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Formula milk

(37 Posts)
star15 Mon 15-Jul-13 13:44:57

I am currently 32 weeks with my first child and planning on breastfeeding, however after watching a few friends really struggle with it I was going to buy some formula milk to have in the house should the same thing happen to me. Can anyone recommend what formula to use?

Featherbag Mon 15-Jul-13 13:48:32

They're all pretty much the same (unless you need a specific type, soya, etc.) so I based my choice on what was readily available everywhere in case I was caught short and needed to buy some while out and about. I used SMA because in the very worst case scenario of having forgotten both milk and bottles you can buy the ready made filled bottles with teats!

knittingirl Mon 15-Jul-13 14:08:16

Hi, sorry no advice on your question, but just something to think about - I am in a similar position, 34 weeks and really want to breastfeed. I know that if there is formula in the house then if/when breastfeeding gets difficult I will be far more likely to give up and use formula than if I have to send dh out to tescos to buy some (and with 24hr supermarkets I'm not particularly worried about ability to buy formula/bottles at any time). You know yourself best, and how determined you are that breastfeeding is what you want to do, but just a thought!

DorasMummy Mon 15-Jul-13 15:10:48

I could not have been more determined to breast feed and it didn't work out for me, so I think it's great that you are being open minded and realistic.

You may have absolutely no problems at all, but as you say, you never know. I thought formula was the devil's work before I had DD (was influenced very heavily by the NCT...) and really resisted it when DD wasn't feeding effectively. I felt horribly guilty when I 'gave in' to supplementing her on advice, but in the end it was the right thing (and only thing I could have done, tbh, in my own case as DD was failing to gain weight).

My advice to you if you are concerned about struggling with BF would be to get some proper breastfeeding guidance before you give birth. What a lot of BF counsellors tell you - that it's all instinctive, that the baby will guide you etc., is IME, total bollocks! It is a skill like any other, which can take time and patience to acquire. Several people have recommended the Ina May Gaskin book on breast feeding to me, which I intend to read now I'm having DC2. I'm also going to have some one-to-one BF 'lessons' with a local independent midwife before I give birth.

I wouldn't worry about having formula in the house as it's so easy to get some if you need it any time, and as another poster said you might be tempted to resort to it sooner if it's to hand. From my own experience my supply reduced even further as soon as the supplementation started, so (purely in my experience, I'm not an expert) I understand that it's best not to do it before six weeks when the supply is more stable. If you struggle in the first days, go to a BF counsellor straight away, and if she doesn't suit you try another one as they are not all trained the same way. In my area there were about six different BF clinics and some definitely better than others.

But, if things aren't working for you, there is really nothing wrong with formula. I slightly prefer Hipp Organic as the milk they use is (as it sounds) organic so the cows won't have had the same exposure to antibiotics and hormones as other intensively reared dairy cows. That is purely personal preference and it's slightly more expensive I think. Most of my friends used Aptimil.

star15 Mon 15-Jul-13 18:04:59

Thanks very much for the info, I am due to see my midwife this week so will ask about breastfeeding support groups in my area. The only reason I thought about getting some in the house was we live in a rural area nearest 24hr shop a 45min drive.

I am hoping I am a natural at breastfeeding and don't ever have to use formal grin

MOTU Mon 15-Jul-13 20:14:22

Can't reccomend a brand but can I suggest getting the ready to go cartons cos they're only about 50p each so you don't need to shell out £10 on a whole box of powder in case you don't use it. I bought a couple of cartons of aptimil but as it never got used I couldn't tell you if that's good or not. Good luck and don't listen to the people who say your preparing to fail (as I did) your just being pragmatic!

LoganMummy Mon 15-Jul-13 20:18:34

We got the aptamil starter pack from Asda with ready made bottles for the exact same reason you say.
Six weeks in and we haven't used it although on day 3 I very nearly did so prepare yourself for the exhaustion and cluster feeding.
I hope it all goes well for you.

mrscog Mon 15-Jul-13 20:21:59

Definitely find out about support groups in your area, any peer support schemes etc. now rather than when you have a problem. I really struggled to BF (but happy ending - got there and I'm still feeding DS 16 months on!) but because I was so confident after reading MN I didn't know where to get help once I hit trouble!

Hawkmoth Mon 15-Jul-13 20:22:53

You may well be a natural at breast feeding, but days three and four were pure hell for me and if I'd had some in, I would have FF. I was begging DH to go and get some.

As it worked out, I have had to top up because I was really ill and my milk took ages to come in, resulting in a big weight loss for DD, but I would have given up completely if there had been artificial milk in the kitchen. I was crying my eyes out before every feed, every two hours. I'm glad there was no easy option for me, because I was so low I wasn't logical.

