Painful nipples during breastfeeding are common but not normal

Cracked. Painful. Damaged. Nipples. Ouch!!! Did you know the nipple shield you were given at the hospital may be the culprit for your persistent nipple pain? Most hospitals will give out a 24mm cone shaped shield (Medela brand). While this may work for some, for many it will be too big or the wrong shape, causing baby to still bite your nipple through the shield. Those with elastic nipples may have their nipple sucked too far and poke out the holes. Ouch!!! Nipple shield now come in many shapes, sizes, lengths and materials to individualize the shield to get an optimal latch. Not happy with your current shield? Schedule an appointment to find out what other options may work better for you.

If you have cracked, bleeding nipples there is always a reason. Reasons for cracked nipples:
🗡Shallow latch
🗡Very short or flat nipples where baby is not yet proficient at taking a big mouthful of breast
🗡Baby is tongue tied
🗡Breast infection
🗡Pumping with the suction too hard
🗡Wrong size pumping flanges causing friction on the nipple
🗡Wrong size nipple shield
🗡Baby was in an odd position in utero and has tension in the head/neck/shoulders
🗡Baby has torticolis (they prefer to turn their head toward one shoulder and they pull the head in this direction while nursing, twisting the nipple)

To treat cracked nipples:
🧸Get a deep latch every time
🧸Breast milk on the nipple after every feeding
🧸Coconut oil, EVOO, nipple balms, butters or creams
🧸Breast gels
🧸Breast shells or Lacticups keep the nipple from touching clothing when damage is severe but should be limited in use
🧸Dr Jack Newman’s All Purpose Nipple Ointment