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Need advice for breastfeeding second child after failed first attempt. (flat nipples?)

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hi Everyone!

 I am currently pregnant with my second and due at the end of this month. I tried breastfeeding with my first sone but everytime he would latch my nipple would go soft and he could not successfully latch on. I pumped for 6 weeks and then lost my supply after returning to work.

 

I am a stay at home mom this time an really really want breast feeding to work this time! My nipples would protrude with my first son but then go flat when he would attempt to latch this was very frustrating for me. What can I do to fix this problem? I saw that there are silicone nipples that have holes and go over your nipple to give baby something to latch on to and pull your nipple out. Are these a good option? Will I need to use these continually?

 

Any advice would be majorly apprechiated I am very nervous about making this successful this time!

Thank you so much!

post #2 of 9

It sounds like you did not have anybody suggest that you use a nipple shield with the first baby (the silicone nipple shaper). I think that might solve your whole problem. Generally, a LC would recommend you use it for the first 6 weeks or so, until your nipple is 'trained' into that shape a little more and baby gets a little bigger and stronger and can pull that nipple back into his mouth a little more easily. I had a client who used one until her very petite little daughter was about 6 months old (despite the LC telling her she ought to stop) because that was what seemed to work the best for her and the baby. Said baby is now 20 months old and still nursing strong. There might also be little tricks with how you position the baby, how you compress the breast, etc. You would want to have the baby's latch assessed if it seems like he's not able to get the nipple far enough in or maintain a good latch, and it's hard to do that on your own if you don't know what you are looking for.

 

If you are able, find a La Leche League group, a lactation consultant, a seasoned postpartum nurse, or even a friend who has nursed a lot of kids, somebody who can help you if you run into troubles. The Dr. Jack Newman website and kellymom.com are also good resources. Good for you for wanting to breastfeed!

post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

Thank you so much and no I did not. I had no help at the hospital with my first son and was absolutly clueless!

post #4 of 9

I had a similar problem with one nipple. you might also try the nipplette? i think by lansinoh. We also used the nipple shield, but only for a few days.  There came a time when the annoyance of using it outweighed the benefits, and we were off! the LC also showed me how to make a 'nipple sandwich' you can google for pics I think. Basically using your finger to make a nipple for the baby to latch on to. We went on to nurse for a year, and I'm now nursing my daughter. My nipple look totally different BTW-- no longer flat.

 

ITA with pp... def get the rec of a really good lc. You can do this! Also, post here ifyou have trouble; the mom's here have seen it all it seems.

post #5 of 9

I've used a nipple shield since my daughter was about a day or two old and she's 3 weeks now. They gave me one in the hospital because her bottom lip/jaw kept slipping and she would only get the nipple and no areola...ow. I use the shield everytime I feed her and it works perfectly. If she gets over excited and loses her latch a little by doing the excited baby head shake thing, it leaks some so I have to watch for the shield slipping.

 

But I'd suggest a nipple shield. Theyre awesome and easy, I'd say. :)

post #6 of 9

I'd actually discourage using a nipple shield unless all else fails. In my opinion, they complicate things, and can effect supply negatively. Not to mention that babies will often refuse to nurse without one and then that becomes an issue. 

 

I had one flat and one inverted nipple and successfully breastfed just by pushing the tip of my areola forward to create a 'nipple' for him to latch onto. Over time, the nipples pulled out and I now have pretty normal looking ones. 

post #7 of 9

We used the nipple shield for a few months and are now off of it.  My LC said that she hasn't seen a lot of the neg effects that people talk about (neg effect on milk supply, for example).  But I did pump, just in case.  I actually had low milk supply from the start but the nipple shield didn't seem to change that.  And we did do a couple of before and after feeding weights to make sure DS could transfer the milk properly.  I would recommend that if there is any question.  We should have done that earlier actually...DS lost a LOT of weight in the beginning.

 

You could also look at Supple Cups.  My LC gave them to me to try and they seem to work.  You can wear breast shields over them so that you can wear them under a bra.  I didn't try the breast shields (for pulling out flat nipples) but they seem worth a try too.  I've heard many people say that they didn't have the problems with flat nipples with their subsequent babies that they had with their firsts so you may not have the difficulty you had last time.

post #8 of 9

When I was pregnant with my son, I was so worried I wouldn't be able to nurse because of my flat nipples.  I was talking to the midwife at my dr's office about it, and she pointed out that if no one with flat nipples could nurse, that trait would have been wiped from the human race eons ago because their babies wouldn't have survived.  She told me to remember that it wasn't impossible, it would just be a little trickier.  She told me that she had flat nipples and had nursed all five of her kids.  It gave me hope. :)
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SubliminalDarkness View Post

I'd actually discourage using a nipple shield unless all else fails. In my opinion, they complicate things, and can effect supply negatively. Not to mention that babies will often refuse to nurse without one and then that becomes an issue. 

 

 

I agree with this.  I did have to use one for my left breast.  For some reason DS was latching fine on the right but just couldn't get it on the left.  The nipple shield was working (kind of) in the hospital, but once we got him home it became apparent to us that he had extreme nipple confusion.  Between the nipple shield on the left, my nipple on the right, and the bottles the nurses gave him at the hospital (he had really terrible jaundice and my milk hadn't come in yet) he just didn't seem to know what was going on.  I finally just ditched the nipple shield and decided he would only have my nipple in his mouth.  I would try nursing first on the left.  After several attempts, if he just couldn't latch we would move him to the right and I'd pump on the left.  (Pumping was really just to keep my supply up.  I was so scared that his nipple confusion would come back, I never even gave him a bottle.)  After a few days, he started to latch on the left occasionally, and after about two weeks we had it on both sides.  We're still going strong at 20 months.

 

Even if you have to pump this time too, maybe it will be different without the return to work looming over your head and stressing you out.  It might give you more time before your supply runs out.  And every baby is different, so you may not have the same difficulties. 

 

I second the suggestion of contacting La Leche League.  I really wish I had had their support when I was going through our nursing difficulties.  I didn't even know they existed until DS was about 6 mo!  

 

Good luck to you!

 

 

post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 

I wanted to give an update DS2 was born 4-26 and nursing had been going GREAT! My flat nipple problem just simply didnot bother him! He has a very strong latch and everything worked out without any intervention! Thank you for all your comments and help!

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