Babies: 0 - 3 Months

Nipple shield

I am having a really hard time with Natalie and her latch. Sometimes she is a pro and other times she cannot latch so she screams and screams and I have to hurry and pump to give her, or supplement.

Have any of you tried the nipple sheild? What are the pros and cons? TIA

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Re: Nipple shield

  • I wouldn't...it's a pain in the ass to wean off of and it can affect supply.

    You just have to be more stubborn than the baby ;) Keep trying, the older she gets, the better she will latch.  ETA: When she is screaming, try to calm her down before trying to get her to latch. Calm babies are a lot easier to BF. Give her a pacifier until she stops crying and then take it away and put her on the boob. also, try to catch her hunger cues before she starts crying, it will make it easier to get her to latch.

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  • I have been using the nipple shield since Kyle was only 1 week old.  It worked really well to help him get enough milk.  A pro to using it is that your nipples are a lot less sore!  A con is that once you start using it its very hard to have them latch without it.  I have tried a few times not to use it and Kyle would not latch on so he is 9 weeks and we are still using it. 

    Good luck with whatever you decide. 

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  • Natalie sometimes will not latch at all. She cant keep a paci in her mouth for this reason. She gets so mad at it. And with bottles she loses half of the milk because she doesnt get a tight latch. Ugh,.... I just have no clue what to do
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  • The LC gave it to me in the hospital because LO wouldn't latch. For some reason when my boobs got bigger my nipples got smaller! I've been using it almost 3 weeks now with no supply issues. At some point I'm going to wean her off of it but for now I couldn't live without it! If you're going to get them I'd get at least 3 so you're not having to wash them in the middle of the night.

    You may want to contact La Leche League or an LC to discuss your issues first though. We did this as a last resort for me. GL!

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    "Oh Bryn, you see through the dark
    Right past the fireflies that sleep in my heart." - Vampire Weekend
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    My beating heart belongs to you." - Billie Joe Armstrong
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    'cause I'm through." - Julian Casablancas

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  • image uluvfranke:
    Natalie sometimes will not latch at all. She cant keep a paci in her mouth for this reason. She gets so mad at it. And with bottles she loses half of the milk because she doesnt get a tight latch. Ugh,.... I just have no clue what to do
    Get in touch with a lactation consultant!!! Do it!!! If you can't afford one, call the LLL.
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  • I use one! DS had trouble latching in the beginning. He will sometimes latch without, but for the most part, we always use it.  Other than always needing to make sure I have it, we haven't had any problems yet and am glad we had to option to use it, otherwise, I might have been EPing again.

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  • I used one for about a week or two when we got home because she wouldn't always latch.  I would try without and if either of us were getting annoyed I would use it for a few minutes and pop her off it. Then try to get her to latch without the shield.  This is how she became used to latching, especially to the one side. 

     I was also told in the hospital if I used one for the whole session I should pump for 10 minutes after wards to make sure that my milk supply was okay.  ( I never did this was too tired of sitting since it took 40 minutes or more to BF).


  • Large breasts with flat nipples in the tiny face of a newborn who wants to eat and gets easily frustrated = nipple shield day 2 in the hospital.  (A frustrating time became a wonderful, bonding time and less stressful for the both of us!)

    It's now 7 weeks later and we still use it 90% of the time.  (Sometimes DD won't want it and is able to latch on for a few short minutes). 

    The only cons for me are that I have to constantly wash the shields and it's one more thing to think about and keep track of (basically the inconvenience).

  • Similar to PP. The LC gave it to me bc she couldnt latch on my short nipples. I was EPing before the shield. If you do use one you might need a smaller one than they sell at the stores. The LC had 20's but I cant find them. It isnt ideal but it works.
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  • DD and I used it for about seven weeks. I would say if you can avoid it then try. It is a PITA and its hard to break. I haven't used it for a week now and my DD still has a hard time latching at almost every feeding. She cries(screams) and flails her arms. I was given it in the hospital by the LC and I wouldn't have been able to breastfeed without it so if you really need it then try.

    Good Luck!!

