Breastfeeding ailments

In principle, breastfeeding does not hurt, but when you start to suffer from it breastfeeding ailments it is a lot less pleasant. In this blog we have listed the most common problems and breastfeeding ailments. We also have tips for you to prevent and treat the ailments.


One of the first breastfeeding ailments that you have to deal with is stowage. Stowage arises because the milk production starts. You can suffer from this 2 to 5 days after delivery, but it can only occur after 10 days. In itself, driving is a good sign, but it can be painful. Fortunately, it is not dangerous and usually passes automatically.

  • Symptoms of stowage:

    • Larger breasts.
    • Painful breasts.
    • Breasts are red, warm and hard.
    • Possibly also fever or slight increase.
  • Prevention and handling of stowage


    • Try to give as much nutrition as possible for the first 48 hours after delivery. This means that the milk production is well under way immediately.
    • Feed your baby immediately if he or she asks for it and do not postpone it. Let that maternity visit just wait!

    To treat:

    • Massage for feeding some milk from your breasts, this eases the pain.
    • Warm compresses or a hot shower helps to relax your breasts.
    • Cooling your breasts also offers relief.
    • Read more information about stowage here.


Thrush, also called Candida albicans, is a yeast infection. It is caused by a fungus that occurs on the skin. Both mother and child can have thrush. In addition, thrush can be passed on from mother to child and from child to mother. For example during breastfeeding, changing or during birth. It is therefore important that mother and child are treated.

  • Symptoms Thrush


    • Red nipples with possibly a burning sensation.
    • Painful and / or itchy nipples.
    • White dots in the skin folds of the nipple.
    • Glossy or scaly skin of the nipple or areola.
    • The skin is also smooth or tense.


    • White spots in the mouth and on the tongue that can not be rubbed away.
  • Prevent and treat thrush.

    Always go to the doctor immediately if you suspect your baby or your self spruce. The doctor will prescribe drops for medication that kill the fungus. You can prevent sprue by paying attention to hygiene:

    • Wash your hands before and after feeding.
    • Wash your hands before and after changing.
    • Leave your nipples to air dry after feeding.
    • Replace the nursing pads after each feeding and choose cotton nursing pads.

The most common problems and breastfeeding ailments are trim, thrush, nipple gaps and chest inflammation


Nipple gorges are small painful wounds or tears in the nipple or areola. These wounds can bleed. To make matters worse, the nipple gaps may also become infected and you will get a fungal infection. The main cause of nipple gaps is the incorrect application of your baby.

  • Symptoms nipple gaps:

    • Small wounds in or around the nipple.
    • Cracks in or around the nipple.
  • Prevent and treat nipple gaps

    Because nipple gaps are usually caused by a wrong fitting technique, it is easy to prevent breastfeeding: put on your baby. But that is sometimes more difficult than it seems. So let yourself be properly informed by the obstetrician and maternity assistant so that you can be sure that you are doing well. Then, in case of doubt, immediately switch on a lactation consultant. Other methods to prevent nipple gaps:

    • Always dry your nipples and skin thoroughly (preferably in the air).
    • Read our article: Bringing a baby to breastfeeding.
    • Do not use soap, this will dry out the skin.
  • Treatment nipple gaps:

    • Allowing a few drops of mother's milk to dry on the nipples can promote recovery.
    • Cold compresses or icepacks can provide relief. You can put this on your nipple before feeding.
    • Let your baby drink more often.
    • Start feeding your least painful nipple during feeding.
    • You can read more tips in our piece about nipple gaps.

Clogged milk duct or breast infection

A blocked milk duct or chest inflammation can be extremely painful. Some women can also become quite ill. When a milk duct is so clogged it can cause chest inflammation. These two breast-feeding ailments are therefore connected to each other.

  • Symptoms of breast inflammation

    • A chest is red, warm and swollen.
    • There may be hard pieces or hard disks in the chest.
    • Feeding is more painful than normal.
    • You can feel sick, weak and tired.
    • Some women get a fever.
  • Prevent and treat breast inflammation


    • Always allow your breasts to drain properly. If this does not happen, you can pump out the rest.
    • Take various poses during feeding so that each milk channel is drained.
    • Wear a well-fitting bra and watch out with tight clothing.
    • Check regularly if your chest has hard pieces or discs and try to massage them away.

    To treat:

    • Try to continue breastfeeding, this can correct the inflammation.
    • Feed and fry a little more often.
    • Heat your breasts for feeding with warm compresses, shower, jug etc.
    • Massage your breast while feeding by stroking your nipple with a flat hand.
    • Always start with your inflamed chest. If this does not work, try using flasks.
    • You can read more tips in our article about breast inflammation.

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