teeth on the titties, PLEASE HELP!

Cori - posted on 10/26/2009 ( 6 moms have responded )

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my son has had his top 2 teeth for almost 2 months now but just in the last week or so they have started hurting me, just on the left side too.. i dont know what is going on.. not much has changed its just the one side and its his top teeth that are hurting me... i am afraid its preventing me from letting down (he is showing the signs that he isnt getting milk fast enough) and i dont know what else to do... we've tried different positions and everything but nothing is preventing the pain!! I want to keep breastfeeding for at leaste another 6 months to get past cold and flu season and i wont give up over a little pain but i need some advice about how to make the experience of breastfeeding with teeth not hurt so much!

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Paige - posted on 10/26/2009

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He needs to relearn how to latch with his new teeth. Here's a good article about how to deal with scraping: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/older-baby/bi...

From that website:
Teeth scraping, uncomfortable latch, or indentations on your nipple tissue from the teeth is not all that uncommon. It seems to be worse for most moms right when the teeth first cut through, and before they have a chance to wear down some and become less sharp. Babies may also change their latch a bit when they get new teeth, as nursing can feel different to them with the new teeth. With time, baby will learn to nurse better with the new teeth and you won't be so aware of them. Here are some suggestions that have helped other moms:

* With an older baby, the weight of the baby can cause baby's mouth and teeth to "drag down" on the breast tissue. See if you can position baby so that her weight is supported well. Use pillows or a chair with arm rests to support her as much as you can. When she is nursing on the left side, bring her bottom in a little bit closer and vice versa. Don't let her nurse in a position that lets her weight and gravity cause her mouth to pull down on your breast and nipple. Try moving her body slightly in different ways (higher, lower, side to side, etc.) till the pressure on your breast is lessened.
* Latch baby on and position her head so that it is tilted back more to get the pressure of the top teeth off your breast. For example, if baby is nursing in the cradle position on the left side, bring her body toward the right a bit. This will bring baby's chin up, with her head a bit cocked back, and that moves the pressure of baby's top teeth off the top of the nipple. Don't let her chin rest on her chest.
* Some other ways to get baby's head tilted back more: ask your child to look at you while she nurses, or hold a book up high to read to your child and have her look at the book.
* When you support your breast with 2-4 fingers underneath and thumb on top, push in against the chest wall with your index finger just before offering the breast. This will cause the nipple and areola to point down more, so that they don't rub against baby's upper teeth. This technique is often suggested for moms who have nipple soreness due to their nipples rubbing up against the roof of baby's mouth.
* Ask baby to open WIDE and show her with your own mouth. Tell her that it hurts mommy and ask her to try again until it feels better.
* A generous application of lanolin before and after feeding may be helpful, as will rinsing your nipples with cool water after feedings. When babies are teething they produce more saliva which can be irritating to nipple tissue. If baby is eating solids, sometimes food particles left in the mouth can also irritate nipple tissue, so it may help to rinse out baby's mouth or give baby a sip of water prior to nursing.
* Any time you experience soreness, go back to the basics of latch just as you did in the early days.
* It's also possible that some of the tenderness is a result of ovulation or an impending menstrual period. Many moms of older babies are more bothered with latch on and baby's teeth during these times.

Tammy - posted on 10/26/2009

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My guess as to why it's only on one side is that you probably hold him a little bit differently when he's nursing there thatn on the other side. (I have the same theory for my son & my left side)

I'm having the same problem on and off. I have to pay REALLY close attention to his latch (even though things have been fine for months in that regard in general) and make sure he's taking enough of my nipple & aereola in so that the teeth aren't rubbing/ cutting in as he drinks.

Also, twice I've "favoured" the other side a little bit, only feeding him from the left at times when I know he is more intent on eating & not popping on & off, lokking around, etc. Then I pump whenever I am able on the left side to keep up the milk supply, and use Lansinoh to help me heal. You could also use a couple drops of breastmilk, leaving it to dry to help with healing too - I prefer the lansinoh.

If he is biting at all, pull him into your breast rather than push him off when he bites. It's kind of like you're smothing him with your breast & he'll let go/unlatch quickly without damaging you any further.

Good luck! Hang in there Cori!

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Cori - posted on 10/26/2009

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i got the boppy pillow out again and it seems to be helping keeping him closer to me... ugh!! I just hope this passes so that i can be a happy breastfeeding mommy again! Thank you for all youre encouragment and recomendations!!

Cori - posted on 10/26/2009

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my son is almost a year (next month he will be a year old) my breasts wont let down for a pump and the pumps just hurt more than nursing him... i have started using my medela ointment (its like lansinoh only easier to spread) it is giving me a little relief but thats only until he nurses again... my son wont take a bottle anyways, he never has.. hes a boob man :)

Bonnie - posted on 10/26/2009

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If the Lansinoh cream dosen't work you could try a bottle. It does take some time to pump the milk but if he will take it it will allow you to rest for a bit. Also with a bottle others can feed the baby and once they get a little older you can use the pumped milk for solid foods. Like rice cereal. Depending how old your baby is you could try a sippy cup. I watch a little boy who won't take his milk from a bottle anymore but will if it's put in a sippy cup. It depends on the child.

If not you might want to ask a doctor about the pain and why it's only on the one side. They might know why the one side is more sensitive than the other.

Kim - posted on 10/26/2009

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I have a 9 month old with 8 teeth and I have had that happen to me twice so far but for diff reasons. The first time was a cloged duct witch went away on its own but the second time my nipple was gettin dry so I just used the nipple cream Lansinoh and after about 3 feedings it stoped hurtting. Hope this helps and good luck.

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