Treating Mastitis without antibiotics

I understand antibiotics have their place but we as a culture tend to overmedicate and overuse of antibiotics is a concern…as is not finishing your prescription.

I met mastitis head on during week 2 and 3 post-partum and it was No fun. High fever, sweats, chills, engorgement…but in the midst of all that I didn’t feel it was necessary to expose my baby’s new and developing immune system to such a harsh bacteria-kill fest where both good and bad die. My midwife gave me some pointers to help fight it and it was gone within 24 hours (more like 12) both times. Had it lasted longer that’s another story. But being a new mom the last thing I wanted was to expose new baby to the 3am ER crowd and introduce anything new to her virgin immune system.

I found this list helpful for researching safety of nursing while under different meds recently as I had to get surgery and that involved way too many decisions about drugs and anesthesia. But everyone is fine and Eve has no side effects of anything that was coursing through my body. It’s amazing how nursing protects her from so many things. You just hear that one horror story and just don’t want to face the risk, even when it’s small. Or at least that’s me.

Let’s get back on topic. Mastitis!
So here’s what I’ve had success with in the throes of the devil called mastitis:

1. Rub castor oil on breast where it is engorged and hard and hot to the touch.
2. Get a heating pad on your chest and heat those puppies up.
3. Drink an emergenc followed by 32 oz of water. Drink it all. (Boost immune system. Hydrate)
4. Get you baby to nurse and drain it as well as possible. Pump if you need to but baby is better at emptying the breasts (hence mastitis #2 for me was pump related)
5. Get some sleep. (Rest)

If this doesn’t help, go to the doctor. Antibiotics have their place.

Leave a Reply