Tuesday, 27 May 2008
by Mama Koala
If you haven't seen the report yet, the FDA has issued a warning about Mommy's Bliss Nipple Cream, which is used to provide relief for breastfeeding moms with sore or cracked nipples. From the official FDA website:
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning consumers not to use or purchase Mommy's Bliss Nipple Cream, marketed by MOM Enterprises, Inc., because the product contains potentially harmful ingredients that may cause respiratory distress or vomiting and diarrhea in infants. The product is promoted to nursing mothers to help soothe and heal dry or cracked nipples. Product labeling specifically states that there is no need for mothers to remove the cream prior to nursing. However, the ingredients contained in the product may be harmful to nursing infants.
Potentially harmful ingredients in Mommy's Bliss Nipple Cream are chlorphenesin and phenoxyethanol. Chlorphenesin relaxes skeletal muscle and can depress the central nervous system and cause respiratory depression (slow or shallow breathing) in infants. Phenoxyethanol is a preservative that is primarily used in cosmetics and medications. It also can depress the central nervous system and may cause vomiting and diarrhea, which can lead to dehydration in infants.
This is scary and upsetting! I nursed Baby Koala for ten months, and I couldn't have done it without a good "nipple cream" the first few weeks. I'm not an expert, so if the label on the box assures me that it's SAFE for my newborn baby to nurse after applying the cream, I trust the "experts" who are supposed to have done the testing for the rest of us.
There haven't been any reported cases of infant injuries due to this product yet, but I believe it's possible that people just didn't know what the cause of the problem was, even if their baby wasn't behaving normally. If you have been using Mommy's Bliss Nipple Cream, please PLEASE discontinue use, read the full warning here, and contact the FDA hotline if you think your baby might have been affected (even if you're not sure).
Also, if you're looking for an alternative and you're not allergic to lanolin, this is what I used last year:
The product description states that "Lansinoh HPA Brand Lanolin is the only lanolin available that contains no preservatives or additives of any kind, so it does not have to be removed before breastfeeding." I once trusted this label, but after this recent FDA warning, I admit I'm not sure what to trust anymore. Maybe it's always best to clean before nursing... but when you're exhausted from feeding your newborn every 2 hours and sore from dry, cracked (sometimes bleeding!) nipples, who wants to add an extra step?!
Did you experience any nipple soreness or cracking from breastfeeding? What products did you use to relieve the pain?