Wow...big title hey! But can you actually prevent mastitis?
I wish I'd been able to write a blog on this 8 years ago when I went through a shocker bout of mastitis. Seven days of hell, unable to even hold my baby for nearly 2 weeks and one of the most painful experiences of my life.
Firstly, what is mastitis in plain English?
So what do we know about mastitis? We know it is in inflammatory condition where the milk is forced into neighbouring tissue which is what triggers the inflammatory response. THIS IS NORMAL in occurrence, to trigger an inflammatory response when a substance (in this case breast milk) is in a place in the body it doesn't belong. And breast milk does not belong outside the duct network.
So the milk goes where it shouldn't, inflammation occurs and this can become an infectious problem that may or may not need anti-biotics. That's a good conversation to have with your personal medical professionals.
Anyway, so when you are breastfeeding, to prevent mastitis everyone talks about:
- massage when feeding
- feed baby
- feed baby again
- pump some more
- feed baby...
It's exhausting. It can feel like you are walking a tight-rope when it comes to balancing milk-emptying & milk-filling. And that's just to stay comfy and not feel like your boobs are going to explode.
Then there's the flip-side of the coin where you feel you are low in milk volume and you are trying everything to increase it.
We've seen both sides in clinic, those trying to manage their milk production, and those trying to increase their milk production. Both groups get mastitis.
Then how can we prevent mastitis?
Well the cool thing about both groups is this. Their breasts are made from the same tissues as each other. Our bodies are put together from a blueprint in our DNA. You breast structure AND mine are pretty much the same. We have different hair and eye colour, body shape etc, but our boobs are much the same in structure.
Then why do different boobs behave so differently you ask? Fair enough. I questioned that as well many years ago. How come that lady gets mastitis only on one side? Or, why does this lady always get mastitis in the same spot each time? Why on earth do women's boobs behave in such different ways? There were so many unanswered questions and to be fair, pretty much nowhere that we could find answers EXCEPT when we looked at each woman's breast independently. Yes, the answer lies within (sounding a bit Star Wars like now haha). You have that potential to do this for yourself and learn about your body.
This is 100% why we have developed Boobology. Our preventative techniques are contained in this most comprehensive course!
Yes, Get in first with our techniques dedicated to prevention. To prevent mastitis. To prevent blocked ducts. To prevent low milk issues.
Get women to prevent their own problems and be free to choose breastfeeding.
Author: Katie Willy
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.