my breasts are hard as rocks... is this normal?

Shanna - posted on 09/23/2009 ( 17 moms have responded )

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my son is two days old and my milk has already came. Also my breasts are hard like bricks or rocks... is there anything i can do to relieve the pressure or relieve this horrible pain.

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Susan - posted on 09/25/2009

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My breasts feel hard now too! lol But what I did those first days was cold compresses and warm showers. I also let my boobs breathe the first few days. After each feeding, I just let my boobs air out and put the cold towel on and let them drip for a few minutes enough to where i could massage them to express more milk. The engorging was gone in two days max. I think. So just try and let them breathe and take warm showers and let the water run on them.

Alicia - posted on 09/25/2009

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I have also heard the cabbage leaves work wonders. My son had trouble latching when I was so full and it hurt a lot, so I would express, by hand, JUST A LITTLE to soften up and then let him feed. If you pump off too much of the "extra" you are just going to prolong the agony b/c your body will keep making so much milk. You want to just let your baby be the way you empty the breast so your body will learn how much to make.

Alicia - posted on 09/25/2009

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I have also heard the cabbage leaves work wonders. My son had trouble latching when I was so full and it hurt a lot, so I would express, by hand, JUST A LITTLE to soften up and then let him feed. If you pump off too much of the "extra" you are just going to prolong the agony b/c your body will keep making so much milk. You want to just let your baby be the way you empty the breast so your body will learn how much to make.

Kirsty - posted on 09/28/2009

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i had a hard time with engorgement also. however, pumping milk off can have the opposite afftect. as breastfeeding works on a supply and demand policy, the amount that is pumped or comsumed by baby is the sam amount tyour breasts will produce the next day or next couple of days. so this is onyl tempory relief. i found a nice hot bath soothed at eased the pain.....as your baby gets into a regular feeding pattern, your breasts will only produce the amount of milk that they need. at the minute they are over producing. as said in previous posts, sometimes baby finds it hard to latch on. the easiest way to relieve this is to hand express a little. this is done easiest with baby in room or photo nearby to activate your "letdown".this you might feel as a tingly feeling. after this had passed, you should be able to attach baby better. all the best to you and your new baby.

kirsty

Gennifer - posted on 09/27/2009

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You can use a pump if possible, if not put a warm towel on them to ease the pain and maybe help with excreteing some of the breastmilk Good luck

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Stephanie - posted on 09/26/2009

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I hope that you have managed to work through the engorged breasts by now, but I just wanted to add something I used. My milk came in on day two and it was agony. In the hospital they froze wet disposable nappies. They work well because they are the right shape and the they don't have that cabbage smell. I lined them with a flannel so that the frozen nappy would not be on my skin. It felt really good. Good luck with your little one.

Michelle - posted on 09/25/2009

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Thats a good sign of having enough milk!! Means its time to feed or pump :)

Sharon - posted on 09/25/2009

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Hi Shanna

This is normal. What I was told to do was either hand express into a dish then give the baby this milk through a syringe (without a needle ofcourse), or you can buy a breast pump to relieve this also. I would save the milk for babies next feed.

[deleted account]

Bless your heart! I remember how miserable that feeling was! I saw a lactation consultant around the time my milk came in and she commented on how engorged I was. She told me to press (like with your fingers) your breast (on the areola) back towards your chest. Like if you were trying to make your chest flatter...It's hard to explain. But this would express the milk and soften the area around the nipple so your baby can latch on. I hope that makes sense. Also I would pump just a little to relieve pressure. Warm compresses and warm showers feel good to. Good luck to you and keep it up. It gets better, I promise!!

Jan - posted on 09/25/2009

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a hot flannel helps, i remember well & know how uncomfortable this is. I wish you luck. Enjoy your baby. x

Cecilia - posted on 09/25/2009

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Feed your baby as much as possible and pump if you can. Try not to supplement because that is a missed feeding and if you do make sure to pump so you get relief.

Erika - posted on 09/24/2009

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i know it sounds crazy but it works..green cabbage. and i used ice packs..i didnt try heat.

[deleted account]

My breasts felt like that too. One thing I did which helped a lot was to express some milk (I did it by hand as using the pump was too painful). That immediately reduces the pressure and discomfort. Newborns' stomachs are much smaller than milk filled breasts and mine couldn't consume enough to relieve my pain so I did stand under the warm water in the shower and just express down the drain on occasions, but you could save the milk for dad or someone else to bottle feed to baby while you have a sleep.

Minnie - posted on 09/24/2009

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Engorgement. You can take tylenol or advil for pain, try a warm shower, warm compresses.

And like another poster said- nurse your baby a lot, no pacifiers, bottles- your milk will regulate soon enough. Make sure to drain one breast thoroughly before switching to the other.

Ayme - posted on 09/24/2009

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My milk came in early, too. By the time I left the hospital, I had one rock-hard duct that felt like a lump. I used a neck wrap that heats up in the microwave & a breast pump. I like the neck wrap because the shape fit perfectly around my breasts. I heated for 2 minutes, applied to my breast for 20-30 minutes, then pumped while & massaging.

Lesley - posted on 09/24/2009

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You are engorged and you have to relieve it quickly. The only way to do so is to let baby feed as often as possible and I mean every hour if he wants! I remember the pain of the first days - my milk came in on the 4th day and I was in agony. The nurse didn't help by squeezing and pushing my breasts. You might want to try some warm compresses and gently massage the breasts to get your milk to come down. Sometimes if you are too full, baby cannot latch on so start massaging now! I found standing in the shower and letting warm water run on them relieved and helped bring my milk down. I've been breastfeeding 11 1/2 months now and can still remember the first days!! Good luck!!! xox

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