Dear Diary,

They say breast is best for a baby, but breastfeeding isn’t always a positive experience for a mom. Many people assume that because we are women we will naturally nurse without any difficulties. It’s in our genes to breastfeed, right?  Not quite! Many moms have a tough time breastfeeding. Most receive support from the lactation consultant at the hospital, but often their challenges continue when they get home. Before you give up, try solving your breastfeeding problems with the advice below. Make sure you check in with your doctor if it requires an actual treatment. Here are common breastfeeding problems and solutions.

Problem: Poor Latch

A poor latch is usually one that is too shallow. When your baby does not have enough of the breast in their mouth, he/she will suck on just the nipple rather than the entire areola. This is what causes soreness.

Solution: Proper Latch

  • Your baby’s mouth needs to be open wide for a proper latch. You can tickle baby’s upper lip with your nipple     to get baby’s mouth to open. Once baby opens wide, bring your baby into your breast.
  • A good latch should feel comfortable—like a strong tug or pull. If the latch feels like the baby is pinching or biting you, remove baby from the breast by breaking the suction with your finger and re-latch.
  • Check to see that your baby’s lips are flanged out and that baby’s mouth is back on the areola—not just grasping the nipple.
  • You want to make sure your baby is really drinking at the breast and not just nuzzling. Nuzzling is fine—just make sure that baby is drinking first (listen for swallows) to insure that he/she is getting enough to eat. If  your baby is just nuzzling or suckling when you think he/she is eating, your baby will probably come off the breast hungry.

Sore Nipple Relief

  • After nursing, rub some colostrum or breast milk onto your nipples and allow to air dry.
  • Change your breast pads between feedings so your nipples are not constantly wet.
  • Make sure your bra is comfortable and not too tight, which can further irritate your nipples.
  • Apply a lanolin-type nipple ointment sparingly to nipples after nursing.
  • Try a hydro gel pad specifically made for sore nipples, which is worn over the nipple and areola and held in       place by your bra. Follow directions on package for use.
  • Vary your positions for feeding: cradle, football, side lying, etc.

What about Thrush and Low Milk Supply? Scroll Down to Click Next Page!

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About The Author

Dr. Renee is a medical doctor living in Chicago. She writes about all things that contribute to a happy, healty life. She loves supplying mothers with the tools they need to receive the best medical health. When not writing for DFTM, Dr. Renee is a contributing writer for Ebony Magazine,, and She is also a sought after speaker for various health organizations and schools. in addition to writing about health, Dr. Renee conducts speaking engagements on social media, branding and becoming an entrepreneur. She also blogs at Ask Dr. Renee.

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