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Clogged Ducts and Mastitis

At some point you may notice a small lump in your breast. These may be red and can be warm and painful to touch. This usually signals a clogged milk duct.

There are several things you can do if your ducts get clogged. Try feeding longer on the affected side to ensure complete emptying of that breast. Massaging the affected area during feeding may also be helpful. Apply warm, moist heat to the area several times a day. Make sure you’re alternating feeding positions with each feeding as different positions allow different ducts to be drained more completely.

Breast infections, or mastitis, have similar symptoms to a clogged duct, but are usually more painful and can be accompanied by a fever or flu-like symptoms. If you think you may have a breast infection, contact your healthcare team right away.

Mastitis is usually treated with antibiotics. Fortunately, mastitis does not necessarily stop you from breastfeeding. Ask your healthcare team for more information.