MoonDragon's Pregnancy Information
BREASTS & BREASTFEEDING
For "Informational Use Only".
For more detailed information, contact your health care provider
about options that may be available for your specific situation.
Breast Care & Breastfeeding Overview Engorgement Sore Nipples Plugged Duct Mastitis (Breast Infection) Recommended Breastfeeding Herbs Nutritional Health While Breastfeeding Nutritional Supplements Breastfeeding Considerations Activity Recommendations & Restrictions Notify Your Midwife or Health Care Provider Breastfeeding-Related Links Recommended Products
BREAST CARE & BREASTFEEDING OVERVIEW
The milk "comes in" on the third or fourth postpartum day and there is some initial discomfort with the engorgement and fluid retention (edema) in the breasts along with milk leakage. This is nature's way of making sure the mother has enough milk to feed her baby (or babies, if more than one baby was delivered).
Homebirth mothers who are breastfeeding should have a postpartum midwife visit about this same time and should receive instructions on how to relieve the discomfort. If not, contact your midwife or a breastfeeding consultant or Le Leche League group in your area.
Breastfeeding should have been established with the baby nursing on demand and receiving the colostrum for the first few days. But, extra help may be needed since the engorgement may create new problems (such as the baby having difficulty latching on to a full, hard nipple and breast and maternal frustration).
The midwife should instruct the mother about how to express excess milk using her hands and/or a breast pump to relieve the engorgement. This is done by taking both hands and placing them on each side of the full breast, one on the inside by the breastbone and the other up and under the arm. Firm strokes are to be done from the furthest point from the nipple... towards the nipple. This forces stored milk out of the milk glands and down to the nipple to be released. Warning, the milk can spray quite a distance, so it would be wise to place a clean towel, or container over the nipple area to catch the expressed milk (the shower is an excellent place to do this, not only for the mess, but the warm water feels great on the sore breasts and helps to provide a lubricated surface for the hands on the skin of the breasts). A simple breast pump may be placed over the nipple that may have a reservoir or container attached to it for storage of the breastmilk for later use. A mild oil (such as almond oil) or lotion (that may be washed off before breastfeeding begins) can be used on the breast to aid in the stroking motion, reducing friction and irritation if necessary. Continue to stoke and express until engorgement is relieved and the baby is able to grasp the nipple to nurse.
The mother should feed her baby frequently and as often as s/he is hungry. Some babies this is every 1.5 to 2 hours, others it may be closer to 3 hours. The baby should be fed on demand and not by any set schedule. This will allow the breasts to become regulated to the baby's hunger needs.
When breastfeeding, the breast that was last fed on in the previous feeding should be the first breast started on in the next feeding. This allows each breast to be completely emptied during feedings and prevents engorgement and mastitis. Partway through the feeding the baby is switched to the other breast and s/he nurses until full. It is this breast that should begin the next feeding, since usually it is not completely emptied at this time. Until your nipples are toughened up, be sure to use a Vitamin E oil or a Lanolin cream (read labels and use something specific for breastfeeding mothers) on your nipples to prevent soreness or cracking of the nipple tissue.
Be prepared between feedings to experience the "let-down" of milk. This is a tingling, sometimes uncomfortable feeling in the breasts where the milk is released and available to your baby. This sensation may occur when you are thinking about your baby, when you hear a baby cry, and when you begin to nurse your baby. This is your body's way of reminding you that you need to feed your baby. It is wise to wear extra thick cotton pads or nipple shields in your bra at this time. Change these frequently so the nipple is not exposed to excess moisture over a length of time. The milk will literally flow down the front of your clothes without protection.
For non-nursing mothers, the engorgement will start to decrease after 2 to 3 days. Pain and discomfort can be eased with the use of ice packs, mild pain medicine (acetaminophen) and wearing a support bra. Special drugs to suppress lactation are no longer available, but some herbal remedies, such as Sage and Parsley teas or eating parsley, fresh or encapsulated. Other suggestions, were not to stimulate the breasts (hot water, or other ways), and to use ice packs, or frozen green peas wrapped in cloth molded to the breasts. Homeopathic remedies include lac caninum and sometimes pulsatilla. Some people recommend Urtica Urens 1X, every 6 hours to suppress milk flow.
The use of Cabbage leaves is a very old treatment for postpartum breastmilk engorgement relief and to suppress milk flow. It has been used in England as far back as 25 years ago. Cabbage leaves have also been used for various other complaints over the years. The cabbage belongs to the Brassicacae Family and contains mustard oil, magnesium, oxalate and sulphur heterosides. Sulphur in amino acid methionine acts as an antibiotic and anti-irritant, which in turn draws an extra flow of blood to the area. This dilates the capillaries and acts as a counter irritant, thus relieving the engorgement and inflammation and allowing milk to flow freely. Use fresh, cold cabbage leaves frequently for the postnatal women with breastmilk engorgement. Separate two fresh (not cooked) leaves and gently bruise the inner side with a kitchen utensil i.e. rolling pin. Then one leaf is placed on each breast for 15 to 20 minutes. This can be repeated as often as desired. It works fantastically and feel very soothing as well as reduces the milk supply.
Lots of moms are very conscientious about drinking lots of fluids while they are nursing. This may stimulate additional letdown. So if you are trying to reduce the letdown, consider NOT drinking fluids right while you are nursing and notice how this changes your letdown. It is important that nursing moms drink plenty of fluids to keep their milk supply up.
Another suggestions for engorgement or for encouraging breastmilk letdown is to take a small disposable diaper and put about a cup of water in it and microwave it just for a few seconds. You have to experiment with it and really feel around so it's warm, not scalding hot. Then you take the diaper and mold it around your breast in your bra. It fits great, does not get you all wet like a washcloth and can be reheated over and over. Some women found this works wonders during those first days when they were too stressed out to get a good letdown right away, or when they needed to pump and their baby was not able to inspire them. The warm diaper worked like a charm.
MoonDragon's Breastfeeding Information
MoonDragon's Breastfeeding Problems & Nutrition Information
MoonDragon's Womens Health Information: Mastitis
Expect engorgement. A new mother usually produces lots of milk, making her breasts big, hard and painful for a few days (nature's way of providing enough milk just in case there were multiple babies born). To relieve this engorgement, she should feed the baby frequently and on demand until her body adjusts and produces only what the baby needs. In the meantime, the mother can take over-the-counter pain relievers (but keep in mind that these will most likely be passed on in breast milk), apply warm, wet compresses to her breasts and take warm baths to relieve the pain.
While taking warm showers and beginning under your arm pits, slowly and firmly apply pressure with both of your hands on each side of the engorged breast in an inward direction you massage toward the nipple to express extra milk out of the breast while allowing the warm water to spray on the breast.
Another tip you can use to help engorgement was to get the baby to nurse on one side for a few minutes and then switching him or her to the other side for a few minutes. While nursing the first breast, you can apply a clean hand towel to the breast not being nursed to "catch" the milk flow created from the "let down"" reaction of the other breast being nursed Try switching the baby back and forth a few times to ease pressure up on both sides until both of your breasts are comfortably relieved. Finish feeding your infant off both breasts until the baby is full.
Engorgement is a temporary problem that most commonly occurs between 2 to 5 days after childbirth. It is caused by a combination of the increased blood supply to the breast and the pressure of the newly produced milk, resulting in the swelling of the tissues in the breast. A low-grade fever may be present; the breasts feel full, hard, tender, and tight; and the skin of the breasts may be hot, shiny, and distended.
Nurse on demand. Newborns need to nurse frequently, at least every two hours once engorgement has been reduced, and not on any strict schedule. This will stimulate the mother's breasts to produce plenty of milk. Later, the baby can settle into a more predictable routine. But because breast milk is more easily digested than formula, breastfed babies often eat more frequently than bottlefed babies.
ENGORGEMENT PREVENTION RECOMMENDATIONS
Give your baby short, frequent feedings. A feeding schedule of every 1.5 to 2 hours day and night should be maintained while engorgement lasts.
Express milk between feedings to relieve pressure (See Marmet Technique Instructions above).
