Throughout breastfeeding, some conditions may occur, among which it is known by the name of pearl of milk, which is nothing more than a white and pearly point, like a kind of blister that appears on the mother's nipple and causing severe pain at the time the baby is breastfed. But, what the white dots mean on the breast of the nursing mother?
A couple of weeks ago a mother contacted me to give her lactation advice. She had a second baby, who was breastfed. For three days, the nursing mother, every time she breastfed her baby, felt intense pain in her left breast, kind of pangs.
He added, almost through tears, that he could not tolerate the pain and that he noticed that there was a little white spot on that chest that appeared for the first time. Evidently Claudia was worried about her pain, she did not want to end her breastfeeding, but the pain was unbearable. When I examined it, I discovered what was wrong with it: this white point was a pearl of milk.
Breastfeeding is the best and main food throughout the first year of life. Different organizations, including the World Health Organization (WHO), recommend offering exclusively in the first 6 months of life, on demand and without schedules. Hard work for the mother, but at the same time rewarding with great benefits for her, for the baby and for society.
Breastfeeding is a beautiful adventure that is not without certain obstacles or difficulties, such as the appearance of white dots on the breast, also known as white pearls. ¿Why do white spots appear on the chest? There are several causes and it is very important to determine them in order to better treat them.
- Trauma such as nipple bites.
- Bad breastfeeding technique with inadequate grip.
- Mastitis (infection in the breast) in the mother's breasts.
In the report 'Problems in breastfeeding', carried out by the pediatrician Margarita Tomico del Río, it establishes as the milk pearls or white dots, as one of the reasons why many women abandon breastfeeding along with the lack of milk or problems in technique.
In most cases, the pearl of milk heals spontaneously. After about 5 to 7 days it tends to disappear with the same forceful sucking that the baby exerts on the breast.
However, what follows will be of great help to cure it, without a doubt being necessary the assessment of a consultant or lactation specialist to determine if you are facing mastitis and if you need to comply with antibiotics or another specific treatment.
1. Improves chest latch technique. Make sure your baby's mouth is wide open, his upper and lower lips everted (that is, both outward), rounded cheeks, and aligned head, shoulder, and hips.
2. Massage the breast before offering your baby. So if there are obstructions (you also notice because you touch some balls on your breasts) they will soften and the milk held there can drain.
3. Apply local heat. To do this, help yourself with a warm water bottle or soap before offering the breast to the baby.
4. Change baby's position when breastfeeding. On a horse, as a rugby ball, lying down, cradling ... It will be a way to ensure that all the quadrants of the chest are emptied correctly.
5. For nothing in the world, pierce the pearl with a needle. This procedure should be done in any case by the lactation consultant or specialist, if deemed necessary if the pearl does not resolve or is very difficult to solve. The material to be used must be previously sterilized, if you try it at home you could aggravate the problem by causing a serious infection in your breasts.
Finally, the appearance of milk pearls It is not a reason to suspend breastfeeding, in any case, on the contrary, that breast must work continuously and, if possible, more so that this pearl can heal.
And, keep in mind that the milk pearl can repeat and that, if this condition becomes repetitive, it is important that you seek lactation counseling and determine what may be happening.
Have you ever read about pearl of milk? Has it happened to you?
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