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Issues of Breast Engorgement

Issues of Breast Engorgement

Breast engorgement is overfilling of the breasts with milk and is usually painful. After giving birth, for initial few days breasts stay soft and produce colostrums (the first milk) in which some discomfort is common. Normally women experience this for only 24 hours but with some other mothers, it might be intense, and can last for a number of days.

Your breasts will produce exactly the right amount of milk for your baby over some time. In cases of extreme or prolonged painful engorgement, consult your doctor or healthcare professional. You should breastfeed at least 8-12 times in 24 hours. If your baby is not latching correctly or feeding regularly, your breasts tend to become overfull. Another reason could be when your baby’s breastfeeding is suddenly reduced, which usually happens either when your baby is starting or increasing solid foods or when the baby has a poor appetite.

Some helpful tricks:

  • Offer only one side breast at each feeding for at least 15-20 minutes.
  • If the other breast gets painfully full before the next feed, express just sufficient milk to relieve the discomfort, but not to empty it completely.
  • Try altering your nursing position. And try to relax during the letdown.
  • Avoid pumping or expressing  milk unless you extremely have to.
  • Try to have a cup of sage tea at bedtime, which contains a natural form of estrogens that can help you decrease your milk supply.

Found it useful? Share it with someone who is struggling with breast engorgement issues.

If you want to ask questions related to pregnancy or about caring for your infant, ask anonymously at MediMetry!