Apply moist heat for 30 minutes preceding each feeding. Massage the breast during feedings to help get the milk flowing.
Do not use nipple shields, as they can confuse the baby's sucking pattern, damage nipples, reduce stimulation of the breast, and decrease the milk supply.
To prevent engorgement, feed your baby on demand and without delay, and allowing unrestricted suckling time. Do not skip or delay feedings during the day or night. Do not give your baby any formula or sugar water, and allow the baby to empty each breast completely at each feeding. This should take about 7 minutes on each side.
Drink Sage tea or infusion. Sage is an anti-galactagogue and dries up milk. If you want to continue breastfeeding, use this remedy carefully.
Take 2 drops of Poke Root tincture daily to decrease swelling. The same dose can be used to prevent engorgement.
RECOMMENDED SUPPLEMENT PRODUCTS
Poke Root Herbal Products Sage Herbal Products
Sore nipples are usually caused by improper nursing positions and nursing schedules, or incorrect sucking by the baby. They can also be caused by infection, most commonly with the fungus Candida albicans.
Air Dry. In the early postpartum period or until her nipples toughen, the mother should air dry her them after each nursing to prevent them from cracking, which can lead to infection. If her nipples do crack, the mother can coat them with breast milk or other natural moisturizers to help them heal. Vitamin E oil and Lanolin are commonly used, although some babies may have allergic reactions to them. Proper positioning at the breast can help prevent sore nipples. Soreness can be caused when the baby does not have the nipple far enough back in his or her mouth.
SORE NIPPLE RECOMMENDATIONS
Proper positioning is important. The baby's mouth should be wide open, with the nipple as far back into his or her mouth as possible. This minimizes soreness for the mother. A midwife, lactation consultant, nurse, or other knowledgeable person can help her find a comfortable nursing position.
Nurse on the least sore side first. However, it both breasts are sore, hand-express (massage the breast) until letdown occurs and milk is readily available to the baby. Make sure that the baby's jaws exert pressure on the least tender spots. Do not pull away when the baby is about to begin feeding. Learn to relax.
Use dry heat such as a low-wattage electric bulb placed 12 to 18 inches from the breast for 10 to 15 minutes following each feeding.
If cracked nipples accompany soreness, apply Aloe Vera gel to the nipples to alleviate pain and promote healing.
To prevent sore nipples, feed your baby frequently to avoid having a baby who is overly hungry bite down roughly on the nipple. Change nursing positions often to rotate the pressure of the baby's mouth on the breast, and learn to break suction correctly. Between feedings, keep the nipples dry. Expose them to sunlight and air. Do not wash them with soap, alcohol, or petroleum-based products, which can wash away their natural protection.
If the pain is severe and persists despite these measures, it may be a sign of a candida infection. See Fungal Infection or Candida Infection. Consult with your midwife or health care provider, if necessary.
For Sore Nipples: Grate one medium potato; mix well with 2 to 3 teaspoons Slippery Elm powder. Form into small patty and place on disturbed area for 10 to 15 minutes, 1 to 3 times a day. This remedy may be used on hemorrhoids as well.
PREVENTING SORE NIPPLES
Expose breasts to air; do not wear bra all day and night. Wear your nursing bra with the flaps down whenever possible. Expose breasts to sunlight or brief periods of ultraviolet light (maximum of 3 minutes, but increase to this level very gradually). Make sure you place the baby correctly making certain that the entire areola (dark area) is in his/her mouth and that the nipple is centered.
Experiment with different nursing positions. Nurse often so baby does not get hungry enough to tear at the breasts. Avoid washing the nipples with soap. Soap removes the natural oils and predisposes the nipple to chapping and cracking. Cologne, deodorant, and powder should also be kept away from the nipples.
SORE NIPPLE REMEDIES
Apply crushed ice in a wet cloth or a wet and frozen gauze pad to the nipples immediately before nursing. Ice is a good local pain killer; it also helps bring out soft or small nipples or the nipple of a very full-breast so the baby can feed more easily.
Yarrow leaf poultices or ointment totally relieves pain and heals cracked nipples rapidly.
Vitamin E can help heal and strengthen the nipples. Apply the oil after nursing. Be sure to use only pure Vitamin E, not preparations or synthetics.
Rub Olive Oil, Sweet Almond oil, Lanolin, or Comfrey root ointment into the nipples throughout the latter part of the pregnancy and the beginning weeks of nursing. Use Comfrey root ointment to soften and strengthen nipples at the same time. Comfrey root ointments are exceptionally soothing to sensitive nipples and rapidly heal any fissures or bruises. Be sure to rinse any ointment off the areola before nursing so the baby can grasp the breast properly.
Try homemade or commercial Calendula ointment to heal and strengthen nipples.
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Herbal Ointments - Healing Wound Salves
Incomplete emptying of the milk ducts by the baby, or the wearing of a tight bra, can cause a plugged duct. Soreness and a lump in one area of a breast is an indication of this problem.
Check the nipple very carefully for any tiny dots of dried milk, and remove them by gentle cleansing. Together with frequent nursing on the affected breast, this should allow the duct to clear itself within 24 hours.
Massage the breasts with firm pressure, from the chest wall toward the nipple, to stimulate milk flow.
Alter the position of the baby on the nipple so all the ducts are drained.
Make sure you offer the affected breast first, when the baby's sucking is strongest.
When a breastfeeding woman has a plugged duct or mastitis, have her crush Ginger root and massage it over the pinkened area above the duct. This improves blood flow. Some women have succeeded using whiskey or Tiger Balm. Make a poultice of Alfalfa and minced Garlic, moistened with warmed Lemon juice. Apply over the affected area ten to twenty minutes before nursing. A moist heat pack may also be helpful.
The usual recommended dosage for recurrent plugged ducts is 3,600 to 4,800 mg Lecithin per day, or 1 capsule (1200 milligram) 3 to 4 times per day. After a week or two with no blockage, the breastfeeding mom can reduce the dosage by one capsule. If there is no blockage within another 2 weeks she can reduce it again by one. The breastfeeding mom may need to continue taking 1 to 2 capsules per day if stopping the Lecithin leads to additional plugged ducts.
For more information about lecithin and blocked ducts see: KellyMom.com: Lecithin Treatment for Recurrent Plugged Ducts
POULTICES FOR SORE BREASTS
Poultice, compresses, and soaks are the best general first aid for painful breasts. Hot water alone has a beneficial effect, as it stimulates circulation and eases the tension in taut tissues; herbs increase the effectiveness. Frequent (4 to 5 times a day), short (3 to 5 minutes), consistent applications work better than sporadic, lengthy treatments. If infection is present, throw away poulticing materials after use. If there is no infection, brews and towels may be reused a number of times.
Run a sink full of warm water. Bend over it with your breasts in the sink. Allow the milk to flow out, massaging down from the back of the breast toward the nipple. This relieves engorgement and eases pain. This can also be done while in the shower with hot water flowing on the breasts while massaging the milk from the back of the breast to toward the nipple.
Use a hot compress of Parsley to ease swollen and painful breasts. Place a handful of fresh or dried Parsley leaves in a clean cotton diaper, tie with a rubber band, and steep in simmering water for 10 to 15 minutes. Use as a compress on the breast with the hot wet bundle.
Try a hot compress of Comfrey leaves, fresh or dried, to soothe sore nipples, soften engorged tissues, reduce the pain of swollen breasts, and help unblock tubes and ducts. Prepare and use like Parsley.
Prepare a cold poultice of grated raw Potato to draw out the heat of inflammation, localize infection, and unblock clogged tubes. Grate raw potato and apply directly to the breasts, covering with a clean cloth. Remove or replace when dry.
Soak breasts in a slimy blend of Slippery Elm and Marshmallow root. It delightfully soothes tender tissues, opens clogged ducts and tubes, powerfully draws out infection, and diminishes the pain of engorged, inflamed breasts and sore nipples. Make an infusion of the dried root, steeping two ounces in a half gallon of boiling water overnight. Reheat the infusion to near boiling. Pour it into a sink or basin and soak the breasts until the infusion cools.
