Just gotten yourself into motherhood and you haven’t gotten the hang of breastfeeding? This is a guide about all you need to know about nipple shields. A nipple shield is a nipple-shaped sheath typically made of flexible silicone. It is worn over the areola and nipple during breastfeeding and has holes at the tip of the nipple section to allow breast milk to flow through. They are made to aid in breastfeeding for both the benefit of the baby and the mother.
Benefits of Using Nipple Shields
In the case of mothers with small, inverted nipples, it is often difficult for the baby to latch-on. The nipple shield allows the breastfeeding process to be feasible until the baby’s suction draws out the nipple. It is also useful for babies who have been bottle-fed since birth. They would have grown used to bottle teats and feeding on the mother’s breast directly might be difficult. This issue can be solved by using a nipple shield.
Apart from that, due to constant breastfeeding, a mother’s nipples can be sore and cracked. If breastfeeding is prolonged, it might cause pain to the mother’s breasts. By using a nipple shield, you give time to heal her cracked nipples as well as making a good transition to feeding using bottle teats. For weak and small babies, latching onto the breast for feeding may be too difficult. A nipple shield makes latching on easier and thus, encourages the baby to breastfeed. Furthermore, the usage of a nipple shield allows the quantity of milk consumed by the baby much easier to monitor and control. Which makes sure that the baby is not over or underfed.
Buying Your Nipple Shields in Malaysia
Before going in and buying your nipple shields, bear in mind that they are not recommended by doctors to be used as a long-term measure. The benefits that come with these handy little breastfeeding tools are to aid in breastfeeding and to provide a temporary fix to a feeding problem. Always try to return to regular breastfeeding as soon as you can!
There are a variety of brands that sell nipple shields in Malaysia. From Medela, Spectra, Pigeon, Tommee Tippee, Haakaa, and ilovebaby to name a few, you can easily get one that meets your needs and specifications. There are also a few things to consider when you buy your nipple shields. Firstly, the size for these tools may vary. From 21mm up to 27mm, make sure that you purchase one in the appropriate size or it will not be as effective. You might also consider getting a special container to store your nipple shields to ensure that they remain germ-free and sterilized before use.
How to Clean Your Nipple Shields
Before using them, make sure you clean your nipple shields properly. Begin by rinsing it with cold water followed by washing it in hot soapy water. After that, run it under hot water to make sure that it is soap-free. Simply dry and store it in a covered container that is also cleaned in the same way.