How to Use Breast-ease for Heat & Cold Therapy

Written by: Sabrina Granniss, IBCLC

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Time to read 4 min

Hot and cold therapy is one of the best home remedies for easing discomfort. Depending on the situation, one may be better than the other. Sometimes, alternating between the two brings the most relief. Legendairy Milk’s Breast-Ease Support Pack is designed for nursing and pumping, can be used hot or cold, and can help alleviate discomfort in various breastfeeding situations.


Breast-Ease Support Pack comes with two reusable gel packs, which are convenient for using one immediately and one ready for the next time or using one simultaneously on each breast. Having two packs also allows you to use one for heat and the other for cold when it is better to alternate between them. Most cold packs are stiff when they are frozen, but with Legendairy Milk’s packs, you can shape them to increase the cold or warm contact of the pack on your breast. It is very flexible and conforms to your breast comfortably and around your nipple rather than over the top of it.

Using heat

Before hand expression and pumping - The truth is, when we are stressed out, cortisol levels rise, and oxytocin decreases. Oxytocin is the hormone released, signaling milk to flow and the milk ejection reflex. It is the hormone that is triggered when we think of our baby, hear a baby cry, or see or smell our baby, and we leak milk. Heat can help you relax, release oxytocin, and remove more milk during hand expression and pumping. (1)


During pumping - No need to take the Breast-Ease pack off while you pump. Because it wraps around your flange, you can keep it on while you pump. This will help encourage more let downs while you pump, which can help you remove more milk during your pump session. Using hands-on massage and compressions on your breast while pumping in addition to heat boosts milk output.


Increase milk supply - Using the Breast-Ease pack warm during nursing or pumping, which can help elicit more let downs, means you can refill with milk more often, and your milk supply may increase. (2)


Milk bleb - Gently rubbing a food-safe oil on a bleb and putting on a heat pack can help soften the tissue and make your bleb a thing of the past. Blebs can be painful and usually are seen on the nipple or areola. It may appear as a white spot. It is a small area of trapped milk under the skin’s surface.


Plugged ducts - When milk gets backed up behind a narrowed duct and cannot flow, the result is a plugged duct. You may need to alternate this with the cold to reduce inflammation, which makes the duct more narrow and the milk unable to flow as easily. Heat can help encourage the flow of milk. Combine gentle tapping and stroking of the breast area above and in front of the plugged duct to help the milk move. Heat can relieve the pain that is accompanied by plugged ducts. Find even more relief by applying castor oil to a clean cotton flannel cloth and placing it over the blocked duct. Cover that with another cloth or piece of plastic wrap and your heated Breast-Ease support pack over the top. The warmth applied just before nursing or pumping will help dilate the ducts so milk can flow, as the castor oil reduces the inflammation.

Using cold

Weaning - It is best to wean slowly so your body has time to adjust and gradually reduce your supply. Sometimes, there are reasons we need to help the process along faster or find ourselves with some mild engorgement during the process.  Using a cold pack to reduce engorgement can reduce pain and discomfort if your breasts feel too full during the weaning process. (3) Use a towel or the plush cover of the Breast-Ease support pack to prevent direct contact with your skin if it is too cold.


When it feels good to you - No rules are set in stone. What works for one person may be different for another. With the Breast-Ease support packs, you can have one for heat and the other for cold applications to determine which feels best for you or to alternate between heat and cold. 

Alternating hot and cold

Mastitis - A breast infection can be caused by unresolved plugged ducts, milk removal not being frequent enough, or seeming to come out of nowhere. One thing is for sure, mastitis is painful and is often accompanied by flu-like symptoms. Using your heated Breast-Ease support pack before nursing or pumping will widen the ducts and encourage milk to flow. After you nurse or pump, apply your chilled Breast-Ease support pack in the cloth cover to help reduce swelling and inflammation and ease pain. Consider taking Lacta-Biotic, which contains a strain of probiotics that can be used for mastitis and overall breast health and reduce the chances of recurrence of mastitis or plugged ducts. 


Engorgement - Heat on your breasts just before nursing or pumping can widen the ducts and let the milk flow more easily, helping to remove more milk and giving you more relief while protecting your milk supply. Alternate this with a cold pack after feeding or pumping to help reduce swelling and inflammation and soothe discomfort.


Plugged ducts - while some people prefer only applying heat for a plugged duct, using a cold compress for the inflammation is recommended and beneficial. It may feel good if you are experiencing pain from the plugged duct and can help decrease swelling. Using Choline or Sunflower lecithin in addition to heat encourages clogs to move. 


Breast-Ease Support Packs were created with comfort and effectiveness for moms. It is a must-have tool in your breastfeeding toolbox. It is easy to pack and use on the go. Carry it in your pump bag for work or on a trip. The warm compress relaxes, encourages milk flow, and increases milk removal at each session. You may choose warmth or cold applications for different reasons, and Breast-Ease makes it convenient and easy to get the comfort you deserve.

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