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Thread: Please help... 6 1/2mos. & very painful feedings

  1. #1

    Unhappy Please help... 6 1/2mos. & very painful feedings

    My DS is 6 1/2 mos. old. For the last 2 days it has been extremely painful to nurse him, almost to the point of myself crying, when he first latches on. After the first 30 sec. the pain does ease up a little, but never goes completely away even after the feeding. My nipples do have a little crack, for which I've been applying lanolin to, and red & irritated even when he isn't nursing. The pain feels quite similar to wrong latch pain. I checked his latch and it seems fine. Neither one of us have been feeling ill either. I thought perhaps it was thrush, but I checked his mouth & I don't see any visible white spots.

    Please please help! I honestly don't know what to do.... I am absolutely desperate for any advice. I have loved nursing every moment for the last 6 1/2 mos. & now dread every feeding. Sometimes the pain is so bad that I 'instinctively' unlatch him & relatch him just to feel some relief when he first latches on.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Houston, TX

    Default Re: Please help... 6 1/2mos. & very painful feedings

    Ouch! So sorry mama!
    My first concern would be why/what caused your nipples to crack in the first place. Is he showing any signs of teething that may be changing his latch?
    It doesn't sound like thrush because the pain eases shortly after the feeding begins. If you felt shooting, burning pain then I'd lean more towards thrush. JIC, try rinsing your nipples before & after feeding with baking soda and water, and let them air dry, and expose your clothing to direct sunlight. Just because symptoms aren't "noticeable", doesn't mean it can't be there. Have you tried a different hold while bfing?
    From my personal experience, when this has happened, it was because I was on the verge of developing a clogged duct.
    Are you drinking enough water? under a lot of stress lately? feel any lumps in your breast?
    Sorry about all the questions, just trying to get a better picture so that we can help you out better
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  3. #3

    Default Re: Please help... 6 1/2mos. & very painful feedings

    Thank you so much for the reply!!! I definitely appreciate any and all advice!!!

    I haven't noticed any teeth, but his gums are tender. No new holds or changes/ lumps in breast either. We use either the football hold or nurse while lying down. I will definitely up the level of fluids though because that tends to be a constant struggle regardless.

    Any other reasons why the nipples would crack? How long do they take to heal? Are there any other things I can help with the pain besides lanolin (sp?)?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Springfield, Oregon

    Default Re: Please help... 6 1/2mos. & very painful feedings

    It's thrush mom. I say this because pain to the point of tears upon latch is the primary symptom of thrush and typically other issues do not have this symptom. LO does not have to have symptoms for you to have a yeast issue.

    Anyhow even if you don't think it is thrush you can use the same treatment for both thrush and cracked nipples. All Purpose Nipple Ointment. Have your OB prescribe it for you.

    In the meantime you need to sanitize everything that touches LO's mouth, LO's bum, and your breasts.

    And either go with the PP's baking soda/water after nursing or do vinegar. Air dry either way. I just put some vinegar in a tiny tupperware container by my bed with some q-tips.

    Lots of hot showers can help as well.
    Baby Girl "Piper" born Feb 12th, 2010. She is a true blessing!

    And a baby who is now an Angel in Heaven Feb 7th, 2008.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Default Re: Please help... 6 1/2mos. & very painful feedings

    I agree with the blocked duct comment, I get exactly the same when I get one. Try to empty that breast as well as you can. I tend to feed her on that side a little more than the other for 24hrs and/or pump after feedings to make sure its empty. Just watch the other one doesnt get blocked up doing it, pump that 1 occasionally too if it feels too full. Hope it eases soon. Oh n if its really bad take some ibruprofen about 30mins before the feed is due. x

  6. #6

    Default Re: Please help... 6 1/2mos. & very painful feedings

    Well, that's a coincidence! I was coming to check on something very similar myself. I'm 14 months + into nursing my second child, and it's become very difficult in the last few weeks. I can't seem to connect with my local LLI lady.

