I nursed my oldest son 15 years ago. I remember there being pain in the beginning, but I didn’t really remember it being so bad. I gave birth to LA last July and for the first month or so I remember tremendous pain. It was like I was a first time mom again after 15 years and I didn’t know what was going on. All I knew was that it hurt and it hurt BAD.
Nursing and Pain
As a first time mom you may not be aware of the pain that can come with nursing. Let me stress first and foremost that it was temporary for me and all of the other women I know. In the beginning of nursing LA his latch was all wrong. He wasn’t opening his mouth enough and I really had to work with him to get the latch right. This is where a lactation consultant would be very helpful. The insurance we had at the time did not cover lactation consulting and that could very well be part of the reason I went as long as I did with the pain…because I wasn’t an expert at getting that latch right and it took a lot of work. There were times when he was nursing that it hurt so bad I would have tears falling down my face. I would clinch up and honestly look forward to him getting done. My nipples did get cracked and dry and they did bleed. In fact, there were times when I pumped I would get pink milk because of the blood. That may be TMI, but I am being completely honest and want others to be prepared. I am not going to lie and tell you it’s not painful. It is tough to get through when you are already sleep deprived and trying to figure out your new bundle of joy. But let me also say that working through that pain and getting past it was one of the best things I ever did. Try focusing on the good that you are doing for your baby and the bond that you will have instead of the pain. Once you get past that pain and continue nursing your little one eventually you don’t feel pain at all and you can just focus on the beautiful bond of nursing your baby. In fact, after the first month or so of nursing I didn’t have any other pain issues and I nursed for a full year. All I can say mamas is that yes, it is painful, but just like labor, it hurts but we get through it and we end up with a priceless thing and with this it’s the bond of nursing and providing the best possible nourishment for our babies. You can do it, hang in there! Again, it is temporary.
I don’t think I would have survived this pain if it weren’t for using nipple cream to help with the cracking. I also used another product that wrapped around my breasts in the shower and basically held in the hot water and it was so relieving. Depending on what nipple cream you use, you may want to wipe it off before nursing though. If you use the Earth Mama Angel Baby Nipple Butter (that’s part of the prize pack for this event!) you won’t need to wash it off as it is safe for baby. There are many products out there to help with getting through these beginning pains of nursing. There are also wonderful lactation consultants available to help you get through it. Take advantage of their help if you are able to. I remember the lady that was available at the hospital and she was a great help for those few days I was able to get her help! Hang in there mamas, it is painful, but it is temporary! 🙂
If you are a nursing mama and you made it through these painful days of nursing, was there anything else that helped you?