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I am pregnant but I have inverted nipples. Can I still breastfeed?


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  • Yes it is possible.
    * First, try to have skin to skin contact with you baby as soon as possible after birth and leave baby between your breasts for as long as possible. This will allow baby to use their innate reflexes which help them to find the breasts and self-attach. Feeding in a laid back skin to skin position may be really helpful for future feeds as well.
    * If your baby cannot attach and feed well then try bringing out your nipple just before feeding with hands on stimulation by rolling the nipples and “pinching” (gently) around the areola. A cold compress for a few minutes may be helpful to keep the nipple everted.
    * Use the breast pump just before feeds to pull out the nipple. The midwives may show you how to use a reverse syringe device (with no needle attached!) to help pull out your nipple as well.
    * Shape your breast before a feed. Compress your fingers a few centimetres behind your nipple to make a “V” or “C” shape. This can help baby attach deeper onto your breast tissue and feed well.
    * Use a nipple shield if the tips above do not work. Nipple shields are designed to help mums breastfeed babies with latch-on difficulties by providing a larger, firmer target for baby to attach and maintain attachment during the feed. Some mums find they only need to use the nipple shield for a short term as over time the frequent feeds help draw out their nipple, while other mums may need to use a nipple shield for longer.
    * Finally, remember to seek ongoing support from a breastfeeding specialist, especially in the first few weeks, until you are feeling confident with breastfeeding and you know your milk supply is good and baby is gaining weight well.
    * It’s normal to need lots of support in these first few weeks, never feel you shouldn’t be going to the clinic for frequent support. Most mums need lots of help and reassurance in the early days/weeks.


  • I think so, but I’d really recommend talking to a nurse, who should know for sure.


  • I’m no expert but I’m my reading over the past 7-8 years I know I have read that it is definately possible. I would suggest ringing the ABA, they may be able help you out further! Goodluck


  • It may be difficult but i’m sure the midwives will give you lots of support and advice :)


  • I think it can be more difficult but many women have successfully breastfed with inverted nipples. I suggest contacting a lactation consultant.


  • yes. Make sure you seen someone now and get advice before your baby is born – as others have mentioned a lactation consultant. The Australian Breastfeeding Association are great.


  • Yes. Make an appointment with a lactation consultant to put a plan in place before the baby is born as there are things you can do during the antenatal period. It does come with challenges but once overcome you should be able to successfully breast feed.


  • A friend of mine has one inverted nipple. She had to put a rubber/silicone nipple on it. I don’t know how it works but she was able to breastfeed. I don’t know how long she would have been able to continue for because she decided she was only going to breastfeed for 6 weeks regardless. Apparently she told one of the grandparents that she wasn’t going to be a Jersey Cow.


  • Yes, but it is harder. I breast fed my first son for 6 weeks before it became too much when he was eating every hour. Second son I breast fed for 2 weeks than started expressing but ran dry when he was about 4 weeks old. If you try to breast feed and can’t, please don’t beat yourself up about it. There is so much pressure on mums already without the guilt being put on them from other parents or midwives. As long as you’re feeding your baby then that’s all that matters. Only if you can, try to get at least the first 3 days into them as this is good stuff that has your anti bodies in it. Remember if you stress than baby can sense it so do what is best for you and bub. What works for someone else may not work for you. Good luck :-)


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