If you read my ten day recovery update you will know that nhs biggest ailment since my C-Section (C/S) has been my painful boobs.
I still hasn't decided whether I would breastfeed or not on arrival at hospital, it has been the toughest decision to do with Albies care so far. I do believe Breast is best, the mass amount of research shows this, however although I agree with this is I think being a happy mummy is just as important. Albie had low blood sugar when he was delivered and the midwife offered me a bottle to try and get his blood sugar up and he took to it straight away. So that was our decision made. I'm happy with this. Mr.Clarke got to bond with Albie straight away and I didn't have to worry about a painful C/S recovery as well as possible latching on problems. Albie does have constipation though so we are off to the doctors today. I do believe that this is a common side effect of formula. If we do have another baby in the very distant future and I am able to have a natural delivery then I will definatly try breast feeding.
Anyway back to the point. On day 5 my boobs were the most painful, swollen and ugliest things I had seen. I actually had to get the girls out and show my friends, you had to see them to believe them- if you watched big brother this season then imagine Courtney's fake titties, mine had a striking resemblence. I couldn't sleep in any position, on my back my heavy boobs fell to the side and hurt, on my side was agonising due to the pressure on them. I was given a lot of breast pads, I would laugh to myself and wonder what I was going to do with them all!! This has not been an issue, using three in each bra cup at one time has seen to this!
I have been advised to wear non-underwired bras, so have been rocking a sports bra and my maternity bras.
After day 7 they started to feel more normal again, it's so important not to stimulate them if you are not breast feeding, this means just leaving them, don't massage them, don't soak them in hot water or express, the milk will only keep coming back!
Luckily for me during my pregnancy I was sent some Nexcare Hot/cold Maternity compress by 3M direct. The website describes them as 'Reusable cool/warm gel compresses for breastfeeding mothers; Ease discomfort caused by engorgement, blocked ducts and inflammation; Slips comfortably inside your bra; Pack contains 2 compresses, each with a soft fabric protective cover'
I know it says they are for breastfeeding mothers but they were a real life saver for me and were certainly more effective then pulling my top down and blowing on my boobs every time I felt pain. The gel compress is the perfect size and shape to fit in your bra and the protective covers stop the cold coming into direct contact with your skin. I placed the gel packs into the fridge for a couple of hours, placed them into the covers and popped them in my bra, the relief was instant, I just wish they could stay permantly cold. A little tip though, keep your breast pads on or you end up with soaked covers!!! I didn't use the hot option for reasons above so I can't review on this.
My boobs have now returned to normal size with nipples that don't resemble digestives! Although still a fair size, they feel so tiny compared to what they have been like, it's nice though, and I feel extra slim on top now.
I can recommend this product 100% and will be passing them on to my preggo friend Lucie at Lucieandthebump.blogspot.co.uk - don't worry Lucie they aren't part of your baby shower present!!
You can purchase these for £13.99 from http://www.3mdirect.co.uk/p-3728-nexcare-coldhot-maternity-breastfeeding-compress.aspx
Do you have any other tips for sore boobies? How about the old cabbage leaf tip??