How I Dealt with Breastfeeding Thrush
Breastfeeding thrush is a kind of yeast infection. It might occur around the nipples of lactating ladies or on breastfed kids. Thrush can be triggered by an overgrowth of a fungus known as Candida albicans that is found on the skin and in the peptic tract. This fungus is a naturally existing organism. Candida does not often cause any issues, but it can lead to thrush if it multiplies several times.
The first time I noticed signs of thrush, my daughter was just two weeks old. I tried to assume the cracking was just normal, but the symptoms exceeded. My initial scars were probably the cause of poor latch. However, breastfeeding became more difficult day by day. My breasts did hurt each time when my daughter was feeding, and sometimes when she was not. The material of my bra started to feel like sandpaper grating over the skin. The itching increased terribly around my nipples. The act turned out to be quite painful, and the amount of blood increased. After every three hours, my daughter and I would weep.
I attempted to ignore the itching and suck everything up, but I even figured that the discomfort was temporary and the nipples required to harden and callous. By the fourth week, I gave up and decided enough is enough. It was time to wean my daughter, at least until I realized the transparent patches. Fuzzy and gentle spots began to appear in her cheeks and around her tongue. It turns out we were suffering from thrush infection. She-well, we-had yeast infection.
Nipple Thrush Treatment
Thrush can cause a very discomfort feeling, but the best part of it is that it can be fully cured. Antifungal drugs are normally recommended, especially nystatin. A breastfeeding mom is normally advised to utilize a topical cream like clotrimazole and miconazole. That said, doctors advised me on a treatment plan for both my daughter and me. According to medical practitioners, it is vitally important that both the baby and parent get treated for this yeast infection even if it is just one of them experiencing the signs. Cure needed to be done for two consecutive weeks to guarantee total relief from thrush.
I was recommended to clean bottles, breast pumps, and pacifiers thoroughly. Washing the bottles and my nipples in hot water after use was another valuable piece of advice from the doctor. Dirty bottles can lead to thrush, which can then be passed to the breastfeeding baby. Their recommendations perfectly worked for me.
Home treatment for nipple thrush
Since my daughter was the first baby, I barely knew what lactating was supposed to be like although I had perceived several moms say over and over again that the act of “breastfeeding should not hurt”. As such, it turned out to be a mania of mine to figure out why the act that was supposed to be easy and natural, just plain hurt. Three months of weeping with my daughter through almost every feeding session took me through a tough journey, and I am excited to say that the home treatment plan I chose worked perfectly, and breastfeed pain-free since then.
Below are a few subjects that helped in my journey of dealing with thrush:
- Begin with the latch. Check on proper latches and look for assistance from a nursing specialist in case your baby is not comfortably latching. If you have been breastfeeding for quite a while and have never experienced any pain, it is probably not an issue with the latch. However, it is certainly the basic thing to handle with a nursing specialist.
- You may notice that you might have latching issues as well as thrush symptoms. My daughter has a serious upper lip problem which clucked each time she breastfed though that was not the basic cause of my pain. It certainly turned me off thinking it was all from her.
- Bleeding or cracked nipples, milk blisters, and vasospasms and lots of other things can lead to thrush and related nursing pain.
- In case you have ever breastfed before, and you are experiencing constant pain on your nipples, and have an experienced lactating friend who has never struggled with thrush, who is also currently breastfeeding and your baby is asymptomatic for thrush, try asking them to breastfeed your kid. I realized this would be quite a small number of persons and that some of them might view this as irresponsibility since you can transmit thrush from individual to individual, although it was then the only significant way I was able to notice that the problem was with me and not my daughter.
The thrush treatment strategy
From my point of view, thrush is a kind of multi-layered issue. I believe there is a need for complete care for the child and the mother and that this care plan has various elements that should be integrated in order to work effectively for severe conditions. In my opinion, one of the most ignored concerns in thrush treatment is accepting that the issue is not just yeast. Naturally, everybody has some amount of yeast in their bodies. The immune system plays the role of keeping the quantity of yeast in check and balanced. Therefore, we need to concurrently eliminate some amount of yeast and get the immune system back to normal. There are several less engaged treatment strategies out there though after attempting various in vain, these are the possible supplements that I would recommend:
- Golden seal
- Extra B Vitamins
- Take several cups from a similar teabag.
Also, the following applications can be of great help when dealing with thrush but may not your issue long-term:
- Nystatin cream- this worked for me.
- Genetian Violet- was very messy and never worked for us. However, it is quite affordable over the counter.
- Grapefruit- can be drying to some individuals.
Thrush can occur in various parts of the body, though oral thrush is quite common, especially in infants under five months. Candidiasis, often known as a fungal infection, is triggered by an overgrowth of candida fungus and is experienced by nearly seventy-five percent of individuals in the USA. Additionally, vaginal thrush, which often leads to yellow discharge is common among fifteen-year-old ladies. And then there is the nipple thrush which causes the skin to shine, crack and flake, along with pain and itching- these are among the signs I was experiencing. Such kind of thrush can be passed on easily from the mother to the baby. If you are a breastfeeding mom, click here to get everything you need to be conversant with about breastfeeding pain and thrush.
Meet Our KeaMommy Contributor: Lindsay Hudson
Lindsay is a freelance writer who is mom to a lovely daughter. She loves dressing in matching outfits with her daughter and bringing their 2 dogs out for their daily walk.