  • I had a super hard time getting DD to latch. I had a hard time even with the nipple shield. The hospital gave me a small and large one. The smaller one worked a lot better since she was so small. We still had issues with it but I kept at it and managed to nurse her until she was 11 months and had no interest in the breast. With DS I asked for one and we used it for a week, but he wasn't gaining weight...he was actually spilling more than he was taking in b/c it flowed too fast. So I took him off of it and he's been latching a whole lot better. All I can say is keep trying, they latch better with age and maybe talk to a lactation consultant. I saw one at the hospital just to make sure DS was nursing ok. And I saw one w/ DD and she helped me out a lot.
  • My experience has been very different then most of the other mommy's. I used a shield since day 1 w/ my 2nd baby as they gave one to me in the hospital. With my 1st child (who I did not use a shield) I never got her to latch & only BF'd for a short time.

    Pros: everything!! No soreness & baby stopped letting milk come out the sides of his mouth.

    My son is 6 mo's now. I sometimes still use a shield seconds before starting a feed then taking it off to feed. This just helps so the first suck isnt painful. I never had issues of weaning off or supply. I just stopped using it whenever it seemed like the milk wasn't coming out fast enough. I would take it off mid-feed & he would slow down his sucking motion.

     Cons: The only con I can think of is in his early months, he would fall asleep if I used the shield becuase the flow is slower. If I took the shield off mid-feed he would wake back up & keep drinking.

  • When I was in the hospital, the LC gave me a shield because E wouldn't latch.  I have flatter nipples.  The shield was awesome, she latched easily the first week, and my supply was fine.  

    Eventually I started to wean her, and only used the shield at night, or if she was really fussy, and was having trouble latching.  Now that my milk is in, I haven't used it in over two weeks.  

    The only con I can think of is it is messy.  When she was done, the shield would have milk in it that would drip all over.  Good luck! 


    Ella - 10/19/10
    Julia and Aubrey - 4/3/14


  • Lactation consultants like to demonize the nipple shield.  They do have their reasons, as it can affect supply.

    However, it can be a lifesaver for latch or other problems.  I've used it since day 1 and am completely satisfied with my experience. 

    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/concerns/baby/wean-shield.html

    Lil Gomer born 8-29-10



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  • i'd give it a shot. the LC gave me one in the hospital and a nurse in the nicu gave me one when we were down there. most of the time he takes it with and it's nice during the middle of the night. i'd rather him latch right away with the shield than scream his head off in the middle of the night. during the day i'll try nursing him without it. sometimes it works and sometimes it doesnt. i had to feed him after his appt today, in the car, without the shield and he did fine for a little bit.
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  • image Jenn06L80:

    When I was in the hospital, the LC gave me a shield because E wouldn't latch.  I have flatter nipples.  The shield was awesome, she latched easily the first week, and my supply was fine.  

    Eventually I started to wean her, and only used the shield at night, or if she was really fussy, and was having trouble latching.  Now that my milk is in, I haven't used it in over two weeks.  

    The only con I can think of is it is messy.  When she was done, the shield would have milk in it that would drip all over.  Good luck! 

    ooooh yes, definitely a con! and it can get even messier if you have a baby that moves their arms a lot and knocks the shield off when it's filled with milk.

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  • I have been using one since the hospital.  The first  3 weeks I pumped after feeding to increase supply and then fed it to her thru a syringe.  My Lc that I saw at 2 weeks pp encouraged pumping until I felt my supply was alright.  She said I could use it as long as I like.

    pro: no sore nipples, I can actually BF, taking a bottle of BM was no problem

    con: keeping track of them, sometimes she hits it off with her hands, makes NIP difficult since I need 2 hands to put it on

    All in all...BF was more important to me than any of the cons!Wink

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  • Here's what finally helped me get my little one off the nipple shield and fix her latch (very shallow):

    http://www.breastfeedingonline.com/whenlatchingpdf.pdf

    For me the key was compressing my breast slightly from the bottom, then making her chin touch my breast first which got her to open her mouth wide and then basically just quickly shoving my breast in her mouth. It took a few times but now she doesn't fight me anymore and it's SO great to be off the shield.

     

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