Happy Mothers Breastfed Babies
Results 1 to 6 of 6

Thread: Losing the battle with nipple shield

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006

    Default Losing the battle with nipple shield

    My son is 6 weeks old and still using a nipple shield. He eats well but I am determined to get rid of the shield once and for all. We were started on it because of a medicated birth and inverted nipples. The LC who gave me the shield never warned me of downfalls of using one, had I known I might never have tried it.

    I've read almost every website and tried almost every trick and technique in the book to wean him from the shield and nothing seems to work. Despite his mood, time of day,etc. when I offer him a bare breast, he gets MAD! (He inherited my short fuse! I've managed to get him latched on a few (less than ten) times but it doesn't last.

    I have been in contact with a LL leader who said to simply wait it out, most babies will outgrow a nipple shield. Is this true or am I doomed to using the shield?

    I would be gratefull for any creative tricks or tips others have used in weaning from a shield. I long to throw this thing in the trash forever!!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2006

    Default Re: Losing the battle with nipple shield

    I also started with a nipple shield and had to wean DD off it. It wasn't easy, it just takes patience - lots of it. I would try to get her latched on when she was a little sleepy still, before she got too worked up. I also tried to sandwich the nipple between my fingers so she could get her mouth around it. Don't give up. Even if you can get a brief latch w/o the shield, keep track of it ( I kept a feeding journal)- that might boost your confidence!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2006

    Default Re: Losing the battle with nipple shield

    My son was on one from 1 week to 5 weeks old. I tried weaning him sometime in the middle there, and it didn't work. I just waited until 5 weeks and tried again, and he was ready. I also have to really squish my breast so he can latch on, but then everything works out. Good luck!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: Losing the battle with nipple shield

    Hi ZMom, I know your pain. I bf my ds with a nipple shield from when he was 2 days old until 3 months. Like you, I got really tired of having to use the shield but had a difficult time weaning my ds from having to use it. Periodically I would try to get him to latch on without it but it would be so frustrating that I woudl give up. Finally I decided to just stick with it for a couple of days and to see how things went. I tried when I was relaxed and when my ds was more relaxed and not starving so he wouldn't get as frustrated. I had to end up using the shield on the right side until my milk let down and then I would take the shield off and latch him on. After a couple of days we seemed to have the hang of it and now I've been "nipple shield free" for almost two weeks. It is definitely frustrating and for the first few days I used the shield only at night when I was too tired to try. It is so wonderful to nurse now without having to put the shield on first and it is soooo much easier to bf in public !! Keep trying and don't get too upset if it doesn't seem to be working. I do think that once my ds was a little older it was easier for him to latch on without the shield. Good luck...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2006

    Default Re: Losing the battle with nipple shield

    I agree patience is the key here. I found that using the shield for a minute or two at the beginning of a feeding, removing it and then quickly latching back on before she realized it was gone worked. Pumping right before and getting her on before my nipple would get back to normal size also helped the transition. It is very frustrating and I wish that all LC would discuss the pros and cons before getting you into a position that is difficult to get out of on your own. Sometimes I wonder if the hospital LC just wants to get it working long enough to have you released and they don't really care what happens to you after you are home. It couldn't hurt to contact your local LLL Leader to give you the moral support you need. Good luck!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: Losing the battle with nipple shield

    I second kst7399 about starting out with the shield during a nursing session and then quickly unlatching the lo, removing the shield and then relatching. I was able to get rid of it at about 8 weeks doing this and once dd go the hang of it we were shield free. Oh, and patience is key--and putting up with the spillage for a little while. It is possible, but it is tough. My sil used a shield with her preemie and never did get rid of it, but she isn't nearly as stubborn as I am!!!!

    Wife to a grizzly
    Mama to my little deer (12/05) my loving bear cub (9/07--), and our little tiger (3/22/10)
    Born by one c-section and 2 amazing VBACs

    Miles in 2012: 350.5/900 (Actual Miles Ran: 189)
    Miles in 2011: 708.5 (Actual Miles Ran: 509)
    Miles in 2010: 800.5 (Actual Miles Ran: 620)

    January Miles: 37.5/75
    February Miles: 59/75
    March Miles: 42.5/60
    April Miles: 64
    May Miles: 41/70
    June Miles: 59
    July Miles: 39.5

    227.5 miles on my new shoes
    338 miles on my old shoes

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts