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    Home ›› How to treat sore nipples from breastfeeding 

    Home ›› How to treat sore nipples from breastfeeding 

    How to treat sore nipples from breastfeeding


    Reading time: 5 mins.


    Breastfeeding can be a wonderful experience. However, breastfeeding also takes strength and patience and can bring its own challenges. Many mothers experience breastfeeding issues, such as sore nipples, especially in the first days and weeks after giving birth. Common side effects of nursing include painful, inflamed or cracked nipples. Breastfeeding can continue, though, and there are steps you can take to reduce the pain. We’ve got the lowdown on breastfeeding pain relief home remedies and how you can prevent sore nipples moving forwards.

    Dauer: 5 Min.

    Why do you get sore nipples from breastfeeding?


    There are several reasons for sensitive and sore nipples. Breastfeeding takes a toll on your breasts and nipples and, as natural as it is, must be learned. These are the most common reasons for painful nipples:


    1. Unsuitable breastfeeding position: Whatever breastfeeding position you choose, your baby should be facing you at breast level without having to turn his or her head. If it’s comfortable and pleasant for you and your baby, then you have found the right position.
    2. Incorrect latching on: Not only is the breastfeeding position important, but also how your baby lays against you while feeding. Your baby’s mouth should cover your entire nipple and most of your areola, and their lips should be turned out.
    3. Flat or inverted nipples: If your nipples are flat or retracted, you may be more prone to painful nipples. Breastfeeding may be easier with the help of a nipple shaper or nipple shield.
    4. Breasts are too full of milk: If your breasts are too full and bulging before breastfeeding, your baby will slip off them because he or she cannot get a good grip on the nipple. Breastfeed more frequently to prevent bulging breasts or pump in between.
    5. Engorged breasts: If your breast is not completely empty after a breastfeeding session, this can lead to blocked milk ducts or even mastitis. There are steps you can take to relieve engorged breasts.

    Don't worry if you have discomfort when breastfeeding at first and it doesn't seem to go smoothly right from the start – that’s very common!

    A new mother in a light blue blouse covers her breast with a breast pad that sits comfortably inside her bra.

    Sore breasts from breastfeeding and relief for sore


    Fortunately, there are several effective breastfeeding pain relief home remedies and products to provide relief for sore nipples and reduce breast pain after breastfeeding. Here’s our pick of breastfeeding nipple pain relief:


    1. Lanolin cream: Lanolin protects and cares for sore, inflamed or painful nipples. Breastfeeding and lanolin cream are complementary – the cream does not need to be washed off before the next feeding session, and it can be applied several times a day throughout breastfeeding if needed. Apply a thin layer to your nipples after each feeding session. 
    2. Nipple shields: A nipple shield is a thin, transparent, odourless and tasteless silicone attachment that helps protect sore or cracked nipples. Breastfeeding typically becomes more bearable when you use them. Philips Avent Nipple Shields are ultra-thin and designed to help you breastfeed when you’re experiencing nipple issues or latch-on challenges. 
    3. Nursing pads: If you’re experiencing breastfeeding nipple pain, relief can come in the form of breast pads. That’s because when your nipples rub against your clothes it can make them hurt even more. Disposable nursing pads, like Philips Avent breast pads, can help. The soft inside prevents extra friction, while any leaking breast milk is immediately absorbed and sensitive skin is kept dry.


    As you can see, there are a few solutions that can help with sore nipples from breastfeeding. Do you suffer from extreme pain or a stinging pain in your breast? Breastfeeding should be off the cards for a while, so that your breasts can recover. The same goes if, after breastfeeding, sore breasts feel bruised. You might choose to pump instead of breastfeeding temporarily. Always ask your doctor for advice if you experience pain.

    What you need

    How to prevent nipple and breast pain after breastfeeding


    Unfortunately, it’s not always possible to completely prevent sore, painful nipples. Breastfeeding can be more comfortable, though, if you follow some suggestions to reduce the risk. 

    Make sure you’re breastfeeding in the right position and that your baby is latched on correctly, and don't skip any feeds. In addition, apply lanolin ointment to your nipples in the evening and protect your nipples with hygienic disposable nursing pads, and you’ll be well on your way to a wonderful breastfeeding experience.


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