Gently warm a handful of dried Elder blossoms in just enough Olive Oil to cover; keep warm for twenty minutes. Strain, cool, and rub the oil into the nipples and breasts to relieve pain and sensitivity.
(Susun Weed's Herbal for Childbearing Year)
MASTITIS (BREAST INFECTION)
If a plugged duct is not take care of, mastitis can result. Soreness and redness in the breast, fever, and flulike symptoms are indicators of this problem. In fact, in a nursing mother all flu-like symptoms should be considered a breast infection until proven otherwise.
You may use non-prescription drugs, such as acetaminophen, for minor pain and discomfort.
Antibiotics to fight infection. Finish the prescription, even if symptoms subside quickly. A major risk factor for recurring mastitis is failure to completely recover from a previous bout of mastitis due to slow treatment, incorrect treatment (wrong antibiotic, for example), or treatment that was not long enough. Amoxil is often ineffective against the bacteria that causes mastitis. Some of the drugs "of choice" for treating this are Keflex, Dicloxacillin, and Erythromycin. Treatment should continue for 10 to 14 days.
If you follow the complete course of treatment with an appropriate antibiotic and the mastitis continues to recur, a treatment course using long-term, low-dose antibiotics for 2 to 3 months or even the duration of lactation may be recommended. This type of treatment has broken the cycle of repeated mastitis for some women. If this treatment is chosen, it is also a good idea to have an antifungal medication prescribed along with the antibiotic and/or to supplement the mother's diet with Acidophilus to lessen the risk of thrush.
Note: Almost all drugs have been found to enter a nursing mother's milk, including acetaminophen (Tylenol) and others), alcohol, amphetamines, antibiotics, antihistamines, aspirin, barbiturates, caffeine, cimetidine (Tagamet), cocaine, decongestants, diazepam (valium), ergotamine, chlordiazepoxide (Librium), marijuana, nicotine, and opiates (codeine, meperidine [Demerol], morphine). Some of the effects of these drugs can have on an infant include diarrhea, rapid heart rate, restlessness, irritability, crying, poor sleeping, vomiting, and convulsions. In addition, some of these drugs may accumulate in an infant's body and cause addiction. Do not take any medication unless it is absolutely necessary and only under the direction of your health care provider or midwife.
MASTITIS TREATMENT RECOMMENDATIONS
Drink plenty of fluids. Get plenty of rest. Apply heat with a hot water bottle or heating pad. Do not stop nursing your baby; if you do, the ducts will remain full, and overfilled ducts can worsen the problem.
Note: FYI - Because Cabbage leaves are used to treat sore nipples, mastitis, and many other kinds of "itis," Cabbage leaves can be placed on top of a maxi pad to treat vaginitis. You can experience complete relief from burning and itching within a couple of hours.
Your health care provider may prescribe antibiotics that can be taken by a nursing mother.
In rare cases, a breast infection results in a breast abscess, in which the sore breast fills with pus. An abscess may have to be incised to allow drainage. This procedure is performed in a health care provider's office. If an abscess develops, milk should be hand-expressed (massaged) from the infected breast and discarded. Breastfeeding should continue on the uninfected breast until the abscess is healed.
MASTITIS NON-ANTIBIOTIC THERAPY
Take mom's and baby's clothes off, get into bed and nurse, nurse, nurse (mastitis appears to be the body's way of telling mom to SLOW DOWN). Get as much rest as possible.
If the mastitis does not improve or gets worse after treatment for 24 to 48 hours, contact your health care provider or midwife - you may need antibiotic treatment.
When your baby nurses on the affected side (use that side first), massage the breast towards the nipple. Massage the breast often during feedings and between feedings to help loosen the plugged area.
A very warm shower can help - let the water just run over your breast.
MASTITIS HERBAL THERAPY
Between feedings, use a cold compress on the breast to help with any inflammation. Some moms use hot compresses directly before nursing, but others prefer to stick to the cold. Compresses and poultices that can be helpful. make a Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) infusion: to make an infusion, add 2 to 4 teaspoons of fresh or dried Rosemary to a cup of boiling water. Infuse (steep) for 10 minutes, then strain. Treatment of mastitis with herbs should include hot applications to the breasts at least 4 times daily. Plenty of bed rest and nursing as often and as long as possible on the infected breast.
Elder root, dug and grated fresh into boiling water, makes an excellent poultice for mastitis.
Echinacea root (echinacea augustifolia) is an excellent treatment for even severe cases of mastitis. It can be used as a poultice and taken internally as a herbal medication. Use Echinacea as an infusion by steeping 1 ounce of the root in a pint of boiling water and steep it overnight or at least 8 hours. Drink two cups daily until fever comes down. Then make a lighter infusion; one ounce of the root in a quart of boiling water and drink one or two cups daily for another week. If you must resort to tincture, use 1/2 drop per pound of body weight as a single dose. Repeat the dose up to 6 times a day until the fever remits. Continue with 2 to 3 doses daily for another 7 days or until all symptoms are cleared.
Make a Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) compress: boil about an ounce of minced Dandelion root in two to three cups of water until only half the liquid remains; use compresses of the resulting brew.
Use a Fenugreek Seed poultice. Taken internally, Fenugreek helps to increase milk supply of mothers.
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Poultices
Poke Root (Phytolacca) is a wide spread weed with tall magenta stalks and black berries. A tincture of the fresh (only) root stimulates lymph gland activity and clears mastitis quickly. Poke root is potent and the effect is cumulative; use no more than 2 drops of tincture daily. It can be combined with Echinacea, but it may be effective as a simple remedy.
Bee Propolis is a substance secreted by bees as a glue. It has a history of use against infection in Russia and a strong following among midwives in North America. It is said to accelerate healing time by increasing the body's metabolism and general resistance to disease. A dose of the tincture is 10 to 15 drops twice a day. It combines well with Echinacea.
For maternal fever, use raw Garlic - At least 2 to 3 raw cloves per day, 4 to 5 cloves a day if possible. Chop a clove into 5 or 6 pieces and then swallow the pieces whole like pills. Raw garlic acts as a broad-spectrum antibiotic, without the added antibiotic side effects of the development of antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria, or the development of yeast infections or thrush. The antimicrobial property in garlic, allicin, is very sensitive to heat and is destroyed when cooked. In order for it to work, it needs to be raw. Swallowing the cloves with orange juice helps with the taste for some. Allicin is also what gives garlic its pungent odor, so the deodorized garlic capsules that some companies offer are essentially useless, if they are being taken for the antimicrobial properties. However, deodorized garlic is still beneficial for its blood pressure reducing properties and for stimulating the immune system.
Echinacea tincture, 3 to 4 times/day, for immune support.
Oregon Grape root tincture, 3 to 4 times a day, to promote a healthy immune system.
Vitamin C (3,000 to 5,000 mg/day megadose). Vitamin C helps to build and maintain a healthy immune system.
Another option: Mix a dropperful of Echinacea tincture, three cloves of raw Garlic and four to six ounces of Carrot juice in a blender and drink the mixture every two hours.
Use a mastitis herbal treatment made of a tincture mixture of Chamomile, Garlic, Rosehips extract (use Rose Hips powder if tincture is not available), Echinacea and Fenugreek with Walnut Flower Essence and Larch Flower Essence. Store in a 100 ml Bottle. Dose 20 drops three times daily taken in a glass of cold Rosehips tea. Drinking 3 cups of Rosehips tea daily (hot or cold) makes an immediate difference to your immunity and will assist the mix and use the Chamomile tea will provide extra fluid and will help relax the parasympathetic nervous systems responses involved in the letdown process.
MASTITIS HOMEOPATHIC REMEDIES
Some moms have success with the following homeopathic treatment:
2 doses Hepar Sulphur and 2 doses of Phytolacca (allow pellets to dissolve in mouth). The doses are to be taken as follows:
First, take Hepar Sulphur 30C - 3 pellets,
3 hours later, take Phytolacca 30C - 3 pellets,
3 hours later, take Hepar Sulphur 30C - 3 pellets,
3 hours later, take Phytolacca 30C - 3 pellets.
