A clogged milk duct causes severe pain, heat, and sensitivity in breast tissue. I’d forgotten about all of this until two weeks ago when a tight shirt plus a baby that slept for seven hours straight led to a swollen and sore right boob in the morning. How could I forget you ask? Well, the last time I’d gotten one of these was over ten years ago with my first child. And with that one, I, unfortunately, ended up with mastitis (a breast infection) and needed to take antibiotics. It may have been my inexperience that led to that result. So when I saw those first symptoms I began researching.
Causes of a Clogged Milk Duct
I’d known that going long stretches between feedings caused breast engorgement (swelling) when the milk gets backed up. But I had no idea that wearing a tight bra or shirt could cause a clogged milk duct by adding too much pressure on any one area of the breast. It makes sense. The duct is overfull (pressure from the inside) and squeezed (pressure from the outside), which stresses or pinches off the pathway for milk release. Other causes include illness, stress, exhaustion, which all lead to poor judgment (mommy mental fog). So please take care of yourselves mamas!
Symptoms of a Clogged Duct
- A hard spot or lump on a breast.
- Heat (breast feels hot to the touch)
- Soreness in one area
- Look out for these Symptoms:
- A temperature of 101 or higher
- Aches and pains (like having the flu)
- Call your doctor immediately if noticing these symptoms.
And finally, I found a resource that had great DIY remedies for at home care (see video below). I started first with a hot shower, then massaged the tissue using coconut oil. I nursed more often, positioning the baby near the affected area. Then used a hot washcloth for a heat compress every hour. And I even ate garlic with honey (the honey isn’t necessary, but it helps the taste). I refused to end up with a full breast infection this time around, so I scarfed down that garlic (to support my immune system) like a champ! I repeated all of these frequently. By the second day, I had relief. The tenderness and lump were dissipating. Within a few days, I was completely back to normal.
Preventing Clogged Milk Ducts
There are some supplements such as lecithin or sunflower lecithin (as the video suggests), as well as probiotics. I may begin a regimen that includes the sunflower lecithin and frequent coconut oil massages, as I’ve noticed the clogged milk duct symptoms occurring more often lately.
How do you do it?
Have you had a clogged milk duct recently? Or do you know of any other remedies not mentioned in this post or in the video? Share your story. I look forward to hearing from you all.
And as always, Be blessed!