Today, Sioned answers one mum’s question on how to manage breastfeeding engorgement and breast pain during the early days of breastfeeding.
“I'm in my first week of breastfeeding and I'm struggling as I'm engorged and it's really painful. Any tips for helping it go? How long will it last? Would you recommend expressing?”
This is very normal when milk comes in, it can be very uncomfortable and painful, taking a few days to resolve. If not resolved quickly, the engorgement can lead to mastitis so a few things to try…
- Try and feed more frequently
- Apply a warm or cool compress to soothe
- You can express but be cautious not to do this too much as expressing could support over production
- Use a hand or breast pump to just soften the breast and then plug little one in
If little one is not feeding well you can finish off by pumping after feeding but I would also recommend that you seek additional support from your midwife or local breastfeeding group to help with feeding and also just to offer some reassurance for you that all is well.