Wednesday, July 16, 2014


There is this not so wonderful risk that comes along with breastfeeding, Mastitis.  Mastitis is an infection that can occur because of a clogged duct, or bacteria.  I have had mastitis four times since starting to nurse Charlotte.  I nursed Owen for almost five months and did not once have mastitis.  Recently within two days of each other, two of my friends have been feeling under the weather.  One of them thought she was feeling crappy because she started birth control. She assumed it was just the hormones in the pill affecting her body.  After asking her what was wrong and some symptoms she had, I told her to take her temperature and check for redness on her breast.  She had all the symptoms.  My cousin asked me about symptoms because she knew I have had mastitis a few times. 

So, what are the symptoms? 
  • Breast has redness, is warm to the touch, and tender.
  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue

There are a couple options when you have mastitis.  The first is to see a doctor and take antibiotics.  The antibiotics will typically take the fever, chills, and fatigue away within the first 24 hours.  If it is more than 48 hours and the symptoms have not started to go away it is best to contact the doctor.  

There are also other remedies for mastitis.  Taking warm showers and massaging the breast, hand express, nurse as often as baby will nurse, nurse in a variety of positions, drink plenty of fluids, get adequate rest.  

After having mastitis once, you are more prone to having mastitis again, as I have had it four times now. 

Preventing Mastitis
  • Wear a supportive bra that is not tight fitting.
  • Nurse in a variety of positions
  • Alternate breasts at each feeding
  • Fully drain your breasts
 Aside from the first time I had mastitis, the three other times all occurred right after traveling.  More than likely because I was not properly draining the breasts every time and positions were not as varied as they maybe should have been.  

Here is to hoping I do not get it again.  

1 comment:

  1. Uh no!
    I'm glad that you found out remedies to get rid of mastitis.

    I had one when my first born was couple weeks old.

    Now...with exclusively pumping I had developed a lot of one point they were the size of an egg! It was soo painful.