sore nipples Tag

Elvie Stride Double Electric Breast Pump

How breast pumps revolutionized breastfeeding

When was the first breast pump patented?

For most of human history, breastfeeding was the only way to nourish a new baby. Even breast pumps are older than you might think. The first pump was patented in 1854, and it was generally used as an aid for mothers with inverted nipples or for infants who were too frail for breastfeeding. It wasn’t comfortable, but it was a lifesaver for families who needed it.

Do all moms pump?

According to the 2005–2007 Infant Feeding Practices Study II (IFPS II), nearly 9 in 10 breastfeeding mothers had successfully expressed milk at some point during the baby’s first year. Many of those moms used a breast pump regularly. In some cases, they fed their infants exclusively pumped milk.

How are today’s breast pumps different?

Breast pumps have improved steadily over the years, becoming more comfortable as they became more commonplace. Today, pumps come in a wide range of styles, sizes, and suctions. While hospital strength double electric breast pumps are still better used at home, many new pumps are silent, discreet, and portable. Women can even pump in their nursing bras without cords or bags to draw attention.

What are the benefits of breast pumps?

Breast pumps aren’t always necessary, but they offer a lot of benefits. If you’re a military mom or a mom who has to return to work early, a breast pump makes sure your baby doesn’t miss out on all of the nutrients only found in breast milk. If you experience frequent engorgement, pumping offers relief. On the flip side, regular pumping can help to keep your milk supply up if you’re worried about your production. It’s also great to have on hand if you have to give up breastfeeding suddenly and need to slowly back down your supply.

Are there other revolutions in the history of pumping?

Definitely. Our company’s history is rooted in revolutionary ideas where pumping is concerned. Our founder Krisi LaMont lobbied on behalf of nursing moms for insurance to cover breastfeeding equipment before the ACA required it. Our women-lead team continues to advocate for mamas and babies every day, one mother at a time.

What are the most revolutionary breast pumps?

In terms of space age technology, the Elvie Stride probably wins out. You can pump directly into your bra using an app on your phone. However, pumps like the Spectra S1 are truly revolutionary in their ability to help mothers who may require hospital strength suction. The most revolutionary pump for any mom, though, is the one she feels comfortable with. Need help finding your breast pump? We’re here for you. Give us a call or email today.

If you’re here, you probably already know the numerous benefits of breastmilk for newborns and babies. It’s the perfect nutrition for your infant, tailored precisely to their changing needs. However, not all babies take to breastfeeding. Some babies struggle with learning to latch while others, most notably pre-term babies and those with fragile health, may have difficulty sucking. One common breastfeeding challenge is called tongue-tie, which affects nearly 1 in 20 newborns. What is tongue-tie? Tongue-tie, or ankyloglossia, restricts the range of motion of a newborn’s tongue, causing breastfeeding difficulties. Infants use their tongue to draw in the nipple and areola while breastfeeding. Tongue-tied babies may be unable to secure a successful latch because their lingual frenulum, the band of tissue that connects the bottom of the tongue to the floor of the mouth, is unusually short or tight. The following signs may indicate tongue-tie: • Tongue doesn’t stick out past gums • Tongue mobility is limited • Tip of the tongue may appear V-shaped or heart shaped when baby sticks it out What are the symptoms of tongue-tie? As you might expect, the chief symptom of tongue-tie is frustration. However, there are other signs that may indicate tongue-tie, including: • Chewing rather than sucking on the nipples • Inadequate weight gain • Unusually long feeding sessions • Fussiness during feeding Baby won’t be the only person suffering from tongue-tie. Moms may experience it as follows: • Painful breastfeeding • Sore or cracked nipples • Mastitis or engorged breasts What causes tongue-tie and how is it treated? Tongue-tie has been a source of medical mystery for centuries. To date, scientists are unsure exactly what causes it, but it does seem to be genetic. Furthermore, it affects male babies more frequently than females. There are two treatments for tongue-tie: frenotomy, a basic out-patient procedure in which the frenulum is clipped by a doctor, and frenuloplasty, which is necessary when the frenulum is too thick for a snip. The former rarely requires sedation, but the latter does. How does a breast pump ease the stress of tongue-tie? If your baby is tongue-tied, and you’re suffering as a result, you may be inclined to abandon breastfeeding. That doesn’t mean you have to give up on the health benefits of breastmilk. A breast pump allows you to have the best of both worlds. It prevents engorgement and mastitis while maintaining a healthy supply of breastmilk for baby. Talk with a lactation consultant and your baby’s pediatrician to get the best answers for your situation. Get in touch with Milk N Mamas Baby for the best advice on choosing a breast pump

