Are you sick and tired of using a nipple shield to feed your baby? If you’re like me, every time a middle of the night feeding rolls around, you’re left searching for that clear piece of silicone while your baby screams. It’s maddening. Also if you’re like me, you hop on your phone and spend endless hours reading through articles and posts about how to wean your baby off nipple shields. And again, if you’re anything like me…none of that advice has worked.
That’s what led me to invent the Back to Mom nipple shield weaning kit. Finally, there’s something real and tangible that can help your baby kick that nipple shield habit and make your life more stress free and easy (well as easy as it can be with a newborn).
The Back to Mom nipple shield weaning kit is a 3 step system which gently reduces baby’s desire to feed with a shield. Here’s a peek at what the Back to Mom nipple shield weaning kit looks like and what it comes with:
Our process of weaning off nipple shields is the best and fastest way of leaving nipple shields behind. Even with the help of this amazing tool, it can still be a little tricky. Watch this video for some great tips on how the kit works and how moms have used it in different ways and find some tips and tricks below on how to improve the process:
- Be patient. This process can take time. Babies have good days and bad days just like us so it’s okay to feel like you take two steps forward and then one step back.
- Don’t push it too much. A calm baby will be more likely to accept something new and different whereas an agitated baby will likely refuse to try something. You don’t want baby to associate your nipple with being really upset so it’s okay to just use the shield baby is used to and try again after baby is calm.
- Express/pump to help induce a quick letdown and express a few drips onto your nipple and the Back to mom shield to help entice baby to latch and reward them immediately when they do.
- Use the bait and switch. If baby refuses your breast or the new shield from the Back to Mom kit, start feeding baby with the shield they are used to and after they’ve fed for a few minutes quickly take that shield off and put on and latch with the Back to Mom shield. The key is to be really quick.
- Try to get as much skin to skin contact in as you can before and during the weaning process so baby can get use to feeling, sensing and smelling your skin.
- If you are successful at latching baby to the bare breast and you have a lot of pain or blistering, consult a lactation specialist as latching issues may be persisting.
- Beginning with SHIELD 1, hold the nipple shield by the rim and flip the nipple shield inside out half way. Center the nipple shield over the breast and nipple and place the cutout where baby’s nose will be (see Figure 1).
- If baby accepts the new shield and successfully eats with it you can move onto SHIELD 2 after a day or two and then SHIELD 3.
- The Back to Mom shields with their open ends can reduce the sucking satisfaction for baby. If baby is frustrated and latches and immediately unlatches it’s a sign they are unhappy with how it feels because it’s not holding it’s nipple shape. This can be good. It leads to baby more quickly realizing that your bare breast is the most satisfying and best way to get your milk. Continue to try to use SHIELD 1 at the beginning of each feeding and introduce your bare breast when baby refuses to accept the shield. This is why it’s key to pump/express before you begin so as soon as baby latches and sucks a little on the bare breast they are instantly rewarded.
- With this approach you may only need to use Shield 1 because baby will realize the shield is not what they want and mom’s bare breast is most comfortable.
- NOTE: Though we say frustration can be good it’s important to not let baby get too agitated. If baby begins to cry loudly or get red in the face and visibly very upset, it’s a good idea to take a break and use your regular shield. Try again once baby is calm (i.e. when you switch breasts).
Drop any questions or comments below about the Nipple Shield Weaning Kit