Thrush and Breastfeeding: Thrush Symptoms, Causes and Treatment
Everything you need to know about THRUSH while breastfeeding
What is thrush
Thrush is caused by a fungus that feeds and thrives on milk. It finds its way inside through cracked nipples and also loves to thrive in a baby’s mouth. The thrush will then cause sore nipples and painful breasts, especially while breastfeeding. Oral thrush in your baby can cause a sore throat and tongue and can also give your baby a diaper rash as well as make him windy and irritable.
Mommy and baby will need to get treatment for thrush together so that they do not pass the infection back and forth between the two of them.
What are the causes of thrush
1. If you have had a vaginal yeast infection before you will have a larger chance of getting thrush while breastfeeding.
2. Moms who have anemia are at risk for thrush
3. A pacifier is something that helps cause thrush, because provides a place for the yeast to grow.
4. Antibiotics given to mom or baby can increase risk of thrush
5. Damp nursing pads give a great environment for yeast to thrive
Foods to avoid that help prevent and get rid of thrush
- Fatty, deep fried foods
- Pickled fruits and vegetables
- Smoked meat and fish
- Dried fruit
- Monosodium glutamate
- Yeast containing products like bread
- Sweets (yeast thrives with sugar)
- Beer, soda and wine
What are the symptoms of thrush In mom:
- Intense breast or nipple pain which can sometimes feel like a sharp pain that radiates from the nipple to the breast and then into your back or arm.
- A vaginal yeast infection is one of the major signs that you might be suffering from thrush
- Angular chelitis (sores on the corner of your mouth)
- Cracked open nipples
- Itchy burning nipples
- A rash in the damp areas of the body such as beneath the arms or in the groin area
Symptoms of thrush in infants:
- Diaper rash
- A unwillingness to nurse because of his mouth (thrush mouth) being painful
- Sometimes baby might have a milky substance or white patches inside his mouth or on his tongue
- Baby might have some gas this is a common thing associated with infant thrush
Some natural remedies for thrush include tea tree oil apple cider vinegar (dab a few drop on your nipples after a feeding, yeast cannot live in acidic surroundings) Aloe vera gel has also been used on the nipple area for thrush treatment.
Some women have found that including garlic supplements or just eating as much garlic as you can helps allot with a thrush infection. Garlic will boost your immune system making it easier to fight off the yeast infection.
Grapefruit seed extract is a great supplement that can be used three times a day.
Echinacea is an immune boosting herb that helps get rid of yeast fast.
Gentian violet is excellent for many things but is a well known treatment for thrush. The nipple area is painted once a day usually at night. It can also be used in baby’s mouth. The only draw back is that its messy and leaves stains on clothing.
Can you breastfeed when you have thrush
Do not stop breastfeeding. Do not rub breast milk into your nipples as yeast thrives in milk. Try eating less sugary foods.
Try pumping for a while if you cant handle the pain of breastfeeding, just until you have healed. A breastfeeding mom can take ibuprofen which is safe during breastfeeding. Also try drinking lots and lots of green tea.
A supplement called Lactobacillus acidophilus helps promote the growth of "friendly bacteria" This can be given for baby thrush too.
How to prevent thrush
- A good diet will keep your immune system strong
- Get enough sleep and rest
- Replace your nursing pads as soon as they become damp
- Always keep your hands clean while breastfeeding
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