Mother & Baby (Australia) - - Real Advice -

Q I’ve been ex­clu­sively breast­feed­ing for over two months but have had three se­vere bouts of mastitis, which makes me feel un­well and exhausted. What can I do to pre­vent fu­ture episodes? A Barb Glare, lac­ta­tion con­sul­tant,

says: The first oc­cur­rence of mastitis can catch many moth­ers un­aware, but once you know the signs and symp­toms, you’ll be able to take simple mea­sures to pre­vent it de­vel­op­ing into full-blown mastitis, or to get it treated quickly.

Make sure your baby drains your breasts well. If your baby is asleep, or full, and won’t take any more milk, ex­press a lit­tle un­til your breasts are soft and feel nor­mal. It’s im­por­tant to avoid en­gorge­ment, so make sure your bra is well-fit­ting, and not cut­ting into your breasts. If you find that you are de­vel­op­ing a blocked duct, or your breasts are very full and en­gorged, it might be help­ful to use a hot com­press or have a hot shower and ex­press some milk. Feed your baby, then put on an icepack. A mild anal­gesic con­tain­ing parac­eta­mol or ibupro­fen can help re­duce pain and fever.

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