Using a breast pump to provide breastmilk to a tongue-tied baby

If you’re here, you probably already know the numerous benefits of breastmilk for newborns and babies. It’s the perfect nutrition for your infant, tailored precisely to their changing needs. However, not all babies take to breastfeeding. Some babies struggle with learning to latch while others, most notably pre-term babies and those with fragile health, may have difficulty sucking. One common breastfeeding challenge is called tongue-tie, which affects nearly 1 in 20 newborns.

What is tongue-tie?

Tongue-tie, or ankyloglossia, restricts the range of motion of a newborn’s tongue, causing breastfeeding difficulties. Infants use their tongue to draw in the nipple and areola while breastfeeding. Tongue-tied babies may be unable to secure a successful latch because their lingual frenulum, the band of tissue that connects the bottom of the tongue to the floor of the mouth, is unusually short or tight. The following signs may indicate tongue-tie:

  • Tongue doesn’t stick out past gums
  • Tongue mobility is limited
  • Tip of the tongue may appear V-shaped or heart shaped when baby sticks it out

What are the symptoms of tongue-tie?

As you might expect, the chief symptom of tongue-tie is frustration. However, there are other signs that may indicate tongue-tie, including:

  • Chewing rather than sucking on the nipples
  • Inadequate weight gain
  • Unusually long feeding sessions
  • Fussiness during feeding

Baby won’t be the only person suffering from tongue-tie. Moms may experience it as follows:

  • Painful breastfeeding
  • Sore or cracked nipples
  • Mastitis or engorged breasts

What causes tongue-tie and how is it treated?

Tongue-tie has been a source of medical mystery for centuries. To date, scientists are unsure exactly what causes it, but it does seem to be genetic. Furthermore, it affects male babies more frequently than females.

There are two treatments for tongue-tie: frenotomy, a basic out-patient procedure in which the frenulum is clipped by a doctor, and frenuloplasty, which is necessary when the frenulum is too thick for a snip. The former rarely requires sedation, but the latter does.

How does a breast pump ease the stress of tongue-tie?

If your baby is tongue-tied, and you’re suffering as a result, you may be inclined to abandon breastfeeding. That doesn’t mean you have to give up on the health benefits of breastmilk. A breast pump allows you to have the best of both worlds. It prevents engorgement and mastitis while maintaining a healthy supply of breastmilk for baby.

Talk with a lactation consultant and your baby’s pediatrician to get the best answers for your situation. Get in touch with Milk N Mamas Baby for the best advice on choosing a breast pump.

overhead view of cute baby with pacifier sleeping on bed with teddy bear

Pros and cons of using a pacifier while breastfeeding

The purpose of a pacifier is right in the name. It pacifies, or calms down, an unhappy or complaining baby. That makes this inexpensive little tool quite handy for new parents, especially those who may have a colicky baby. However, many breastfeeding moms worry that giving baby a pacifier might lead to breastfeeding challenges or other health problem. What does science say?

The Big Picture

Sucking is an instinct for newborns, but it takes time to perfect it. Babies and moms need a few weeks of practice to get the hang of best latching positions and ideal sucking techniques. Babies use a different sucking technique when using a pacifier or a bottle than when nursing at the breast, which can confuse babies as they learn the ropes. Introducing a pacifier or bottle during the early weeks of breastfeeding can cause some bad nursing habits or nursing frustrations for baby. For this reason, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends waiting until baby is one month or older before introducing a pacifier to make sure baby has mastered breastfeeding.

