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Thread: Controlling nipple shield grabbing hands

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2006

    Default Controlling nipple shield grabbing hands

    Can anyone give me tips on how to stop my newborn baby trying to grab my nipple shield when I first put him onto the breast. I am using the crade position as that works best for me and can somewhat contain his lower hand with my breast supporting hand but as my other hand is guiding his head for latch on, I don't have a spare hand to keep his upper hand away from my nipple shield. When it is there it prevents latch on.

    My husband is home for the next week so provides assitance holding the hand out of the way however I am really concerned about continuing to breastfeed when he goes back to work with this problem.

    Amy Dalton mother to Riley, 10 days old.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006

    Default Re: Controlling nipple shield grabbing hands

    congratulations on your little one and welcome to the forum!

    i used to use a nipple shield when my dd was a week old due to sore nipples. i used it for about 3 weeks (dd is now 4.5 months old). i used the side-lying position and the cradle position...and was fortunate enough to not have my dd grab unto the nipple shield. maybe you can try and swaddle your baby while you breastfeed to keep his hands from grabbing unto the nipple shield?! the following link shows different positions...and maybe you can "troubleshoot" your cradle position to allow your hand/arm that is not supporting your baby's head to be free to hold down your baby's hand.

    if you are still running into problems, contact your local LLL or your hospital's lactation specialist.

    HTH! good luck!
    Mommy to...
    Aleina... born on Mother's Day, May 14, 2006...7lbs 4oz, 21.6 inches
    Lauryn Elle...January 26, 2008...7lbs 15oz, 20 inches

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2006

    Red face Re: Controlling nipple shield grabbing hands

    I had to use the nipple shield with my son for almost 2 months a very frustrating 2 months might I add. It seems that as soon as I would put on the shield, he would pull/knock it off and my milk would leak everywhere. Almost started to bottle feed because I was so frustrated. But I am happy to say that now at almost 3 months old he is now exclusively bf.

    What worked for us was to use the cradle position. For example: using left hand to support his head, and the index and middle fingers (upside down V) of my right hand to hold on to the shield until he latched on. Holding him close so that the whole nipple shield was in his mouth. Also have you been wetting the shield prior to putting it on? That does seem to help a little. also noticed that he had a pattern of arm swinging and timed the latch in between swings (sounds crazy but i was desparate).

    Hang in there I've been there and understand how incredibly hard it can be. Let us know how it goes. You’re in my thoughts

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2006

    Default Re: Controlling nipple shield grabbing hands

    Are you using the shield for a specific reason? I used one for the first six weeks because that is what they gave me in the hospital and my dd wouldn't nurse without it for awhile. Weaning her from it was wonderful, at not as difficult as I thought it would be. I hope that you will be able to do the same. They are incredibly frustrating and we had the same problem with her knocking it off. The cradle position is what I used, with my fingers to hold the shield on. I would also tuck one of her little arms behind mine and this meant only one free hand to fly around. It worked pretty well. When things were really frustrating, I would use my Boppy, laying her on it in front of me (still cradle position) but to where I could bend over her and more easily place the nipple shield in her mouth and hang onto it. Hard on the back but a much easier latch. Wetting the shield can also help, or putting a small amount of whatever nipple cream you use to help hold it on. It is also my understanding that the more pliable they are, the better they stay on. You can boil them in hot water to do this. Good luck to you!

    Loving my two sweet girls Audrey (7/18/06) and Annie (6/18/09) Baby #3 due to appear 8/5/10

    Feel free to ask me about my successful HBAC , food allergies, cloth diapers, and the joy of having a high-needs, non-sleeping little dear who has grown into a wonderful preschooler.

    Blogging here.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2006

    Default Re: Controlling nipple shield grabbing hands

    I have the same problem sometimes... I have never used nipple shields, but Sophie likes to grab at my nipple or put her hand on her mouth when she's very hungry, which really makes latching difficult, if not preventing it completely. I've found that when there is no one to help me hold her hand away from the breast, it's pretty effective to put a baby blanket around her and tuck it snugly with her arm inside it.

    Good luck!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2006

    Default Re: Controlling nipple shield grabbing hands

    i used to try to swaddle my LO to keep his hands out of the way.

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