For more suggestions about postpartum breast care, engorgement, and mastitis, see these links:
MoonDragon's Holistic Post-Partum Instructions
MoonDragon's Womens Health Information: Mastitis
RECOMMENDED SUPPLEMENT PRODUCTS
Acidophilus Supplement Products Bee Propolis Supplement Products Castor Oil Herbal Products Chamomile Herbal Products Dandelion Herbal Products Echinacea Herbal Products Elder Herbal Products Fenugreek Herbal Products Garlic Herbal Product Hepar Sulphur Homeopathic Products Larch Flower Essence Products Oregon Grape Herbal Products Phytolacca (Poke Root) Homeopathic Products Poke Root Herbal Products Rosehips Herbal Products Rosemary Herbal Products Vitamin C Supplement Products Walnut Flower Essence Products
RECOMMENDED BREASTFEEDING HERBS
Any of the following herbs can be beneficial for the nursing mother.
ALFALFA: Alfalfa is one of the best natural sources of vitamin K and a rich source of vitamins A, B Complex, C, D, and E, biotin, carotenes, calcium, phosphorus, choline, inositol, PABA, actacosonal, trace minerals including iron, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium, chlorophyll, and many other nutrients. Alfalfa is an excellent tonic for the whole body and it may help build iron levels in blood. It contains natural fluoride that may help rebuild tooth decay and strengthen tooth enamel. It is a good infection fighter and may help cleanse the body of toxins. Alfalfa contains 8 digestive enzymes, thereby aiding the digestion of protein, fat, and carbohydrates. The resultant improved assimilation is helpful for gastritis, indigestion, morning sickeness, and nausea. Alfalfa tea is an appetite stimulator. Vitamin K helps blood to clot by moving calcium into proteins that form a microscopic net to capture red blood cells. Vitamin K likewise helps bones to knit by working with vitamin D and glutamic acid to activate osteocalcin. The combination of these three nutrients is essential to building good bone. Your body can not use calcium without it. Alfalfa not only helps keep calcium in bones, it helps keep calcium out of the linings of arteries. Good for the pituitary gland and to help the quantity and quality of mother’s milk. Alfalfa is used with homeopathic remedy Lactuca Virosa to stimulate milk production in breastfeeding mothers. It can also be used with Blessed Thistle, Fenugreek, and/or Marshmallow for this purpose.
ALOE VERA JUICE: Aloe Vera juice helps to heal sore nipples when applied topically. Apply the fresh clear gel from a fresh aloe vera leaf to soothe and heal sore and cracked nipples. Be sure to wash it off before nursing as the taste can be bitter.
BLESSED THISTLE: Modern herbal applications of blessed thistle are based on a long history of use in Europe and in Indian Ayurvedic medicine. Blessed Thistle is used to treat digestive ailments fundamentally caused by insufficient secretion of stomach acid. The herb's bitter taste triggers a reflex reaction that releases gastric juices into the stomach, especially those needed to digest fats. For this reason, modern herbalists agree that the plant is helpful for loss of appetite, upset stomach, and gas, although it may be better to take the herb before these symptoms occur (such as before eating a fatty meal), rather than after. Used to tone the female reproductive system and relieve cramps. The herb is also antibacterial. Used to enrich and enhance milk flow, stimulating milk production in breastfeeding mothers, used with Alfalfa, Fenugreek, and/or Marshmallow for this purpose.
DANDELION: Dandelion root is a natural diuretic and improves appetite and minor digestive problems. As a tea it is warm and soothing and acts as a blood cleanser. Dandelion root is a mild chloretic, that is, an agent for stimulating the release of bile from the liver into the gallbladder. The herb is used to support treatment of a variety of liver and gallbladder disorders, especially the incomplete digestion of fats. The release of bile is laxative, and accelerates the breakdown of various steroid hormones, causing an indirect, favorable effect on eczema and other skin conditions. Dandelion root also is one of the best herbal diuretics. It stimulates urination but also replaces the potassium lost to the increased volume of urine.
Dandelion leaves are commonly recommended as a food supplement for pregnant and postmenopausal women. Dandelion leaf is a mild chloretic, that is, an agent for stimulating the release of bile from the liver into the gallbladder. The herb is used to support treatment of a variety of liver and gallbladder disorders, especially the incomplete digestion of fats. The release of bile is laxative, and accelerates the breakdown of various steroid hormones, causing an indirect, favorable effect on eczema and other skin conditions. Dandelion leaf, like dandelion root, also is one of the best herbal diuretics. It stimulates urination but also replaces the potassium lost to the increased volume of urine.
FENNEL SEED: Fennel seed is antiseptic and secretolytic, that is, encouraging secretion of saliva and gastric juices. It also stops stomach cramps, often added to laxatives to ensure gentle action. Fennel seed teas break up congestion caused by colds and allergies. There are preliminary studies that suggest that regular consumption of fennel (as well as regular consumption of green beans, mushrooms, oranges, and prunes) might slow the progression of osteoporosis. Fennel seed powder has almost exactly the same taste and medicinal effect as whole fennel seed, except it tends to lose anethole. Powdering makes fennel a less estrogenic herb, that is, less likely to stimulate the production of estrogen in women, a characteristic that may be desirable or undesirable depending on the user.
HORSETAIL: In very high doses, horsetail is sedative and anticonvulsant. The primary use of the herb, however, is as a diuretic. Gently stimulating increased urinary flow, horsetail helps "flush" infectious bacteria out of the bladder without altering the body's balance of electrolytes. The powdered form of the herb is better when electrolytes may be depleted. It's also the form of the herb being investigated as a treatment for age-related memory impairment. Horsetail is rich in silicates and silicic acid. It is also rich in potassium, aluminum, manganese, and bioflavonoids. The bioflavonoids are thought to cause the diuretic action, while the silicon is thought to help strenghten connective tissue.
NETTLE LEAF: Nettle leaf has a tonic effect and contains iron in addition to many other nutrients.
RED RASPBERRY LEAF: Organic Raspberry Leaf tea supports the female system by aiding healthy menstruation as well as toning the uterus in preparation for childbirth. For millennia European and Native American women have safely used raspberry leaf for irregular menstruation, menstrual cramps and during pregnancy. Today naturopaths and midwives often recommend raspberry leaf tea for these traditional uses. Raspberry leaf has a robust, full-bodied flavor reminiscent of fine black tea, making it an excellent choice for a caffeine-free breakfast or afternoon tea.
The following herbs decrease milk supply, and should be avoided until a woman is no longer nursing: Black Walnut, Sage, and Yarrow.
Continue to drink MoonDragon's Pregnancy Tea Formula after the birth of your baby while breastfeeding.
MOONDRAGON'S PREGNANCY TEA RECIPE
2 parts Red Raspberry Leaf
1 part Nettle Leaf
1 part Alfalfa Leaf
1 part Peppermint Leaf
Mix dried herbs thoroughly and use a portion to make up a half gallon to a gallon of tea. This blend makes a nice sun tea that can them be refrigerated for a refreshing iced tea to be consumed throughout the day. It provides red raspberry leaf for hormonal balance and uterine toning, Nettle and Alfalfa are high in blood building vitamins and minerals, and the peppermint leaf is good for soothing the digestive system and getting it back to normal as well as giving the tea a nice minty flavor. It tastes fine unsweetened, but if the mom would like a little sweetener, use Honey. Honey is high in nutrients and digests easily. A great tea blend for not only pregnancy, but postpartum recovery. It makes a great tea blend for adding recovery tinctures to, if needed, since the flavor of the tea will help "hide" some of the flavors of the tinctures (not all of them taste good).
LACTATION BLEND RECIPE
For lactation, Blessed Thistle or Borage Leaves can be added to MoonDragon's Pregnancy Tea recipe above. The tinctures can be added by dropper-dose right to the tea and taken internally this way.
