- What It Is
- Risk Factors
- Living With
- User Questions
- Alternative Treatment
- Care Guide
- Questions for Your Doctor
- When to Contact a Doctor
- Find a Doctor
- Resource Guide
How to Treat Mastitis
Treatment may include:
Methods to Clear Blocked Breast Ducts
Relieving the blockage in the milk duct is an effective way to decrease the pain and swelling. To clear blocked breast ducts try:
- Breastfeeding frequently-Breastfeeding with mastitis is not harmful to the baby. Talk to your doctor if you are also taking medicines though, to make sure the medicines are not harmful to your baby.
- Offering the baby the infected breast first (to promote complete emptying of infected breast)
- Using a breast pump to express milk
- Applying warm compresses to breasts prior to feeding (to stimulate milk ejection reflex)
To reduce pain and swelling in the breast:
- Apply ice compresses to the affected area of your breast after breastfeeding.
- If your mastitis is not caused by breastfeeding, consider using over-the-counter pain relievers as recommended by your doctor.
- Be sure to ask your doctor what pain relievers are safe for you and your baby. Taking aspirin is not advised during pregnancy or breastfeeding.
- Drink lots of fluids.
- Get plenty of rest.
Antibiotics may be used to treat the infection. They may help cure the infection or reduce the risk of more serious but rare complications such as blood infection. If you are breastfeeding, talk to your doctor about which antibiotics are best for you to take so you can continue to breastfeed.
The bacteria known as
If mastitis does not respond to antibiotics, a localized collection of pus called an abscess might be present. This is usually treated with other antibiotics and a drainage procedure or surgery.
If you are diagnosed with mastitis, follow your doctor's instructions.