The foundation of comfortable breastfeeding is good positioning and good latch. If positioning is off or awkward or the latch is less than optimal, breastfeeding will not be enjoyable. On a daily basis I keep hearing some of the same myths. The first one being that it is normal for breastfeeding to hurt and that moms just need to give it a few weeks and it will get better. The second myth around early breastfeeding is that it is normal for your breasts to be engorged for many days in a row – until your body figures out how much milk to make for your baby.
As your friendly nieghborhood lactation consultant, I am here to tell you that Breastfeeding should not hurt and it is not normal to be engorged for days in a row. Sore nipples, painful breastfeeding and aching engorged breasts are telling me that something is not quite right with the breastfeeding.
Why is this information so important that I make sure that everyone who takes a breastfeeding class from me, leaves the class knowing – Breastfeeding should not hurt.
ANSWER: When mothers know what is normal and what is not, if they are in pain, they will seek help sooner rather than later. Having a breastfeeding expert helping you sooner can mean:
Less breastfeeding challenges, such as: sore, cracked, bleeding nipples, engorged breasts, clogged milk ducts, mastitis ( breast infection), low milk supply, baby that is feeding poorly.
Correcting and solving early breastfeeding challenges can mean:
Comfortable and enjoyable breastfeeding that both you and your baby look forward to,
a good milk supply,
and a well fed baby.
Places to look for breastfeeding help:
Your local WIC office
Your local La Leche League Group
Your local hospital based breastfeeding support group
Your local breastfeeding experts who are IBCLC. If you are in the Phoenix, Arizona area, you can contact me at www.aabreastfeeding.com
Outside of Phoenix, Arizona, you can check for your local IBCLC at www.iblce.org