Every woman knows about the benefits of breast milk, so many young mothers make every effort to breastfeed their baby. But often nursing mothers, especially primiparous, face such an unpleasant phenomenon as lactostasis. In other words, it is the stagnation of milk in the breast, in which pain, compaction and redness appear.
The main danger of lactostasis is that it can turn into another more serious problem – mastitis. In this case, drug treatment is required, and sometimes surgery. Milk stagnation can and should even be strained at home. At the first signs of lactostasis, and it is a lump in the chest, swelling, pain in the breast, you must immediately begin to take action.
What should be done when lactostasis occurs?
If you find signs of stagnant milk, then you should know that the best helper in solving your problem is a child. No breast pump can express milk as well as a baby can. As often as possible, apply the baby to the chest. In order for breast bonding to produce noticeable results, the following measures should be taken:
- Before feeding, strain hands with 20 grams of milk so that the baby sucks the breast more actively.
- Heat the mammary gland before feeding. This can be done with a jet of warm shower or a simple compress, for example, attach a napkin, after moistening it in warm water.
- Make a light breast massage that simplifies the waste of milk.
- Correctly attach the baby to the chest. Remember that the part of the chest to which the child touches the chin is most empty. During lactostasis, the baby’s chin should be pressed against the part in which the bumps are formed. Experiment with postures while feeding. You may have to take a not very comfortable position.
- If milk is left in the breast after breastfeeding, it must be drained.
How to express?
Many young mothers from breastfeeding with lactostasis are stopped by pain in the chest. But if lactostasis is correctly decanted, then the pain will decrease already after the first decantation, and complete stagnation will pass in 1-2 days. By the way, if this does not happen or the condition of the nursing mother has worsened, then the visit to the doctor cannot be postponed for a minute.
Straighten your hands as follows:
- Place four fingers of your hand under the chest, and the thumb – on top. Note that the thumb and forefinger should be as close as possible to the edge of the halo.
- Move your fingers to the center of the chest, while slightly pressing them deep into the breast. Movement make slow and rhythmic.
- It is necessary to filter all the breast areas, paying special attention to the places with the resulting seal.
- Then place your thumb and index finger on the edges of the nipple halos and press down on your chest. Do not forget to change the position of your fingers so that the milk is decanted from different parts of the milk ducts.
- If the milk stops flowing, lightly massage the mammary gland that you want to strain. Do not push on the chest. Massaging movements should be soft and smooth. They should not be painful.
- After the massage, repeat the pumping procedure.
- If the milk quickly ceased to depart, and the lumps in the breast are still well felt, then go back to the massage. Do not forget that lactostasis massage perfectly helps to relieve pain and improve the waste of stagnant milk. At this time, make circular movements directed from the edge to the center.
During pumping, do not attempt to break the seals, as this may cause increased pain and complications. Be sure to wash your hands with soap and water before you start pumping to avoid infection or bacteria on the nipple.
To dissolve lactostasis, you can also use a breast pump. These special devices are presented in a wide selection in the market. You can purchase an electrical or mechanical model. This will greatly facilitate the process of pumping. But in many cases when forming seals it is best to carry out the whole process with your hands. Move slowly and smoothly so as not to damage the mammary gland, as this can aggravate the flow of milk through the ducts.
How to do a massage with milk stagnation in the chest?
Please note that breast massage for lactostasis is a necessary step. During the massage, the woman’s actions are not aimed at breaking up the seals in the breast, but at her maximum relaxation. This contributes to a better movement of milk in the ducts and waste.
Massage can be done before feeding, before or during the pumping process. It is important to know that massage movements should be light and relaxing. That is why it is not recommended to use the services of professional massage therapists.
Breast massage for lactostasis
- The main task of the massage is to relax, so no pressure and other actions that increase pain.
- Chest must be stroked and rubbed, but not kneaded. To improve the passage of milk through the ducts, it is sufficient to warm up and relax the mammary gland.
- Movement should be directed from the periphery to the center. The most commonly used circular motion.
- If a woman experiences intolerable pain during a massage, the procedure can be performed under a warm shower or bath. Warm water will help to relax and reduce pain. But the water temperature should be no more than 37 degrees.
With a properly made massage, the breast pump may not be useful to you. Breast relaxation simplifies the waste of milk, and pumping does not require much effort.
What compresses will simplify the breakdown during lactostasis?
If the pain in the chest is very strong, then compresses can help disentangle the milk. The actions of compresses are aimed at warming and relaxing the muscles of the mammary gland. This contributes to a better flow of milk through the ducts. To make the simplest, but quite effective compress, you need to moisten a napkin in warm water and attach it to the area with the formed bumps. Keep the napkin to the point until it cools down. Do this or any other compress you need before feeding or decanting.
In addition, you can make a simple cabbage compress. To do this, discard the cabbage leaf until the juice appears, and then attach it to the chest. Good to get rid of stagnant milk will help and cakes, spread with honey, and grated potatoes or beets. All heat compresses contribute to the release of oxytocin, which simplifies the process of milk waste.
But it is better not to do compresses based on alcohol or camphor, since, on the contrary, they block the production of oxytocin. With the formation of strong compaction or pain compresses can be put on all night. When the temperature rises, heat compresses cannot be used.
What else do you need to know about lactostasis chilling?
If you need to get rid of milk stagnation, then you should know that during this period it is necessary to reduce the amount of liquid consumed in order to reduce milk production. The baby must be fed regularly, without missing a single feed. An important role is played by night feedings. They need to be carried out, even if the child does not cry. Excess milk must be decanted. And do it better with your hands, not with a breast pump.
If within two days you can not be decoupled, and the seals do not decrease, then you need to consult a doctor. Most likely, the doctor will prescribe the use of ultrasound or another technique that will help to express the milk.
In order to prevent the child regularly apply to the chest. If necessary, use a breast pump so that there is no excess milk in the breast.