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Thread: Nipple "Too Big"???

  1. #1

    Default Nipple "Too Big"???

    Hi Ladies,

    I'm new to this forum and LLLI, but boy am I glad that I found this site and all of you experienced mommies!

    I just had my DS 2 days ago and I've been determined to EBF. While in the hospital, because DS only had 1 peepee diaper during his first 24hrs of life, the nurses really pushed supplementing to prevent dehydration. According to the so called lactation consultant/nurse on staff, my nipples were too big for my son's too small mouth, and that I needed to supplement asap to get him to pee.

    My question is this: Is there such a thing as too big of a nipple? When they provided me with a nipple shield to see if that would help with latching, that seemed to be way bigger and longer than my own nipple, so it was a bit confusing and contradicting that I was told that my own nipple was what was prevent DS from latching correctly.

    We're home now and I'm pumping and BF. He is doing much better at BF now that he's a little more alert, but I don't think we're getting the latching down correctly. He barely opens his mouth which causes a shallow latch. My nipple looks like a lip stick at the end of BF and I don't think it's supposed to look like that.

    Any advice on how to get my LO to open his mouth wide so I can get a proper latch? Is my nipple the problem?

    Thanks Ladies!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010

    Default Re: Nipple "Too Big"???

    The nurses and lactation consultants at the hospital didn't help me at all. I don't think your nipple can be too big, silly. Baby just needs to open wider, hard to achieve but can be done. Tickling his chin might help. I had to make my son work for it, he'd get really mad and then we got a good latch. I'm sure some other mamas will have more things to try.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006

    Default Re: Nipple "Too Big"???

    I don't believe there is too big of a nipple since I am the proud owner of two rather large ones.. I would really work on your lo's latch, big open mouth. you can gently pull his chin down to help him open up.. make sure you can see his lips over your nipple ( like fish lips KWIM).. don't let him slurp you up like spagetti..
    Wife to T
    Mother to 4 crazy ones

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: Nipple "Too Big"???

    Sounds like the hospital LC gave you some pretty questionable advice. Babies don't nipple-feed, they breastfeed. When a baby is properly latched, the nipple is deep inside the mouth, and the baby is sucking predominantly on breast tissue, and the breast is a lot bigger than the nipple (Unless you have some really unusual nipples!).

    I'd suggest seeing a non-hospital LC, preferably an IBCLC, for some hands-on help. There's no substitute when you have a latch issue with a newborn!

    Tips on getting a baby to open wide:
    - Patience. You may need to wait for him to really open up.
    - Try getting to him before he's crying, since once a baby is crying he's frantic and impatient, and may be thrashing around and not opening well.
    - If he's frantic, try offering your pinky finger with nail held down towards his tongue. Sucking on your pinky may calm him enough to allow a second latching attempt.
    - Show him what you want him to do: even young babies can mirror you, so open your mouth really wide when attempting to latch him on.
    - Try the "nipple sandwich technique discussed here: http://www.naturalbirthandbabycare.com/latch-on.html

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