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Success stories breastfeeding with flat or inverted nipples

13 replies

Indigogirl88 · 04/06/2020 09:15

Hi ladies,

I'm 22 weeks now and looking into breastfeeding. I never even knew it but aparently I have flat nipples which could potentially become an issue when breastfeeding. I've bought a haakaa which reviews say can be used with flat nipples.

I've found they do go erect when stimulating (man what has my life become 😂) but go back flat shortly after.

I just wondered if anyone in the same position could share there success stories?

Thank you!

OP posts:
cinnabarmoth · 04/06/2020 09:43

I had inverted nipples until my mid 30s when I used Nipplettes (suction cap thingies) to draw them out (pre-pregnancy). Even now they are sometimes a bit flat, though they haven't inverted again. I struggled to get my daughter to latch initially, though I couldn't say with certainty that it was related to having had inverted/flat nipples, and I used nipple shields for the entire duration of breastfeeding. I did try without them but though I did manage to get her to latch, I always found it extremely painful. The midwives and health visitor were almost universally against using nipple shields, but they worked very well for me and my DD, and my HV did actually tell me that she had reconsidered the advice she gave about them in light of my experience.

Anyway, I don't know if Nipplettes can be used during pregnancy but might be worth finding out, and while I would recommend trying to breastfeed without them, nipple shields may be worth a shot too.

Tinkersaur · 04/06/2020 12:33

My nipples were a little weird where one was fine and the other was flat.

I found as long as you stimulated/teased the flat nipple so it came out them put baby on, they could breast feed fine. It did feel a little weird at first but once breastfeeding was established then both nipples stayed out and I no longer had to stimulate prior to a feed.
Hope your pregnancies is going well

Rainbowchampagne · 04/06/2020 12:44

I have flat nipples and tried breast feeding, I was able to an extent. I had to make them cold so they would be erect and she would latch on, but after a length of time they were flat again.

Ended up in hospital because she lost too much weight 😩 A paediatric nurse told me to use nipple shields (I used the medela ones) this helped and I was actually able to feed her properly. Having said that, they really got on my nerves, they take away the convenience and after a while stick to babies face, so when baby moves so does the shield. But if you’re more patient than me it may be worth a try!

Lua · 04/06/2020 12:48

I have a flat almost inverted nipple. Breastfed 2, until 18 months. No problems and no preferences for the non-flat nipple.

First one is always a bit more stresful, but second one had no issues. So is not the nipple that is the problem.... You will be fine!

Sheera1 · 04/06/2020 15:27

I have one sort of inverted nipple. I worried about breastfeeding and it was the best of the two! Try not to overthink. Do what works for you when the time comes. I breastfeed very successfully but ds just knew what to do. Nothing to do with me.

I had a very hungry boy and gave in at 16 weeks and gave a hungry baby formula at night so he actually started to sleep more than only 2-3 hours which was torture.

We always give ourselves such a hard time. I am determined not to do it to myself this time. I want to breastfeed again but want to have a bottle too fairly soonish to give myself a break as it is knackering to start with. I was feeding and expressing and it was just a nonsense as I broke down in tears. I would always advocate breastfeeding even if just initially but if it is not working and making you upset don't beat yourself up for moving to formula.

Once breastfeeding is established it is sooo easy esp at night and when they are ill, but it is also full on esp at the start and I want to give DP a shot at feeding and bonding.

stormtrooperjulian · 04/06/2020 15:42

I had fairly flat nipples. It was actually commented on by the midwife when I first tried to feed, she said I would 'probably need nipple shields' (it didn't do much for my confidence!). I'm still breastfeeding at 8 months, never needed shields and my nipples aren't flat any more. There are a few techniques to help get a good latch with flatter nipples. You will be fine.

physicskate · 04/06/2020 15:52

Mine are both quite flat. Never used shields. Still breastfeeding through the night at nearly 15 months (she won't take bottles or any other milk!!).

Was a bit tricky the first few weeks. But the first weeks are anyway.

Alarae · 04/06/2020 15:56

It was a pain in the ass and I had to use a nipple shield. My daughter woke up screaming and hungry so the faff of getting the shield on and into position to the breastfeed made me extremely stressed, plus I never seemed to make enough to satisfy her and we supplemented with formula pretty much straight away.

I stopped after three weeks. It wasn't a great experience for either myself or my daughter and my DH and I decided fed is best. At the end of the day I tried my best and it just didn't work out.

TobysMum16 · 04/06/2020 16:44

I’m a breastfeeding peer supporter for my local Baby Cafe.... we always stress it’s breastfeeding not nipple feeding so it doesn’t matter about shape or size of nipple. The midwives at our local hospital continue to tell ladies that their nipples are too flat / too large / too small which isn’t helpful at all! I was told that my small flat nipples were no good. Baby had a tongue tie so we did take some time to get established but we did continue for 20 months so was worth it.
Best thing to do is research the support groups and lactation consultants in your area so if you do run into any issues you can get some good advice. In my area they are still working remotely through video and telephone calls.

ACatCalledLola · 04/06/2020 22:49

I had flat nipples pre children. I fed dc1 for 2 years and dc2 is still feeding at over 3. I didn’t ever have a problem and both of mine fed easily from the beginning. I think it’s less about the nipple and more about whether your baby knows what to do. I was lucky and mine both took to it easily but there’s plenty of support out there if you have any problems. Good luck!

Sammyset · 04/06/2020 22:55

I'm a success story!
I had inverted nipples throughout life pre- giving birth but could pull them out with my fingers and did this for breastfeeding two children.

They must have sucked them out so much that they then stayed sticking out permanently. Smile

FromtheZoo · 05/06/2020 00:19

I have always had flat nipples and was really worried about this when I was pregnant. I bough a Lansinoh latch assist (I think that's what it's called) which is like a little thing you attach to your nipple and it has a suction that pulls it out. It has lots of good reviews saying that when used just before a feed it will draw the nipple out. I used it in the hospital just after having my son and every midwife that came in said they'd never seen it before and I quickly forgot about it as it was just such a faff to use when you have a crying baby that wants milk!! Like a previous poster said it's breastfeeding not nipple feeding and once I had relaxed and stopped worrying about my nipples my baby had no issues with latching onto my flat nipples and actually the more he fed the more they naturally became less flat. I'm still breastfeeding now 16 months on

Foreverbaffled · 05/06/2020 09:26

Flat nipples here! Baby would just persevere until stimulated enough to become erect. After two years of breastfeeding they are no longer flat :)

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