While we talk a lot about breast-feeding, we also talk about bottles, formulas, pumped breast milk and more. While I pumped for the first six and a half months, my daughter drank formula as well as breast milk. Because she seemed to have bad reactions to other formulas, I put her on Nutramigen as the supplement when there wasn’t enough breast milk. Nutramigen was expensive, but because it was only the supplement, it didn’t cost as much as it might have.
The following five tips were what made bottle-feeding easer on me – I hope they make it easier on you too!
- Playtex Bottles with their little baggie inserts were among some of the best purchases I ever made. As baby gets older, they can drink while sitting up, the bag draws up into the nipple and you can squeeze the majority of the air out. They have to actively suckle to get anything out of the bottle, but they are not going to get a belly full of air
- Buy a Large Thermos – an oversized thermos can more than accommodate holding a bottle inside of it and this is a great way to maintain the temperature of the formula or breast milk. You can also slide an ice pack in there to keep the breast milk or formula from spoiling while you are in transit. Depending on your bottle type, insulated carry bags work well too
- Mylicon Drops – Mylicon is a great product for babies who get gas really easily. A small dropper full before a bottle and you can nip even the most painful gas in the bud and helps make their belching easier and with a lot less spit up
- Pumping ahead for your milk supply can be a great way to provide the sitter or caregiver with bottles for your little one – clear a shelf in the fridge that is dedicated for your bottles and your bottles only. That way you are never looking for a place to put them and even better, you don’t accidentally leave one too long in the back of the fridge
- Bottles are available for the baby to drink while in the car and you are in transit – for all that the breast offers, there is no way to safely nurse in a moving vehicle whereas pumping into a bottle or giving your baby formula in a bottle means they can drink while safely secured in their infant carrier and on their way to a destination
The last may not seem a tip, but it was a real bonus to settling on the bottle over time. It was also a real kick when she wanted to hold the bottle herself and sought some independence – I was free to take care of other things while she was drinking.
What tips can you offer to others for bottle-feeding ease?