If you notice some white patches on your nipples, don’t worry too much about it. A bleb, or clogged pore, is a harmless symptom caused by a buildup of dried milk in your nipple.
Read on to find out more about the possible causes of white spots on your nipple and when you should seek medical attention.
1. It’s usually a blocked pore or duct
When a mother breastfeeds her child, milk exits through pores in her nipples. Occasionally, a nipple hole can get clogged due to a clump of dried milk. Milk blebs or a clogged nipple pore are the medical terms for this condition. Milk blisters arise when pores are sealed up by the epidermis.
Sometimes the passages behind the nipple get blocked up too. The milk ducts have become clogged or obstructed.
Nipple white spots are often the result of a bleb or blister. The skin around the spot may become red, and the spot itself may be a pale yellow or pink.
Blisters and blebs can be extremely unpleasant. The discomfort may feel like being stabbed or stung.
The force of your baby’s sucking during a feeding should be enough to clear the obstruction. When a clog in the breasts doesn’t clear up, it might cause an infection known as mastitis.
What you can do
If the bleb or blister persists after breastfeeding, try applying a warm, wet compress in the time before feedings to slowly release the clog.
The pore can be opened with a sterile needle under medical supervision. Squeezing your breast after the pore has opened can aid in the drainage process. Find out what causes milk blisters and how they can be treated and avoided in the future.
2. Milk drainage
Blocked nipple pores can also be caused by not completely emptying breasts between feedings. You may get a plug if you frequently switch your infant to the other breast before they are finished with the first.
This issue can also be brought on by the infant not eating enough or latching on properly.
Large-milk-producing women are more prone to experience clogged pores than their smaller-milk-producing counterparts.
What you can do
If you breastfeed your baby more frequently, you will reduce the likelihood of milk pore clogging. It’s best to start your infant off on the less healthy breast first. Pump your breast milk if you have to go a few hours without feeding your baby, such when you’re at work. After you’ve been breastfeeding for a while, you shouldn’t experience these obstructions anymore.
3. Pressure on the breast
Tight bras can restrict milk production because they exert stress on the breasts. When compared to wire-free bras, underwired bras are more likely to obstruct your pores.
This can also occur if you wear a baby carrier or seatbelt that is too tight across your chest.
What you can do
Do your best to avoid wearing restrictive bras and other garments if you want to keep your pores open. For help selecting the right bra size, read on.
During pregnancy, the nipples go through a number of transitions. The pigmented area of your nipple, known as the areola, may develop a rash of tiny pimples. These protrusions, known as Montgomery tubercles, are glands that secrete substances to lubricate your nipples and signal to your infant that it is time to eat.
These glands may swell due to hormonal shifts experienced during pregnancy. They are harmless and should disappear once your hormone levels have returned to normal.