Pacifier Pros

We don’t need a study to know that pacifiers give non-breastfeeding caregivers a tool for soothing newborns while mom takes a break. They also make travel, especially on planes and other public transportation, much more pleasant. You may be surprised to learn that there are science-backed benefits of thoughtful pacifier use, too.

  • Giving baby a pacifier at naptime and/or bedtime may reduce the risk of SIDS, according to the AAP.
  • A 2011 study of premature infants found that those who sucked a pacifier while listening to lullabies transitioned more successfully to oral feeding.
  • A 2016 study of pacifier-use after lactation is established did not shorten the duration of breastfeeding or reduce breast milk production.
  • A 2015 study found that pacifier-use can provide some relief for babies experiencing pain or discomfort related to colic, vaccinations, injury, medical procedures, or sickness.

Pacifier Cons

As with most choices we make as parents, whether to use a pacifier or not is complicated. Despite all the perks, they can be a breeding ground for germs. Weaning children from their binkies can be a huge emotional challenge if they’re very attached. Scientists have also found some potential medical problems related to pacifier use.

  • According to the AAP, introducing a pacifier too early can contribute to nipple confusion and lead to difficulties in latching. These issues can, in turn, create more serious problems for mom, like mastitis, and baby, like weight loss.
  • A 2013 study revealed that pacifier use, especially after six months, may lead to Acute Otitis Media (AOM), or ear infections.
  • A 2018 scientific review found evidence that pacifier sucking, especially long-term, can lead to orthodontic problems, most notably an anterior open bite and posterior crossbite.

Use pacifiers safely and thoughtfully for maximum benefit and minimum harm.

If you choose to use a pacifier, consider waiting until you and baby have gotten comfortable with your nursing routines. Keep the pacifier sanitized to avoid thrush and other bacterial infections, and choose a one-piece pacifier that is the proper size for your child to prevent the possibility of choking.

Home portrait of a newborn baby with mother on the bed. Mom holding and kissing her child. Concept breast feeding.

Natural remedies for cracked, sore nipples

If you’re a breastfeeding mom experiencing itchy, irritated, or even bleeding nipples, you’re not alone. A 2017 medical study showed that most moms experience sore nipples during their first months of breastfeeding. In a recent post, we talked about some of the common causes of nipple soreness and possible solutions.

However, there’s likely to be an adjustment period, no matter what you do, especially if this is your first time breastfeeding. A lanolin cream like the one in Medela Accessory Starter Set will soothe and rehydrate painful nipples. But if you have wool allergies, lanolin probably isn’t for you. Fortunately, there are some natural remedies for cracked, sore nipples.

Breastmilk

Your own breastmilk is full of antibodies that can prevent infection while relieving tenderness. It’s as easy as applying breastmilk to your nipple after a feeding and allowing it to dry. As wild as it may sound, one cure for sore nipples is breastmilk. Breastmilk contains antibodies that can prevent infection and soothe sore nipples. Gently apply breastmilk to your nipple and allow it to dry after each feeding.

Aloe Vera

A 2020 medical study showed that the anti-inflammatory and anti-infection herb aloe vera can improve nipple soreness considerably. It may even be more effective than breastmilk. An aloe plant is great to have in your kitchen anyway, as it can also help heal burns. Simply cut off a piece of aloe, slice the stem open, and apply the gel inside to your nipples. Allow to air dry as with breastmilk.

Olive Oil

Yes, there’s another ingredient in your kitchen that can help nipple soreness – olive oil. Actually, both olive oil and coconut oil have been shown to have positive effects on painful nipples, but olive oil appears to be slightly more effective. It’s also in more people’s cabinets, and it’s very affordable.

Witch Hazel

Witch Hazel contains anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants, which can reduce irritated skin around the nipples. It can also prevent itching associated with inflamed and aggravated breasts.

