Breastfeeding can be challenging if you are having problems with soreness, engorgement, or a poor latch.
You may also be struggling with breastfeeding if you have inverted nipples or your baby is premature and unable to suck your breast without getting tired.
Thankfully, nipple shields can help make breastfeeding much easier and less painful.
Generally, it is a thin silicone device that is soft and flexible and can be worn over the breast to help with breastfeeding.
However, nipple shields are tricky to use and they don’t always stay in place during your baby’s feeding.
Even if they do, you may have trouble maintaining proper breastfeeding positions while you try to keep the shield in your baby’s mouth.
Now, let’s talk about how to get nipple shield to stay on while you breastfeed your baby. Check it out below!
How to Get Nipple Shield to Stay On
The nipple shield is a little cap that a woman puts over her nipple during breastfeeding.
It’s tricky to get on at first since it tends to fall off when you’re trying to snap it on.
Nevertheless, it comes with a lot of benefits once you know how to get nipple shield to stay on.
Here are effective tips for ensuring your nipple shield sticks.
Use Warm Water
If you encounter problems with the nipple shield slipping off your baby’s nipple, try warming it up first.
You can do this in a bowl of warm water. Put the shield in the bowl until it is just slightly warmer than body temperature.
The warmth will help make it more malleable and stickier, so it stays on better.
But remember when boiling water for use with a nipple shield, do not heat the water so much that it is scalding.
Otherwise, you are likely to burn yourself or your baby.
2. Use Medical Tape
Applying medical tape to your shield can help to secure it in place.
You should ensure that the tape does not stand in the way of your baby breastfeeding and don’t remove it or the shield in the middle of feeding.
3. Flip the Nipple Shield Inside Out
Flip the flat part of your shield until you expose more of the hat part. Then, place the hat part on your nipple and roll the flat part onto your breast.
4. Apply Lanolin
Applying lanolin offers friction and makes the shield sticky. This can help keep the shield attached to your skin.
5. Hold with Your Hands
A temporary solution for getting your nipple shield to stay on is by using your hands.
Tips for Selecting a Nipple Shield
Basically, a good nipple shield should fit you and your child appropriately. Here are tips for selecting one.
Choose the Product that Works for You
There are several nipple shield options available to parents. The most important factor to consider is comfort; especially if you intend to use the nipple shield for an extended time.
2. Choose the Correct Size
Some women may experience discomfort if a nipple shield is too small resulting in a drop in breast milk supply. You also don’t want it to be too big as it will not serve its purpose.
3. Attachment is Important
How your baby attaches to the nipple shield affects milk flow, supply, and the way your baby’s mouth comes in contact with the breast.
A good latch will mean that your baby will get used to a good, effective sucking rhythm—one that you can use when breastfeeding without the shield.
Who Can Benefit from a Nipple Shield?
Breastfeeding comes with its own challenges and this is where a nipple shield comes in handy for some women.
Ideally, some nursing mothers find nipple shields useful for easing the pain and improving the quality of the nursing experience.
It is also a temporary solution for babies that need to breastfeed on their own without relying on formula.
Those that may benefit from using a nipple shield include:
- Women who experience breastfeeding challenges due to short, flat, or inverted nipples.
- Women with cracked or sore nipples.
- Babies that prefer bottle teats.
- Women that are nursing premature babies.
- Little children with tongue ties.
Disadvantages of Using a Nipple Shield
Nipple shields do come with some inconveniences. They include:
Your Milk Supply May Dwindle!
A baby’s ability to effectively remove milk from the breast during breastfeeding is critical to weight gain and, in turn, milk production.
If your baby is unable to suck hard enough, he may not get the right milk supply from the breast, leading to poor weight gain.
2. It’s Harder to Get Enough Milk
The baby may need some extra help getting milk from a nipple shield.
Hence, you may need to assist her by gently massaging your breast during nursing sessions.
Use your thumb and index finger to compress different areas of your breast.
This will help her get the most milk possible. If your breasts are still full after nursing, use a pump to squeeze out any extra milk.
3. Public Breastfeeding is No Easy Task
Using a nipple shield can be easy when you are doing it in the comfort of your home.
However, this may not be the case when you have to do it in public. Not only is it uncomfortable but also stressful to put on.
4. Infants May Become Overly Reliant on Nipple Shields
It is important to ask for help from a lactation consultant when it comes to weaning from a nipple shield.
A lactation consultant can help you decide when the proper time is to remove the shield so as not to cause any unnecessary stress for you or your baby.
Nipple shields can be tricky to use–and even trickier to apply if you’re not sure how to get nipple shield to stay on.
Many mothers find it challenging to nourish an infant via breast milk while using one.
If you’re considering breastfeeding, or are experiencing problems with your current method, keep in mind that a nipple shield can come in handy—but improper use can cause pain while you nurse.
We hope that the tips above will prove helpful when you want your nipple shield to stay put.
While nipple shields can help a breastfeeding mother and her baby get off to a good start, they should not be used in place of good or regular breastfeeding practices.
As the baby grows, you will want to wean him or her off the nipple shield so he or she can develop a strong latch.
Also, it is always smart to consult with a board-certified lactation consultant when using nipple shields.
They may also offer some tips on how to get nipple shield to stay on.
Also read a similar post: What Size Nipple For Newborn
Frequently Asked Questions
Why won’t my nipple shield stay on?
A nipple shield that falls off too easily might be a result of not wearing the shield long enough.
Try soaking the shield in a bowl of warm water to help make it more pliable, allowing it to stick better.
How do I keep my nipple shield on?
To get a better seal around the nipple, wipe the edges of the nipple shield with warm water and gently turn it inside out.
Position it over your nipple so that it fits snugly against your breast. Make sure that the tip of your nipple fits into the nipple hole.
Other tips include:
- Apply lanolin to help the nipple shield stick.
- Turn the nipple shield inside out.
- Hold it in place.
- Use a medical tape.
How can I get my baby to latch with a nipple shield?
To help your baby latch using a nipple shield, it may help to express a little milk into the tip of the shield before applying.
You can also dip the shield’s tip into expressed milk, or drip expressed milk onto the outside of the shield to encourage your baby to latch on.
When applying the nipple shield, it helps to turn it almost inside out before putting it over your nipple.
Iesha is a loving mother of 2 beautiful children. She’s an active parent who enjoys indoor and outdoor adventures with her family. Her mission is to share practical and realistic parenting advice to help the parenting community becoming stronger.
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