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Flat nipples

Is breastfeeding realistically possible with flat nipples? Or is it not even worth trying?

Various websites seem to think you can with a little help from breast shells and pumps etc but has anyone gone through this and managed ok?

Totally confused as would love little one to get what's best for her!


  • Why dont you contact your midwife and see if there is a breast feeding group or peer supporter in your area or a breast feeding work shop? I have heard of people breast feeding using the nipple shields but never as a peer counsellor myself come across this so I dont really know what to suggest, but yes it can be possible x
  • I have flat nipples and currently breast feeding my second. I found that as they suck the sort of pull the nipple into shape so it's easier. I didn't even know until this time round that flat nipples could be a problem.

    Won't lie, it has been hard work and I've had issues with weight gain on both. I do some formula top ups but this time it's only 1 per day in the evenings.

    Don't be put off, it is possible, just prepare that if you are like me it is going to be harder for you than for some.

    I do have real problems expressing but that may well just be me rather than related to the nipples.

    Good luck and do get help, it's better if you do.
  • hi chervandy

    a lot depends on your baby and how strong he/she sucks!You can get nipplettes from chemists that work at gently reversing things, they are great for having on for 30 seconds before the feed so baby has something to grab onto. Otherwise a breast pump may also work for this - with the hope that with regular BFs your nipples stay out, or your baby becomes accomplished enough to draw the nipple out on his/her own.

    The best thing you can do is get in the position where you can get hands on support for the few days following birth, somewhere with the staffing to provide it, eg a MLU if there is one near you. The big units often only let you stay if medically necessary. If this isnt an option, discuss additional support with your mw, or childrens centres but your best bet would be somewhere you can stay in for help withe every feed till you and bubba have it off the ground.

    Have seen people do it and it isnt impossible. Nipple shields also often work, but arent great before your milk comes in on day 3 and you may need help to give your breasts additional stimulation if your LO wont latch so your milk does come in. Good luck! xx
  • oh and just to add, i've bf my LO for 6 months with a nipple shield (I dont have flat nipples, i was just very sore and then LO got used to them and wouldnt feed without them) really if it works you should go with it. Its always worth trying for, and anything your bubba gets from you is full of antibodies and a bonus to him or her x
  • I had flat nipples, I tried breastfeeding but she was very jaundice so very panicy and destroyed my nipples. I can pump though so have been exclusively pumping for 12 weeks. My nipples are now out so hopefully I can breast feed my next baby but this little girl won't latch now lol

    I didn't know they were flat until I had her lol it's weird having normal nipples now x
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