Tips on Breast and Nipple Care during Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

The size and shape of breast and nipples changes during pregnancy, so an extra care is require for both. Sometimes unusual things also happen like leaking of milk, oily discharge from the nipples, etc. Here in this article, you will find useful tips on breast and nipple care during pregnancy and lactation.

1. Oily discharge from the nipples – Sometimes, there is an oily discharge from the nipples during pregnancy and after childbirth for a few days. Around the areola of the breasts there are small glands (called Montgomery’s Tubercles) which secrete small amounts of a greasy material which kills the germs on the skin in this area. The greasy material is also useful in keeping the nipples supple. Do not wash nipples with soap to clean the greasy material; otherwise there will be a possibility that the nipples might become sore when the baby suckles them. All that need to be done is to splash the nipples with plain water to keep them clean.

2. Flat or inverted nipples – In case the nipples appear flat or inverted, it is advised to press the areola between the thumb and the finger to encourage the nipple to stand out. If the nipple sticks out, the baby will not have any difficulty in suckling. During the pregnancy period the shape of the nipple may be abnormal, but it improves as the pregnancy advances. This is because of the effect of hormones during pregnancy. Do not apply any ointment or a cream to the nipples. Clean the nipples by splashing water on them. Do not try to remove any secretions, since these are protective and prevent infection.

3. Leaking of Milk From Breasts – Oozing of milk from the breast is common during the first few weeks after the baby is born. This indicates that the breast is full and the mother is ready to breastfeed the baby. Keep a soft napkin or a hanky or a piece of soft cloth or a pad against the nipple in the cup of the brassiere. This will soak up the milk and prevent the blouse, bra and sheet from getting spoiled. Make sure to change this pad quite often to prevent the nipples from remaining wet. Otherwise these will become sore. Try to keep the nipples dry and clean. The secretion of milk can be stopped by pressing the nipple with the heel of your hand against the breast for about one minute. In case the milk drips from the other breast while feeding the baby, just leave the breast exposed and let the milk drip on a hanky or a clear diaper.

Hope this article will help you to find some easy solution of problem discussed above.

Disclaimer: This article is not meant to provide health advice and is for general information only. Always seek the insights of a qualified health professional before embarking on any health program.

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