In the last few months of pregnancy, please keep soaps, lotions, powder etc away from your nipples as they could cause dryness and eventually lead to cracked nipples while breastfeeding. Warm water is just fine.
Your breasts may grow up to twice its current size so you will need to change your bras down the line.
When choosing bras, great support is Key as it could save you back and shoulder pains due to your new breast size.
Do not buy bras with underwires. Yes there is a reason why maternity/nursing bras do not have underwire #notamistake. .
It is because wearing wired bras at this stage could block your milk ducts or cause mastitis.
Mastitis is a condition in which the breasts become inflamed and painful. It may be caused by an infection. Symptoms of an infection include fever, chills, redness. Mastitis could also be due to engorgement (too much milk in the breasts).
Since soaps, lotions etc cause nipple dryness, Olive oil, Coconut oil and Shea butter are great for cleaning any dirt or residue without cracking your nipples. Use with a piece of cotton wool.
Change your nursing pads frequently as wet pads could be a breeding ground for germs and yeast infections.
Having your baby latch on properly is an essential to avoiding painful breastfeeding and sore nipples. Baby’s mouth should cover not just nipple but most part of the areola (dark part around nipple).
Photo credit: Google
When you need to get baby off your breast, do not pull breast out just like that.. instead put a finger in the corner of baby’s mouth and gently remove breast.
This method will save you pains and cracked nipples.
Photo credit: Google
So what do you do if you already have sore nipples?
1) Use Breast milk
Express few drops of milk on your breast, massage lightly on your nipples and let it air dry. Do several times a day.
2) Nipple creams
Use nipple creams to soothe sore nipples. Just make sure they have no parabens, fragrances, dyes etc.. that can be harmful to your baby.
3) Oil like Coconut oil, warm a bit and rub on nipples.
4) Warm compress
A warm compress used about 10 minutes before breastfeeding could help soothe sore nipples.