South Africa has the lowest rate of exclusively breastfeed babies under 6 months of age in the world. Many South African mothers want to breastfeed and almost all of us try. Yet within three months more than two-thirds of us have already begun to use formula and by six month, more than half of us have completely stopped breastfeeding altogether. So where do we turn for help?
Many women with cracked and sore nipples often want to know if there is an anything they can apply to their nipples to speed up healing and alleviate pain. Although there are a variety of nipple creams and ointments on the market, the scientific evidence to determine the efficacy and possible side effects is limited.
Accurate assessment of the wound will facilitate the development of an effective treatment program that allows optimal wound healing to occur. A four-stage system for rating nipple trauma has been developed to standardize the reporting and management of nipple trauma.
Lanolin is considered a pure and safe intervention aimed at creating a moist healing environment for nipple trauma, and provides a semi-occlusive barrier that promotes retention of internal moisture and prevents dryness.
There are several possible causes of sore nipples in a breastfeeding mother. It is important to identify the cause of pain early on and resolve the issue as soon as possible so as to prevent further complications. Nipple cracks and fissures can allow bacteria to enter the breast, often resulting in mastitis and breast abscesses.
Sore nipples are the bane of breastfeeding mothers. Nipple pain and damage ranks in the first two or three reasons for the early discontinuation of breastfeeding. Expediting healing should be a priority. If not attended to quickly, tissue breakdown can progress rapidly and, in some cases, nipple injury can be extensive.