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#1 Funwith3

Posted 10 November 2012 - 08:38 PM

Some background... I breast fed DD1 for 9 months. I stopped because she started biting and I felt so nervous about the next bite that I felt I was pulling her off prematurely. So she went to formula. I breast fed DD2 until she was 16 months old. A great BF experience.

Now, DD3 is 5 and a half months old and I'm having a LOT of trouble, but feeling very guilty for considering weaning her at what I consider to be too early.

It started with the cracked, bleeding nipples which hung around for 6 weeks. I dealt with that. I have had mastitis three times with DD3. In addition, I've had very painful blocked milk ducts on two other occasions. I currently have my third and by far most horrifically painful bout of mastitis. That's three lots of antibiotics is 5 and a half months. This third time, the pain is so unbearable that I am literally screaming and crying whilst trying to feed her. I'm feeling very light headed and nauseous just from the pain. Yesterday I couldn't get my head off the shower floor because of the pain and the dizziness it was causing. My entire boob looks like its been out in the sun for 3 hours with no sunscreen on. I can't bear the thought of going through this again. So I'm considering weaning her. I was aiming to feed her for 12 months and I'm disappointed that I can't push through. I have a very high pain threshold but I cannot go through this again. sick.gif  cry1.gif

Does anyone have any suggestions, words of encouragement, advice? Push through? Stop now? What should I do. I feel like I'm losing so many days because of feeling unwell and it's not fair on my other two daughters that I'm unwell and in pain (so very short tempered and grumpy with them) but then again, BF is very important to me and I don't want to be one of those people who said "it was all too hard and it hurt so much". sad.gif

Edited by Funwith3, 10 November 2012 - 08:40 PM.


#2 beaglebaby

Posted 10 November 2012 - 08:42 PM

Have you seen a doctor?  It sounds like the infection is severe and you might need to go back, my doctor said if I wasn't much better within 12hours of starting the ABs that I'd need to be admitted for IV antibiotics.  A physio can also do ultrasound on the affected area which breaks up the blockage and reduces the swelling.

hugs, I hope you get through this.  With your history of mastitis I'm not sure that stopping abruptly is a good idea if you decide to stop feeding do it very gradually.

#3 Suz01

Posted 10 November 2012 - 08:45 PM

Listen to your body, and don't push on. I know how painful blocked ducts can be, I had an abscess that popped after DD waved her little hand too close to the build up. It was horrific. I pushed through only to lose my milk very shortly after. Sometimes its just not working and to push on like you have is amazing. Good on you.

#4 SplashingRainbows

Posted 10 November 2012 - 08:59 PM

I think I'd be seeking some more immediate medical attention. When that's resolve you can consider where to. If your body int responding to the ABs I'd be heading down to the hospital if at all possible.

In relation to keeping on going - I just want to reassure you there is no need torture yourself.
You've given your dd3 a wonderful start to life. She will be starting solids soon (if not already) and taking in a range of foods.
It is most likely she will do well on formula and solids when ready. You can keep going if you want but you haven't failed of you need to stop. I would suggest weaning with some assistance from a LC or midwife given your history. You'd hate to re-trigger mastitis.



#5 ~Sorceress~

Posted 10 November 2012 - 09:00 PM

Breastfeeding my third child was my hardest ever because of mastitis and thrush sad.gif . But once I made to to the six month mark, changed my diet and started getting some energy back it all got SO much better : ).

I found I needed to take a lot of vitamin C as SOON as I felt myself getting any sort of signs of an infection, but I had also let myself run down so taking Floradix twice daily and starting a low carb diet (with almost NO sugar) made a huge difference.

I've since read that taking a really good probiotic can do a lot to help prevent mastitis recurrence - perhaps try that? shrug.gif

And if you're worried about the infection getting worse, see a doctor because that sounds really really miserable sad.gif .

Well done on making it this far through that many tough spells already original.gif . I hope that for you, as it was for me, this is the start of your breastfeeding turn-around!

#6 Not Escapin Xmas

Posted 10 November 2012 - 09:06 PM

If I were you I'd be going straight to the doctor or emergency department, what you are describing is simply ridiculous to be putting up with.

