Over 70% of all women with newborns in the U.S. currently breastfeed their babies and that percentage is growing for good reason. There's a tremendous amount of evidence that breastfeeding improves immune function in infants. According to the U.S. Surgeon General’s 2011 report, compared with breast-fed infants, babies who drink formula are more prone to ear infections and diarrhea in the first six months and face a higher lifetime risk of asthma, obesity, type 2 diabetes and other health problems.
There are times when breastfeeding presents some challenges for new moms. Commonly seen problems with breastfeeding include engorgement (swelling and discomfort with soreness of the nipples) and/or inadequate or excessive milk supply. Homeopathy can be tremendously helpful and SAFE for women with any of these problems - providing relief without the dangers associated with taking conventional drugs that pass through the milk to the infant.
When preparing to choose a remedy - one should examine the breasts to see if there is any discoloration or visible swelling of the breasts or anything unusual about the nipples. The milk produced should also be examined to check the texture and appearance of the milk. Also observe whether the child has any problems with feeding as well, such as a tongue-tie.
Here are just a few remedies to consider for women struggling with any of these problems:
Belladonna: Sudden onset with intense symptoms. Worse right side. Breast(s) is red, hot and hard and can be marked by red streaks. The patient is very uncomfortable being touched or jarred and may have a craving for lemons or lemonade.
Bryonia: Breast is very painful with motion and the patient is quite irritable. Pain is often "sticking” or "stitching” in nature. While the breasts are hot and painful as well as hard - they are not as red as with Belladonna. Problem can be worse around 9:00PM. Mucus membranes of patient may also be dry (lips, etc.) and they may complain of pains and aches all over. They are worse from ANY motion and better from pressure to the breast. The patient also tends to be very thirsty.
Calcarea carb: Breasts can be hot and swollen - but pale in color. The patient will complain of being chilly with a tendency to perspire - in fact, they can perspire even when cold. There may be production of excess watery milk - or deficiency of milk. The milk may also disagree with the child. The patient is worse from exertion or a cold room and has a strong craving for eggs and a strong desire for dairy including cheese. Warmth makes the patient feel better.
Pulsatilla: Breast milk can be watery, suppressed or blocked - or flow profusely. The flow may also be quite variable. The patient tends to have symptoms that change often. They also tend to be yielding in nature and easily brought to tears - with a warm personality. They can cry while nursing the baby. Patient is worse in a warm room and much better in open air. They are also thirst less.
Urtica urens: No breast milk is produced at all - and there does not seem to be a cause for the problem. Breasts can be swollen with stinging pains like the sting of a bee. The breasts may also itch. Patient can also experience a stinging or itching rash. There is an aggravation from cold and cold bathing.
Dose with either a 30C or 200C potency to start - placing one pellet in water, stirring vigorously and taking teaspoon doses as needed. Always cease dosing when relief begins and only redose if symptoms again worsen.
About Dr. Samet:
Dr. Lisa Samet N.D. provides Washington Homeopathic Products with a weekly column on using homeopathy for the family. She's a naturopathic physician who specializes in homeopathic medicine and she's a partner with Dr. Andre Saine N.D. She is perhaps best known as a guest expert on homeopathy used by Dr. Mehmet Oz M.D. on the popular TV program - the Dr. Oz Show. Dr. Samet graduated from the Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine in 1998 and has been practicing in Montreal since then. She was born and raised in New York.
Dr. Samet has chosen to focus on homeopathy because in her experience it is the deepest healing modality available in that it does not just soothe or palliate symptoms but can actually stimulate the body to start to heal itself. Dr. Samet sees patients in her Montreal office as well as remotely using Skype.