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Is breastfeeding extremly painful at first? At what should I expect?

I plan on breastfeeding my daughter when she is born. I'm due sep. 21,2008. My mom didn't breastfeed me or my sister because she said it's too painful. What should I expect? And any other advise would be helpful.


Asked by Lizzie32390 at 12:05 PM on Jul. 15, 2008 in Babies (0-12 months)

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Answers (11)
  • I think if you can get help from a lactation consultant when you give birth, that would be best. They can help you with positioning and establishing a good latch, and any other questions you might have.

    I think much of my pain came from not knowing how to position him properly. It did hurt me for the first month or so....but I refused to give up, b/c I knew the benefits of exclusively breastfeeding.

    Don't be discouraged by your family's can do it:)

    Don't let them give your baby formula in the hospital, and don't let anyone tell you that you don't have milk. It takes a little while for the actual milk to start flowing, and in the beginning you will only have tiny bits of sticky colostrum. It may not seem like much, but your baby's stomach is only the size of a marble at birth. I wish I had known this when my son was born!

    Answer by MommytoNakoa at 5:48 PM on Jul. 15, 2008

  • It hurts pretty bad... but it doesnt hurt your breast... it hurts your stummic muscles..(i know wierd right?) i wasnt really expecting that.. thats one part they didnt tell me about... but they actually gave me some meds. that helped ease the boobs really didnt hurt!!! and also thats why they say you lose weight when you breastfeed... You are not only loosing more cal. but your also working out your stummie muscles.(my midwife told me that AFTER i started feeding lol) But its just like working out it hurts the first few times you do it..then its all down hill =) hope that helps!

    Answer by Sweet_nothings at 12:43 PM on Jul. 15, 2008

  • My nipples would crack and bleed..i would literally be bawling while i fed my daughter. I recommend getting some of the Lanisoh breast cream and put it on your nipples before feeding. Also, use it before a shower because hot water on sore nipples HURTS!! Good luck.

    Answer by mybabygirlz at 12:56 PM on Jul. 15, 2008

  • Breastfeeding does NOT hurt me at all. At first when I started to bf when my daughter was born, it only hurt at first when she first latched on. But I was also engorged so it would take a while of nursing (3-4 mins) for my nipples to get soft. And at times it will hurt when they latch on hard when they are really hungry, but after a minute or 2 you shouldnt feel anything at all. All in all, it doesnt hurt if you have the proper latch. The nurses at the hospital should help you w/ that. Good luck with everything.

    Answer by jaschem at 1:04 PM on Jul. 15, 2008

  • I had cracked nipples and I also had thrush alot of times. It hurt alot in the beging,but I promise you once you get through all of that it is so worth it. It is so amazing the feeling you feel. Just dont give up. IT wont hurt forever.

    Answer by muslimmom at 2:15 PM on Jul. 15, 2008

  • Every has different experiences, but I think just about everyone will tell you that it does hurt at first. Here's my experience... I only nursed for 3 weeks. My daughter spend her first week of life in the NICU with breathing problems, so she was half formula fed and half breast fed. When I nursed her, it hurt very very bad, and it felt even worse when I got home and continued to nurse. I was literally cringing and in tears it hurt so bad. Also for the first week-ish, it will hurt in your uterus too, because when you breastfeed, it kinda makes your uterus shrink back down slowly, so it contracts and is painful, feels like cramps. So yeah I made the decision to stop on account of the incredible pain I was enduring, it was just too much for me. (cont.)

    Answer by Juliebee81 at 2:30 PM on Jul. 15, 2008

  • (cont.) I do know, however, that if I could have just held on another week or 2, the pain would have subsided and my nipples would have toughened up enough for it to not hurt anymore. So if you can, just stick it out for the first few weeks, and if not hey that's ok too because my 7 month old is formula fed and as healthy and happy as can be! =)

    Answer by Juliebee81 at 2:31 PM on Jul. 15, 2008

  • My actual milk didn't come in until my son was three days old. This is normal.

    Also, if you have sore/cracked nipples, try putting your own milk on them, and letting them air out. I also found the cooling gerber gel pads to be a lifesaver:)

    Answer by MommytoNakoa at 5:50 PM on Jul. 15, 2008

  • My daughter was a barracuda feeder (a hard, fast sucker), so it hurt during the first few weeks until my nipples toughened up. My lactation consultant gave me a nipple shield (a little flexible plastic cover for your nipple) that I could use during feedings when my nipples felt really raw. I also used lanolin and breastmilk (believe it or not, it helps with sore nipples) after each feeding. If you have lactation consultants at your hospital, take advantage of their expertise. It really helped me get through those first few weeks. And I'm still breastfeeding (though my daughter is starting to self-wean) at 13 months.

    Answer by jilby at 2:22 AM on Jul. 16, 2008

  • It does hurt at first, but remember the baby is learning how to feed right along with you. The Lansinoh cream was my best friend for the first month. I used it after every feeding. Don't hesitate to contact the lactation consultants in the hospital and after you are home. The best advice I received was from a lactation consultant. She said to never make a decision (whether to continue or quit breastfeeding) when you are having a bad day. That got me through the first month. I breast fed for 6 1/2 months and would do it all over again in a heartbeat.

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:56 PM on Jul. 16, 2008