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If you managed to bf with flat/inverted nipples

(13 Posts)
MissHairspray Mon 29-Nov-10 14:51:49

Did it hurt at first and/or did it become easier to get baby latched on as time went on? I'm bf 3-week old dc but nipples are a bit flat and although I really try to get a good latch it can take some time to get her on at all which I find quite stressful. Also,the actual feed doesn't hurt but the first minute or so of sucking is still really painful and although my nipples aren't getting any worse, they aren't healing either and still look red raw on the side nearest wherever her chin goes. Does this sound like a latch issue, or to do with their shape, or just normal early-breastfeeding soreness? She is definitely getting enough as has put on loads of weight but I just wish I could stop dreading each feed! Thanks

Dozeyland Mon 29-Nov-10 15:00:35

Hiya, My left side is flat. having lots of trouble with it though. VERY painful, it eases as she feeds but yes very pinful at the start.

would also like to know the answer to your question lol

I think where DD mouth is tiny, she can't open wide enough to latch on something that isnt sticking out! poor little things. and poor boobs! pain!

LadybeenKissingSantaClaus Mon 29-Nov-10 15:02:58

Hi - I have flat nipples - one side worse than the other, and yes it hurt quite a lot.
What worked for me (and I realise there are other things to consider in relation to these) was using nipple shields for a while. I hurt like crazy - absolutely dreaded each feed which made me feel like the worst new mother ever. Not Good.
Nipple shields seemed to help my nipples pull out into a more sticky-out shape. I was very careful to see that there was a lot a milk all around the shield and I could hear DS swallow happily. I'd also get him latched on with them initially, the nipple would get sucked into the sticky-out shape, then eventually I could unlatch, get rid of the shield and latch back on more comfortably. I didn't have problems with stimulation of supply and my cracks finally started healing up. I also had several visits to BFing supporters who watched an entire feed with and without shields and were happy with my positioning and what was going on.
Sorry to go into so much detail but the mere mention of nipple shields tends to get a lot of raised eyebrows and 'they're problematic' type comments here. Just wanted to reassure you that they can be helpful when used with good support and careful attention.

oh, also, I didn't need to use them forever. It definitely got better when DS got a bit older - after about 6-9 weeks he grew, his mouth got bigger, I exclusively BF for 6 months and continued to BF for a year til he self-weaned.

TooBlessed2spendxmasalone Mon 29-Nov-10 15:04:35

well interestinf because i thought i was the only one with flat nipples,what i did was i used a pump for a minute to get them into a pointed nipple so DD could feed,and yes it always hurt in the beggining,it gets better with time though but for me i breatfed dd till she stopped herself at six months,it still hurt each time she latched on,,

emsyj Mon 29-Nov-10 16:35:10

Hmmm well I have flat nipples and to be honest they didn't affect my breastfeeding at all really. DD was very sleepy following birth for nearly a week and would latch but not suck, but none of that was related to the flat nipples. A couple of times the infant feeding midwife suggested I manipulate them brief.y to make it easier for DD to latch but I didn't really notice any difference. I have only suffered sore nipples 2 or 3 times in 6 months, being at times when DD was growing like a weed and feeding constantly - the soreness only lasted a day before my supply caught up.

My nipples are still flat now, despite 6 months of more or less constant feeding. So it might be worth exploring other causes for your soreness as flat nipples don't always mean painful feeding, at least not in my (admittedly limited) experience.

Zimm Mon 29-Nov-10 17:35:22


Mine are flat. DD is now 16 weeks and EBF. Yes it was very painful and difficult to begin with, DD couldn't latch, used to try and draw them out with a pump or one of those syringe things. Had to express and do formula tops up until week 3 and the pain went around week 6-8, although it started getting much better around week 4. I would expect your situation to gradually improve like mine did - it is completely pain free now. Best of luck!

japhrimel Mon 29-Nov-10 17:37:45

My Mum had inverted nipples and strongly recommends nipple shields. I know Medela also do something specifically for flat/inverted nipples to get them into a better shape.

MissHairspray Mon 29-Nov-10 20:36:02

Thanks for your replies, at least i'm not the only one! I tried shields once and lo wasn't keen but might give it another go, and will try the pump thing - have been just using fingers to try and pull nipple out a bit before a feed but it isn't that effective. Hopefully if I persevere it will get better.

pepperonipizza Mon 29-Nov-10 21:50:23

Yep, flat and really hurt. Not a latch problem - had it checked a lot of times. Nipple shields the only thing that helped me. Try the medela sheilds (they sell tham on amazon or in mothercare), much, much more comfortable than any other I tried and stayed on loads better too.

Pump thing worked too, but it's very faffy and a bit annoying!


Meglet Mon 29-Nov-10 21:52:49

I used to squish my nipple into a 'point' shape to make it easier for my DC's to get a good latch. It seemed to work as I never got sore and supply was fine.

Panzee Mon 29-Nov-10 22:04:28

I started with nipple shields but later on had more luck with this squeezy little number.

cinnamongreyhound Tue 30-Nov-10 21:36:08

Had inverted nipples but they weren't when I finished feeding ds1 at 15 months! Did have painful cracked nipples and then got thrush so that slowed the healing, I used nipple shields for a day to give a bit of relief. Did have a horrible midwife visit the day after I got home who told me I hadfunny shaped nipples and I'd have problems when my milk came in, she then grabbed my nipple pulled it and shoved ds1 onto it!!!

Much easier time with ds2, slight discomfort for 10 days and no other problems. Did help that I knew a good latch and he seemed to be a natural, plus he only feeds 10-15mins compared to ds1 who was 45min-1hr in the beginning. Could be change in nipple shape or those factors that made it easier.

RJandA Wed 01-Dec-10 14:49:05

Mine are a quite flat, though not totally. Did find it incredibly painful at first, especially the first minute or two of each feed but it just gradually got better and now isn't uncomfortable at all. Hard to remember when it stopped hurting completely, but probably about 8 weeks or so.

One of the midwives said DD had a small mouth and it would get easier as she grew so maybe that was something to do with it. Anyway, IT WILL GET EASIER smile

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