I had mastitis when my little boy was around 8/9 months old. By this point I thought we had well and truly mastered feeding but a couple of things had changed.
I went back to work when Fletcher was 8 months old, and although I only worked 2 mornings a week it was at this time that he really went off feeding during the day. He was amazing at eating food and he was also busy crawling so wasn’t fussed about me anymore!
He had also just started to get his front teeth, this wouldn’t have been a problem but he had always had quite a bad latch. He was tongue tied for 5 months before it got cut and it was difficult to try and get him to change his latch at this point.
His tooth began grazing my nipple, it was always in the same place and it got more and more painful to feed from. I tried to limit the feeds from that side as it was toe curling at times. I had noticed after a few days I wasn’t feeling great but put it down to him going to nursery and us both getting every bug going!
I ignored the signs thinking it would get better but it didn’t. It got to the point where I couldn’t lift Fletcher to feed him and quite honestly had never felt so ill in my life. I couldn’t eat or drink and when I had been vomiting for 24 hours I ended up in the walk in centre. They told me I should be heading to hospital to go on a drip but that wasn’t really an option so instead I got some anti sickness tablets so I could then start on the antibiotics.
So what signs did I ignore?
My breast had become red, swollen and hot
I had burning pains in my breast
I felt like I had the flu, no energy at all.
What I should have done when I got the cracked nipple was to treat that, if I had carried on feeding it would not have been a problem but as a mum we feel like we can’t take the time out for ourselves (even if it is to go to the docs) and that made it so much worse.
I should have been trying to massage the breast more to release the blockage also by feeding or pumping as much as I could from that side.