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Avoid Infections When Breastfeeding With These Simple Steps

Almost one in 5 women gets an infection in her breast when breastfeeding.

It’s healthy to avoid antibiotic use if they are unnecessary, and many women can be successfully rid of a breast infection without antibiotic use, even if an infection does occur.

Breast massage may help relieve clogged ducts, but you do have to be gentle as it is possible to cause a bit of swelling and inflammation if the massage is too vigorous.

It is helpful to massage from the nipple towards the underarm area so that flow is increased in all glands, even those that might have turns in the other direction!

In addition to massage actually working the milk out the nipple is helpful.

Continuing to regularly feed the baby both is helpful in preventing infections as well as treating an early one.

Rest for mom is also important as well.

Sometimes just feeding and hand expressing milk is the most helpful, sometimes breast pump use has been associated with breast infections.

If you do use a breast pump, be sure to not injure the nipple.

Other helpful information can always be obtained from your birth provider or the baby’s heath care provider, and if you do think an infection is brewing please see a medical professional.


Suzanne Trupin, MD, Board Certified Obstetrician and Gynecologist and owner of Women's Health Practice, Hada Cosmetic Medicine, and Hatha Yoga and Fitness

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