Disclaimer: The contents contained in this post are for informational purposes only. The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions.
From the very start, I knew I was going to have to use a nipple shield while I nursed. You see, I have an inverted nipple. Which means I have a problem.
Enter the nipple shield! Boom! Problem solved, right?
Yes, the nipple shield certainly did make nursing my baby girl on my left side easier. I have used one since day one. (I should say I *used to use* one. I’ve transitioned to finger tube feeding temporarily while we work out some supply/ lazy eater problems).
So, what is the down and dirty with nipple shields? I can’t tell you that completely. What I can tell you is my experience. Take it for what it is. If you feel like you need to use a nipple shield, be sure to ask a lactation consultant before changing up anything with your breastfeeding routine!
For me, the nipple shield made nursing possible. Baby Girl wouldn’t latch at all without it. Even with the nipple shield, though, I bled. So, while it helped to pull out the inverted nipple, it didn’t help to solve her latching problem (latching or ties… we’re still working on figuring out what it is exactly).
The supply on my left side dropped long before the supply on my right. And, the supply on my right side dropped once I started using the shield over there–like I said, Baby Girl has been having some issues. The shield on my right, like on my left side, made nursing possible NOT comfortable.
In the end, I don’t blame the nipple shields for my supply dropping. Maybe it’s just a coincidence. I honestly think there were a couple of factors that contributed to that. (For more information on that, see my post 5 Breastfeeding Tips I Wish I Had Known Two Weeks Ago). It is something worth noting, though. And for that reason, if you think you need one or want to start using one, be sure to talk to your pediatrician or lactation consultant beforehand!
My advice to any mom wanting to use a nipple shield: Talk to your pediatrician first! If you and your health care professional decide you should use one, be sure to get the right size! There are only two- 20mm and 24mm. The wrong size will make you even more miserable than no shield at all! And, of course, stick with it. Breastfeeding is a long, hard journey for so many of us. Don’t give up. But remember– in the end, you have to do what is best for you, your baby, and your body.
If you want to follow along with me and Norah check us out on Instagram @miniminimalistmama!