I am the first time mom of a 10-day old newborn girl. We are encountering problems transistioning her back to bare breastfeeding from using a silicone breast shield and bottle feeding her.
I'm enclosing an excerpt of an email I sent to the certified lactation consultant I am working with who is also a La Leche League member. I am sure I am not the first person to have this problem and I am sure I won't be the last. I am hoping a wider community of minds may have an idea or two that the consultant and I haven't thought of.
We did some more work with Marcy tonight.
I first tried her with the nipple shield then without.
I then got a bottle and examined what she is doing
The key I found is to watch where her lower lip is
what it is doing.
She flanges well with the upper lip.
She does flange with the lower lip BUT, she either
quickly or covertly moves it in after
On the slipperly silicone of the bottle and the nipple
shield this is easy for her to do.
However, she can't get away with it so well on the
breast or at least when they're softer.
This makes her very frustrated and angry, very strong
The other thing I've discovered or realized is that it
does seem a little easier to get her to
latch correctly and with less fuss using a football
hold rather than a cross cradle. It seems
to me because of the shape of my breast the contour
in cross cradle is more round
making it harder to latch correctly, while the outer
contour is more amenable to her efforts
in a foot ball hold.
When she was first born in her early latching days at
the hospital she did not have this
problem. She consistently latched correctly. This is a
style that has developed over the
past week, probably because of the use of the bottle
and the nipple shield, which she is
now quite fond of.
The challenge is what to do to change her latch style
now that she have a style that she is
very devoted to that is incompatible with bare nipple
The ancilliary problem I've discovered is that because
of her style the ducts on my areola
are not being drained properly and are backing up. The
only way I can now relieve the
pressure in them is to pump because of her latch style
It seems the only way to get her to latch properly is
to make that her only option for
feeding. However, is such a harse approach really
appropriate for a less than 2 week old
newborn. Aren't proper nourishment and hydration of
I guess the other $64000 question is how important is
it to feed her bare breasted. The
alternatives are to continue to use the nipple shield
and pump and bottle. I'd rather get
her to nurse bare with a correct latch.
Let me know what you think.