I've nursed two little ones now and have had a lot of questions about post-breastfeeding breasts--not just a week after but months or even years. I'm not finding a lot of resources online about breast health after weaning. I'm sure women have asked these questions here before but I can't find them. Anyway we can get a section or a sticky for this?
As for my specific questions: I'm nearly 3 months out from weaning but still have some soreness in one breast. My breasts are definitely back to their pre-nursing size and only produce a tiny bit of fluid if I force it. The soreness does seem to wax and wane a bit with my cycle but I find it odd that only one side hurts. That side happens to be the side I had mastitis in about 18 months ago. I also have a sore, mildly enlarged lymph node in that armpit. I went to the GYN who had me go for an u/s and mammo which came back clear. Has anyone else experienced something like this? My GYN suggested that this is just my "problem breast." Is that a thing?
ETA: Weaned for medical reasons. I dragged my feet as long as possible which meant it was a slow and gentle process so abrupt weaning isn't to blame.
I agree... not much talk about what we do with them post-kiddo.
I've had issues with this, pain very intense and lumps in the breast as my second child started to wean, especially on the left breast. It was (and continues to be) really intense closer and closer to the period, starting around the middle of the cycle. Can't even wear a bra within about a week. Usually the day I start or the second day, the pain has abated to nearly nothing, though in between it's almost like being engorged again. Yuck. After going in twice to my OB for the pain, he sent me for an u/s. Says it's 'fibrocystic breasts,' basically that I have several harmless, small cysts. They well and hurt like hell around that time of the month, but they aren't dangerous. Doc said going on birth control could help, otherwise just expect pain and take some ibuprofen and heat or cold if it gets intense, avoid heavy caffeine use. Not that I like the pain, but after the u/s I could manage it knowing there's nothing dangerous in there. I've found massage (husband loves that part), sometimes alternating heat/cold, and ibuprofen help me deal. Funny that I've never had the issue while lactating. :-/
(Come to think of it... my mom had them too, in fact; had one that filled with fluid about where it sounds like you're talking, under the armpitish, right where the back of an underwire might hit. Hers got to be the size of a golf ball, but after aspiration, it never came back like that.)
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