Nipple pain caused by a baby’s mouth that is incorrectly or inadequately latching is a common problem amongst breastfeeding women. Successful breastfeeding relies on a proper latch of the baby’s mouth to the nipple, but when this latch is incomplete, it can cause a lot of pain and be a reason to stop breastfeeding or to wean earlier than you might have.
There may be a solution, research has found, using low-level lasers. A recent study found that after three low-level laser treatments, self-reported pain was less in the treatment group and relief from nipple pain was achieved. This allowed the women to continue exclusive breastfeeding for longer.
Latch is key
Latching is the most important element of breastfeeding, since without a proper latch, the baby won’t be getting enough milk and the breast isn’t stimulated to produce more milk. This improper latch often causes cracked and painful nipples, as the baby chomps down on the nipple itself, instead of the areola. This results is a downward spiral of pain and low morale, with many new mothers backing away from breastfeeding at this point due to the severe discomfort and a disappointing lack of success.
Signs of poor latch
- Nipple pain while breastfeeding
- Baby’s gums chewing on the nipple instead of the areola
- Clicking noises
- Baby sucking on other parts of the breast
When laser can help
Learning how to breastfeed effectively can take some time and be an unbearably painful trial by fire. Before you give up completely, make use of a lactation consultant and consider coming in for several laser treatments to alleviate the pain and discomfort so that you can keep on trying.
What will the laser feel like?
These laser treatments are not painful, and can provide relief quicker by stimulating the deeper levels of tissue to strengthen, heal, and function optimally. When your nipples have taken a beating, having some sweet relief can be just what you need to keep trying a little bit longer.
Save the nipple!
We can help.