When breastfeeding you get quite used to having full and tender breasts, it’s fairly common. The 'slept through the night boob', the 'baby fallen asleep on it for 2 hours boob', the 'baby is using me as a pacifier' boob, the 'first little razor-sharp tooth' boob, the engorged boob. So many reasons for there to be a sore boob.
So I’ve become quite familiar with having at times, rather uncomfortable boobs. But on Wednesday I had another new experience, a blocked duct. If you’ve had one, you’ll know what I mean. If that went on to become mastitis then I really feel for you because even faze one is awful, I cannot imagine how awful mastitis must be.
I started to notice it during the day and didn’t really think anything of it, to be honest. Just thought 'oh must be “one of the above” boobs, Henry probably just needs a feed' (you get quite good at knowing when feed times are due by squeezing a boob). Henry fed and it started to feel a bit better so I carried on as normal. After Henry is in bed for the night, I pump 200ml for Henry’s before bed bottle the following night. It was only when I went to do this did I notice how sore my boob really was.
If you are breastfeeding, you’ll know what I mean when one side of your boob goes solid like a rock, and how feeding/pumping or hand expressing usually relieves that in a couple of minutes. However this time it didn’t, the lump stayed and I could feel it and see it under my skin. It was sore to touch and the longer I pumped with my electric pump, the more uncomfortable it became. I had a blocked duct.
The thought of having to sit with Henry at A&E or my GP did not fill me with joy, so I grabbed my Pumpd Pump and jumped in the shower. Turned the shower up literally as hot as I could stand it, placed a hot flannel on my boob and attached my Pumpd Pump to my boob with the block. Gently massaging the top of my boob and the block, I sat there for 30 minutes and expressed another 80ml in the process.
After a very helpful chat with Healthline, I was told that if in the morning it was the same or worse, I started to get a fever or flu-like symptoms I would need to call my GP or head to A&E.
In the morning luckily my boob had settled down, and the dreaded ‘mastitis rash’ which was forming on my boob was starting to fade from red to pink. The block had cleared and I was just left with quite a bruised feeling.
I kept feeding Henry any chance I could from that boob during the day and after a couple of days, we were back to normal.
Thank goodness for my Pumpd Pump which helped me clear the block at home, and kept me away from antibiotics or worse hospital with mastitis. Having a pump you can take into the shower with you is a godsend in those situations to release the pressure, without adding to the pain and you can sit in the heat.
If you have think you have a blocked duct or start to experience fever or flu-like symptoms contact Healthline or your GP immediately. Keep feeding as much as you can to help pass the block, and use your Pumpd Pump with heat to help release pressure.
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