Thrush on the areola typically appears as a red, spotty rash. It may also have a raised, bumpy texture, similar to eczema. The area may be itchy or sore. There may also be a white, cottage cheese-like discharge which can be painful if allowed to build up.
White patches may also form on the areola, which can be scraped off and may indicate a fungal infection. It is important to speak to your healthcare professional if you experience any of these symptoms.
How do I know if I have thrush on my nipples?
One of the key signs that you may have thrush on your nipples is if you notice changes in their appearance, such as they becoming red and cracked. Thrush can also cause your nipples to itch and feel sore, as well as burning discomfort when breastfeeding.
Your nipples may also be a bit flaky, as if they are drying out. You may also notice patches of white, cottage cheese-type discharge on the nipples, or in the surrounding area of the areola. If you have any of these symptoms then it is best to speak with a medical professional, or your midwife or health visitor, to get a proper diagnosis.
Will breast thrush go away by itself?
In general, breast thrush is not likely to go away on its own and will require treatment to fully clear up. Breast thrush is a type of fungal infection that can affect nipples, areola and breasts, caused by an overgrowth of candida yeast.
It can present as cracked, red, and itchy nipples, along with burning and soreness in the breast area. If it is left untreated breast thrush can cause serious pain, leading to a lack of desire to continue breastfeeding.
Typically treatment treatments for a fungal infection like breast thrush involve topical or oral antifungal medications. Therefore, it is recommended that you seek medical advice and treatment options from your doctor to ensure that the infection is treated properly.
Is it OK to pump with thrush?
No, it is not OK to pump with thrush. Thrush is an oral yeast infection caused by an overgrowth of the Candida albicans fungus, which can be spread to the breasts through breastfeeding. If you have thrush on or around your nipples or within your breast milk, it is important to avoid pumping, as this could increase the spread of thrush.
Instead, treat the thrush with a topical cream or ointment and contact your healthcare provider to ensure treatment is applied safely and effectively. It is also important to thoroughly clean your pump parts before and after each use to avoid any further spread of thrush.
Taking these steps will help to ensure that your pump remains clean and free from the yeast-causing fungus for the best breastfeeding experience for both you and your baby.
Can I still breastfeed with thrush?
Yes, it is possible to continue breastfeeding even if you have thrush. However, it is important to get treatment so that you and your baby do not continue to pass the infection back and forth. Since thrush is caused by an overgrowth of yeast, antifungal medications are often prescribed.
It is important to take the medication as prescribed to get rid of the infection and prevent it from coming back. You may also want to try some home remedies to help reduce the symptoms. Some of these include applying pure aloe vera to the nipples or soaking them in warm water with vinegar or lemon juice.
Additionally, make sure to rinse your nipples with water several times a day and keep them dry. All of these treatments will help reduce your symptoms and help speed up your recovery. It is also important to keep any breastfeeding equipment clean and avoid sharing items such as cups or pacifiers, and to practice good handwashing technique.
Consulting with your healthcare provider is always recommended before changing your breastfeeding schedule or discontinuing breastfeeding, as they can provide you with additional advice on how to manage the situation.
How to treat thrush naturally for breastfeeding?
The best way to treat thrush naturally while breastfeeding is to focus on promoting a balanced and healthy gut microbiome, improving your overall diet, and using certain herbal treatments.
It is important to maintain a healthy diet for both you and your baby that focuses on whole, unprocessed foods full of nutrients. Working to add fermented foods, probiotics, and prebiotics like yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, and kombucha to your diet can help improve your gut health, which can support the immune system.
Additionally, reducing the amount of processed foods and added sugar that you and your baby eat can be beneficial to help fight off thrush.
Herbal remedies can be a great addition to an overall plan to help fight thrush naturally. Many herbs have natural antimicrobial properties that can help to kill off the fungus responsible for thrush.
Some examples of herbs suitable for oral thrush in breastfeeding include sage, chamomile, gentian, tea tree oil, and myrrh. In addition, herbs like calendula and marshmallow root can help provide relief to sore or inflamed nipples.
It is important to talk to your doctor or lactation consultant before taking any herbs to ensure that they are safe and appropriate for you and your baby. Additionally, they will provide you with the best recommendations for how to safely use the herbal remedies and how to apply them to the affected area.
What does early signs of thrush look like?
Early signs of thrush may include white patches inside the cheeks, on the roof of the mouth and on the tongue. The patches may look like cottage cheese, and they may cause burning or itching sensations.
In some cases, the patches may be painful and make the areas around the mouth and tongue red or swollen. When thrush is advanced or severe, it may affect the gums and tonsils. Other signs may include a sore throat, difficulty swallowing, and a bad taste in the mouth.
Additionally, you may experience unusual frothy saliva, muscle aches, fever, and skin rashes in advanced cases. It is important to note that anyone can get thrush, but it is more common in infants, people with weak immune systems, and the elderly.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to see your doctor for further evaluation and treatment.
Can thrush decrease milk supply?
