I mentioned right before New Year's that I had another round of mastitis. Believe me, I had the same reaction you had, AGAIN? Because seriously, there are few mamas out there who get it four times in three months. You probably wonder, is it really mastitis or just blocked ducts? Yes, all four bouts have been full blown mastitis with high fever, chills and shaking, and a red hard cone shaped spot on one of my breasts. Here is what gets me...
Of the four visits I have had with different providers, every one first asks me if I am thoroughly cleaning my hands and pumping equipment. Let me tell you that at this point, I want to SMACK them when they ask me this.
Yes, I know they are doing their jobs.
According to WebMd, "Mastitis most often happens when bacteria enter the breast through the nipple. This can happen when a nursing mother has a cracked or sore nipple. Going for long stretches between nursing or failing to empty the breast completely may also contribute to mastitis."
So for round one and two I imagine that having a cracked nipple and producing more milk than my kiddo was eating caused the mastitis. But after this point, I had educated myself and essentially switched to eping (exclusive pumping). My husband would walk in when I was pumping and cringe at the sight of me smooshing my boob in an effort to make sure that every possible drop of leche was squeezed from the girls. Additionally since the very beginning, my cleaning routine for my pumping equipment included not only washing it every time with hot, soapy water, but also using the medela bags to sterilize it at various points during the day. The skin around my fingers cracked between the copious amounts of hand-washing along with antibacterial goop I slather on afterwards for good measure.
So, when a health provider insists that mastitis occurs from bad hygiene, I have to hold myself back not to completely lose it with them. Now I just picture angry birds blowing them up (very addicted, must stop playing). I am not dirty!!!!
Besides giving me a huge dose of Ibuprofen and antibiotics, the professionals really seem to have no answers for me. I'm suppose to go in sometime this week to discuss what we can do to figure this shiznat out. Really, you might do a culture or something? Wow, go all out for me docs.
The bummer for this time is that the doc put me on antibiotics that I can not breastfeed with which has sent us dipping into my freezer stash. I'm grateful I have my treasure trove, but I don't think there is quite enough milk to get me through the ten days + 1 to let the drug clear my system. These pills also make my stomach hurt all of the time despite the fact that I'm following the instructions and taking them with food. Good times!
Despite this, my little man is doing great. I'll post soon about him!