White spot at the end of nipple
White spot at the end of nipple - Transcript
If you notice a small white dot at the end of your nipple, this could be thickened milk, or a layer of skin, which is blocking milk from coming out of the nipple pore.
If you’re not in any pain, however, then even though this white spot may last for a few days or even a few weeks, there’s nothing really for you to do.
If, however, you are experiencing pain, then there are a number of steps that you can take to rectify the situation:
The first one is to look at your baby’s attachment at the breast, look at your positioning and ensure that it’s as comfortable as it can be. If this blockage is actually thickened skin, in effect you have a nipple blister, and there is a separate video relating to this. If this blockage is caused by solidified milk, even a string of milk, then this is a white spot.
When your baby is latched on well and breastfeeding frequently, this can often release that thickened milk from behind the duct – and a little bit of hand expression as well, can resolve the situation.
As well as feeding at the breast in as comfortable a position as possible, draining the breast well, you may still need to scrape some of that thickened milk away with a very, very clean fingernail, too.
If you find that feeding itself isn’t enough to dislodge this thickened milk, then it might be necessary to apply warm, wet compresses, or a bath or shower beforehand, just to soften that area. Coupled with the feeding itself and hand expression, this may be all that is needed.
If you find that these measures still aren’t enough, it may be necessary to use a saline soak beforehand, just to help to open the milk duct a little bit, and also to aid the healing. It can be really useful, before you actually feed your baby, to squeeze the areola/nipple area, just to see if you can squeeze some of that thickened milk from the duct itself.
If these measures are still not enough to resolve the situation, try soaking cotton wool with olive oil, leaving it in your bra for a few hours, just to soften the skin of the nipple and then you’ll be able to peel away the hardened milk.
Every now and again, you’ll find that some women have to take a few extra measures in these situations, and one of them is to seek help from your medical person, your doctor, who can use a sterile needle to release that thickened, hardened milk.
A lot of mothers will tell me that once that white spot has gone, there has been instant relief, but some have had to employ preventative measures to stop a recurrence of this: some women have found that using a daily saline soak, for instance, and a brisk wash with a face cloth for a couple of weeks can prevent a recurrence.
Studies have also shown that reducing your intake of saturated fats and taking a capsule of lecithin (1200mg) 3-4 times a day can be a preventative measure, to prevent these blockages.
Please remember that white spots are a temporary trouble, try the strategies that I’ve mentioned in the video – if you do, however, feel that things are still not resolved, then seek out further help.
Review dates, references & further resources
V1 published June 2017. Next review date: April 2020
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