Yes, thrush can decrease a mother’s milk supply. Thrush is a type of fungal infection that can develop both in the mother’s breasts and in the baby’s mouth. In addition to causing pain, itching, and burning sensations in the mother, it can make it difficult for a baby to establish a good latch if present in their mouth.
A poor latch during breastfeeding can interfere with the mother’s ability to express enough milk and subsequently decrease the amount of milk they can provide. Furthermore, this can add to the mother’s discomfort by impeding their ability to empty the breasts, leading to engorgement.
If thrush is indeed present and decreasing milk supply, a doctor can prescribe anti-fungal medication which can clear up the infection and restore breastfeeding to its regular state.
What happens if you leave breast thrush untreated?
Leaving breast thrush untreated can lead to a few potential complications. To start, thrush can spread from the breasts to other parts of the body, including the baby’s mouth. If this happens, thrush can cause an uncomfortable condition in the mouth called oral thrush.
This can make it difficult for the baby to feed. Additionally, without adequate treatment, thrush can lead to a condition called nipple vasospasm, in which the blood vessels around the nipple constrict and reduce blood flow.
This can make it difficult to get enough nutrition and make nursing very painful. Ongoing skin irritation can also result from leaving thrush untreated. Irritation can lead to inflammation and make it more likely for a skin infection known as mastitis to develop.
Additionally, untreated thrush can cause issues for breastfeeding due to the pain associated with it. As such, it is important to seek an appropriate treatment for thrush in order to avoid potential complications.
How long can thrush last if untreated?
If thrush is left untreated, it can persist for a long period of time and can become a chronic infection. Thrush is caused by the fungus Candida, which is a naturally occurring organism in the body that can quickly multiply if the body’s natural balance of bacteria is disrupted.
When left untreated, Candida can spread and cause a wide range of health issues, from oral and genital infections to systemic inflammation.
The duration of the infection is largely dependent on your individual circumstances. If you have a weakened immune system due to underlying issues, such as diabetes, HIV, or chemotherapy, the thrush can last much longer.
Similarly, if you’re taking antibiotics or receive frequent chemotherapy treatments, thrush can reappear and require multiple rounds of treatment.
In some cases, thrush can last for months or even years, especially if the underlying causes are not addressed. During this time, you may experience persistent itching, burning, and redness in the affected areas.
It is important to always seek medical advice and treatment as soon as possible to keep thrush from becoming a long-term issue.
Is thrush serious if left untreated?
Yes, thrush can be a very serious condition if left untreated. Thrush is a fungal infection that occurs when certain strains of fungus called Candida albicans grow out of control in the mouth and throat.
Because these infections normally occur when our bodies’ natural defenses are weakened, an untreated infection can quickly spread to other parts of the body and cause major health issues. Left untreated, thrush can cause damage to the mouth, throat and esophagus.
In extreme cases, it can cause difficulty breathing and even lead to life-threatening infections. Other common complications include poor nutrition from difficulty eating and drinking, chronic fatigue, and recurrent infections.
With early diagnosis and proper treatment, however, most people can recover from thrush without any long-term consequences.
How do you treat areola thrush?
Areola thrush is an infection of the nipple and areola caused by an overgrowth of yeast and is usually found in breastfeeding women. To treat areola thrush, it is important to use specific medication that is effective against yeast.
The most commonly recommended treatment is an antifungal cream or ointment such as Lotrimin, Lamisil, or Monistat which should be applied to the affected area 3-4 times daily for up to two weeks. Additionally, it is important to keep the area dry and clean and to use a clean towel when drying the area between applications of the antifungal cream.
For breastfeeding mothers, if a yeast infection is found on the nipple, consider treating both the mother and baby with topical or oral antifungal medication as the baby can pass the infection back to the mother while breastfeeding if only one partner is treated.
Finally, if the infection is not improving, contact your healthcare provider as they may need to prescribe stronger antifungal medication.
What is the white stuff around my areola?
The white stuff around the areola is likely a natural secretion called smegma. Smegma is produced by oil and sweat glands around the nipple and areola. It is usually a white, waxy substance that has a cheese-like consistency.
Smegma is not harmful, but it can accumulate in the folds of skin and cause irritation or infection if not cleaned regularly. It is best practice to wash your areola and nipples gently with warm water and a mild, fragrance-free soap every day while showering.
Avoid scrubbing too vigorously, as this can irritate your skin.
How do you know if your areola is infected?
If you suspect your areola is infected, the best thing to do is to visit your doctor or healthcare provider for a proper diagnosis. It is important to note that infections of the areola are usually a symptom of an underlying issue, such as mastitis or a blocked milk duct.
Symptoms to look out for when diagnosing an infection of the areola include swelling, redness, pain, tenderness, warmth to the touch, and a cloudy discharge. You may also experience fever, nausea, and fatigue.
Your doctor may do a physical examination and may take a tissue sample for laboratory testing to identify the underlying cause of the infection and to determine the best course of treatment. If your doctor confirms symptoms of an infection, they may recommend a course of antibiotics, and may also recommend techniques to improve lactation.