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Hi... my name is Carrie, and i just had my second child 4 days ago. i nursed my first for 2 months through constant pain, and swore this time i would do it right and stick through it. well... not going well! my milk just came in and i am so swollen he can't even latch on or get a good suction... let alone it hurts more than the actual birth just to feed the kid! i didnt want to start bottles this early, but i decided this morning it hurt too much and was not helping my breasts heal at all. they are very sore, and the lactation lady at the hospital said he looked to be latching fine... i might just be more sensitive. well, now i am blistery and sore, and dont know what to do! he takes the bottle very well, so i am not worried about him. when he does nurse, he doesnt seem to open his mouth very wide to get a great latch, but the pain usually only lasted through the first minute. any advice on how to get them to open up, besides the whole nipple rub thing? with them being so swollen, i cant even maneuver them, let alone rub them on his nose and lips. but how long does this swollen feeling last? and will manual pumping every few hours suffice if i am not nursing to save my nipples? i dont want to loose my milk supply, but at the same time, can something that hurts this bad really be good for my already compromised nerves? i am at a loss, and need some advice. i have a call into the hospital lactation lady, but thought maybe you ladies could offer some real advice. thanks for any input!
What youre describing is perfectly normal, though thats no real consolation when youre frustrated & at wits end lol
Try expressing some milk just before offering him the breast to relieve the engorgement & swelling & to help him latch on easier. Trust me, this is a very temporary thing. It'll also help him get more in his mouth.
The engorgement & swelling in addition to the constant nursing will all make your nipples pretty sensitive... as long as its only lasting the first minute, then it sounds like its just normal irritation from having something constnatly suckling away at your nipples lol.
My suggestion woudl be to stop on the bottles though - at this early age, it could easily complicate the latch and you could be dealing with nipple confusion which is only one more problem that you DONT need. Reteaching him how to latch onto the breast is a time consuming thing AND takes quite a bit of effort. Save yourself the grief & hold off on bottles for at least a few more weeks. Besides, the nursing is the only way to really help regulate & establish your supply. Right now you have an oversupply, but giving bottles will quickly lead to an under supply.
Pump a little to relieve engorgement, and try warm wet compresses as well. Keep an eye out for plugged ducts (usually the biggest sign is hard red knots in yoru breast), and nurse nurse nurse. Every little peep - nurse. Lip smacking, finger sucking, rooting - theyre all signs of hunger. Crying is a LATE sign of hunger, and itll be harder ot latch him on if you wait until hes crying. If you nurse EARLY at the first cues and as OFTEN as possible that will really help with the engorgement too.
Take it a day at a time - make it through these first few weeks & things will steadily get better with each day. Sometimes it feels like you trade one battle for another, but I assure you that it gets better. These are all temporary things, very easily fixed & the engorgement & soreness wont last more than a week if that - dont make permanent decisions to solve temporary problems
I had the same problem when I had my son 4 months ago, my breasts were so rock hard that Hayden wouldn't nurse. I just pumped about an ounce out of each breast and he nursed fine after that.....your milk will eventually even out.