Are you a nursing mother suffering from cracked nipples? Do your nipples hurt while you breastfeed? If you nodded along solemnly, you most probably are suffering from a yeast infection, and you need to see a doctor as soon as possible. What is breastfeeding yeast infection? How to spot it? How to treat it effectively? Read on to get answers to all you questions here.
What Is Yeast Infection?
Yeast infection, also popular as Candida, occurs due to the excess of yeast in warm, moist, and dark areas, such as persistently wet nipple areas in nursing mothers. Yeast infections are quite common during pregnancy since high levels of estrogen hormone raises the sugar levels and yeast feeds on sugar. About 75% of women suffer from yeast infections during breastfeeding. Early detection and treatment can help you get rid of the infection.
Causes Of Yeast Infection In Nursing Mothers:
Yeast infections can occur due to many reasons. Here are some prominent causes of yeast infections while breastfeeding.
- Use of antibiotics since they promote the growth of yeast
- High levels of estrogen during pregnancy
- Use of hormonal contraceptives or steroids
- Moist and wet areas near nipples (1)
[ Read: Symptoms Of Thrush During Breastfeeding ]
Symptoms Of Yeast Infection In Nursing Mothers:
What are the symptoms of a yeast infection? Here we list some common symptoms of a yeast infection while nursing.
- Burning pain in nipples
- Severe stinging sensation in nipples
- Cracked nipples
- Sharp pain radiating from nipples into breast, arm, or back
- Tiny blisters or sores on the nipples
- Nipples appear scaly, wet, and flaky
- Reduction in the milk supply
[ Read: Common Breastfeeding Problems ]
Treating Yeast Infection While Breastfeeding:
It is very important to treat yeast infection in the nursing moms as it can affect your baby adversely. Here are some tips to treat breastfeeding yeast infections and prevent its growth and expansion.
1. Drink Green Tea:
Drinking green tea thrice or four times every day helps cleanse your system. The remedial tea helps rid your body of the yeast infection effectively.
[ Read: Plugged Ducts While Breastfeeding ]
2. Eat Yogurt:
Eating yogurt can help treat yeast infection in nursing mothers. Along with yogurt, you can have one or two capsules supplying Caprylic acid every day to reduce the symptoms of the infection. Consult your physician for the right dosage.
3. Rinse Your Nipples And Apply Cream After Nursing:
Add one tablespoon of vinegar to a cup of water and rinse your nipples after each feeding. Let it dry well since moist areas are favorable for the growth of yeast. You can also apply antifungal creams, such as Gyne-Lotrimin, Monistat, Lotramin AF, Nizoral to treat the infection. Seek medical assistance when using creams to treat the infection. If you suffer from chronic pain, apply the cream after each feeding or six to eight times every day. Your skin quickly absorbs the cream. However, if it persists, you can remove it using a warm cloth before nursing your baby.
4. Avoid Nursing Pads:
Nursing pads may keep your nipples moist, which promotes the growth of yeast. So, avoid wearing nursing pads to keep your nipples dry.
[ Read: Symptoms of Mastitis While Breastfeeding ]
5. Avoid Eating High-Sugar Foods:
Eating foods high in sugar promotes the growth of yeast. So avoid eating foods rich in sugar that include desserts, beer, sodas, wine, bread, and other sugar-rich foods.
6. Dietary Supplements:
Have dietary supplements comprising Lactobacillus acidophilus, which promotes the growth of good bacteria and aids eliminating yeast infection. You can have ¼ or ½ teaspoon of powder or one or two capsules daily. Consult your physician for the appropriate dose. (2)
Did you suffer from yeast infection while breastfeeding? How did you treat it? Tell us your story below. Leave a comment.
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