The loose leaf herbs can be put into a "tea ball" or wrapped loosely in unfolded, layered 4X4-inch gauze pads that have been tied with string, or strained out of the tea after steeping is completed. Allow the herbs to remain in hot water to steep preferably overnight. Store unused tea in the refrigerator and drink cold or reheat, if desired. If you wish to sweeten it (which usually is not necessary), add a spoonful of Honey to your tea. You can obtain quality bulk herbs our vendors such as Mountain Rose herbs (see provided links). If you buy your herbs from another retailer, make sure they are aromatic and quality fresh (they should have a pleasantly strong aroma for the individual herb, good green color, and contain few stems or other plant parts except for leaves).
SUSUN WEED'S NURSING FORMULA
1 ounce dried Blessed Thistle or Borage Leaves
1 ounce dried Red Raspberry or Nettle Leaves
1 teaspoon of any one of these seeds: Anise, Cumin, Fennel, Caraway, Coriander, Dill.
Place leaves in a half-gallon jar and fill to the top with boiling water. Cap tightly and let steep overnight. Strain out herbs and refrigerate liquid until needed. As you get ready to nurse, pour off one cupful of the brew and heat it nearly to boiling. Pour it over a teaspoon of any of the aromatic seeds. Let it brew and cool for five more minutes before drinking.
Blessed Thistle (or Borage) stimulates the milk flow and helps restore vitality to weary mothers. Red Raspberry and Nettle supply vitamins and minerals, notably calcium, needed for plentiful lactation. The aromatic seeds increase milk production and tone the digestive system; their powers are carried through the breast milk and into the child, curtailing colic and indigestion. This brew can be drunk freely, up to two quarts daily, if desired.
RECOMMENDED SUPPLEMENT PRODUCTS
Alfalfa Herbal Products Aloe Vera Herbal Products Anise Herbal Products Blessed Thistle Herbal Products Borage Herbal Products Caraway Herbal Products Coriander Herbal Products Cumin Herbal Products Dandelion Herbal Products Dill Herbal Products Fennel Herbal Products Honey Products Horsetail Herbal Products Nettle Herbal Products Peppermint Herbal Products Red Raspberry Herbal Products
NUTRITIONAL HEALTH WHILE BREASTFEEDING
There is no special diet specific to mastitis or other breastfeeding problems. Drink extra fluids while you have fever.
Eat regularly, and eat plenty of fresh food and vegetables. This will help to increase your resistance to infection. A Vitamin C supplement can be helpful for any mom suffering from recurrent plugged ducts or mastitis. Eat plenty of Brewer's Yeast, eggs, nuts and seeds, and whole grains. Raw foods should be plentiful in the diet.
Discuss the need for supplements for your baby with your health care provider or midwife. Mother's milk (breastmilk) is "nearly" a perfect food, according to researchers (they are always trying to improve on nature itself). As your baby grows, develops and ages, the breastmilk will change with your baby's nutritional needs. Most breastfed infants can be totally breastfed for up to a year or longer without additional supplementation of other foods and without nutritional deficiencies. However, most western breastfeeding mothers will start introducing solid foods somewhere between 6 months to a year of age, usually corresponding with the baby getting its first teeth and wanting to chew on everything. According to researchers, breastmilk is low in Vitamin C, Vitamin D and Iron. There may be a natural reason for this that scientists have not figured out yet having to do with the development of the infant and its nutritional requirements. They do discover new things every day. However, if you need to supplement breastmilk feedings, try using almond milk, Rice Dream (made from brown rice), or a soymilk formula with a small amount of Papaya (put through a blender). This resembles mother's milk. You can add a small amount of Blackstrap Molasses and Brewer's Yeast after the baby is a few months old to supply iron and B-vitamins. For most breastfed babies, any type of infant supplementation is not necessary as long as the mother's nutrition is good resulting in quality breastmilk. It is always recommended you consult with your health care provider or midwife before making any changes in your baby's diet.
Lack of sufficient fluids can contribute to plugged ducts. Make sure you are drinking something each time you sit down to nurse or pump. If you feel thirsty, you are dehydrated.
Too much saturated fat in the diet can be a problem. Reduce animal fats and limit your fat to polyunsaturated fats and take one tablespoon of Lecithin. Adding Lecithin to the diets of moms with recurrent plugged ducts has been shown to be very effective. Either too much salt or too little salt in the diet has been linked to this problem.
In recent studies, mothers who consumed Garlic increased their babies' desire for milk, and the babies nursed longer. Garlic is good for both mother and baby, contains antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal properties. Garlic can be consumed fresh (best- but may not be sociable) with 2 to 3 cloves of fresh Garlic eaten 3 times per day or it can be taken in Kyolic Garlic form, which is odorless and therefore more sociable.
USING SUPPLEMENTS WISELY
The following supplements are beneficial for nursing mothers. After discussion with your midwife or health care provider, you may decide to supplement your diet with these herbs, vitamins and minerals. Whatever herbs you choose to recommend to others for breastfeeding, strive toward creating a tasty blend. Nutty flavors blend well with spices, leafy tastes call for mint or citrus, and savory flavors go well in soups or broths. Bitter flavors are tough to mask, and sweeteners do not really help. For these, it is best to make small, concentrated quantities and down it quickly. A good self imposed rule that calls for first trying anything you ask someone else to take. That way you know what they are really up against, and you are more motivated to create something that tastes good.
A report from Italy describes a case where breastfed babies were made ill because their mothers were drinking large quantities of an herbal tea that was supposed to increase milk supply [Acta Paediatrica, 1994 vol. 83]. The tea contained licorice, fennel, anise and galega officinalis. It is known that both anise and fennel can get into breastmilk and they contain essential oils that can cause neurological symptoms. Two babies aged 15 and 20 days had been vomiting, became lethargic, had weak cries and poor sucking. One of the mothers also said she was drowsy and weak. Breastfeeding and herbal teas were stopped and babies and the mother rapidly improved. When breastmilk was restarted after two days, both babies were fine. -AIMS Journal, 7(1), Spring 1995
Be aware and careful about what herbs and quantities consumed and use your common sense. All things in moderation. Any herb can become a problem if taken to excess. Rotating herbs that have similar functions can help reduce problems of excess use of any one or combination of herbs. If in doubt, discuss it with your midwife, naturopathic health care practitioner, or herbalist.
INCREASING BREASTMILK SUPPLY
To increase milk, an herbal blend of these herbs works well. Drink one cup in the morning and another cup around noon, and your milk supply should increase afternoon. Even one cup in a day makes a significant difference. It contains Fennel Seed, Anise Seed, Coriander Seed, Spearmint Leaf, Lemongrass, Lemon Verbena Leaf, Marshmallow (Althea) Root, Blessed Thistle Leaf, and Fenugreek Seed, a good tasting combination. This blend can be found in Mother's Milk Tea.
The other herbal emedy found effective for increasing milk is Oats. When milk has gets low, eat a generous serving of Oatmeal for breakfast. Later in the day you can see a difference in the quantity of milk. Continue to eat this for a few days until your milk is reestablished at a sufficient level.
TO INCREASE MILK PRODUCTION
Chaste Berry and Milk Thistle are herbs that increase milk production. Take three capsules of each per day.
Other herbs commonly used to increase milk production are Fennel, Marshmallow, Goat's Rue, and Blessed Thistle.
TO DECREASE MILK PRODUCTION (FOR WEANING)
At weaning, one to two capsules each of Sage and Parsley should be taken every two to three hours.
Of course, all of these remedies should be combined with the common sense solutions of plenty of liquids for mom and enough rest. Making milk is hard work for a mom's body.
RECOMMENDED SUPPLEMENT PRODUCTS
Anise Herbal Products Blessed Thistle Herbal Products Brewers Yeast Chaste Berry Herbal Products Coriander Herbal Products Fennel Herbal Products Fenugreek Herbal Products Garlic Herbal Products Goat's Rue Herbal Products Iron Supplement Products Lecithin Supplement Products Lemongrass Herbal Products Lemon Verbena Herbal Products Marshmallow Herbal Products Milk Thistle Herbal Products Molasses Products Mother's Milk Tea Herbal Products Oats Herbal Products Papaya Herbal Products Parsley Herbal Products Sage Herbal Products Spearmint Herbal Products Vitamin C Supplement Products Vitamin D Supplement Products
NUTRIENTS Supplement Suggested Dosage Comments
Amino Acid Complex
As directed on label. To supply needed protein. Soy protein and free form amino acids are better sources than animal protein.
