Other Tips For A Smooth Transition To Formula Feeding
Now that youve learned the best way to transition your baby from breastmilk to formula as well as how to choose a good replacement formula, we have a few other suggestions to make the switch go as smoothly as possible.
Nurse When Youre Together, Use Formula Bottles When Apart
Many moms choose this route if they will be partially weaning their babies. Formula bottles can be given when mom is at work or away and she can breastfeed during the times they are together. She may choose to breastfeed overnight or formula can be given in a bottle by her partner. If going the cold turkey route, it would be wise for mom to leave the room and have someone else give the bottle for the first several feedings
Babies who breastfeed have become used to getting warm milk that is body temperature. This temperature can be difficult to mimic when warming a bottle in a bowl of water or under a tap. . A bottle warmer like The Babys Brew is the perfect way to give your baby the same temperature of milk they are used to since you can get milk at 98.6 degrees at the push of a button. As the only battery-powered warmer, its completely portable so you can give your baby perfectly warmed milk wherever you go. And the detachable formula dispense is an added bonus!
Choose a Bottle that Mimics a Breastfeeding Experience
Switch When Introducing New Solids
Tips For Introducing Formula Or Switching From Breastfeeding To Formula
Some babies become gassier
When introducing a bottle and/or formula, many babies may become temporarily a bit gassier. This can be normal.
Formula may cause gas if a lot of bubbles or foam formed when shaking the powder and water together.20 This may allow baby to swallow more air. Let the bottle sit in the fridge until all bubbles have dispersed.
Good news: Most formulas can be prepared up to 24 hours in advance and kept in individual bottles in the refrigerator, allowing for plenty of time for the bubbles to reduce.
Incorrect bottle feeding and latch may also cause baby to swallow more air, which results in more gas.21 Used paced bottle feeding to help with this.
Be aware: Some babies may have a food intolerance or allergy to an ingredient in the formula. If you also notice changes in babys stool, such as mucous or blood forceful vomiting or excessive crying or fussiness after a feeding, chat with babys pediatrician about this possibility.22
Get ready for changes in stool color
Formula often causes stool to be a green, brown, or darker yellow color.30 These changes are usually normal.
Some babies refuse the bottle
Your little one knows what they like and what they are familiar with, and often thats you! Moving to a latex nipple can be quite the adjustment for some babies.
Here are some tips to help your baby take a bottle
Still refusing the bottle after a few weeks? Try an alternate feeding method
If Your Baby Refuses The Bottle
Some babies take to the bottle better than others. If yours rejects the bottle at first, try experimenting with different brands of bottles and nipples until you find one your baby likes. Or, have a caregiver or your partner offer the bottle, since your baby may associate you with breastfeeding. Give your baby a bottle at a feeding when theyre not overly tired and hungry since they may be more willing to accept it then.
Breastfeeding is amazing!!!! But having a second set of boobs is always helpful. Enfamil® mom
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How To Choose The Best Formula
Many moms breastfeed longer than they want to because they believe its the best way to nourish their baby. However, many baby formulas offer all of the nutrients your baby needs.
As you review your formula options, look for one that is:
- Balanced in nutrients
- Made of sustainable, clean ingredients
- Free of any potential food allergens
- Low in added sugar
Start Slowly Use The Right Nipple Relax And Enlist Help
Start by offering bottles filled with just a half ounce or so .
If your baby has been exclusively breastfed, Rosenfeld recommended starting with a wide, slow flow nipple that mimics the shape and flow of your own nipples, decreasing the chance that your baby will find it easier to get milk from a bottle than the breast.
A baby older than 3 months, however, may become frustrated with a slow flow bottle, especially if moms breasts have a fast flow, Rosenfeld warned. In that case, she recommended trying a faster flow nipple.
To ensure that baby is happy, relaxed and not too hungry, offer a bottle one to two hours after your babys last feeding. Crying is a late sign of hunger, and a hungry baby is easily frustrated.
If you are the first to offer the bottle, your baby may refuse and insist on nursing. Instead, ask your partner or another familiar caregiver to offer the first few bottles, if you can. This will not only help your baby get used to bottle feeding, but will help establish a feeding relationship with your partner , too.
Whomever is giving the bottle should try to relax and follow your babys cues. Babies sense stress and may reject a bottle if the person offering it seems anxious.
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How To Switch To Formula From Breast Milk: Step By Step
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Breastfeeding can be an incredibly rewarding journey. It allows you time to create a very special bond with your baby while providing them with the best possible nutrition.
But it can also be extremely demanding on a mom and not every mom who plans to breastfeed can.
Some moms who may be looking at alternatives to exclusively breastfeeding may consider supplementing with formula. Their breastfeeding journey may not be going to plan and they may be looking to transition their baby to formula.
Whether you are ready to start transitioning your baby to formula or you need to make a complete switch. We have put together a wealth of information and techniques to help the transition be as smooth as possible.
Further Tips For An Older Infant
Here is some further guidance if you are weaning your baby after the age of 6 months.
Weaning an older baby can be easier than weaning a younger baby, but it also can present different challenges. Heres what to keep in mind if you are weaning a baby older than 6 months.
Feeding Solids: Babies over 6 months of age can start eating solids. Because they are already being introduced to new flavors and textures, this can be a good time to transition to a bottle of formula. Just remember that milk feeds should always happen before feeding solids and that the majority of your baby’s nutrition will come from formula or breastmilk until age 1. Consider Skipping the Bottle and Moving to a Sippy Cup: If you are starting the weaning process with a 9-month-old baby or older, consider skipping the bottle step altogether. Soon enough your baby will need to transition to a sippy cup anyway, so this can streamline the process. Just be sure that your baby is comfortable using a sippy cup before completely making the switch.
