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Breastfeeding shouldn't hurt, right?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Hi there,


My little sister just had her first baby a week ago and she says that he is nursing just fine but that it hurts a lot. People have told her that in the beginning it does hurt a lot, but I don't remember any pain with my babes.


I read that if breastfeeding hurts, the baby is not latching correctly.


What do you know about this, and what could I tell her?

post #2 of 12

Frankly, in my experience, sometimes is just hurts.  I don't know if I have nerves in the wrong places, but with all three of mine, no latch problems, and an abundant supply--it *hurt*.  It got increasingly painful over the course of two weeks, got to the point where I didn't think I could do it any more, and once I got over that hurdle, the pain went away and we were fine.


With my last two, let-down alone was incredibly painful.


post #3 of 12

I've had four without latch issues and plenty of pain in the first couple weeks; it does happen. smile.gif

post #4 of 12

seeing an ibclc could really help.  if there are latch issues (or tongue-tie which can cause awful pain) the lc can help, and also she can suggest different positions, ways to latch etc that may decrease the pain a bit.


I had pain for~2 weeks.  lansinoh helped a lot!!!

post #5 of 12

I think it's misleading when nursing enthusiasts claim that breastfeeding doesn't hurt. Maybe for a lucky few women, it never does, but in my experience with nursing my three kiddos, sometimes it just hurts, and you have to grit your teeth and bear it because you know it's what's best for your child. I tell myself it's character-building. :-) Yes, every nursing woman should be informed about getting a good latch, nursing frequently, etc., but sometimes, you can do everything right, and it still hurts, especially in the first few weeks. Sorry your sis is in pain. :-(

post #6 of 12
For me, breastfeeding hurt like heck for the first few weeks - and when I say hurt, I mean HURT, not a little discomfort now and then. I was doing everything right, working with multiple IBCLCs, and getting tired of people telling me it shouldn't hurt. Turns out my baby was tongue-tied - it was noted soon after he was born, but no one thought it was the problem because he was gaining weight like crazy and my supply was huge. We got it clipped at three weeks, and it took a few more weeks for the pain to fully subside.
Edited by Addie - 1/21/11 at 4:00pm
post #7 of 12

There is a world of difference between pain and discomfort during breastfeeding. Discomfort at first is very common but pain should never be tolerated.


I would suggest your sister attend a local LLL meeting. The leaders should be able to observe a feeding and assess the latch visually and by listening and be able to assist your sister and nephew in achieving a better latch.

post #8 of 12

My baby never had any latch issues or anything, and breastfeeding never hurt me. I've heard a lot of women say it does hurt even when everything's "right" so I really don't know.

post #9 of 12

Breastfeeding hurt Hurt HURT with my first. It turned out to be misdiagnosed thrush. Thrush can be extremely painful. I built a lot of character with that one. Ugh! 


With my next two babies, I assumed that as long as latch was right, and we didn't have thrush--there would only be a few days of "discomfort." Well, I had weeks of actual pain, and I was doing everything "right." I was a trained breastfeeding counselor, had close friends who were IBCLCs, etc. I was like, please check me: pain is supposed to signal something's wrong! Sometimes, IME, breastfeeding hurting may just be something that has to resolve itself--sometimes within days, sometimes weeks...sometimes longer. As far as pain, I'd work to rule out latch, thrush and frenulum (tongue-tie) issues. There's also Raynaud's syndrome that can cause pain, too. 


I hope things start feeling better for her asap! 

post #10 of 12

I don't know a single woman IRL for whom breastfeeding wasn't extremely painful for the first month or so.  

post #11 of 12

I've been breastfeeding for 6 weeks and even though I have a good latch, my left breast is still slightly painful until my milk starts flowing. I think its just more sensitive. But yes, in the beginning, sometimes I cried when I latched him on. 

post #12 of 12
My nipples hurt pretty consistently for the first few weeks. It eventually went away with mo changes to latch. That said we have upper lip tie and a shallow latch so I know it's not perfect but it works for us now.
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