I had no issues beginning breastfeeding (for which I am thankful) and now DD is 9 months and we're still happily at it BUT.... When she was somewhere between 7 and 8 months I noticed some dry skin patches, on on each areola. Thinking it may have something to do with her new teeth rubbing or such I applied lanolin and they disappeared. But not entirely. And now they're back. And ITCHY. I'm 99% sure it's not thrush/yeast and have had that hunched confirmed by both my midwife and a nurse whose parenting playgroup we attend. DD has no symptoms, no weird mouth and I have no pain just itching. The patches don't seem to bother DD either. They get more inflamed with stress, be it from emotions, lack of sleep, sugar, caffeine or some other food I'm sensitive too. I get a really similar thing on my eyelids which makes me think it's eczema too.
So my question is, What do I do now? Other than avoid the things that seem to most aggravate it? The patches have stayed on my areolas until now but on the most affected side, there's some spots on the actual nipple now :( If I apply lanolin 3xs a day so that my nipples never really try out, it seems to help. Other nipple balms don't seem to do anything but rub off. Haven't tried any kind of shield and am hesitant to do so. I've started taking evening primrose.
With my eyelids, after trying every natural remedy I could think of, I've had to use hydrocortisone cream. Only a tiny bit but I'm not willing to put steroids on my nipples. (Unless it was a do it or stop nursing thing of course.)
I have a similar thing - glad I'm not the only one! :) I asked my doctor about it but at the time it didn't look so bad - it has times during the days where it's not so bad - and she just suggested it being dry skin from the winter weather, to keep putting nipple cream on it like I had been, and that it'll probably go away after winter is over. I'm hoping!