Expect Some Push Back: Some babies may be completely fine with transitioning to a bottle of formula, whereas others will surely protest. Being a bit older means they have a more established connection with breastfeeding which may make the transition a bit more difficult. Just keep this in mind and know that within a couple of weeks your baby will be drinking out of a bottle just fine!
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When Should I Introduce A Bottle To My Breastfed Baby
Even if youve decided to breastfeed, chances are that at some point youll want to make the bottle a part of your babys feeding routine. After youve been breastfeeding regularly and well, when and how to introduce a bottle is up to you. Whether you start at 6 months, sooner than that, or later, whats best for you is whatever fits your lifestyle.
There are many reasons why bottle-feeding may make sense for you. Maybe youre going back to work or you want other family members to help with feeding. Dont worry if your baby doesnt take a bottle easily from the start. It may take a little trial and error before your baby accepts a bottle, but were here to help!
Review our tips and considerations below before you get started.
How To Transition Your Baby From Breastmilk To Formula
Ana Reisdorf, MS, RDAna Reisdorf, MS, RD is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and freelance writer with 13-years of experience in the field of nutrition and dietetics. She is the author of three books, including theAnti-Inflammatory Diet One PotCookbook. Through her writing she demonstrates her passion for helping people achieve ideal health and make transformational changes in their lives
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Start With One Or Two Formula Bottles A Day
Each day, your body makes breast milk based on the concept of supply and demand. When you start to add formula, it can affect how much breast milk you make.
If you plan on supplementing one or two bottles a week, it shouldn’t affect your breast milk supply. But if you give your child one or two bottles of formula a day, your milk supply will begin to drop.
Which Formula Tastes The Most Like Breastmilk
Transitioning from breastmilk to formula in general involves understanding what formula to pick.
With the array of formula available on the market, it becomes so hard to choose whats best for a breastfed child.
Parents should get pick a formula that mimics breastmilk in every possible way, especially in flavor, texture, and nutrients, etc.
To help you with such decisions, here are my top 3 choices:
Enfamil Enspire Baby Formula Enfamil Enspire is a non-GMO milk formula that was made solely for breastfed infants.
It contains MFGM that helps to improve intellectual advancement, it has lactoferrin that enhanced the babys immune system and intestinal tracts.
Several parents have testified that their breastfed child aligned to this formula easily.
Similac Pro-Advance Infant Formula with this product, Similac made a close option to breastmilk.
It contains an exceptional mix of DHA, vitamin E, and lutein for the mind and eye development.
It also has Human Milk Oligosaccharide which are probiotics and usually bountiful in breastmilk.
Gerber Good Start Gentle It is a mixture of DHA, comfort proteins and prebiotics, that makes it closest to breastmilk. This formula contains corn maltodextrin and lactose for taste. It is great for lactose intolerance children, gentle on the tummy and no strong odor.
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Cold Turkey Weaning Can Work But
It usually involves a lot of tears. Yours and your babys. If a baby has been exclusively breastfed and then one day, is expected to latch onto a rubber nipple and drink something unfamiliar and different.well, lets just say this is a recipe for struggle. When you wean a baby, you are changing all kinds of things:
- the taste of the milk
- temperature of the milk
- speed of delivery
- cuddled up with mom versus bottle feeding by other caregiver, or even in a crib not touching anyone
Let Somebody Else Do The Feeding
Mothers being being sole food source makes it difficult to transition from breastmilk to formula.
To correct this, your child needs to realize that other people, aside from his/her mother, can take care of his/her needs.
A companion or your partner can assist you with the feeding of your baby, and this will equally keep him from getting distracted by your smell.
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Help How To Switch From Breastmilk To Formula Without Tears And Constipation
Breastfeeding is a fantastic option for some parents, but not all mothers want to breastfeed for an entire year. If you decide to wean your child from breastmilk before reaching one-year-old, you have to learn how to switch from breastmilk to formula.
Now, if you find that youre happy and enjoy breastfeeding, feel free to continue! The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends breastfeeding exclusively for the first six months and then as long as both mother and baby are happy.
The World Health Organization recommends breastfeeding for at least two years.
While that might be the recommendation, life happens. You might start a new job, have a huge life change, or simply feel like breastfeeding isnt working for your family. Thats okay never feel bad if you decide to switch to formula. Fed is best.
However, what is essential is that you learn the proper way when weaning your baby from breastmilk to formula. Doing so incorrectly can lead to bellyaches, constipation, and an overall unhappy baby. You dont want that! So, heres what you need to do.
Table of Content
Start By Offering Expressed Breast Milk In A Bottle
The first and often most difficult step in transitioning to formula is getting your baby to take a bottle that isnt attached to their moms. After all, they are used to being close to their moms for every feed.
To start the process, begin by putting breast milk in a bottle and getting them to successfully take that. Once they get used to drinking from a bottle the move to formula should be a little easier.
You will need to find the right bottle for them and there are some great bottles available that are designed to replicate the feel of a real nipple and breast. Check out our review of the Mimijumi vs Comotomo bottles which do just this.
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Not Getting The Temperature Right
Breastfeeding mothers rarely think about having to heat up a bottle. Their breastmilk comes out of the source at the perfect temperature each and every time. But formula is not created that way.
If this is your first time heating up baby formula then there is a strong possibility that you may make a few errors along the way.
Formula or breastmilk should never be heated in the microwave as it can cause hot spots in the milk that can burn your baby. The formula should never feel warm or hot it should be lukewarm this is the perfect temperature for your baby.