Not wanting to guilt you into acting, but seriously, what if you pass out in the shower while you're home alone with the kids?

And yes, I'm all for breastfeeding but there ARE limits.

#7 unicycle

Posted 10 November 2012 - 09:08 PM

you have brought back memories. which leads me to ask:
are you on the antibiotics again? have you had/ do you have secondary mastitis?
has your doctor recommended cabbage leaves? mine cited a study and he gave me the recommended time to keep the leaves on according to the stury's results. he said to put them in the freezer.
can you get to a doctor this weekend to review you medication?
can you bear to put the baby on the breast more often and are you massaging towards the nipple?
and to answer your question: i went though a lot to continue breastfeeding, but that was a choice i made, not one i would make for others.
look after yourself


#8 bluedragon

Posted 10 November 2012 - 09:33 PM

Firstly I think you need to seek further medical treatment/advice to help you get over the mastitis, even though it is painful I wouldn't quit feeding cold turkey in this case as draining the breast will help with the mastitis, stoping may make it worse.

I would also seek further advise once you are feeling better. Have you had a lactation consultant review you and your baby? It's sounds to me as there may be an underlying attachment or other issue that has been causing the cracked nipples and also not draining the breast enough which may be causing the blocked ducts and mastitis. I could be wrong but that's the first thing that popped into my head reading your story.

Gook luck OP, I hope you feel better soon!

#9 antigone_

Posted 10 November 2012 - 09:38 PM

I just want to give you a big hug sad.gif That sounds absolutely horrific  bbighug.gif Please seek urgent medical attention lovie xx

#10 DM. 2012

Posted 10 November 2012 - 09:50 PM

Do you know what is causing you to get the blocked ducts and mastitis?  i had blocked ducts (on one side only) twice and I think that one was caused when bub dropped a night feed and possibly the other when I took bub to a friends and used expressed milk for a feed which caused me to be quite full and engorged before the next feed and from memory bub may only have fed from one side for the next feed which caused the problem in the other side. The second time I was starting to feel unwell so perhaps was on the verge of it turning to mastitis. After a few days I managed to massage to blockage away along with the help if heat pack and anti-inflamatories. Did bub drop a feed or miss some feeds around the times you have had blocked ducts or mastitis.

I found that hand expressing was not painful but breast feeding was. Is that something you could consider while you get well.

It is up to you but try not to  feel bad if you decide to switch to formula, you seem to have gone through a bit already and it has been almost 6 months.  It just depends on how much pain you are prepared to put up with especially if breast feeding is not the close, enjoyable bonding experience it should be. You need to be able to enjoy your baby.

#11 6plus2

Posted 10 November 2012 - 09:58 PM

Your body and mind says to stop, but your heart wants to push on.

I would consider what is in the best interest of ALL the family.

I would also make an appointment with a lactation consultant.

#12 Guest_AllegraM_*

Posted 10 November 2012 - 10:02 PM

Please seek medical attention immediately to check whether your mastitis has led to a breast abscess. This is treatable, but needs surgical drainage and iv antibiotics.

#13 LoudMuffin

Posted 10 November 2012 - 10:11 PM

Get to a doctor asap and consider your options afterward.

I understand the guilt but don't end up a martyr to it. If it's causing you so much pain it must be distressing for your DD during feeding too. Everyone needs to be healthy and happy/calm as possible. You've put your self through enough pain and done the best you could.

If after treatment you can and still want to breastfeed then more power to you, but if you don't then you don't and there's no shame in it at all.

#14 Funwith3

Posted 10 November 2012 - 10:26 PM

Sorry, I wasn't clear. I've been to the doctor each time I've had mastitis. I have been to the doctor on this occasion, got some antibiotics and they're slowly doing their job. Slowly.....slowly....

I'm still well and truly feeding. I know feeding is the best way to help clear the ducts (no matter how painful).

QUOTE (~Sorceress~ @ 10/11/2012, 10:00 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Breastfeeding my third child was my hardest ever because of mastitis and thrush sad.gif . But once I made to to the six month mark, changed my diet and started getting some energy back it all got SO much better : ).

