Breastfeeding
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use of nipple shield to BF

Hello, I have been using a nipple shield to nurse my son (almost 4 weeks old) due to one flat and one inverted nipple.  Both nipples are gradually becoming "normally" shaped and I've been working with a LC for positioning, latch and weaning from the shield.

 These 4 weeks of breastfeeding have been really difficult for me and often painful due to my nipples.  The weaning from the shield is painful and super stressful for me.  Is it horrible to continue to use the nipple shield for the duration of breast feeding?  It doesn't hurt with the shield anymore but it does hurt even after without.  The LC told me it will hurt initially again without the shield since the skin on the nipples will be raw and exposed like it wasn't before.  

I'm just nervous that the pain/stress I feel trying to wean will cause me to want to stop breastfeeding.  

 or does anyone have any advice to successfully wean from the nipple shield?  ideally, I'd like to, purely from a convenience standpoint if anything.  

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Re: use of nipple shield to BF

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    I had to use one with my first due to latching issues.  She just wouldn't latch without one period.  Then with a desperate prayer and a miracle, when we were away from home, I could not find it, she latched on and after that we never needed it again. 

    It was painful for me for a short while but after some perseverance we were able to nurse without it.   

    I know this probably wasn't too helpful for your situation, but that is our experience.

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    Don't stress about weaning from the shield. Enjoy bf-Ing and growing that relationship with baby.

    We used the shield due to not being able to latch. Ds weaned off the shield around 3 months.  Some will say you need to wean off of it ASAP, but many use it for months so don't stress. 

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    While some might say using one long term could hurt your supply, I used one the entire duration of nursing DD1 with no problems. But, it was a major pain in the assss if I lost it and always having to clean it. I would have preferred not to have one. But, it is what allowed me to breastfeed.

    I was determined to not use one with DD2, but she had a horrible latch that left my nipples raw and sore. If it wasn't for the shield, I probably would have given up. Around 8 weeks old I decided to do one feeding a day without it. gradually over time I just became able to nurse without it. About 4 weeks later, we were shield free.

    If you feel you need it to continue then use one. As long as baby is growing and your supply is fine, it really doesn't matter. Good luck!
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    I agree with PPs.  Do what works best for you and LO.  As long as you still have a good supply and LO is having the right amount of wet and dirty diapers and growing then it's NBD.

    If you do want to wean off it for convenience sake, here's how I did it with LO.  I picked the feeding LO was most awake and "happy" for.  (First morning for us.)  I would get him latched on with the sheild and let him nurse for 5 minutes or so to get a little milk in his belly.  Then I'd burp and remove the shield and latch him on again.  I kept doing this for a couple days until he didn't have trouble latching on without the sheild.  Then I started trying to get him latched initially without the sheild.  Once that was accomplished, I started removing the sheild for the next "happiest" feeding.  I saved the middle of the night feeding(s) for last since he was most tired and least patient for those.

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    We used one for about 8 weeks because I have flat nipples. I suggest periodically nursing without it. Your baby's saliva helps trigger changes in your milk. I also found it much easier to nurse without it and glad we are sheild free now.
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    i have used one the entire time with DD. she is over 7 months old now.

    i need one due to very large, plump breasts that have made my nipples flat. by the time she is done feeding, i have a typical nipple shape, but by the time of her next feeding, they are flat again.

    we haven't had any problems with them so far. and in a few rare incidents i can slide the shield off and let her latch on naturally without much fuss. i mean it is an inconvenience to have to use on every time, but after 7 months i am used to it. if it means my LO can get a healthy BFed snack/meal, then i don't mind using it long term.

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    And use nipple cream after every feeding.
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    We weaned off around 9 weeks, but i never thought it would happen.  Different issue, our LO had tongue tie that was clipped.  He ended up nursing the best in the "laid back" nursing position.  That position was best for him learning how to latch properly, now he can latch any position. It did hurt initially, but that hot/cold gel product worked wonders for me and lanolin before showering.  I think it took 1 week for the pain to subside after weaning.  But, its not the end of the world if you dont wean.  People like to hate on the shield, but use what is best for you. 

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    I used one for 9 months with baby 1. Do what works for u! No stress!!
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