Jump to content. Breast engorgement means your breasts are painfully overfull of milk. This usually occurs when a mother makes more milk than her baby uses.
During your first week postpartum, whether you're breastfeeding or not, your breast milk will come in and your breasts will engorge — and they may become bigger, tender and hard. A chain reaction begins the moment your body ejects the placenta. You stop making those pregnancy hormones estrogen and progesterone and start making prolactin, the magical hormone that throws the dairy barn inside your breasts into full production mode.
Minimizing early engorgement Treat engorgement to… When to treat engorgement After the first few weeks Causes of engorgement Treating engorgment Be sure your baby is sucking effectively Reverse pressure softening Keep comfortable Watch out for signs of mastitis. Position your baby with his chest and tummy in full contact with your body. With his cheek in close contact with your breast, your baby can easily tip back his head to latch on.
When you first start breastfeeding your baby, your breasts produce colostrum in small amounts that gradually increase over the first few days. One of the signs milk is coming in is your breasts become fuller and firmer. This swelling is not just caused by the greater quantity of milk, but also by increased blood flow and extra lymph fluids in your breast tissue.
Breast engorgement is the development of hard, swollen, painful breasts from too much breast milk. Engorged breasts can become extremely large, tight, lumpy, and tender. The swelling may go all the way up into your armpit, and the veins on the surface of your breasts may become more visible or even stick out.
Breast engorgement is breast swelling that results in painful, tender breasts. It can happen in the first few days after delivery. Breast engorgement is the result of increased blood flow in your breasts in the days after the delivery of a baby.
NCBI Bookshelf. Geneva: World Health Organization; Those discussed here include breast conditions and other breastfeeding difficulties, twins, a mother separated from her baby, a child with sickness, abnormality or a condition that interferes with suckling, and conditions of the mother.
Engorgement is caused by a build-up of milk, blood and other fluids in the breast tissue. This is normal. It does not affect milk flow or the ability of your baby to attach to your breast.
Back to Your pregnancy and baby guide. There are a number of reasons why you may experience breast pain while you're breastfeeding. Persevering on your own, hoping it will get better, may make matters worse.