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Painful nipples in the cold and they've stopped the breastfeeding clinic!

(18 Posts)
HarimadSol Fri 21-Nov-14 12:44:41

Today I tried to go to the weekly drop-in breastfeeding clinic at the hospital, and they've stopped holding them! I am so disappointed; I really could have used the help today. The alternatives they've offered are a clinic held once per month, or a by-appointment-only breastfeeding counselor. How do they expect mums to breastfeed with such nonexistent minimal support?!

Anyway, the reason I went today was to ask why my nipples have been getting painful at the end of feeds and in the cold - like when I open the refrigerator door. They turn white after a bath for a short time, then go normal again. The GP said it's because they're full of fluid and get painful like fingers and toes do (mine aren't). He told me to dress warmly. I draw the line at hat and gloves in the house with the heat on. Anyone have any tips?

JollyCrumbs Fri 21-Nov-14 12:55:08


This is actually not uncommon. Here are a couple of links:
Improving the latch may be the best way to tackle this.

Showy Fri 21-Nov-14 13:02:20

I suffered with Raynaud's of the nipple while pregnant and bfing. It's shockingly sore. Changes of temperature were my biggest enemy. Getting out of the bath/shower and opening the fridge at home or going into a warm shop on a cold day. Owwwwww.

That's rubbish bfing support. Our local support group is run by a woman who has no children which might be okay on paper but sometimes her lack of experience causes a few problems. She was v surprised to hear you bleed after birth for example... grin She's lovely but not the best person to run the support group (which has now joined the new mother's group as they don't have funding/time for two groups and there's only a 10 minute slot for bfing issues at the end <rant moan>).

HarimadSol Fri 21-Nov-14 13:04:40

Thanks, Jolly. Those are helpful links. I've been trying to make sure DD's latch stays good, taking her off and trying again when it gets painful. It doesn't seem to make much of a difference. I'd hoped to get my latch checked again at the clinic this morning, but there you have it. I'll keep working on it till I can be seen by the breastfeeding counselor.

domesticslattern Fri 21-Nov-14 13:06:03

I had this. Horrid. I wore a cheap bodywarmer (the padded type) all the time. It really made a difference even if I looked like a berk. Also, vests are your friend. Lots of them.

HarimadSol Fri 21-Nov-14 13:07:29

Oooh, yes, I have a vest with a nursing bra built in. Love it.

HarimadSol Fri 21-Nov-14 13:08:52

<goes shopping for a bodywarmer>

plantsitter Fri 21-Nov-14 13:11:05

I had this too - ouchy. I used washable breast pads to keep me nips warm.

SoonToBeSix Fri 21-Nov-14 13:11:30

Were do you live op? Maybe someone can suggest local support. Also most children's centres offer breast feeding support.

plantsitter Fri 21-Nov-14 13:12:13

and I've just remembered I used to put them on the radiator first!

Taystee Fri 21-Nov-14 13:15:57

I have this as well. Marking place to try to remind me to type out a proper reply when I'm on the computer.

PurplePidjin Fri 21-Nov-14 13:18:34

Try your local Sure Start centre, or give the local midwifery unit a call? Also La Leche League have meetings iirc smile

HarimadSol Fri 21-Nov-14 13:26:37

Breast pads carefully balanced on the radiator now!

Just had a look at the leaflet from the Children's Centre, I'll be heading there next week, I guess. And I have an appointment to talk to the GP about Reynaud's as well. Hopefully he'll be more helpful than last time.

squizita Fri 21-Nov-14 20:47:04

Mine hate the cold. I use Muslims or folded flannels up my top at home, hot showers and hot water bottles/hand warmers help.

If there's no nhs support, you could ring your local nct. Mine has a drop in with a bf advisor, it's open to all £1.50 to cover tea and cake, also a play session for babies. I found their advice much easier to access and down to earth.

squizita Fri 21-Nov-14 20:48:01

Muslims? Muslins!

misscph1973 Fri 21-Nov-14 21:00:02

I always used nursing pads made from pure wool with a thin silk liner on the inside. I even used them in the summer. I swear they saved my life. Mine were from Lanacare, I had 2 pairs and they only need a quick handwash in good wool detergent, and they dry quickly. I also used a lanolin nipple cream, amazing.

Taystee Fri 21-Nov-14 21:05:29

Right - I suffered really badly with Raynauds of the nipples when I started breastfeeding. It was terrible pain - at times I'd be curled up in bed crying because of it. I got pain after feeding but also when I got cold (and it didn't even need to be that cold to set it off, for example if I moved from the warm living room to the kitchen it would happen). I did go to a couple of breastfeeding support groups but found that no one really knew anything about the condition. I did consider some sort of medication (can't remember the name - I think it's for high blood pressure?) but was wary of the side effects and my unfriendly GP really put me off taking it.

I tried loads of other stuff which helped to varying degrees - wool breast pads, thermals, a microwave wheat sack etc did help a bit. I also think cutting down on caffeine helped. After loads of internet research in the middle of the night I came across a claim that high doses of Evening Primrose Oil helps with Raynauds so I started taking 3 x 1000mg capsules a day. After a few weeks I started seeing a difference. I'm pretty sure it did help as when I stopped taking it the pain returned. I emailed the Breastfeeding network about it and received this info:

High dose 3-6g per day
.Takes 6 weeks to achieve any response
.One small clinical trial to support
.Reduced number and severity of attacks although it doesn't increase blood flow .Showed that fatty acids in evening primrose oil (EPO) inhibit the formation of prostaglandins that promote vaso-constriction.
.A double-blind trial of 21 people with Raynaud'sdisease found that, compared with placebo, supplementation with EPO reduced the number and severity of attacks despite the fact that blood flow did not appear to increase.
Belch JJF, Shaw B, O'Dowd A, et al. Evening primrose oil (Efamol) in the treatment of Raynaud'sphenomenon: A double-blind study.

Hope you manage to get it sorted. I really do feel for you.

HarimadSol Sat 22-Nov-14 06:37:05

Thank you, Taystee! That's very helpful, I'll give EPO a try.

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