-inflammatory. I was already getting better and didn't need to try this, but have heard good things about it. Dr. Jack Newman came up with the formula; here are some helpful links on breastfeeding from his site: http://www.drjacknewman.com/breastfeeding-help.asp

    Also a link here:
    http://www.kellymom.com/newman/03b-t...s_breasts.html

    The lactation consultant at the hospital also told me it would be helpful to increase the suction on the pump (but not necessary) - to make sure I was getting the milk out AND because it would be more like how hard the baby would suck, but since I'm only pumping and I massage to get as much milk out as I can - I haven't had the suction up in awhile (since my nipples were red and sore 3 weeks ago).

    Hope this helps! It will get better. Hang in there!

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Am I being too impatient? Will it stop hurting?

    Another thing. Yesterday I was diagnosed with Raynaud's Phenomenon of the nipple. It felt a lot like thrush, but I have had thrush and it wasn't exactly the same. I called me LC to test my pump because what it felt like was that my pump had way too much suction. My nipples were turning blue or purple during and after pumping.

    You should ask your dr or LC if that could be it. Probably your LC more than the dr. because when i called for the prescription yesterday the midwife was not too familiar with what I was telling her. The treatment is super easy. It is like 2 weeks of a low dose of blood pressure meds.

    It still could be thrush, but they told me that Raynaud's feels like thrush and is often misdiagnosed as such...here is some more info...http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/...blanching.html

    Good luck mama!
    I'm Hillary
    Wife to Gualberto
    Mom to Nolan
    Born at 32 weeks-3lbs/10oz
    11-25-2007
    Our precious early angel


    Remember, you are not managing an inconvenience; You are raising a human being ~ Kittie Frantz
    Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth ~ Albert Einstein
    First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi
    Looking for more information about vaccines?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    16

    Default Re: Am I being too impatient? Will it stop hurting?

    What the ...?? I responded to this thread yesterday ... where's my post?? Blah! Anywho, let me try and recreate my message ...

    Thank you so much for the wealth of information. I will definitely try to do the things you mentioned. I am currently using gentian violet on my nipples just in case it is thrush. According to Dr. Newman et al, I should feel a difference after a few days of use. I am still hoping it isn't thrush, because LO shows no sign of it (thank goodness) and I've put him on the breast a few times. Also I have been taking acidophilus for a few years now (to prevent UTI's) and I can only hope that it is now helping me ward off thrush.

    This Raynaud's phenomenon intrigues me, I will definitely look into it.

    Thank you again for all the help!!
    FTM to Dante
    Birthday: June 15 2008 (Father's Day!)
    Birth Time: Crack of Noon
    Birth Weight: 8 lbs 4 oz


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