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Hey ladies I have not visited this board before. I wish I had know about it when my had my first. I am only 15 weeks pregnant, but I am determined to BF this go around. Not only because of health benefits, but because I am a SAHM and there is no reason to be spending $100 a month on formula when I have it for free.
With my DD my nipples cracked about the second time I fed her. I had a lactation con come in and she said that DD was latching on well that she just had a strong suction. I BF for a week and I was miserable so after a week I went to pumping and I did this for about 3 weeks. It just took a lot of time to pump and feed.
So my question is is there anything I can be putting on them now to keep them from cracking or is it just something that I will have to deal with? I plan on visiting much more in the upcoming months and I am sure I will be on here a lot once the baby gets here. I am determined to BF this time around so I could use any advice you ladies have! Thanks
Your nipples shouldn't crack without a real reason. It's possible she had a strong suck, but usually a bad latch or a problem, like tongue-tie is to blame. Your LC should have looked into it more, to be sure there wasn't anything else causing her to crack your nipples. I went through the same thing with my daughter. She started giving my cracks the first day and they remained for almost 2 months. She did have a tongue-tie though, which caused the cracks. You shouldn't have to just deal with cracks. If you do get a crack, first, find out what caused it. Check and double-check her latch and positioning. Then have the baby checked for other problems, like a tongue-tie. Some soreness is normal in the beginning, just because your nipples aren't adjusted to being sucked on 12 times a day. You can imagine that will cause them to be a little sore! Cracks can also take some time to heal, but usually a normal crack shouldn't be anymore than a few weeks and within a week, you should see an improvement with it.
The best thing for a crack or sore nipples is breastmilk and air. Once you get the crack or if you have sore nipples, let them air as much as possible. Also express some milk on them after you nurse, and the milk's natural antibodies will help it heal quicker and avoid infection. There isn't anything you can do now to prepare your nipples, and every woman is different. Some woman are very sore at first, some experience very little discomfort. Since cracks are usually due to a problem with the baby's latch or suck, there's no way to prevent them or predict when they will happen. Just be sure to visit with your lactation consultant soon after the birth and let a nurse (if she knows much about breastfeeding) help you latch your baby on if you need it.
Andrea, mom to Abigail (8) Annabelle (5) and Alexis (2)