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Thread: questions about nipple shields

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
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    Question questions about nipple shields

    i have a questions about using nipple shields. i have OALD/oversupply and I read that using them could be a "last resort" solution. What are the pros/cons of using them to help this situation.


    Also, I am trying to master side-lying. We are doing ok. I can usually get my DS latched on decently, but if i fall asleep and he unlatches/relatches, it is usually not a good latch and hurts. Would use of a nipple shield be a solution here?

    Any advice or other suggestions would be appreciated. my son is 6 wks old if that info helps any.

  2. #2

    Default Re: questions about nipple shields

    No, a nipple shield won't really help wtih OALD or Oversupply. I had BOTH with my DD and also used a nipple shield in the beginning for a flat nipple. The nipple shield is good for pulling out inverted/flat nipples or helping your LO learn to latch on correctly. If you are having nipple pain due to a bad latch, it might help your LO learn to latch correctly. But, if you are experiencing a bad latch only in the side-lying position, (and all is fine in other positions) a nipple shield won't work. You just need to reposition yourself of your LO. Also, if you are experiencing pain due to a bad latch, I hate to say it, but the only way to get past it is to NURSE MORE - b/c then your LO learns and your nipples get toughened up more. So, the nipple shield won't be a "fix" - more like a bandaid.

    In regards to the OALD and oversupply. First, STOP PUMPING if you are. All that is doing is telling your body to make more milk! Establish the block feeding (every 3 hours - only nurse on ONE side) . And, for the OALD - have a burp cloth or recieving blanket nearby when you sit down to nurse - hand express into the towel before LO latches on and then you might even have to take LO off to hand express again, once you feel the letdown occur. Also, nursing in a reclinging position is very helpful.

    HTH!!
    Jenni
    SAHM to 2 EBF babies!
    Elly Ann born 06/26/2006 *Nursed 15 months!
    Mitchell Carter born 08/08/2008 *Going strong at 4 months!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Houston Texas
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    Default Re: questions about nipple shields

    I agree with PP, a nipple shield isn't going to help your issues. As far as the side laying position... you said it is ok unless you and LO fall asleep and LO relatches on his own. Try practicing more during the day when you are awake and can work on it. That will also help the pain from poor latch. OALD and oversupply seem to be a bigger issue with a shield for some. I used one for my LO who had a had time latching at every feeding. It caused me to over produce more, have a clogged duct and thrush. If you decide it is the way to go make sure you work with a lactation consultant first to get the right size, so you don't cause nipple damage. Most importantly, your LO will get the hang of the latch and your supply will fall more into a supply and demand quicker than you realize.
    wife , mom, maid , cook , taxi. All in a days work

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Default Re: questions about nipple shields

    i have a questions about using nipple shields. i have OALD/oversupply and I read that using them could be a "last resort" solution. What are the pros/cons of using them to help this situation.
    The usual situations where a nipple shield might be helpful are a premature baby who is not yet effective at the breast, a baby having difficulty getting on the breast because of tongue thrust, a retracted tongue, neurological problems, or a weak suck. Also they are sometimes useful for mom's with inverted nipples.
    I've not heard of their use before to help deal with OALD/oversupply, maybe in conjunction with other problems.
    Because your having problems with milk flow and milk supply, and the nipple shield helps mainly with mechanical problems it might not really help.
    The good thing is thought that there are good ways to correct the problems that you are having! Have you seen this link on oversupply?
    It's got a lot of great info, let me know if you have any questions about info in that article.

    Also, I am trying to master side-lying. We are doing ok. I can usually get my DS latched on decently, but if i fall asleep and he unlatches/relatches, it is usually not a good latch and hurts. Would use of a nipple shield be a solution here?
    That's great you've got side-lying down already! Most mothers find that they will have to help baby latch in the early months, about the time your baby gets good head control you will see a big improvement in baby being able to latch himself. Make sure you guys have plenty of support with pillows, keep trying, this position can really take some work to perfect.
    The nipple shield in this case would probably not help much because your DS would still latch on wrong/shallow onto it just like he does your breast. So you would still need to help him because he doesn't have the muscles he needs yet to be effective on his own with this position.

    Any advice or other suggestions would be appreciated. my son is 6 wks old if that info helps any.
    It sounds like you guys are doing great! Nipple shields can be a bit more work than they initially sound like. They also require the same amount of time or more to work with your baby to latch onto them well. Also most mothers want to wean off the shield at some point because they can be inconvenient, so there will still be a time when he would have to get nursing at the breast down.
    He's still learning, and your still learning! The first 6 weeks are pretty tough, and it does start to get better soon as you guys both get comfortable with this.
    Jessica
    LLL Leader

    Breastfeeding is an instinctual and natural act, but it is also an art that is learned day by day.

    Visit LLL of Ashburn PM's Blog!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    NoVA
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    Default Re: questions about nipple shields

    Also! I really like this latch animation, maybe this will help you guys.
    Jessica
    LLL Leader

    Breastfeeding is an instinctual and natural act, but it is also an art that is learned day by day.

    Visit LLL of Ashburn PM's Blog!

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