In this "MommyMonday" post I'm sharing with you my video review of Medela nipple shields and telling a little bit about my experience with breastfeeding and inverted nipples.
I was recommended to get Medela nipple shields by hospital's obstetrician (where I gave birth), and they suggested the size I should get.
I didn't go on my own to buy nipple shields out of my own initiative; at that time I really had no other choice: Because of my inverted nipples, my son couldn't latch, and so it was impossible for me to breastfeed him. I wanted to stress that out, because I don't think you should get nipple shields without first consulting your obstetrician or lactation specialist. Nipple shields are a temporary solution (they were indeed, very helpful in my case, as thanks to them I was able to overcome the problem of inverted nipples); my son eventually learned how to latch properly, and now that he's 13 months I still breastfeed him (without the nipple shields).
I used them until he was 2-3 months old, and then, one day, it just happened: He was able to latch without nipple shields! It was like a little miracle, because I tried having him latch for countless of times, and it was always a struggle which resulted in him crying and hungry and me being quite stressed out. As soon as he latched without the help of nipple shields, my milk supply started to increase (as there was no more that barrier that affected my milk supply), and I was able to switch from mostly formula feeding, to exclusively breastfeeding my son.
It was definitely a hard and challenging journey, and I thought that, because of the shape of my nipples, my son would have to be formula fed and that's just how it's gonna go down, but luckily, I kept trying and I never gave up on breastfeeding him always before formula feeding...one day he was able to latch without that "plastic barrier"...
Nipple shields were indeed very helpful the first few months, but as soon as my son was able to latch, I ditched them, as I wanted to increase my milk supply and I knew, by using nipple shields this would never gonna happen. When you have direct "skin to skin" contact, the hormones are released, to affect and stimulate milk production, if there is constantly a barrier between your nipples and your baby's mouth, chances are high that your milk production won't be enough to satisfy your baby's needs.
So yes, they were helpful (in my case), but don't use them just to prevent cracking or sore nipples (there are plenty of great nipple creams and oils that can help you out with that!).
If you need to use them for a bit, because it's just way to painful to breastfeed without, then use them for some time until your nipples heal, but aim towards not using them if not necessary.
Here is the video where I talk more about this subject:
and all about my breastfeeding journey:
#throwback to february,15th.2017. My baby was 25 days old! Time indeed flies by! Our bundle of joy :-)
Please feel free to share with me your breastfeeding story!
Did you ever have to use nipple shields?
Were you able to breastfeed and for how long, or did you use formula to feed your baby?