Calcium 1,000 to 1,500 mg daily, in divided doses, after meals and at bedtime. This has a calming effect and needed by both mother and baby. Use calcium chelate forms. Do not use bone meal or dolomite, as these may contain lead. Magnesium 500 to 750 mg daily. Needed to balance with calcium. Bifidus
1/2 teaspoon daily, between meals. For mother. Boosts immune system and provides necessary friendly bacteria. Use only unchilled water in preparation.
Produces lactic and acetic acid which lower the PH of the large intestine and deter undesirable bacteria. Protects the walls of the large intestine from colonization by invading bacteria or yeast. Inhibits bacteria which can alter nitrates into potentially harmful nitrites. Assists in the support of healthy liver function. Produces B vitamins that help the body complete the digestive process and helps to promote regularity. Bifidobacterium Bifidum assists in the absorption of calcium and other vitamins and minerals. Bifidobacteria lives on the intestinal wall, where it discourages undesirable bacteria from taking up residence and helps the large intestine dispose of unused food, helping to minimize elimination concerns. Natren's Milk-Based Formula contains natural lactulose, a specific food for the Bifidobacterium Bifidum which has been found to maximize liver support and proper elimination. The powder begins working in the mouth and gives benefits all throughout the digestive tract as well as the large intestine. Japanese researchers consider Bifidobacterium to be the most important beneficial bacteria for human health.
Bifidus Supplement Products Bifido Factor Supplement Products Life Start
1/4 teaspoon daily, added to water or juice. For infant. Use only unchilled water in preparation.
LIFE START: Life Start is designed specifically for infants, Life Start contains Bifidobacterium infantis, the most beneficial bacteria prominent in healthy infants. Providing 1 billion colony forming units (cfu) of Bifidobacterium infantis, NLS super strain per serving, Life Start encourages healthier weight gain through nitrogen retention. This is particularly important for formula-fed infants and for infants delivered by cesarean section (who do not have the benefit of acquiring beneficial bacteria as they pass through the birth canal). Pregnant women and nursing mothers may take Life Start along with their regular regimen of Healthy Trinity® to give their baby the best start possible. Life Start optimizes the health of infants as well as expectant and nursing mothers. Life Start works throughout your baby’s digestive system: Daily supplementation helps develop healthy bodies. Produces natural lactic, acetic and formic acids, to help promote a healthy digestive environment. Increases nutritional value by producing essential B vitamins. Stimulates optimal immune function in newborns. Assists absorption of calcium, vitamins and other nutrients. Even breast-fed babies need the advantages of Life Start to optimize health.
LIFE START 2: Thousands of mothers and infants have enjoyed the benefits of the original Life Start. Recent research has proven the same bacteria found in Life Start and Life Start 2, Bifidobacterium infantis, has major benefits for all ages, especially people with abdominal discomfort. Cultured in goat's milk, Life Start 2 is specially formulated to work for adults' more mature digestive tracts. Life Start 2 is available in powder and capsule formulas. Each serving is guaranteed to contain 2 billion colony forming units (cfu) of Bifidobacterium infantis, NLS super strain through the printed expiration date. Life Start 2 probiotic formula is specifically designed and formulated for children, adolescents and adults with immune system hypersensitivity that leads to occasional diarrhea, minor constipation, gas and bloating. Helps relieve constipation, gas and bloating. Cultured in goat’s milk to facilitate easy digestion, particularly important for people with intestinal disturbances. Boosts the immune system. Helps alleviate diarrhea, cramps and abdominal discomfort. Enhances the absorption of calcium, vitamins and other nutrients. Available in powder and capsules.
HEALTHY TRINITY: Healthy Trinity provides 30 billion colony forming units (cfu) of effective beneficial bacteria per capsule to enhance digestion, improve nutrient absorption, stimulate proper elimination and maximize your immune function. These exceptional probiotic super strains are also found in Natren’s Healthy Start System® of powders or capsules and, individually, in Megadophilus®, Bifido Factor® and Digesta-Lac®. The guaranteed potency and benefits of Natren’s super strains are not available from any other probiotic in the world. Only Natren® uses a unique oil matrix system that micro-enrobes three super strains of beneficial bacteria, keeping them separated, noncompetitive and protected from the stomach’s gastric juices. Healthy Trinity works to support your entire gastrointestinal (GI) system: Discourages attachment of undesirable bacteria in the GI tract. Produces hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), which research has proven will inhibit yeast and bacteria. Helps alleviate occasional gas, bloating and upper GI problems. Produces organic acids that promote normal elimination. Enhances digestion of dairy products by assisting lactose metabolism. Helps maintain normal cholesterol levels. Assists digestion of complex carbohydrates and proteins. Produces B vitamins and enhances absorption of calcium and other minerals.
Life Start, Life Start 2 & Healthy Trinity Supplement Products Vitamin B-Complex 50 mg twice daily. All nutrients are needed by both mother and baby. Needed for production of milk and to relieve stress. Brewer's Yeast Start with 1 teaspoon and work up to 1 tablespoon 3 times daily, taken in juice. All nutrients are needed by both mother and baby. Needed for production of milk and to relieve stress. A source of B-vitamins and Iron. Plus Extra
400 mcg daily. Good for relieving stress. All nutrients are needed by both mother and baby. And
3,000 mg daily. All nutrients are needed by both mother and baby. Helps immune system. Vitamin D 400 IU daily. All nutrients are needed by both mother and baby. Aids in absorption of calcium and magnesium. Multivitamin
As directed on label. To supply a balance of nutrients important in formation and metabolism of bone and connective tissue and needed for healing. All patients are needed by both mother and baby. Use a high potency formula. Iron As directed on label, by health care provider or midwife. All nutrients are needed by both mother and baby. Manganese 2 mg daily. Take separately from calcium. Do not take calcium and manganese together, as they compete for absorption.
Eat right, get rest. To produce plenty of good milk, the nursing mother needs a balanced diet that includes 500 extra calories a day and six to eight glasses of fluid. She should also rest as much as possible to prevent breast infections, which are aggravated by fatigue. She should take care of herself and her body with the same attention and dedication as she did when she was pregnant. Following the same healthy diet she did while she was pregnant is recommended plus the extra 500 calories in the form of Protein (this is equivalent to a peanut butter sandwich on whole grain bread).
MoonDragon's Nutrition Guidelines, Diets & Food Analysis Index
MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Pregnancy Diet
Relax and be happy. It is important to have and keep a sense of humor about birth and parenting. A relaxed emotional approach and a non-stressed environment to simply enjoy your new baby will go a long way towards breastfeeding (and parenting) success. The emotional state of the mother will also have effect on the baby. For a relaxed baby, the mother will need to keep herself relaxed. A stressed out mother will have a tense and fussy baby.
The UCLA Medical School reported that mother's milk kills a tiny parasite (Giardia lamblia) that can cause intestinal disease in children.
In recent studies, mothers who consumed Garlic increased their babies' desire for milk, and the babies nursed longer. Garlic is good for both the mother and the infant. Kyolic Garlic from Wakunaga is an ideal way to consume garlic since it is odorless and therefore more "sociable."
Almost all drugs have been found to enter a nursing mother's milk, including acetaminophen (Tylenol), aspirin, alcohol, amphetamines, antibiotics, antihistamines, barbiturates, caffeine, cimetidine (Tagamet), cocaine, decongestants, diazepam (Valium), ergotamine, chlordiazepoxide (Librium), marijuana, nicotine, and opiates (codeine, meperidine [Demerol], morphine). Some of the effects these drugs can have on an infant include diarrhea, rapid heart rate, restlessness, irritability, crying, poor sleeping, vomiting, restlessness, irritability, crying, poor sleeping, and convulsions. In addition, some of these drugs may accumulate in an infant's body and cause addiction.
