Aren't blocked milk ducts such a pain in the bum. Dr Elise & Dr Katie are the osteopaths behind Your Two Jugs, an online masterclass platform teaching breastfeeding women how to manage common physical breastfeeding issues such as blocked milk ducts. The women they’ve been treating at their Melbourne clinic over the years have inspired the creation of Your Two Jugs. Here’s what they want you to know about blocked ducts!
1. A blocked milk duct doesn’t mean you have mastitis!
Blocked ducts and mastitis are both caused by milk stasis. Milk stasis is when milk doesn’t flow well and the breast doesn’t clear properly. But that’s about as similar as these two get! A blocked duct will be sore, and you will feel lumps in your breast. But you won’t have common symptoms associated with mastitis, like fever. Sometimes, a blocked duct that isn’t cleared well can lead to mastitis, so definitely keep an eye out for different symptoms.
2. You probably don’t need antibiotics.
Antibiotics are only useful if you have a bacterial infection. Most blocked ducts are caused by a lack of milk flow, and so some milk hardens and causes a backup down the line. This is where you will feel lumpiness in your breasts that may be tender to touch. If you develop flu like symptoms such as a high fever, achy joints and redness over the breast, please consult your doctor, as these are not typical symptoms of a blocked duct.
3. It can take time to clear the blocked milk duct!
That pesky blockage may have popped up out of nowhere, but that doesn’t mean it disappears just as fast (unfortunately!). Don’t think you’re going to push that blockage out in 5 mins. Clearing your blockage takes time and persistence.
4. Be kind to your breasts!
So on that topic of clearing the breast…There’s minimal direction on google when it comes to massaging your breasts with blocked ducts. So many of the ladies we have treated in clinical practice have gone so hard massaging their breast tissue, that they have bruised themselves! This makes it tricky to decipher whether the tenderness in your breast is the blockage, or the bruising. This is why we always advise gentle massage. Not sure how to massage your breast? We have designed our Masterclasses to teach you specific techniques to help yourself clear your blockages!
Author: Elise Fuller
Osteopath & Your Two Jugs Co-Founder
Elise Fuller & Katie Willy
Osteopaths & Your Two Jugs Co-Founders
Elise & Katie are Melbourne based osteopaths who have been actively treating breastfeeding women in clinic since 2015. During 2020 lockdown they launched their company Your Two Jugs to educate more women about how to treat their own breastfeeding conditions. Their online video based course, Boobology, is available now with heaps of education and hands on techniques to teach women the do’s & don’ts for mastitis, blocked ducts & engorgement. More recently, Your Two Jugs launched a full health care practitioner course, called The Boob Hero, to educate manual therapists on their contribution to supporting breastfeeding women with hands on care. Empowerment all starts with education, and the more support available for women, the better.