Blog Takeover - My experience with Mastitis
My experience with Mastitis - by Hollie @almostmrsgray
Hi I’m Hollie, Mum to Layla, Albie & Oathie.
I wanted to share my experience with Mastitis!
So with my first born Albie (two years old) I had the most horrendous HG ( Hyperemesis gravidarum) pregnancy and thought it was all over when he was born...
I exclusively breast fed him up until 13 months also whilst being pregnant when he was 10 months old. When Albie was 6 weeks old I got mastitis. When he was around 5 weeks old I started to suffer with what I thought was engorgement, my breast started to feel really full and almost as if he wasn’t emptying them during feeds so I made a trip to the doctors and they told me that it was just that he didn’t have a regular feeding pattern yet.
Later on that week I walked to school to pick Layla up with Albie, I felt fine. But when we got back I just all of a sudden felt really unwell. I was so cold I just couldn’t warm up but was red hot to touch. I remember he needed feeding but I felt like I didn’t want to, like I had no energy. My mum was actually with us and I asked her to stay as something just didn’t feel right, I didn’t feel ok.
That night I went to sleep, I had a paracetamol and felt ok. I woke up and fed him through the night feeling really weak and unwell. When we woke up that morning I touched Albie in his crib and he felt so cold, I was really worried and I felt so unwell, he wasn’t cold at all it was me that was so hot that everything felt cold. We rang the doctors and they referred me to the hospital, we waited ages in A&E for about 4 hours.
Then I was put in a room, I still continued breast feeding I was so weak I just had to lay on my side to feed him and his dad had to just pass him back and forth to me, I remember feeding him and not even been able to open my eyes my temperature had reached 40. My boobs felt like they were bruised and almost sunburned and I felt like I had flu and just so weak and still absolutely freezing. They kept me in the hospital for 5 days on antibiotics IV.
I was told not to feed him from the infected breast, but I did. Because although nurses and doctors are trained they may not have breast fed before and I knew my breast was only going to get worst and more blocked if I wasn’t feeding from one side. I was also told to express as I may have had to go to theatre to have my breast drained if the antibiotics didn’t work which really scared me as I’d never given Albie milk from a bottle and I didn’t want to leave him.
I kept him in the hospital with me for the five days but I wasn’t allowed to be alone - someone had to stay with me to look after him in case they had to rush me to theatre. After 5 days I went home with antibiotics - I still felt so unwell but eventually it completely went, I’m so glad that those 5 days I continued to breast feed and it didn’t spoil our journey. It was painful, it was hard but so worth those 5 days out of the 13 months I managed.
Red mark on boobs - mine was underneath and felt like sunburn
Boobs hot to touch
Lumpy engorged breasts
Flu fever feeling
What to do:
Firstly take ibropfen
Try express the milk
Continue to feed from the mastitis breast to clear the blocked duct
This is just my advice and what I did. There are less serve cases of mastitis but no one prepares you for it when you plan to breast feed and it doesn’t happen to everyone. And also just stay strong and know it will be over and don't let it spoil your breast feeding journey!