5 Top Tips for Breastfeeding with Inverted Nipples ……
In order to breastfeed successfully with inverted nipples, your newborn needs to be able to latch onto your nipple correctly, so as to not cause pain, damage, and be able to draw milk from your breast. Inverted nipples are shy about coming forward and can take some encouragement to get started and realize their purpose. Once regularly stimulated and your baby latches for long enough to draw your nipple out, drink properly and maintain active feeding, you should find the length of time it takes to eventually draw the nipple out at the start of the feed shortens and eventually your nipples start to behave themselves without any encouragement but, of course, this is all down to teamwork.
Here are my 5 top tips to help coax your inverted nipples out for breastfeeding and help your baby latch on.
1. Expressing for 30 – 60 seconds to draw out the nipple is probably easier and more effective than using your hands to encourage the nipple out but you will have to latch baby very quickly whilst the nipple is drawn out.
2. Hold ice cubes wrapped in a muslin onto the nipple for 30-60 seconds then latch your baby quickly before your nipple retracts.
3. Hold your breast and make a shape with your nipple so baby can latch. If possible hold it for a couple of minutes whilst baby is sucking.
4. Nipple shields are often recommended to help draw out the nipple. Usually, this is all they do as it is very hard for a baby to draw milk through a shield and to stimulate the nipple. Allow your baby to suck at the shield for 30-60 seconds then quickly remove it and latch baby onto the nipple whilst it is still drawn out.
5. Make sure your newborn is actively feeding and wide awake for at least 10 minutes before a feed and strip down to a vest to keep him cool while feeding to help maintain active feeding and stimulation which, of course, will help keep your nipple out and protruding and not retract back due to comfort sucking or snoozing.
Problems latching your baby onto inverted nipples should ease with time. Try different positions, such as the rugby/football position.