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Any breastfeeding mother who thinks she has a cold may have mastitis.
FOR PROFESSIONALS: HOW YOU CAN HELP Most mothers are now breastfeeding in a variety of circumstances, and they need the support of experienced professionals such as nursing nurses, pediatricians, family practitioners and medical assistants. We give tips on how you can help them.
1. Believe in breastfeeding. Faith is contagious. The more you believe that a mother can breastfeed, the more each mother will believe in herself. Breastfeeding has an important brain component: it requires an attitude - "I know that I can." Your role as a doctor is to motivate different paths of developing maternal self-confidence. Many mothers become victims of bad advice on breastfeeding from bottle-feeding friends and relatives who give the setting: "We didn’t succeed in breastfeeding, and you won’t succeed." In the depths of thoughts of every woman who became a mother for the first time, anxiety lurked, but would she fail in breastfeeding? I once had a mother whose baby I watched before childbirth. She said that at first she didn’t want to breastfeed, but since I was so positive about breastfeeding, she passed this attitude on her, suggesting that she would breastfeed, and she decided to breastfeed. She thanked me for my position. The work of health ministers is to convey to nursing parents the idea that breastfeeding is the norm, but artificial feeding is not.
2. Work on your education. The teacher should know the subject better than the student. Read this book cover to cover, especially chapter 2, “BEGINNING”. Helping mother and baby need to start with learning how to properly breastfeed is the moment where you, as someone who knows a lot about mothers and children, can really help.
4. Reject free artificial nutrition. Beware of representatives of artificial food manufacturers carrying gifts. Learn to distinguish between posters, pamphlets and educational materials from artificial food companies. By informing manufacturers of artificial nutrition, you convey to your patient the idea that artificial nutrition is the norm. 7. Why do you need it? Breastfeeding is beneficial not only for the mother and baby, but also for the healthcare provider. Breast-fed children are healthier, and they recover faster when they become ill. This is especially true for gastrointestinal diseases such as gastroenteritis, during which children can continue to breastfeed to minimize dehydration and weight loss. Breastfeeding mothers have a more developed intuition. Since they know their children very well, they establish a relationship of mutual trust, their children are more obedient, and nursing mothers teach children to discipline better.
Mothers who understand the benefits of breastfeeding will find a way to implement it. The job of a professional is to provide the mother with information showing the differences in breastfeeding, and then provide support and assistance in achieving the result. When two of our sons, Dr. Jim and Dr. Bob, recently joined our pediatric practice, we gave them our success criterion: "Your life success is directly proportional to the number of lives that you have encountered and which have become better."
The treatment of mastitis is almost the same as the treatment of engorgement (see above), only more intensive:
- Rest, rest, rest. You must take maternity leave and be freed from all duties except breastfeeding, take your baby with you to bed and feed him. Rest will reduce stress and strengthen your immune system.
- Put alternately warm and cold compresses. A cold compress reduces pain, while a warm compress increases blood circulation, which mobilizes fighters with infection in the inflamed area. Lean over a pool of warm water, stand under a warm shower, or take a warm bath. Wet heat, like warm water or a warm, damp towel, is more effective than a dry heat from a heating pad. Many mothers find that sinking their breasts in warm water is less painful than wrapping them in a warm towel.
- In addition to immersing the chest in warm water, gently massage the painful areas. This helps increase circulation and mobilizes local immune factors.
- Often feed on the affected side. If feeding causes pain, start feeding on the side that is not inflamed, and then, after you feel the work of the milk secretion reflex, quickly switch to the affected side. Breastfeeding is usually more convenient when milk flows. It is important to empty the sore chest. As in other parts of the body, fluid stagnation can cause infection. A baby can empty her breast more efficiently than a breast pump. Of course, if your child does not eat well, you may need a breast pump or manual pump to express the milk. This milk is safe to use.
- Change the position of the baby near the chest to empty all milk ducts.
- Take analgesics against colds and pain. Acetaminophen and / or ibuprofen (good and against inflammation) are safe to take during breastfeeding. Monotonous pain can not only reduce the formation and excretion of milk, but also prevent the body from fighting the infection.
- Drink as much liquid as possible if you have a cold. Heat and inflammation increase your need for fluids.
- Support your immune system with good nutrition. (Try the lactation recipe in chapter 4.)
- Avoid sleeping on your stomach or leaning deeply on your side, which can lead to engorgement and blockage of the ducts.
- Sleep without a bra. The rest of the time, wear a supportive bra that does not exert pressure on the affected areas. When do you need antibiotic treatment? As we mentioned above, breast inflammation does not always mean that you have a bacterial infection. But it’s hard to say in advance whether mastitis will develop into a chest infection. Although it is always best to consult your doctor, since you suspect mastitis, you may not need to take antibiotics in the following situations:
“There is no recurring case of mastitis in your history.” - You do not feel that it is a disease. - You do not feel that the disease is progressing over the past few hours. - Your temperature does not rise. - Chest pain and sensitivity do not increase. - You can easily exclude any factors that could primarily cause your chest edema.
The symptoms below indicate that you really need antibiotic treatment:
- You have a history of frequent recurring mastitis. - You have a fever. “You feel worse hour by hour.” - Your nipples crack (which leads to the appearance of foci of damage that open the way for bacteria to enter the breast tissue).
In our medical practice, we acted on the principle that it is better to treat sooner rather than later. From our medical experience (and research confirms this), mothers who received an antibiotic in the treatment of mastitis too late often wean children, have a more severe infection, and more often have recurring infections.
Which antibiotics are better? The type of bacteria that usually causes mastitis is staphylococcus, and the two safest and most effective classes of antibiotics against these microbes are cloxacillins and cephalosporins. These antibiotics are safe to take while breastfeeding. Although you will feel better after several days of taking antibiotics, be sure to complete the course prescribed by your doctor (usually ten days); otherwise, you risk receiving a mastitis return. If you do not feel better on the second or third day of receiving the antibiotic, call your doctor, who may want to prescribe another medication for you. Inflammation of the mammary glands can increase the sodium content in milk, giving it a salty taste. Most children do not even notice this or do not mind and continue to eat well. Some children may protest against a change in taste and worry or refuse to feed on this side. Try to start feeding on the unaffected side and end on the inflamed side. As the inflammatory process is cured, the taste of milk will become normal. Do not stop breastfeeding due to mastitis. Weaning increases the risk of breast infections passing into the breast abscess, which requires surgical intervention. Continuing feeding your baby is the best treatment for engorgement, mastitis, and breast infections.
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Any breastfeeding mother who thinks she has a cold may have mastitis.
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