An inflammatory condition of the breast tissue is known as mastitis. Mastitis may or may not be a result of an infection. It is most commonly seen in the women that are breastfeeding. However, some non-breastfeeding women and men are also seen to be getting affected with this condition. If mastitis is seen in breastfeeding women, it is known as lactational or puerperal mastitis and if it is seen in non-breastfeeding women it is known as a periductal mastitis. Mastitis may need to be treated with antibiotics if it is associated with an infection.
Can You Treat Mastitis With Amoxicillin?
Mastitis infection is generally caused due to the bacterium staphylococcus aureus. This bacterium does not respond very well to amoxicillin and there may be a need to change the antibiotic. Amoxicillin is used to treat mastitis, however, the drug of choice in treating mastitis is dicloxacillin or cephalexin. These drugs are capable to treat an infection caused due to the staphylococcus aureus.
- Amoxicillin is otherwise considered generally safe for breastfeeding infants. However, its efficacy in treating mastitis is still under study, though it is used by many practitioners for the treatment of mastitis.
- If to be used, amoxycillin is generally paired with another drug. Like clavulanate to treat mastitis, as the combination is proven to give better results than using amoxycillin alone.
Antibiotics are not recommended right away in the treatment of mastitis. Clinicians prefer the condition to resolve on its own by using certain supportive strategies. If the symptoms do not improve or get worse, antibiotics are prescribed.
It is better to start treating mastitis with some home remedies and techniques that can alleviate the symptoms. These strategies may include-
Not weaning the baby:
- The baby should not be weaned fearing the spread of the infection through the breastmilk
- Only in the case that a mother is suffering from HIV, the breastfeeding from the mastitis affected breast is kept on hold until the mastitis is resolved; as HIV infection can be passed on to the baby through a mastitis infected breast
- In most of the other cases, mothers are encouraged to continue with the breastfeeding as this helps a great deal in alleviating the pain and other symptoms by preventing the accumulation of milk in the breast and thereby relieving inflammation
Frequent feeding sessions:
- It is advisable to feed the baby frequently and, also on demand
- This helps in avoiding the build-up of excess milk in the breasts thereby alleviating pain and discomfort to a great deal
- It is also recommended to start feeding on the affected breast first, so that it can be emptied better
Empty the breasts:
- After the feeding session is done, remove any leftover milk by manually expressing the milk
- This can be done by gently squeezing the breasts to express the milk out
- This gentle pressure can also help in dislodging the lumps if any
- Expressing the leftover milk can also be done with the help of a breast pump
Apply a warm compress:
- The warm compress will help in drainage of the remaining breast milk after a feeding session is over
- It can also be done before a feeding session to facilitate the drainage of the milk when the baby is suckling
Take enough rest:
- Resting as much as possible is recommended so that the body can store up the much-needed energy to fight off the condition
Mastitis is an inflammation of the breast tissue. This condition can be very painful at times. It may or may not be associated with an infection. Mastitis may go away on its own. However, if it does not happen, there may be a need to start some medications like antibiotics and anti-inflammatory medicines. The antibiotic Amoxicillin alone is not much effective in treating mastitis. However, when used with drugs like clavulanate it can give good results in the treatment of mastitis.