Home Remedies for Blocked Milk Duct

  • Frequent nursing is the best remedy, it is initially painful but will alleviate discomfort by emptying breast.  Begin nursing on the affected side when the baby's sucking is strongest and pump any milk left after nursing.  Also, don't go for extended periods of time without nursing or pumping.
  • Try changing nursing positions to a more cradled or reclined position.  Make sure the baby's chin is pointing at sore duct area, as suction is then aimed directly at blockage and will encourage drainage.  Massage lump while nursing. Wrap breast with a warm compress (like heating pad) before nursing. 
  • Get adequate rest to promote healing and recovery and sleep on other side or back.
  • Ensure nursing bras fit comfortably and are made of cotton without underwire.
  • Eat a diet of nutritious foods, drink plenty of water, take Vitamin C (500 mg. daily while breastfeeding), try extracts of echinacea and/or lecithin as teas (lecithin capsules can also be used, 1200 mg. three times a day for two weeks, then 1200 mg. daily as long as you breastfeed), and mild exercise (i.e. walking).
  • Use regular massage: wrap in a warm towel first then begin on the outside the sides of breasts and move in toward nipple, you can also use castor oil to massage.  After massage, use thumb and index finger to squeeze out blockage; place fingers at outer edges of areola, press down and squeeze fingers toward nipple.
  • Soak in warm water, you can supplement with epsom salts. 
  • Cold packs can also reduce swelling and discomfort.   Cold potato compresses are also recommended.  Refrigerate potato for a few hours, then grate a medium portion, apply over affected area, cover with clean wash cloth while lying down for five minutes and repeat hourly.
  • Warm cabbage leaf compresses can be used - microwave cabbage leaf for a few seconds then apply to breast for 2-3 minutes, repeat hourly.
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