Engorgement

•Engorgement may occur when milk supply rapidly increases on or after the third day after birth.
•Breasts may feel firm and lumpy and there may be an elevated temperature.–be sure to consider infection if fever is present!
•Frequent nursing, or hand-expression, or pumping, if baby is not breastfeeding, reduces the likelihood of engorgement.
•Cold compresses between feeds may reduce inflammation.  Ibuprofen may also help reduce inflammation and reduce pain.
•Warm compresses or a warm shower right before feeding may help milk to flow.
•Baby may have difficulty nursing from a breast when it is engorged, due to firmness in the areola.
Reverse pressure softening, developed by K. Jean Cotterman RNC-E, IBCLC, moves edema out of the areolas and makes them more soft.
•Nurse frequently, unrelieved engorgement may reduce milk supply!
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