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Old 02-04-2011, 02:15 PM   #1
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Help for inverted nipples

I am trying to prepare for my fourth baby who is arriving in March!! My past 3 breast feeding experiences have been emotional, difficult and ended in using formula despite my best efforts. I have learned a TON from each experience for sure but am still hoping to find more answers or someone who has lived my experience and made it! I want so badly to be able to nurse this baby!

My midwife did a breast exam at my last appointment and confirmed that I do indeed have inverted nipples and that we need to begin addressing this. It sounds really silly, I realize, but I had asked all of my docs in the past about it and they just shrugged it off as a variation of "normal" and claimed I wouldn't have any issue nursing. NOT SO!!! Everytime I've had a baby I go through an entire event of blistered, bleeding, cracked nipples with terrible pain that ends up being so bad I about have a mental breakdown and end up bottle feeding. I was able to pump with my first until healing took place and then nurse her until my milk dried up at 3 months. My other two only made it to two weeks with no pumping success. I have always had great lactation help...why they never addressed the inverted nipples, I do not know .

So I guess I'm wondering, has anyone out there had inverted nipples and successfully nursed a baby. What about the pain? Did your nipples ever correct themselves? Any tips and advice at all would be wonderful!!

Currently, for preparation and treatment I am using something called the Supple Cup which essentially applies suction to your nipples to help break the adhesions that cause inverted nipples and wearing the Medella softshells for inverted nipples in the opposing time. I plan on also have a nipple shield ready in case I need it when the baby is born but am fearful of milk supply issues if I do use that.

Thanks for your help!!

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Old 02-04-2011, 09:38 PM   #2
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Re: Help for inverted nipples

If you actually have adhesions, then you truly do have inverted nipples. Do they ever come out with pumping or sexual stimulation? If they do, then I would plan to use the pump to draw the nipple out before attempting to nurse. If not, then a nipple shield and some extra stim from a pump will be your best bet. I would get in to get a prenatal consult with a local lactation specialist to discuss this. This one is harder for me to help via the internet....lol
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Old 02-04-2011, 09:43 PM   #3
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Re: Help for inverted nipples

I had flat nipples and had a very hard time nursing my first. I was really frustrated because I guess you can use a nipple shell that you wear in your bra BEFORE you have baby (http://www.askdrsears.com/html/2/t021800.asp tells about them). Had my OB just checked me, I would have known and could have prevented the problems, or at least tried. But, since they didn't assume I would be nursing, they never checked. Anyhow... after many stressful and tear-filled attempts at nursing for days, they finally brought me a nipple shield. I had to nurse with it on for a few months then was able to get rid of it because my nipples were fine and he was good at nursing. It wasn't great, but it worked, and it got us to 3 years of nursing .
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Old 02-07-2011, 07:15 PM   #4
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Re: Help for inverted nipples

Quote:
Originally Posted by jveprek View Post
I had flat nipples and had a very hard time nursing my first. I was really frustrated because I guess you can use a nipple shell that you wear in your bra BEFORE you have baby (http://www.askdrsears.com/html/2/t021800.asp tells about them). Had my OB just checked me, I would have known and could have prevented the problems, or at least tried. But, since they didn't assume I would be nursing, they never checked. Anyhow... after many stressful and tear-filled attempts at nursing for days, they finally brought me a nipple shield. I had to nurse with it on for a few months then was able to get rid of it because my nipples were fine and he was good at nursing. It wasn't great, but it worked, and it got us to 3 years of nursing .
Thanks ladies, both of you! Did your milk supply ever suffer with using the shield? I guess what I am unsure about is if the treatments I'm using now to draw out my nipples does not work enough in the time before the baby arrives, should I just go with the shield, should I do the pump before feeding thing, etc?? I don't know which route is best. I know the general advice is usually only use a shield as a last resort but I get so torn up in the process of trying to nurse despite having a "good latch" from my kiddos.
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Old 02-08-2011, 09:18 PM   #5
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Re: Help for inverted nipples

i have the same problem and the hospital actually gave me a nipple attachment. helped wonderfully. has to be cleaned each time very well to reduce thrush! and around 4 months old i was able to ween my son off of it and he nursed just fine afterward. my milk was never low or nothing! it is definitely harder than regular bf'ing bc you have to get the shield jsut right but once you get used to it it will be great!
target sells them they are made by medulla !
http://www.loveyourbaby.com/inverted-nipples.html
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