Breastfeeding Myth #1: It's normal for breastfeeding to hurt
Myths and misinformation pose real barriers to breastfeeding. One of the most common myths about breastfeeding is that breastfeeding is inherently painful. Pain is one of the most commonly cited reasons for premature weaning. However, pain during breastfeeding is almost always resolved by improving the nursling's position at the breast and latch. Other less common--but treatable--causes of pain during breastfeeding include thrush (a yeast infection of the breast) and ankyloglossia (tongue tie) in the nursling. Women in countries where the art of breastfeeding has been lost may have no one in their family or circle of friends to model comfortable positioning and latching for them. Breastfeeding information and support are still available, though, including on the Internet.
A great online resource to learn how to position and latch a nursling for comfortable breastfeeding is Dr. Jack Newman's collection of video clips at: http://www.drjacknewman.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=18...
These online resources are also useful:
"Sore Nipples" by Jack Newman at http://www.drjacknewman.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=57...
"How Do I Prevent Sore Nipples" by La Leche League International at http://www.llli.org/FAQ/sore.html
Mothers can contact a volunteer breastfeeding counselor with La Leche League for free telephone help or free in-person help at a local mother-to-mother breastfeeding support meeting. Go to www.llli.org to locate local breastfeeding help. Mothers can also contact an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) for breastfeeding help. Go to http://gotwww.net/ilca/ to locate a local IBCLC.
Cynthia Good Mojab
Director, LifeCircle Counseling and Consulting, LLC (www.lifecirclecc.com)