I found I needed to take a lot of vitamin C as SOON as I felt myself getting any sort of signs of an infection, but I had also let myself run down so taking Floradix twice daily and starting a low carb diet (with almost NO sugar) made a huge difference.

I've since read that taking a really good probiotic can do a lot to help prevent mastitis recurrence - perhaps try that? shrug.gif

And if you're worried about the infection getting worse, see a doctor because that sounds really really miserable sad.gif .

Well done on making it this far through that many tough spells already original.gif . I hope that for you, as it was for me, this is the start of your breastfeeding turn-around!

Thank you for those suggestions, especially about the vitamins. I will definitely buy some!

QUOTE (unicycle @ 10/11/2012, 10:08 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
you have brought back memories. which leads me to ask:
are you on the antibiotics again? have you had/ do you have secondary mastitis?
has your doctor recommended cabbage leaves? mine cited a study and he gave me the recommended time to keep the leaves on according to the stury's results. he said to put them in the freezer.
can you get to a doctor this weekend to review you medication?
can you bear to put the baby on the breast more often and are you massaging towards the nipple?
and to answer your question: i went though a lot to continue breastfeeding, but that was a choice i made, not one i would make for others.
look after yourself

I've been doing cabbage leaves - they are amazing.

QUOTE (joshuakalan @ 10/11/2012, 10:58 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Your body and mind says to stop, but your heart wants to push on.

I would consider what is in the best interest of ALL the family.

I would also make an appointment with a lactation consultant.

You really have put it in a nutshell. I'm going to make an appointment with a lactation consultant, because I'm wondering if it's something I'm doing wrong. Would I just call the hospital where DD was born for a consultant??

#15 bluedragon

Posted 10 November 2012 - 10:32 PM

If you ring the ABA hotline I think they can give you contact details of local LCs.

#16 Gruffalo's Child

Posted 10 November 2012 - 10:36 PM

Please seek further medical treatment as you should not be in this much pain.    

In regards to persevering or weaning, that choice can only come from you, but I think you need to consider how important breastfeeding is to you, and whether persevering will be worth it, or cause too much stress for your family, especially with 3 children to care for.     In your situation, I would not make that decision until after I had sought further medical attention.

FWIW, I was unable to attach my third child, so exclusively expressed as an alternative.   I was determined to do so until 12 months, and for the first few months I had no major problems, other than the time commitment.    For some reason, I found myself mentally struggling more and more as I got further along, and by 6 months my milk was starting to dry up, which I think was directly related to my mental aversion to another session of pumping.  I was literally exhausted by the effort of exclusively pumping as well as taking care of my 3 kids, so I made the decision to stop and put DD2 on formula instead.   I felt terrible at the time, but knew that it was the best thing for my family.    For me, this was the best decision I could make, and it had such a positive impact on our family that any regrets and guilt I had felt were quickly diminished.   Seeing DD2 continue to thrive on formula, was also reassuring.    

She is now a delightful almost 2 year old, and, with hindsight,  I am so relieved that I made the decision to stop pushing myself to pump as the benefits the whole family got from me doing so were so great.   It enabled me to spend more quality time with all of my children, have more energy, and for us to function better as a family.  

I wish you the very best of luck with whatever decision you make, and hope that you are pain free very soon.

#17 Mum2TwoDSs

Posted 11 November 2012 - 06:32 AM

Oh gosh...very tough for you...I have got mastitis once on my left boob...I swear it was hell on earth..i was so scared of abscess or losing a boob... can't believe you are going through so much...big pat on your shoulder.

Don't feel guilty if you wan to stop. That's what I tell myself...I may be stop bfg soon due to other reasons..bubs just almost a month...sometimes nobody makes us feel guilty...it's ourselves that do that. It's a decision you have to make yourself and respect yourself for.

At the end of it, remember we really have done our best for our children.

Hope you recover soonest.

#18 Mianta

Posted 11 November 2012 - 07:01 AM

If you don't think you are responding to the antibiotics then you really should get medical advice, first and foremost.

I also recommend using cold compresses on breasts in between feeds, making sure they don't get warm as the heat will stimulate the supply and panadol for pain, but keep feeding at least until the mastitis is gone. That is the best way to clear ducts. Massage the lumps as much as comfortable as you feed.

