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I have sprung a leak

March 23, 2011
by

I am an overachiever. In my education, in my career, in my milk supply. I’m almost ashamed to say it, when so many mamas have such problems making enough milk or keeping their supply up. But I make milk and I make a lot of it. Even now, when she is starting to wean herself and only sporadically nursing there is plenty in there. My husband is sure that there’s nothing left.  Ah but there is, see? And this abundant supply led me to rebel against the two biggest don’ts of lactating women: underwires and plastic nursing pads. dun dun dun…..

How do I stop the leaking? This is by far the most embarrassing part of nursing. The two big wet spots.  Part of the problem is how much the breastfeeding classes and experts tell you NOT to use plastic backed nursing pads. They will cause mastitis. And of course, I was scared to death of mastitis. But, plastic backed pads are really the only ones that are good at preventing the leaks from reaching your shirt.

I used a lot of organic cotton pads (some custom-made – b/c most nursing pads also don’t fit larger breasts and forget engorged large boobs! yet another issue). But the cotton pads always soaked through and they always showed through my shirt like enormous nipples. Not cute.The problem with wearing pads is you really don’t want to look like you’re wearing nursing pads. I mean really, do we need to advertise it more that I’m lactating and possibly leaking? It’s already hard enough trying to wear a nursing bra with no under wire (b/c that is also a no-no and will cause mastitis). Oh how I missed my IPEX during nursing.

So live and learn, after about a month back at work and dealing with having to carry a change of clothes and 10 sets of cotton nursing pads, I switched. I started using plastic backed pads (and wearing an underwire, nursing bra experts be damned!). And I was fine. No mastitis. I don’t know how I never ended up with a clogged duct with all the plastic and wires I had going on, but whatever I was doing worked.

And then come to find out they make these things called lilly pads which are basically pasties for nursing moms. I’m sure these are an even bigger no-no but I will definitely be trying them with the next baby. It would just be nice to not have to be checking your shirt every few minutes for wet spots.

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