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How to get my nipples ready for breastfeeding?

I tried nursing both my children and had no success.. i have inverted nipples.. Could you please give me some advice on how to get myself ready to breastfeed again. I even tried the shield.. didnt help. Saw a lactation specialist.. didnt help. Please give me any suggestions you may have. I will try anything.. I really want to make it work this time.

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Asked by Anonymous at 12:14 PM on Nov. 17, 2009 in Babies (0-12 months)

Answers (11)
  • can i ask why the shield didn't work, i had the same problem, but i used the shield, i have to use it evrytime i nurse, it says to only use it for the first few minutes then remove it, to help draw the nipple out, but it didn't work that way, so i had to keep it on. my nurse did say you could try pumping for a few minutes before feeding.

    Answer by newmom092009 at 12:17 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • Maybe because I only used it for a few minutes. Was told not to use it any longer than that. Next time I will have to try using it the whole time. Thanks..

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:22 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • Have you tried shells? You wear them during pregnancy and before feedings to help draw out the nipple. There's also a technique... hoffman technique, I believe? Basically, you roll your nipple between two fingers to try and separate the tissue that is connecting your nipple and pulling it down.

    I'm sure you tried pumping before nursing the other times, yes? How soon did you try to get them latching? Did you have an epidural with the births?

    Answer by LeanneC at 12:22 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • im glad i helped, my doc did say it using the shield the entire feeding helps you BF then do it, and stick with it

    Answer by newmom092009 at 12:26 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • You just have to watch out with the shield because sometimes it can cause poor milk transfer. If it's the only way you can nurse... absolutely, but it should be a last resort and it should be gotten rid of as soon as possible.

    Answer by LeanneC at 12:31 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • I'd try the shells before the shields. Some babies have issues weaning off the shields, and like the PP said, there can be issues with milk transfer.

    Answer by asaffell at 12:35 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • Here's a link for the shells:

    And here's some info about inverted and flat nipples:

    Answer by asaffell at 12:37 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • I used the shield and it worked for us. I just had to get the inside really wet first to get a good seal.

    Answer by Christina2135 at 1:01 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • Shields are the WORST treatment for inverted nipples. They are for WOUNDED nipples only.

    Breast SHELLS. You wear them when NOT nursing. Start today. They will draw out the nipple.

    Shields are only for cracks, cuts, bleeding. Not for inversion.

    Answer by gdiamante at 3:24 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

  • You could also try Lansinoh's Latch Assist. It's a device that draws the nipple out just before feeding. It can be a little messy but It worked to draw my nipples out. I have flat, inverted nipples and wore the shells for the last half of my pregnancy and after her birth. They helped a lot to draw my nipples out but the latch assist really pulled them out just before nursing. My daughter still would not breastfeed but it had nothing to do with my nipples at that point. You can check out the latch assist by clicking the link below. Good luck mama!


    Answer by ktok2009 at 5:17 PM on Nov. 17, 2009

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