Pros: affordable,easy to use
Cons: need professional supervision to use
As a Board Certified Lactation Consultant I strongly caution the use of nipple shields with out the help of a professional. Nipple shields are used to help temporarily with some difficulty that a mom might be experiencing. This should only be prescribed and then closely watched by a professional.
I use nipple shields in the NICU for extreme preemies to assist in milk transfer until they get to be the age closer to full term. This is done with a lot of follow up and guidance. It can also benefit a mom with extremely damaged nipples for a short period of time. Also, with a lot of follow up by the lactation consultant.
Over time, if a shield is used too much the downside is decreased milk production and the infant learns bad habits and cannot be weaned back to the breast.
Avent makes some really great products but the shield needs to be top quality and only used with the supervision of a Lactation Consultant.