22 answers

How to soothe burning nipple pain during pregnancy?

I was wondering if anyone else had experienced this problem and what you did for it (if anything can be done). I am in my last month of pregnancy and for the past few months I have had a problem with at least one nipple (they alternate) getting hard and not going down. It burns like someone set it on fire for anywhere from 5 to 20 minutes. It may sound silly, but it's EXCRUCIATING! Yesterday in the grocery store this happened with both of them to the point that I thought I was going to have to run out screaming! With my first pregnancy and child 2 years ago, I never had this problem. My colostrum has been coming in, but I am wondering if this is a symptom of something else. I have a Dr's appt. Wednesday and plan to ask, but was curious if anyone else had experienced it. It really feels like someone set fire to them.

What can I do next?


The burning sensation is called the "Let down" "feature". This happens when the milk that you are producing is being "Let Down", as this occurs there can be pain, stinging and of course a burning sensation. It normally go away after giving birth, if it persists, consult your doctor.

So What Happened?™

Well, I asked the doctor yesterday, and she said they didn't know of anything it could be -she mentioned hormonal changes, etc. pretty much what I've been thinking. I am going to try the cabbage leaves. I had heard of that before but forgotten it! I will also try warm cloths if I'm in a position to use them the next time this happens. I appreciate all of your advice and suggestions!

Featured Answers


This sounds like Raynaud's of the nipple Here's a link to some information http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/mom/nipple-blanching....

I would contact a lactation consultant to help, Sharon at Lactation Consultants of Atlanta has experience with this her website is www.breastfeedingatlanta.com


More Answers

I had a similar thing happen to me, but not to the extreme you are describing, at the end of both of my pregnancies. My pain would start like a burning sensation and then get itchy. With my second pregnancy this feeling started the day before I went into labor and with my first pregnancy it started the week before I gave birth. I have no idea what causes this, but I just took it as a sign that the end is near. Hopefully this is true for you too and the pain will subside soon.

It sounds like let-down, but I'm surprised you've got it before the baby is born.
Lots of weird things happen during and after pregnancy, I wouldn't worry about it too much.

I am 22 weeks pregnant (Monday) and for the past month, I'd say, I'd been experiencing the same problem. I found that running warm water on my nipples helps. NOT letting the shower run on them, that hurts like you wouldn't believe, but I simply lean over the sink, cupping my breast, and let the water run over them. And I'm not talking about lukewarm water, the warmer the better, but not too hot either... It takes about a min or so for the pain to subside but it definitely helps!! Upon further research, I found that this seems to be something completely normal seeing as how many, many other women go through the same thing, so no worries. And last but not least, at your own risk try the frozen rings, but I can't even stand for cold air to touch, so its up to you.

Sounds like a clogged duct...try massaging it with a hot wash cloth!

I don't have an answer to what it may be, just ans alternative to ice packs. Use bags of frozen peas or corn. They conform to the body better but don't use for more than 10-15 minutes once per hour or you can cause tissue damage.

It has been 18 years since I was pregnant. However, I experienced something similar if not the same thing. I remember icing myself to help with pain. A naturopathic doctor recommended a cream that was sold to dairy farmers to sooth cow udders! I used that cream for chemical burns as well. I wonder now if you could use a salve like that or coco butter w/some lidocaine mixed in. Good luck, please let us know what you find out.

I had my little girl on August 5th so the 'joys' of pregnancy are still a recent memory. I experienced the same pain you are suffering from now. Nothing quite like that I think. Thankfully, I can encourage you by telling you that it was nothing to be concerned about healthwise and went away when my little girl was born. I hope it disappears as quickly for you or even sooner. I hope that helps.

I had that happen as well. It seemed to happen more when I got cold - like going through the freezer section of the grocery store. I never talked to my doctors about it. I thought it was too weird to explain. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who had that. If I was in private I could use my hand to put pressure on it which helped a lot. That was a little hard to do in the grocery store. Now that my baby is born I don't have any problems with it. Good luck.

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