Breastfeeding is extremely important for the growth of your baby and in most cases mothers do not have any trouble feeding their babies as babies are able to latch on to the breast of their mothers quite naturally. But there are some mothers who face issues, because babies are not able to latch on to their mother’s breast for some reasons. As a solution to this problem, lactation consultants suggest nipple shields to the mothers.
Tips to keep in mind when using nipple shields
- Nipple shields are mostly taken as the last resort and it should only be used under the supervision and guidance of the physicians. If this is not worn in the right way, there are chances that it would have a negative impact on breastfeeding. In case it is not properly used, it could lead to weight loss in the baby resulting from low milk supply.
- If you are using a nipple shield it is important that you keep a track of the wet diapers of your baby. This will help you to understand if your baby is getting the milk that he needs. Also monitor the weight of your baby. There are certain nipple shield breastfeeding disadvantages as well but make sure that you use it only for your advantage.
- There are also chances that your baby gets accustomed to nipple shield and might find it very difficult to nurse without it. If you use the nipple shield quite often, ensure that you also try weaning your child from the shield.
- It is very important for you to understand that you should not wear a nipple shield through the entire time period of breast feeding. When you are using the shield also make your baby nurse without the shield. Always help your baby to latch on to the breast.
- It has often been observed that when you breast feed using a shield, your full breast is not emptied. In order to increase the milk supply it is very important that you clear the breast milk completely after breastfeeding. Women face health issues like mastitis, plugged ducts etc. when milk remains in the breast. You can make use of a breast pump to remove the excess milk.
- It is very important that a nipple shield is used in place of a breast shell. A breast shield covers the nipple and the areola, whereas the nipple shell covers the areola but the nipple remains protruded. Nipple shields should be used during breastfeeding and not nipple shells.
If you are using a nipple shield make sure that you clean it properly. You need to wash it with cold after using it each time. You should also wash it with water that has some soap in it. After this use some hot water and then finally dry it using some paper towels. You should now store this in a place that is clean and dry. Using nipple shield in breastfeeding is a good idea but make sure that keep in mind the above mentioned tips.