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Thread: Quit use of breast shield?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2006

    Default Quit use of breast shield?

    My baby is 11 days old. I had horribly sore nipples (cracked w/puss and almost bleeding). The LC and nurses in the hospital thought she looked like she was latching appropriately. However by day 4 I was ready to give up. I went to a consult visit with a lactation nurse. She said I was so bad it hurt to look at me. She gave me a nipple shield to use while I healed. I also used lanolin cream and shells inbetween feedings. My DD did great with the shield. Now I am healed and ready to wean her off the shield. I have tried it some. Sometimes I start without it and sometimes I start with it and take it away after a few minutes. Sometimes she does great and other times she refuses my bare breast. When she does take the breast she seems to do great. Has anyone had to do this? What worked best for getting them to suck on your bare breast? TIA

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Re: Quit use of breast shield?

    Hi maggiesmom,
    It's been about 10 days since your post. How are you doing?
    Here's a quote from an article in LEAVEN, LLL's magazine for Leaders. It's great to hear your nipples have healed! I hope this helps a little.

    Nipple Shields . . . Friend or Foe? by Kathy Parkes, IBCLC
    From: LEAVEN, Vol. 36 No. 3, June-July 2000, pp. 39-41

    "Many infants are more willing to accept the change from nipple shield to breast after the initial milk ejection reflex (let-down) and a pause in the suck pattern occurs. Gently slipping the shield off the breast and encouraging the infant to latch on to the breast is often what the infant needs to successfully make the transition back to the breast. Other infants need a partial feeding at one breast before they might be willing to attempt to breastfeed at the other breast without the shield. Following the infant's cues will help the mother to know when to attempt removal of the nipple shield in her situation. It can be helpful to encourage the mother to attempt breastfeeding without the shield in place at every feeding. Whether this is done at the beginning, middle, or end of the feeding will depend on the individual mother and infant. The Leader needs to stress to the mother that these attempts are learning opportunities for the infant, not intended to pressure either mother or infant to perform."


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: Quit use of breast shield?

    I used a nipple shield in the beginning because we made the mistake of giving dd a bottle when I was engorged and then she refused to take the breast afterward. The only way I could get her to latch on was to use a nippleshield. At about 8 weeks I set a goal that we would be shield free by and I just worked on getting dd to latch on without it. I would always offer the breast without the shield first, and if she latched, great. If not I would put the shield on and let her nurse for a while and then unlatch and remove the shield and try to get her to latch without it. If it worked, great. If not, I would replace the shield and leter her suck, sometimes until she was finished with that breast sometimes unlatching her and trying to get her to latch on my bare breast. Then I woudl do the same on the other side...offer bare breast, then shield, then remove and try again. It mostly depended on what kind of mood we were both in--I never forced it on her and just let hermove at her own pace. Most of the time in the night I could get her to latch without the shield if she was still a little sleepy.

    My goal was one month out and I met that goal...by just being patient and letting baby move at her own pace. Sometimes I got lazy and didn't even try. But we have been nursing for 2 months now without it and all is going great! It is def. possible, although most of what I read made it sound like it wasn't, including the LLL site. And my dd is more difficult than most, at everything in life

    Let me know how it goes!

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Re: Quit use of breast shield?

    Just keep doing what you're doing. I didn't get Elisabeth to latch without a shield until she was about a month old or so. Oh, what a wonderful feeling that was! And painful, too. Without the shield, it was like learning to nurse all over again! It took us a while, but she eventually got used to it. Every baby's going to be different, to take your time, and don't stress.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: Quit use of breast shield?

    I used the shields and really had no issue with dd taking a bare breast. One time she was fussing about it so I dripped some ebm onto the nipple and she was all over it

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: Quit use of breast shield?

    My friend is nursing her 4-month old with a nipple shield. She has tried a couple of times to wean her off with no luck. But she is determined to breastfeed no matter what, so she'll use the breast shield for as long as it works.

    She's even gotten brave about NIP with the nipple shield.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    New Orleans, LA

    Default Re: Quit use of breast shield?

    I nursed with the nipple shield for about 4 weeks, that's how long it took to get her off of it. We tried repeatedly and she fought to keep it, but eventually surrendered to the bare nipple. How nice that was, not to have to sterilize the shield between feedings, no panicking when were we out and about and I forgot it at home. Nursing became much easier once the shield was gone - just keep trying, you'll get there. If there is one lesson to be learned with breastfeeding, it is that persistence pays!! And nothing worth fighting for comes easy....I could go on with the cliches...

    Mother - Wife - Artist - Cook - Writer - EnvironMENTAList - Cloth Diaperer (but we are soooo done with diapers) - Organic Health Nut...I'm sure there's more.

    DD1 - 12/15/05 Breastfed for 16.5 months
    DD2 - 8/6/07 Breastfed for 3 whole years and 3 little, extra days.

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