Breastfeeding and Body Acne
Are you struggling with acne while breastfeeding? There are natural products you can use, to take care of acne during breastfeeding!
Some Moms notice acne outbreaks during the first few months after childbirth. This can include pimples on the face or all over the body.
This post pregnancy acne is completely normal. Acne after giving birth, will most likely disappear once your hormones have settled down a bit.
Acne after childbirth, can take from a few weeks to a few months to clear. On this page we will also discuss baby acne and breastfeeding.
Acne and Breastfeeding ~ The Cause
What Causes Acne in Mom during Breastfeeding?
* It could be hormonal; related to the hormones that are produced during breastfeeding, but it is mostly due to hormones that are returning back to normal after birth. Most Moms have acne post pregnancy, whether they are breastfeeding or not.
* Stress: Usually when a new baby is introduced into an already busy lifestyle, it can cause some extra stress. Try to relax as much as possible, and get as much help around the house or with the kids as possible. Read more about stress and breastfeeding here.
* Dehydration: Many Moms forget that they need to stay extra hydrated during breastfeeding. When your skin becomes dehydrated, it will start to retaliate! Drink at least 8 glasses of water per day.
Acne and Breastfeeding ~ Safe MEDs
Acne MEDs and Topical Creams that are Safe during Breastfeeding
Oral medications are not really recommended, as these can put Mom and baby at risk for thrush and should only be taken if necessary.
* Most topical acne products that are applied to the skin, are safe during breastfeeding, because they are found in very small amounts in the blood stream and are hardly ever found in breast milk. There are a few exceptions to this rule; always ask your doctor first.
* Medications that are taken orally, like Tetracycline, Erythromycin and Retin-A are safe while nursing. They are not found in breast milk, the tiny amounts of Tetracycline found in breast milk will not get absorbed, but will bind with the calcium in milk and finally land up in baby’s poop, without affecting him at all.
* The best topical acne treatments while breastfeeding, are products that contain Benzoyl peroxide or Salicyclic acid. These are not absorbed by the skin.
* Azelex (azelaic acid) is another topical acne treatment, that is safe while breastfeeding.
* Other safe medications: Erythromycin, Proactive.
* MEDs that should not be taken: Accutane (Isotretinoin).
Breastfeeding and Pimples ~ Natural Acne Remedies
Alternative Methods to get Rid of Acne
* The best and safest way to handle acne during breastfeeding, is to try natural products and methods. Remedies-for-skin is a site with all natural recipes for skin care. There you will find natural cleansers, moisturizers, toners, essential oils for oily skin and much more.
* You can also use your own breast milk and apply it twice per day for acne relief. Breast milk is antibacterial and contains healing properties. Breast milk contains Lauric acid, which has acne fighting properties; without producing skin irritation and redness. Read more about other uses of breast milk.
* Using a gentle baby wash on your face can be quite effective, and won’t harm you or Baby.
Pimples on my Nipples!
Some Moms experience an acne outbreak on their breasts and nipples during breastfeeding.
Acne that is due to hormonal changes, can be found anywhere on the body, including the breasts
Breast acne may be an indication of a yeast infection.
Acne and Breastfeeding ~ Baby Acne
Breastfeeding and Acne in Baby?
* Acne neonatum “ breastfeeding acne ”, is the acne that is caused by the mother's excess hormones in the breast milk. The hormones are transferred to Baby through the milk, and can cause the baby’s sebaceous glands to produce more sebum; clogging the pores and causing pimples.
* This acne is usually visible from the first few weeks of life, until about three months postpartum.
* Nursing acne usually does not require medical treatment, and should disappear on its own.
* The occurrence of birth acne, is more common in boys than in girls.
* This acne is usually situated on Baby’s cheeks, near the mouth, chin, forehead or on the scalp.
* Lotions and oils will just worsen the condition, and should be avoided. You can use a facial cleanser that is specifically made for babies.
* Should I stop breastfeeding? The benefits of breastfeeding outweigh the temporary inconvenience of breastfeeding with pimples.
Author ~ Tracy Ann Behr: Breastfeeding Mom of two, Breastfeeding Helper, currently studying at Childbirth International for breastfeeding counselor and Birth doula.
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