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Old 09-03-2011, 08:43 PM   #1
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Nipple shields? And when does the pain go away?

For the most part, DS has a good latch, but my nipples are huge compared to his little mouth (he's 6 days old), and my boobs are freaking huge. I have a hard time getting everything at the right angle, etc... One of my nipples has a tear near the base. It does not look like it's getting better. It looks like it's getting deeper. I found my nipple shield and tried that, but it's been long enough that I don't know if I used it right. When I use it, do I still angle my nipple towards the top of DS's mouth, or do I just pop it straight in? I tried the angle, but there was no way I could get it in his mouth. If there had been someone else doing it (or if I had another hand), I probably could have. Plus, DS was less than thrilled w/the shield and didn't want to nurse. I would like to try again b/c I am at the point where I bawled the last time I nursed him. I'm debating giving up nursing on that side at the moment and pumping to see if that will help it heal. The thought of nursing on that side again makes me want to cry. I really, really hate this.

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Old 09-03-2011, 09:52 PM   #2
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Re: Nipple shields? And when does the pain go away?

If he won't use the shield I would pump that side until it heals. If it keeps looking worse, you don't want it to end up infected. It's amazing how quick your nipples heal. Super big hugs. The beginning is so hard. Can you see a LC?
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Old 09-04-2011, 08:31 AM   #3
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Re: Nipple shields? And when does the pain go away?

I hate the first week too. I had to use a shield with my first because he was premature. When I made it to 37 weeks with my second I threw my shield away -- way too hasty. I ended up engorged and he couldn't latch even though he was a 39 weeker and had latched fine in the hospital. The new shields are nicer than the one I had just 2 years ago, so maybe try a new one? Also, I found that if I calmed DS2 down he didn't have much of a problem with the shield. I would run water and have him suck my finger to get him to a more pliant frame of mind, and then with water still running would switch to the shield. We had a day with lots of tears, but by evening of the first day of the shield, he was loving it (too much, it took forever to get him off of it when my engorgement went away). I used football hold and angled the shield to hit the roof of his mouth. My nipple was cracked and bleeding, I think it healed in like 2 days?

You'll both get the hang of it soon, my DS2 is 2 months now and nursing without the shield like a champion.
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Old 09-04-2011, 09:12 AM   #4
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We used a shield for the first 9 weeks as DD was a preemie. As pp said, use football hold and angle. Football hold gives you greater control of lo head. We then transitioned to cross-cradle with the shield and eventually weaned off the shield and started to use cradle. I still use all three holds depending on where I'm at, whether I'm sitting or standing etc. Good luck and I agree, maybe give that side a break and pump more than nurse and rely on your "good" side for majority of your nursing for a day or so
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Old 09-04-2011, 11:49 AM   #5
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Re: Nipple shields? And when does the pain go away?

Thank you! I ended up pumping my left side last night. It still hurt when I nursed him this morning, and when he was done, I could see that the crack was larger, plus there is a second longer crack. I don't think I can bring myself to nurse on that side again for a while. I talked to my LC this morning, and she said it's alright to exclusively pump that side while it heals. Now I'm worried that increased nursing on my right side will make things worse for it as well as I've noticed the beginnings of a crack there too. *sigh* I successfully used the nipple shield in a FB hold at our last nursing. It still hurt, but I didn't have to "breathe" through the nursing session. I hope my milk supply bumps up soon b/c he didn't get enough last time.

I talked to my LC this morning.
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Old 09-04-2011, 07:11 PM   #6
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Try a little nipple ointment like lansinoh under the shield. It helps things glide, less friction
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Old 09-04-2011, 07:15 PM   #7
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Re: Nipple shields? And when does the pain go away?

I agree. And wanted to say sorry mama. I remember how hard that was!! It'll pass though. Take care of yourself!
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Old 09-11-2011, 06:17 PM   #8
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Re: Nipple shields? And when does the pain go away?

That sounds tough--I'm so sorry! We ended up using a nipple shield full time because it was either that or exclusive pumping or formula. Hope your situation gets better
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Old 09-11-2011, 06:35 PM   #9
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Re: Nipple shields? And when does the pain go away?

Thank you! The pain is getting better. I got some triple nipple ointment, and that is helping. The cracks aren't healing though. How long does it take for them to close up?
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Old 09-11-2011, 09:34 PM   #10
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Re: Nipple shields? And when does the pain go away?

I had to EP for almost four weeks the damage at the beginning was so bad, then slowly got DS on with the shields. Once I got the special ointment they healed fairly quickly, though (although I still have scars). Have you tried the little healing stickies you can get? (I can't remember what theyre called). Hugs, mama, the beginning is so hard but it goes fast.
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