In a study of new mothers, those who were trained and sent home from the hospital with a breast pump were found to breastfeed their infants longer than those who were given formula but no pumps.
Breastfed babies run a very low risk of ever developing meningitis or severe blood infections. They also have a 500 to 600 percent lower risk of developing childhood lymphoma and suffer from 50 percent few middle ear infections than bottlefed babies.
Breast milk contains high amounts of Inositol, a B-vitamin that plays a crucial role in survival and infant development.
Women who undergo reduction mammoplasty (breast reduction surgery) and subsequently become pregnant can retain the ability to lactate and nurse. However, in one study only 35 percent of such women breastfed successfully, whereas 65 percent either did not breastfeed or discontinued nursing for various reasons. It was not disclosed whether any of these women were actually unable to secrete sufficient amounts of milk to nurse their babies. Women who are considering breast reduction surgery should nevertheless consider this if they wish to have children later on and hope to breastfed.
There are resources available to help women learn to breastfeed successfully and to overcome any problems that arise. Certified lactation consultants are practitioners who specialize in this area. Your health care provider, the facility where you give birth, or your midwife should be able to give you a referral. La Leche League is another valuable resource for the breastfeeding mother. This is an organization of nursing women that can serve as both an educational resource and a support group.
La Leche League International
1400 N. Meacham Road
Schaumburg, IL 60173-4808
Phone: (847) 519-7730
Website: La Leche League.org
RECOMMENDED SUPPLEMENT PRODUCTS
Garlic & Kyolic Garlic Herbal Products
ACTIVITY RECOMMENDATIONS & RESTRICTIONS
Rest in bed until fever and pain diminish. Drink plenty of fluids. Breastfeed your baby as often as you can get him/her on the breast to keep the milk flowing out. To prevent plugged ducts, be sure to remove tiny drops of dried milk from the nipples and massage the breasts firmly to stimulate milk flow. If a duct becomes plugged, offer that breast first when sucking is strongest. Mastitis (breast infection) occurs when a plugged duct is left untreated. Mastitis can also occur if there are cracks in the nipple, allowing bacteria to enter. Be sure to wash hands and clean breasts before and after each feeding to help prevent further infection problems. Allow breasts to air-dry after feedings to prevent cracking.
Continue nursing on a breast with a blocked or plugged duct or tube. Cessation of nursing can increase the discomfort and endanger milk supply. But go carefully, nurse or pump every hour but just enough to empty the breast.
Right before nursing, use any of the warm compresses (see below under herbs) for five to 10 minutes.
Be sure to get plenty of rest. The blockage will usually clear within a few hours or overnight. Breast infections are almost always a sign of too little rest. Time to take a daily nap, and ten minute breaks every 2 hours: put up your feet, enjoy a cup of Violet Leaf (Blue Violet) infusion (or other suggested herbal teas seen on this page); relax deeply. It is important to nurse often, keeping the breasts empty to promote prompt healing. Note: The breast infection will NOT make your baby sick.
If you have further problems, contact your midwife or lactation consultant for more information and support.
RECOMMENDED SUPPLEMENT PRODUCTS
Violet Leaf Herbal Products
NOTIFY YOUR MIDWIFE OR HEALTH CARE PROVIDER
You have any questions about breast-feeding. You have signs of infection or problems breastfeeding your baby.
RELATED BREASTFEEDING LINKS
MoonDragon's Breastfeeding Index & Resources
MoonDragon's Postpartum Care Information - Breast Care
MoonDragon's Nutrition Guidelines, Diets & Food Analysis Index
MoonDragon's Womens Health Information: Breast Abscess
MoonDragon's Womens Health Information: Candida
MoonDragon's Pediatric Information: Thrush
MoonDragon's Pediatric Information: Neonatal Jaundice
MoonDragon's Postpartum Care Index
MoonDragon's Breastfeeding Information
MoonDragon's Breastfeeding Problems & Nutrition Information
MoonDragon's Womens Health Information: Mastitis
MoonDragon's Pregnancy Information: Herbal & Holistic Information
MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Postpartum Care
MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Index
POSTPARTUM CARE INFORMATION
Postpartum Care: Index Postpartum Care: Weight Postpartum Care: Diet Postpartum Care: Bowel Movements & Urination Postpartum Care: Bathing Postpartum Care: Breasts & Breastfeeding Postpartum Care: Perineal Care Postpartum Care: Vaginal Bleeding (Lochia) & Menstruation Postpartum Care: Exercise & Back Care Postpartum Care: Sexual Intercourse Postpartum Care: Contraception
PostPartum Visit: Day One PostPartum Visit: Day Three PostPartum Visit: Day Seven PostPartum Visit: 4 to 6 Week Visit
Baby Care & Concerns Fatigue & Exhaustion Postpartum Depression (The "Baby Blues")
MoonDragon's Pregnancy Information: Pregnancy Information & Survival Tips
MoonDragon's Pregnancy Index
MoonDragon's Womens Pregnancy Health Information Index
MoonDragon's Pediatric Information Index
MoonDragon's Parenting Information Index
MoonDragon's Nutrition Information Index
POSTPARTUM BREAST & BREASTFEEDING SUPPLEMENT PRODUCTS
Supplements and products for postpartum women (mothers of newborn babies) to help with breastfeeding and breast care for breastfeeding related problems.
Acidophilus Supplement Products Alfalfa Herbal Products Almond (Sweet) Oil Products Aloe Vera Herbal Products Amino Acid Complex Products Anise Herbal Products Bee Propolis Products Bifidus Supplement Products Bioflavonoid Supplement Products Blessed Thistle Herbal Products Borage Herbal Products Brewers Yeast Products Calcium Supplement Products Calendula Herbal Products Caraway Herbal Products Castor Oil Herbal Products Chamomile Herbal Products Chaste Berry Herbal Products Comfrey Herbal Products Coriander Herbal Products Cumin Herbal Products Dandelion Herbal Products Dill Herbal Products Echinacea Herbal Products Elder Herbal Products Fennel Herbal Products Fenugreek Herbal Products Folic Acid Supplement Products Garlic Herbal Products Ginger Herbal Products Goat's Rue Herbal Products Hepar Sulphur Homeopathic Products Homeopathic Breast Care Honey Products Horsetail Herbal Products Iron Supplement Products Lanolin Products Larch Flower Essence Products Lecithin Supplement Products Lemongrass Herbal Products Lemon Verbena Herbal Products Magnesium Supplement Products
Mammary Care Formula Manganese Supplement Products Marshmallow Herbal Products Milk Thistle Herbal Products Molasses Products Mother's Milk Tea Products Multimineral Supplement Products Multivitamin Supplement Products Natren Life Start Products Nettle Herbal Products Neuromins DHA Supplement Products Nipple Breast Care Products Nursing Pads Products Nursing Formula Products Oats Herbal Products Olive Oil Herbal Products Oregon Grape Herbal Products Papaya Herbal Products Parsley Herbal Products Peppermint Herbal Products Phytolacca Homeopathic Products Poke Root Herbal Products Prenatal DHA Omega Products Prenatal Multinutrient Products Prickly Pear Herbal Products Red Raspberry Herbal Products Rosehips Herbal Products Rosemary Herbal Products Sage Herbal Products Shatavari Herbal Products Slippery Elm Herbal Products Soy Protein Supplement Products Spearmint Herbal Products Squawvine Herbal Products Susun Weed Wise Woman Herbal Books Violet Leaf Herbal Products Vitamin B-Complex Products Vitamin C Supplement Products Vitamin D Supplement Products Vitamin E Supplement Products Walnut Flower Essence Products
QUALITY SUPPLIES & PRODUCTS
HEPAR SULPHUR HOMEOPATHIC PRODUCTS
HerbsPro: Hepar Sulphuris Calcareum 6X, Hylands, 250 Tabs (15800)
HerbsPro: Hepar Sulphuris Calcareum 30X, Hylands, 250 Tabs (15799)
HerbsPro: Hepar Sulphuris Calcareum 30C, Hylands, 2 Drams (64094)
Amazon: Hepar Sulphuris Calcareum Homeopathic Products
Nutrition Basics: Sulphur Homeopathic Information
HOMEOPATHIC BREAST CARE PRODUCTS
Amazon: Newton Homeopathic Breast Help, 1 oz.