#19 lucky 2

Posted 11 November 2012 - 10:05 AM

http://www.essentialbaby.com.au/forums/ind...howtopic=846852
The link above is to a pinned topic in this forum, to help you find a private LC but you certainly could call the Hosp first and then ABA if you wish.
I'd be doing this ASAP as you may need a second medical opinion especially if you are not getting better (I see you are so that's great).
Are you going to be taking a double or single course of AB's, often 2 courses are needed apparently.
Did you have recurrent mastitis with your other children?
Something is definintely not right here, either you have a specific infection that has yet to be fully identified or treated or your baby is not bfing well (a pp mentioned this) and is causing milk to pool in the breast/s triggering blocked ducts and mastitis. Or the recurent mastitis has led to changes in the breast. I wouldn't know but this is not usual (but certainly not unheard of) and is not good for you at all.
Where are you located? If you are in Melbourne I might have some resources you could use so send me a pm if you wish.
As for stopping bfing, if there are some underlying issues with the breasts or feeding (ie baby related) and you are continually getting ill then stopping the feeding process would be worth considering, but I'd suggest getting some more professional help and not stopping bfing/expressing in the middle of mastitis!
You may not have seen the link below, it may be of some use.
All the best.
http://kellymom.com/bf/concerns/mother/recurrent-mastitis/

#20 Funwith3

Posted 11 November 2012 - 08:23 PM

QUOTE (Mum2TwoDSs @ 11/11/2012, 07:32 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
...sometimes nobody makes us feel guilty...it's ourselves that do that. It's a decision you have to make yourself and respect yourself for.

At the end of it, remember we really have done our best for our children.

Thank you, that's very kind and you're right, I think it's me that makes me feel guilty! My mum supports me, my DH supports any decision I want to make. It's my own feeling of disappointment and the fact that it hasn't gone how I expected it to. Kind of like a birthing plan not going to plan too I imagine.

QUOTE (lucky 2 @ 11/11/2012, 11:05 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
http://www.essentialbaby.com.au/forums/ind...howtopic=846852
The link above is to a pinned topic in this forum, to help you find a private LC but you certainly could call the Hosp first and then ABA if you wish.
I'd be doing this ASAP as you may need a second medical opinion especially if you are not getting better (I see you are so that's great).
Are you going to be taking a double or single course of AB's, often 2 courses are needed apparently.
Did you have recurrent mastitis with your other children?
Something is definintely not right here, either you have a specific infection that has yet to be fully identified or treated or your baby is not bfing well (a pp mentioned this) and is causing milk to pool in the breast/s triggering blocked ducts and mastitis. Or the recurent mastitis has led to changes in the breast. I wouldn't know but this is not usual (but certainly not unheard of) and is not good for you at all.
Where are you located? If you are in Melbourne I might have some resources you could use so send me a pm if you wish.
As for stopping bfing, if there are some underlying issues with the breasts or feeding (ie baby related) and you are continually getting ill then stopping the feeding process would be worth considering, but I'd suggest getting some more professional help and not stopping bfing/expressing in the middle of mastitis!
You may not have seen the link below, it may be of some use.
All the best.
http://kellymom.com/bf/concerns/mother/recurrent-mastitis/

I have a repeat on my script...maybe I'll get it filled and take the two lots of AB's. Good advice!
With my other children I had one lot of mastitis for each of them, both of which were treated with AB's. Nothing more. And quite manageable, nothing as painful as this.
And I think you're right, I'm sure there's something more to it. I'm an hour away from Melbourne but am willing to travel so would appreciate any resources or contacts you can suggest, thank you. original.gif

#21 nothing123

Posted 11 November 2012 - 08:26 PM

Sounds like a tough situation.  But regardless, now isn't the time to give up as it will make mastitis worse.  It's also not the time to be making a decision about your ongoing breastfeeding.   Wait until you are well.

Apparently lecithin can help with women who have recurrent blocked ducts and mastitis.  I hope things  improve for you soon.


#22 nothing123

Posted 11 November 2012 - 08:28 PM

http://kellymom.com/bf/concerns/mother/lecithin/


#23 lucky 2

Posted 11 November 2012 - 10:45 PM

I've sent you a pm.




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