5 Problems That Arise From Breastfeeding and Their Solutions

Learn about some of the most common issues related to breastfeeding as well as effective solutions.
5 Problems That Arise From Breastfeeding and Their Solutions

Last update: 11 December, 2018

Knowing the causes of the main problems that arise from breastfeeding can help you to prevent or solve them.

There is no better food for your baby than the milk your body produces after giving birth. Breastfeeding your newborn should be a time of peace and tranquility, not fear and trauma.

Choosing to feed your baby with breast milk is an excellent decision, but learning to breastfeed can be tricky. The problems that arise from breastfeeding increase the possibility of an early weaning or changing the baby’s feeding program.

In the following list, you’ll see the most common obstacles that you can face at the beginning of breastfeeding:

1. Bad grip on the nipple

One of the biggest problems that arise from breastfeeding is poor grip of the nipple.

Problem: the baby doesn’t suckle the breast well, because he only takes the nipple with his lips, and this triggers other problems.

Solution: use your index and middle fingers as a clamp to grasp the nipple and introduce it subtly into the baby’s mouth. You must make sure that the nipple and part of the areola are inside the mouth.

2. Abundant or poor production of breast milk

Problem: during the first months after childbirth, hormonal changes increase or decrease the production of breast milk.

Solution: allow the demands of the baby to set the standard for regulating the mother’s milk production. When it’s believed that production is abundant, it’s recommended to offer the baby only one breast per feeding.

Otherwise, giving the breast freely whenever the baby wants it is the key to naturally stimulating the production of breast milk.

5 Problems That Arise From Breastfeeding and Their Solutions

Tip: how can you tell if you’re producing the right amount of breast milk for your baby? You should evaluate whether the little one soils his diaper frequently and in accordance with his age. Also, make sure he’s gaining proper weight. If so, you have nothing to worry about.

3. Breast rejection

Problem: the baby rejects the breast for one of the following reasons:

  • Bad experience related to poor grip of the nipple or inadequate posture.
  • The baby has already tried to bottle feed and finds that extracting milk from your breast requires more effort.
  • Perhaps he finds an unpleasant smell or taste caused by products you use on your skin, such as a perfume or lotion.

Solution: avoid the use of cosmetics on your breasts and persist in offering the breast to your baby. Also, don’t use bottles and pacifiers. Be patient and place your baby on your chest for as long as he needs in order to stimulate his suckling reflex.

The problems that arise from breastfeeding increase the possibility of an early weaning or a change in the baby’s feeding program.

4. Cracked and sore nipples

Problem: the cause of this frequent problem is the bad position of the baby on the breast or incorrect suction.

Solution: Try to breastfeed from different positions until you find one in which you both feel comfortable. To facilitate the release of milk, it’s recommended that you apply warm cloths to one breast prior to breastfeeding. This will help to avoid a little pain when the baby begins to suck.

In addition, you can use liners to reduce the impact of the baby’s suction force. You can also use a few drops of your own breast milk as a lubricant in that area, or use creams to restore the tissue and prevent it from cracking further.

5 Problems That Arise From Breastfeeding and Their Solutions

5. Mastitis

Problem: the affected breast is congested by a blocked milk duct, or too much time lapses between each feeding. This hot breast milk is the preferred breeding ground for the germs that produce an infection.

Symptoms of mastitis: the area in question feels warm to the touch, hard, sensitive, sore, red, feverish and clogged.

Solution: the best solution to this problem will be the frequent suckling of the baby. It’s important to clarify that this infection won’t harm him. It’s advised that you consult a professional, who will prescribe an antibiotic so you can fight the infection internally.

Going through problems that arise from breastfeeding is very common and shouldn’t discourage you.

Every inconvenience has a solution, which most of the time is easier than you imagine. You just have to be very patient and optimistic that you’ll overcome it.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.