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Red Itchy Areola, Help!

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Hmmm....didn't think I'd be facing something like this at 15 months, but here we are...The lower half or so of both my areolae (sp?) are red and really itchy and flaky. What's up? I noticed some dryness and itch about a month ago and started using Lansinoh and now I don't know if that's just exacerbating it. I've been using a small amt. once or twice a day. Or maybe it is contact with Meg's tongue? I can't imagine why that would start to be a problem when it hasn't before...help, it's driving me crazy!
post #2 of 19
Thread Starter 
Please help, I'm so reluctant to nurse my babe I'm afraid this is going to be very bad for our bfing relationship.
post #3 of 19
I have no help to offer, but the same exact thing is happening to me, except that the skin is actually starting to break open in places, and nursing is becoming very painful. It is like super dry skin from hell in the WORST possible place of my body. I've been using Lansinoh too, for temporary relief, but it is not healing.

I'm hoping that the warm weather will help, since my skin in general gets dry during the winter.

Oh -- and my nursling is 32 months old!!!
post #4 of 19
I hate to say it because it is such a curse, but it sounds like thrush...

We had problems with it with ds 1.. I didn't think anything of it, but everytime he nursed it was sort of a firey pain, and itchy all at the same time.. It would also cause the flaking skin..

We went to the ped and got nystatin for ds since he probably had it too, and i just put antifungal cream on my nipples after he ate and made sure they were clean before he nursed again...

Warm Squishy Feelings...

post #5 of 19
Dyan-- I was wondering, but the inside of ds's mouth is nice and pink and normal looking. Would I necessarily see anything in his mouth if it were thrush?
post #6 of 19

I didn't see anything inside ds1's mouth, but his tongue seemed to have a whitish coating which i thought was normal... Everyone in my family has a whitish tongue coating.. Something to do with a geographic tongue i guess... If you notice you babe or nursling is more gassy than usual that can be a sign as well, as diaper rash or a red rash around the anus that is not clearing up... (ok.. that seems like TMI, but i hope it helps some..)

Warm Squishy Feelings....

post #7 of 19
Thread Starter 
Well I just don't know what to think...I put breastmilk on the sore areas in the middle of the night and it seems very slightly better this morning...Meg doesn't seem to have thrush, but the possibility that I do did occur to me...
post #8 of 19
Yep. I did a little research, and I'm convinced. Its thrush. Too bad I didn't realize like 2 months ago, when it started. As it is now, I'm biting my lip to keep from weeping everytime he nurses. Sigh.

I think I'm going to try the gentian violet treatment. Two weeks of creams and such sounds like a crazy endeavor to attempt at this point in our life.
Not to mention, I don't really feel like telling our ped. that he is still nursing.
post #9 of 19
thrush is hard to figure out of the breast. Am dealing with it now also, had no idea what was causing my pain initially. I wanted to go the gentian violet route but ended up getting Diflucan from the doc. cause mine is more than superficial I think. Anyway, a small caution with gentian violet - latest research in Australia says if you use it on cracked skin, it can cause ulceration (and long term staining). I think there's a small risk of this but just so you are aware if it did happen. Also everyone told me that Lanisoh makes thrush worse. I guess any sort of barrier treatment is gonna make it worse.
post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
Well if Lansinoh makes it worse I think that's it. Sigh...
post #11 of 19
Meg's mom -- I just read up on it some, and found something suggesting that you use olive oil to sooth it. I started doing that, and whew -- such relief! I don't know if it will help to heal it or not, but it is very soothing.
post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 
Well I have an appt. w/the doc at 4 pm. Meanwhile I will use olive oil to get thru the day! Thanks, MD and Dyan, for all the help with this! I'm going to my first LLL toddler mtg. tomorrow morning so hopefully will get some advice there, too.
post #13 of 19
Thread Starter 
Update...it's yeast. Sigh. Got nystatin for both of us.
post #14 of 19
do a search for yeast/thrush here, you will come up with lots of helpful info on dietary changes/alternative treatments (in addition to medical treatments) that will really help a lot.
post #15 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Jane, I will!
post #16 of 19
Hey! I mixed a tbl. of olive oil with the contents of a capsule of acidopholus, and I'm putting in on my nipples several times a day. Guess what? It seems to be healing! I'm so excited. My fingers are crossed.
post #17 of 19
Analisa! I wish I had seen your post earlier! *fusses at you for not posting locally*

Run fast as you can to this link, right on Mothering's site:

Superb thrush article!

You'll also get some great, specific results by searching on Dr. Jack Newman's site as well as over at Kelly's Attachment Parenting's thrush resources.

Make sure you follow directions on washing/sterilizing linens and clothing, and be sure to take acidophilus or a broader probiotic. Please PM me here or at APC! if you have any questions -- DS weaned because of undiagnosed and untreated thrush and I have treated it successfully with DD, so I am a huge enemy of this beasty and have vowed to help wipe it out from all my nursing mama friends! :sinister
post #18 of 19
Thread Starter 
Sorry, L. Thanks for the links! We are making progress, I think...
post #19 of 19
Here's what I'm doing for my red itchy nipples right now (and hoping this will take care of it so I don't have to go to Diflucan or gentian violet again)


15 drops of grapefruit seed extract in an oz of distilled water - apply and let dry morning and evening

5 drops of calendula tincture in an oz of distilled water - apply and let dry morning and evening

few drops tea tree oil in olive oil - apply and let dry morning and evening (kinda the layer cake effect)


Nature's Way Probiotics 2 capsules 2x/day

Kyolic garlic 2 tablets 2x/day

GSE tablets 1 tablet 2x/day

I think it's working....they look like they're healing and I'm not itching any more.

Here's what I'm not doing....cutting all sugar out of my diet because I am too weak-willed.
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