    In my case, I'm pretty sure it's not thrush--we've had thrush four times, and to me this feels very different. Additionally, the baby's mouth is clean. I'm having a lot of pain, however I settle her--and she's trying to be gentle. The pain is on both sides, sometimes worse on one, sometimes on the other. Pain is primarily while nursing but does appear at othre times. The most nightmarish is when my nipple is actually stuck to my bra. It is... indescribable. And then to nurse off that side... I'm concerned that I have some kind of skin infection.

    I've more or less given up and decided to wean, considering her age, though I'd been planning to wait longer due to her trouble gaining weight. (Long story... she has some gastric oddity, spent several weeks vomitting, and was 15 lb. at her 1-year appt.) I'm disappointed, but I just couldn't take it anymore. At the moment it's been nearly 24 hours--still time to reverse it if I can get good advice from anyone, but I'm not counting on it. I'm itchy and engorged on one side.

    I realize no one can diagnose over the phone or the internet, but I can't even figure out what kind of doctor to see. Could anyone give me a hint?

    Good luck to the OP. I hope you find relief soon! Painful nursing is just miserable. My first child was easy, in retrospect. This time... well, four episodes of thrush and now this. Ugh.

    Be well.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Springfield, Oregon

    Default Re: Please help... 6 1/2mos. & very painful feedings

    I think that even though baby's mouth is clean you have yeast in your breasts. This can happen without baby getting thrush. Try some APNO (all purpose nipple ointment) before deciding to wean if you are still open to intervention. It doesn't hurt to try!!
    Baby Girl "Piper" born Feb 12th, 2010. She is a true blessing!

    And a baby who is now an Angel in Heaven Feb 7th, 2008.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2010

    Default Re: Please help... 6 1/2mos. & very painful feedings

    The Poster who asked what kind of dr to see, you want to see one of those IB something LC's I think. From what I've been reading online, and on this board!

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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Brussels, Belgium

    Default Re: Please help... 6 1/2mos. & very painful feedings

    KellyMom cites 6 causes:


    http://www.askdrsears.com/html/11/T021900.asp which has at the bottom:
    "Consider other causes. If after trying all the above measures your nipples remain exquisitely tender, suspect a yeast infection, called candida. Sore nipples that appear after weeks or months of comfortable breastfeeding are almost always caused by yeast. Other causes of persistent sore nipples include eczema or Reynaud's syndrome."

    I have Reynaud's, which has symptoms similar to thrush, and/or Reynaud's patients have a higher tendency to get thrush. I have Reynaud's in my hands and nose too. I noticed sudden, searing nipple pain when not nursing but just stepping out into the cold, walking into the refrigerated produce section at the grocery, and when disrobing for the bath (all sudden temperature changes to cold temps). How about you?


    Katharine in Belgium
    Be the change you want to see in the world--Mahatma Gandhi
    DD2 Feb 2015 - natural birth VBAC with DD (2010) & DS (2011 VBAC)
    Ouch! Is it thrush or Raynaud's phenomenon?

  10. #10

    Default Re: Please help... 6 1/2mos. & very painful feedings

    Thanks all!
    Finally was available at the same time as the La Leche lady. She doesn't think it's thrush, but recommends I see a gynecologist to have it considered, and specifically bring up APNO to see if it would help.
    I was disappointed but secure in my decision to wean--and the baby (14 months) is taking her whole cow's milk from her spout cup incredibly well--but as I was expressing a bit to relieve the pressure just a few minutes ago a disgusting amount of hard, dry, dead skin came off one side, and underneath is perfect, smooth, painless skin.
    I don't know what to think about this!
    And now of course I'm tempted to start nursing again, because look, it's beautiful now!
    I'm going to try to make that gyno appointment (I had no idea gynos are knowledgable about the milk end of things as well, I really thought they were only expert on the parts directly involved in reproduction), and will hope the bad skin comes off the other side too. If it does, perhaps I'll go back to nursing. Of course if it does I'll have nothing to show the gyno! *laughs*
    Go figure.
    I wonder if I'll ever know what just happened.

    Maybe the baby really was sucking in a bad way due to her molars and the problem was just biting to start with...

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