Medela Calma vs Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Teats

(13 Posts)
maskedsongbird Sat 22-Feb-14 19:09:38

Hi There,

I am looking for feedback from women who have used both the Medela Calma and Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Teats as I want to know how successful your LO's have been at switching between the bottle and the breast. My best friend is getting married in 8 weeks and no children are going to be allowed at the hen weekend or wedding and I am the made of honour but my daughter is now nearly 4 weeks old so I need to express some milk for my husband to feed her incase she is hungry and I am not available for a feed.

The midwife recommended the Medela pumps and Calma feeding system to ensure that she easily switched from the breast to the bottle and back as I don't want her to reject the breast and wish to breastfeed her until she is at least 6 months old. I have bought the Medela Swing and have used it very successfully today to express milk for the first time and plan to try and feed her the expressed milk to top up her feed from me this evening.

However, as a surprise my husband bought me the Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Starter kit before Christmas and I think he is worried we will not be able to return it or sell it on and recoup the money he spent.

Essentially I want to know whether the Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Teat is as good as the Medela Calma or whether I should sell on the TT set and purchase a few more Medela bottles etc.

Please help!

maskedsongbird Sat 22-Feb-14 19:10:58

Sorry I meant to say Medela Calma OR Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Teats.

ExBrightonBell Sun 23-Feb-14 00:43:02

I've used the Medela Calma bottles. They are completely different to the Closer to Nature teats, so they are not in anyway comparable.

The Calma system is not a free flow teat. No milk can come out unless the baby creates a vacuum much like when breastfeeding and sucks. They can then control how much milk they get and pause naturally as with breastfeeding. That's why it is supposed to help with preventing nipple confusion. I actually used them to help my DS learn how to breastfeed after being poorly at birth.

The Closer to Nature ones afaik are just softer feel teats that are shaped more like a nipple, but they are free flow - so milk will just pour out of the end when it is held up.

I would use the Calma system if I were in your position, and sell on the TT set.

cookiefiend Sun 23-Feb-14 00:55:35

I have had to mix feed and 5 months in dd still latches no problem having used calma. No idea about tt sorry. We only used the one bottle tat came with the set for weeks- just sterilised after each use so you could ask whoever watches her to do that and avoid buying more just yet.

Ditsy79 Sun 23-Feb-14 06:41:25

We used the Calma teat with DD who is now 6.5 months, for similar reasons to you (wedding where DD (then 3 mo) wasn't invited).
I started getting her to take a bottle of EBM every few days from about 6 weeks old, so she was used to it. Found the Calma teat to be brilliant, although it did take a couple of attempts for her to work out how to use it.
I am now mix-feeding as going back to work soon, and was gutted you can't use formula with Calma - apparently it blocks the valves. So we are now using Avent natural (think they are similar to the Tommee Tippee ones) and she manages fine, although the bottle gets drained much quicker than the Calma did.
In my opinion, stick to the Calma with EBM.

SaBearOz Sun 23-Feb-14 19:37:09

I have used both but found that my two DC didn't like the calma but did like the TT. Does the TT kit have other things in it apart from the bottles?

maskedsongbird Sun 23-Feb-14 23:40:21

Hi everyone,

Thanks for your feedback it is greatly appreciated. I think I was leaning towards Calma anyway so I will talk to my husband about selling on the TT CTN as it is a really good set which has never been opened and the box contains:-
1 x Electric Steam Steriliser
1 x Travel Steriliser
1 x Electric Bottle and Food Warmer
2 x 150 ml Easivent bottles with slow flow teats
4 x 260 ml Easivent bottles with slow flow teats
2 x Medium flow teats (3–6 months)
2 x Fast flow teats (6 months+)
4 x Milk storage lids
6 x Milk powder dispensers
2 x Insulated bottle bags
1 x Bottle teat and brush

It's such a shame Medela do n 't do a similar kit!

jennyapples Tue 25-Feb-14 10:49:29

My LO had a tongue tie and in order to keep him from fading away we had to give him bottles. We had the medela ones but he was just not interested, probably because his tongue meant that he was unable to actually forcefully suck the milk out of them. We used the Tommee Tippee ones as had to literally pour the formula/milk down his throat!

I could see how for a baby with no oral issues the free flow could be problematic, that's for sure.

ananikifo Tue 25-Feb-14 10:59:35

The valid low tears are meant to make TT bottles more like breast but I've never tried them.

I've heard good things about Dr Brown bottles for bottle refusers, and haberman suckle feeder.

ananikifo Tue 25-Feb-14 11:00:20

That should have said vari flow teats.

perfectstorm Tue 25-Feb-14 11:07:11

I found the Calma leaked like hell. Not ideal, when it's expressed breastmilk. I'd hang on to the TT set until you know if that's true for you.

Babies don't actually get nipple confused, according to what I was told by the Oxford breastfeeding clinic. They're smart little cookies who work out letting the milk flow in with minimum effort, only having to block flow with their tongues when they want a break, is more fun than the harder work of bf, in some cases (others, and they hate the plastic and won't contemplate a bottle). So some will happily adopt one exclusively, others will swap between two without problems, and you just don't know which you have in advance.

But the TT teat is nothing, NOTHING like bf nipples. The nipple in the baby's mouth is pulled so far back it takes on a completely different shape - has to, to reach the soft palate, when the roof of the mouth is so hard and rigid. They call it closer to nature because the teat looks like a boob as adults see one, but when inside the baby's mouth the nipple looks very different. TT are good bottles - they work well for tongue-tied babies especially, which my eldest was - but they are nothing whatsoever like breastfeeding and the nipple looks and presumably feels nothing whatsoever like one in the process of breastfeeding. NUK are supposed to be closer, but they lack the Calma's requirement that the baby "works" for the milk - and it's that that is supposed to make them compatible with bf. Definitely worth a shot on that basis, I'd have thought? Maybe the leaks were down to my son's feeding issues rather than bottle design.

perfectstorm Tue 25-Feb-14 11:10:20

Jennyapples Mervyn Griffiths told us that most of the really severely tt babies he sees are given TT bottles. The kind with the vented teats combined (against instructions) with the ones with the thing down the middle, to slow the flow - we were shock because that was precisely what we'd ended up using, too.

I don't think they can be "closer to nature" if babies who can't latch on a breast at all and struggle with most bottles can manage them, and them alone. But given how common tt is, I think maybe TT should be making more of a song and dance about how successful their system is with such babies!

ExBrightonBell Tue 25-Feb-14 17:48:40

I didn't get leaks with the Medela bottles. They are a bit fiddly to put together but once we worked out how to do it they were fine.

Assuming your baby doesn't have any tongue/lip ties then the Medela should work fine.

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