Saline Soak

Some soreness is normal, but cracks and fissures should be minimum. If your nipples have been damaged, a saline soak of ½ teaspoon Epsom salt to 1 cup of warm water can offer some healing support. Soak nipples for five minutes twice a day for up to three days for maximum relief. Be sure to rinse and air dry after soaking.

Take care of you

Getting plenty of rest, staying hydrated, and eating healthy meals are all important to keeping your immune response in peak condition. That’s half the battle. Preventative measures like wearing absorbent breast pads and comfortable nursing bras are also important. Need to talk to someone about nipple pain caused by breastfeeding? We’re here for you. Give us a call.

Tired mom breastfeeding baby

What to do about sore nipples from breastfeeding

If you’re a first-time mom, there’s a solid chance you have or are experiencing nipple pain during and even after breastfeeding. This isn’t speculation. A 2017 medical study revealed that being a new mom naturally predisposes you to some amount of nipple pain. Believe it or not, that’s actually good news. It means that the pain is likely to go away with time and experience.

Why are first-time moms more likely to experience sore, cracked nipples?

If parenting was a video game, the cool kids would call you a noob. You’ve never done it before, so there’s no reason to believe you and baby are going to get it exactly right from day one. Even if a lactation consultant spoke with you at the hospital, there’s a good chance you were so goofy with exhaustion, you missed some of the tips.

Breastfeeding seems like it should be easy and natural, so you may feel embarrassed that it’s not happening as organically as you’d imagined. To make matters worse for a boob noob, people often feel uncomfortable talking about breasts and breastfeeding in our society. You may feel awkward bringing the conversation up, or you may not know who to ask for guidance. In either case, you end up suffering in silence, which can actually aggravate nipple pain.

Don’t forget that you’re also exhausted from nine months of pregnancy and then however many hours or days of labor and delivery. Honey, if you came out of all that a natural born pro at breastfeeding, well, that would be pretty impressive. You absolutely should be feeling tired during those first months and being tired makes everything a little bit harder.

What are some of the main causes of nipple pain and are they fixable?

Baby’s latch needs some work. Your baby is new at this, too, and may need a little help. They need to be able to grasp enough breast tissue for your nipple to be positioned deep in their mouth.

1.      Make sure baby’s mouth is open wide and their tongue is cupped and forward before they latch on.

2.      Make sure their lower lip is fanned out and not tucked in.

3.      Try a few different positions like “The Football” and “The Cradle” to see if that helps improve baby’s latch.

 

Baby is super duper hungry and nursing vigorously. Crying is a late stage of hunger (as any woman who has ever experienced “hanger” knows), and once a baby is crying, they’re more likely to suckle in a way that can be less comfortable for mom.

Be on the lookout for early warning signs of hunger including:

1.      Puckering lips,

2.      Sucking on hands or fingers,

3.      Moving head side to side.

Then, feed baby before they take it out on the nipple.

 

Baby is hanging out on the nipple after they’ve finished nursing because it’s comforting.

Babies are so cute it can be hard to say no to comfort suckling, but this can lead to nipple pain, so be strong and just say no anyway.

 

Pulling baby’s mouth away from the breast without breaking the suction first. This can cause damage to your sensitive breast tissue.

1.      When possible, allow baby to finish nursing and release naturally.

2.      If you must detach the baby while they’re nursing, break the suction by pressing down on your breast near baby’s mouth or by gently pulling down on baby’s chin.

 

Tight bras and drying soaps.

Since your breasts are especially sensitive now, keep them comfortable with a properly fitting bra and soaps and detergents that don’t aggravate your skin.

 

Mother Nature’s sore nipple elixir

As wild as it may sound, one cure for sore nipples is breastmilk. Breastmilk contains antibodies that can prevent infection and soothe sore nipples. Gently apply breastmilk to your nipple and allow it to dry after each feeding.

The other part of the equation is time and practice, just like with anything else. For most moms, getting the hang of positioning baby, anticipating baby’s needs, and taking care of your own needs will eventually lead to a pain-free, pleasant breastfeeding experience.