Q&A: I’ve Been Nursing for a Month, and It Hurts. Is This Normal?

I’ve been nursing for a month, and it hurts. Is this normal?
Mar 2017
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No, it’s not normal to have sore nipples. Mothers get sore nipples when the babyis not latching on properly. Many mothers are told that it is normal to have sorenipples for three weeks and that the pain then gets better, but that’s not alwaystrue (though it is sometimes). On the other hand, mothers are often told that painmeans a poor latch. This is usually true, but then mothers are told that if it hurtsthey should take the baby off the breast and put him on again, and if it still hurts,they should repeat this. Again and again and again. This is not a good idea.Why? If the mother takes the baby off and on the breast five times and it hurtseach time: that’s five times more pain, five times more damage to the nipples, themother is frustrated, and so is the baby.You should get good hands-on help. Good “hands-on help” means someone who will help you with a good latch, not who suggests a nipple shield. See also how we suggest latching on a baby (video clips of 28-hour-old baby) and theinformation sheets at the website www.nbci.ca

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