Mastitis is usually brought on by a few things: an ill fitting bra, cracked or bleeding nipples, exhaustion, or skipped feedings and not fully emptied breasts that lead to plugged ducts.
While one of the most common treatments for mastitis is antibiotics(please consult your doctor) we wanted to focus on other natural remedies that will help ease the pain and discomfort and can aide in helping solve the problem, either working with antibiotics or any other route you may choose to take.
DO NOT STOP NURSING! Nurse as often as possible to keep the milk flowing. Also try pumping following the feed to ensure that your breasts get completely emptied.
FLUIDS: Drink lots and lots of water. You need this anyways but really try to focus on it!
HEAT and COLD PACKS - Apply heat/cold before and after nursing baby. The warm will increase circulation, moving the infection out, and cool will decrease the pain and inflammation.
MASSAGE: while nursing or pumping. Try gently massaging your breast toward the nipple to loosen clogged ducts
REST: This is one of the hardest things for new moms to find time for but getting enough rest is key to your health. Do whatever you can to get rest and stay in bed.
NURSING POSITIONS: Try varying the feeding position to increase breast drainage. The area of under the baby’s chin gets emptied the fastest so experiment with various positions to focus on the plugged duct.
Stay tuned for our next post that will deal with more Natural Ways to Relieve and Prevent Mastitis and Plugged Milk Ducts.