Is It Safe To Breastfeed When You Are Suffering From Fever?


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Breastfeeding mothers often suffer from a breast inflammation condition known as Mastitis. The disease may cause high fever with shivering, and it mostly occurs in lactating mothers within the first six months of delivery.

Mothers get worried with such critical health conditions and do not understand how to deal with such illnesses. Read the following post, to get detailed information about whether is it safe to breastfeed while having a fever or not.

Why Breastfeeding Mothers Suffer From High Fever?

During the breastfeeding phase, mothers may suffer from breast inflammation, caused due to the blockage of the milk duct. The disease is termed Mastitis, and it is the resultant of the infection present in the mammary gland of the lactating mothers. Mastitis is most common to occur during the first six months of breastfeeding, and the mother can suffer from high fever along with shivering and flu (1).

[ Read: How To Treat Mastitis While Breastfeeding ]

Symptoms Of Mastitis In Lactating Mothers:

Lactating mothers suffering from the disease of Mastitis may often encounter some signs and symptoms of the disease (2).

  • High fever and chills
  • Skin redness
  • Pain or a burning sensation during breastfeeding
  • Swelling of the breast
  • Breast tenderness
  • Liquid or pus discharge from nipple
  • Lump in breast
  • Warm area in breast tissue
  • Itchiness
  • Body aches

Causes of Mastitis In Lactating Mothers:

Mastitis in lactating mothers can make her suffer from severe illness and high fever. Some of the causes of Mastitis are: (3)

  • Blockage of milk- If the baby is not able to suck enough amount of milk, the milk ducts may get clogged. Blockage of milk duct can induce severe pain and inflammation in the breast, and it can further lead to cause breast infection or Mastitis.
  • Entry of harmful bacteria in the breast- Bacteria can enter the mother’s breast from her own skin’s surface or through her baby’s mouth and can thereby enter the milk ducts. This can cause breast infection and the mother can suffer from high fever and sore breast.

[ Read: Home Remedies To Treat Sore Breasts During Breastfeeding ]

Is It Safe To Breastfeed While Having A Fever?

Lactating mothers suffering from high fever caused due to Mastitis can continue to feed her baby. There is no risk of danger for the baby. In fact, regular breastfeeding opens the blockage of the milk ducts and the stagnation of milk is highly prevented (4).

Doctors may often prescribe antibiotics to cure high fever for lactating mother. But most of these antibiotics pass in smaller quantities through the breast milk and do not cause any significant health problems for the baby.

[ Read: Tips For Treating Common Breastfeeding Problems ]

Preventive Measures To Be Adopted By The Lactating Mothers:

Lactating mothers are advised to adopt a healthy lifestyle to prevent the disease of Mastitis, which can cause high fever and other health discomforts. Some of the preventive measures may include: (5)

  • Mothers should thoroughly wash their hands before touching the breasts for feeding their baby.
  • The breastfeeding position should be correct and the baby should be attached to the breast properly.
  • Prevent long gaps between feeds. Frequent breastfeeding can avoid stagnation of milk or clogging of milk ducts.
  • Mothers need to wear loose and comfortable clothing.
  • Avoid usage of nipple creams or ointments.
  • Wash the breasts with mild soap and rinse them thoroughly with warm water before feedings.

When To Seek Medical Help?

Lactating mothers suffering from intense breast pain or high fever should always consult their medical consultant immediately. All the prescribed medications must be taken according to the doctor’s advice and recommendation.

These simple curative measures can help the lactating mothers to stay away from fever and harmful infections. You may want to lead a healthy life during your breastfeeding phase. So, take a little care for yourself and ensure better health conditions of your newborn baby.

Do you know any home remedy to cure the fever of lactating mothers? Have you gone through similar symptoms of fever and Mastitis in you early stages of motherhood? Do share your experiences with other moms here!


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