How to Use Breast Pads

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Nipple leakage can happen to any woman who is pregnant or breastfeeding. It is very common and normal in the weeks before and after delivering your baby. Nipple leakage can be uncomfortable and may be embarrassing, but it’s your body’s way of regulating milk supply to feed your baby. Breast pads, which are also called nursing pads, are a great way to absorb leaks and keep your clothes clean and dry. You can use breast pads by placing them properly in your bra, removing and caring for them, and deciding on the right type for your needs.


1. Remove adhesive tabs. Some disposable breast pads have sticky pieces on them to hold them in place. The sticky pieces also prevent sliding in your bra. If you are using nursing pads with baby-safe adhesive, take off the tabs to expose the sticky bit. Then position your pad just above where you want to apply it.

2. Insert the nursing pad. After you’ve put on your bra, you’re ready to put in the breast pad. Slide or gently place it over your nipple, between your bra and breast. Then return your bra strap to its natural place.

  • Recognize that you can use breast pads with nursing and regular bras.
  • Consider adding a baby-safe lanolin cream to your nipple area if you have any irritation.

3. Position your breast pad. Before you put on your shirt, make sure your breast pad is still aligned with your nipple. If it isn’t, simply reposition the pad. This can help prevent wet clothes, leaks, and irritation.

  • Be aware that it’s normal for your breast pads to show through your clothing. You can buy thinner ones if you have less leakage that won’t show through your bra or clothing.

4. Watch for sliding pads. Active pregnant women and mothers may notice that their breast pads slide during use. This is normal, especially if you are not using pads with sticky pieces. If you feel like your nursing pad is sliding around in your bra, check it and remove or reposition the pad. This can contain leaks and prevent irritation.


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