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Cracked and Sore Nipples

Getting cracked nipples is probably going to be the most painful thing you will have to endure when you start breastfeeding. Not all mothers get cracked nipples, however it is a very common occurrence when you are first getting breast feeding established.

The first few times that you breastfeed baby after your amazing birthing experience, are going to be crucial. The very first time you feed baby in the recovery ward - you will likely have no idea what to do, and you may not be able to feel much anyway depending on what pain relief you had during labour.

  • Try and only put baby on your breast when they have a full open mouth. The midwife will probably be 'shoving' your baby's head right up to your breast.
  • If it is not comfortable, break baby's mouth seal with your finger and try again.
  • Cracked nipples, crazed nipples, or sore nipples are so common.
  • Use Purelan nipple cream after every feed, so pack this in your hospital bag.
  • Try and let the air circulate your nipples as that can help.
  • And work on latching baby. Get a midwife to help you every time you latch baby to your breast when in the hospital.
  • If it still hurts 1 or 2 days when you get home, speak to your midwife or doctor.
  • Occasionally a baby may have trouble latching due to tongue tie - they cant lift up their tongue and get the sucking motion working as well. This can be cut by doctor.

Breastfeeding will be a million times better when cracked nipples have healed, so try and stick with it.

If you still have very painful nipples (like with blood) you may want to look at getting some silicone nipple protectors. They go over your nipple while baby is sucking. Made from very thin silicone, and baby can still get the skin-to-skin contact with you.

Though some midwives will not recommend these because they don't like anything that inhibits or restricts the amount of skin contact. But if these can reduce your pain and still help you to breastfeed then they are something that everyone would recommend!

And we have Hydrogel Breast Discs which provide cooling relief and healing.

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