According to the Materia Medica the following remedies in Breast Help may be administered for the following conditions: Apis mellifica: Excessive swelling; Stinging, burning pains in the breast. Asterias rubens: Nipples retracted; Breasts swell, worse left; Axillary glands sollen, hard and knotty. Belladonna: Mastitis with throbbing, redness, streaks radiate from nipple; Breast feels heavy, hard and red. Bryonia: Breast-feeding disorders; Pain in breasts at menses; Mastits; Breasts hot, painful and hard. Bufo rana: Cancer of breasts; Induration in breast glands; Violent pain in breasts, especially at night. Calcarea carbonica: Breasts tender, swollen before menses; Breast feeding disorders; Deficient breast milk with distended breasts in lymphatic women; Nipples cracked, ulcerated, tender; Severe stitches in breast when nursing. Chamomilla: Breasts sore, nipples inflamed and very tender; Breast milk is spoiled, baby won't suckle. Chimaphila umbellata: Breasts disorders; Pain in breasts, sharp; Suppression of milk. Cinchona officinalis: Breast feeding disorders. Conium maculatum: Tumors after injury, cycts; Stitching pain in nipples; Breasts enlarged and painful before and during menses. Croton tiglium: Inflamed breasts; Nodes in breasts with pain from nipple to scapula; Breasts hard, swollen. Echinacea: Lymphangitis; Abscess; Fevers. Graphites: Breasts swollen and hard; Nipples sore Hamamelis virginiana: Sore nipples Helonias dioica: Breast disorders; Breasts swollen, nipples painful and tender Lachesis mutus: Breasts inflammed, bluish. Mercurius vivus: Breasts swollen Phellandrium aquaticum: Pain in milk ducts intolerable between nursing; Better while nursing. Phosphorus: Breast abscess Phytolacca decandra: Breast disorders; Mastitis, heavy, stony, hard swollen, tender breasts; Old scars Pulsatilla: Breast pain; Ruta graveolens: Chest pains; Bruised, sore Sanguinaria canadensis: Breast tumor; Sore and enlarged breasts at menopause Silicea: Breast abscesses.
PHYTOLACCA HOMEOPATHIC PRODUCTS
Amazon: Phytolacca Homeopathic Products
Nutrition Basics: Phytolacca Homeopathic Information
SUSUN S WEED WISE WOMAN HERBAL SERIES BOOKS
These books are a complete herbal pharmacopoeia in the Wise Woman Herbal Series for dealing with every problem that might arise before, during and after pregnancy and childbirth and during a woman's life. These are great books for people interested in alternative medicine and herbs. Full of lots of hard to find information about herbs and remedies to take and not take while pregnant and during other times of a woman's reproductive life. Also good pre and post pregnancy and baby information and menopausal suggestions for the older woman. Note: some of the remedies on this page are found in her book(s).
AROMATHERAPY: ESSENTIAL OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES
Allspice Leaf Oil Angelica Oil Anise Oil Baobab Oil Basil Oil Bay Laurel Oil Bay Oil Benzoin Oil Bergamot Oil Black Pepper Oil Chamomile (German) Oil Cajuput Oil Calamus Oil Camphor (White) Oil Caraway Oil Cardamom Oil Carrot Seed Oil Catnip Oil Cedarwood Oil Chamomile Oil Cinnamon Oil Citronella Oil Clary-Sage Oil Clove Oil Coriander Oil Cypress Oil Dill Oil Eucalyptus Oil Fennel Oil Fir Needle Oil Frankincense Oil Geranium Oil German Chamomile Oil Ginger Oil Grapefruit Oil Helichrysum Oil Hyssop Oil Iris-Root Oil Jasmine Oil Juniper Oil Labdanum Oil Lavender Oil Lemon-Balm Oil Lemongrass Oil Lemon Oil Lime Oil Longleaf-Pine Oil Mandarin Oil Marjoram Oil Mimosa Oil Myrrh Oil Myrtle Oil Neroli Oil Niaouli Oil Nutmeg Oil Orange Oil Oregano Oil Palmarosa Oil Patchouli Oil Peppermint Oil Peru-Balsam Oil Petitgrain Oil Pine-Long Leaf Oil Pine-Needle Oil Pine-Swiss Oil Rosemary Oil Rose Oil Rosewood Oil Sage Oil Sandalwood Oil Savory Oil Spearmint Oil Spikenard Oil Swiss-Pine Oil Tangerine Oil Tea-Tree Oil Thyme Oil Vanilla Oil Verbena Oil Vetiver Oil Violet Oil White-Camphor Oil Yarrow Oil Ylang-Ylang Oil Aromatherapy
Healing Baths For Colds
Using Essential Oils
AROMATHERAPY: HERBAL & CARRIER OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES
Almond, Sweet Oil Apricot Kernel Oil Argan Oil Arnica Oil Avocado Oil Baobab Oil Black Cumin Oil Black Currant Oil Black Seed Oil Borage Seed Oil Calendula Oil Camelina Oil Castor Oil Coconut Oil Comfrey Oil Evening Primrose Oil Flaxseed Oil Grapeseed Oil Hazelnut Oil Hemp Seed Oil Jojoba Oil Kukui Nut Oil Macadamia Nut Oil Meadowfoam Seed Oil Mullein Oil Neem Oil Olive Oil Palm Oil Plantain Oil Plum Kernel Oil Poke Root Oil Pomegranate Seed Oil Pumpkin Seed Oil Rosehip Seed Oil Safflower Oil Sea Buckthorn Oil Sesame Seed Oil Shea Nut Oil Soybean Oil St. Johns Wort Oil Sunflower Oil Tamanu Oil Vitamin E Oil Wheat Germ Oil
HELPFUL RELATED MOONDRAGON NUTRITION BASICS LINKS
MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Amino Acids Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Antioxidants Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Enzymes Information MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Herbs Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Homeopathics Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Hydrosols Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Minerals Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Mineral Introduction MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Dietary & Cosmetic Supplements Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Dietary Supplements Introduction MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Specialty Supplements MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Vitamins Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Vitamins Introduction
NUTRITION BASICS ARTICLES
MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: 4 Basic Nutrients MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Avoid Foods That Contain Additives & Artificial Ingredients MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Is Aspartame A Safe Sugar Substitute? MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Guidelines For Selecting & Preparing Foods MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Foods That Destroy MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Foods That Heal MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: The Micronutrients: Vitamins & Minerals MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Avoid Overcooking Your Foods MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Phytochemicals MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Increase Your Consumption of Raw Produce MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Limit Your Use of Salt MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Use Proper Cooking Utensils MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Choosing The Best Water & Types of Water
RELATED MOONDRAGON HEALTH LINKS & INFORMATION
MoonDragon's Nutrition Information Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Therapy Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Analysis Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Diet Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Recipe Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Therapy: Preparing Produce for Juicing MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Food Additives Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Food Safety Links MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Index MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Articles MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Back Pain MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Labor & Birth MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Blending Chart MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Essential Oil Details MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Links MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Miscarriage MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Post Partum MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Childbearing MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Problems in Pregnancy & Birthing MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #1 MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #2 MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Tips MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Uses MoonDragon's Alternative Health Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health Information Overview MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Touch & Movement Therapies Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy: Touch & Movement: Aromatherapy MoonDragon's Alternative Therapy: Touch & Movement - Massage Therapy MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Therapeutic Massage MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 1 MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 2 MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Nutrition Basics Index MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy Index MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Massage Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Hydrotherapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Pain Control Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Relaxation Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Steam Inhalation Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy - Herbal Oils Index
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MOONDRAGON'S REALM - WEBSITE DIRECTORY
A website map to help you find what you are looking for on MoonDragon.org's Website. Available pages have been listed under appropriate directory headings.