Hawkmoth Mon 15-Jul-13 20:25:24

Sorry... And logically now, I know that the four lots of two ounces of FF baby has at the moment doesn't take away from all the BFing I do, and the fun I have sat Feeding and MNing for hours :D

Tinyflutterby Mon 15-Jul-13 20:31:02

Hi, I too was so desperate to bf with DS1 that I didn't even consider buying bottles, formula or anything of the sort. Didn't even research it. However, due to a lack of support in hospital, I was unable to breastfeed and in addition to the guilt and disappointment I felt over this, I was also totally overwhelmed and unprepared for what to do instead and had to rely on DH running to the supermarket at all hours of the day and night and panic buying bottles, formula, steriliser etc. We wasted a lot of money as most of the stuff was unsuitable and we had to buy more.

I am now 21 weeks pregnant with DS2 and although I am equally, if not more, determined to breastfeed this time, I am preparing for all eventualities so that I don't end up in this out-of -control panic situation again. I will be looking out all the bottles and steriliser, buying a few ready-prepared cartons of Aptamil, but have also bought an electric breast pump, so that if baby is having trouble latching on as before I hope to express and feed that before I have to resort to formula. If I'd been more prepared and done more research first time round I would have tried to do this. I wrongly assumed that bf was 'natural' and would happen automatically and how wrong I was. I am also hoping to see an independent midwife before and after the birth so that I am not left relying on already over-worked and understaffed midwives in hospital. Good luck!

Callmedreckly Mon 15-Jul-13 20:32:08

I got some before LO was born, Its still in the cupboard after 12 weeks, I persevered through 2 weeks of Mastitis, very nearly gave up.

It was just peace of mind for me, I got the organic one but Im not sure which is best.

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Mon 15-Jul-13 20:36:51

I got a couple of cartons in with each. Aptimil is my preferred brand but they're all basically the same. Fwiw I mixed fed ds from 6 wks and ebf dd to 8 mo but the cartons of formula in the cupboard didn't deter me from bf. if anything it took the pressure off.

lurcherlover Mon 15-Jul-13 20:37:26

I'd really recommend reading The Food of Love by Kat Evans. Despite the cheesy name, it's actually a really practical, humorous guide to bf and has lots of really good info.

AlisonL1981 Mon 15-Jul-13 20:40:48

I got some aptimil cartons just in case. Ready made and easy to use!

I breast feed at home but take the cartons if I go out. They also came in useful a couple of times when dp fed ds when I wasn't feeling well and didn't have the energy to express.

RobotBananas Mon 15-Jul-13 20:42:37

Whichever one they sell in your local shop, or the nearest 24 hour garage - because that's where you'll need to go if you need emergency supplies smile

(they're all basically the same)

RobotBananas Mon 15-Jul-13 20:48:59

Oh - cow & gate is made in the same factory as aptamil, and £2-3 a carton cheaper. Don't buy into the advertising bullshit. It is not 'closer to breastmilk' than any of the others.

jammiedonut Mon 15-Jul-13 20:50:53

Aptamil is closest to breast milk, so that's what I would go for. The ready made cartons are fab on the go. I was absolutely determined to breastfeed but lo tongue tie was undiagnosed for 4 weeks, so had to combine formula and expressed breast milk. I was extremely reluctant to introduce formula (wanted to avoid nipple confusion), but was absolutely heartbroken to see ds lose weight so rapidly when he couldn't latch and my supply was dwindling despite pumping 8 times a day. I'm very glad I was prepared with formula- ds guzzled 12oz in one sitting and I was able to relax knowing he wasn't starving!

jammiedonut Mon 15-Jul-13 20:52:16

Btw I've had no issues re nipple confusion and was able to switch to ebf in a matter of weeks by slowly replacing formula feeds with bf, so there's always hope!

patchesmcp Mon 15-Jul-13 21:01:23

Can't help with which formula to use but if you are keen to bf it may be worth while buying some nipple shields before the baby arrives. They have been a life saver for me with both my DC.

Apparently, they are a little frowned on but I don't know if I'd have continued through the initial painful period without them. Also make sure you have a tube of lansinoh and apply it before and after feeding.

Good luck and enjoy your baby when it arrives

Bert2e Mon 15-Jul-13 21:05:07
lurcherlover Mon 15-Jul-13 21:46:37

Jammiedonut aptamil want you to think that, but it's a myth. Formulas are all the same and everything else is marketing.

RobotBananas Mon 15-Jul-13 22:19:04

Like I said,don't buy in to the advertising BS

jammiedonut Tue 16-Jul-13 02:58:44

Fair enough, only plumped for aptamil as was recommended by sis who used it....may give cow and gate a go next time and save myself a few bob!

RobotBananas Tue 16-Jul-13 07:32:30


Cow and gate and Aptimil have exactly the same ingredient list. I had formula cartons in the cupboard but didn't use them, I think it was just nice to know they were there at 3am (no 24 hour shops here).

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 16-Jul-13 07:42:45

Research shows that if you have formula in the house you are more likely to give up on bfing. Having said that, if you do want to get some in I'd suggest getting in the one that is stocked in your local shop. You really don't want to be stuck in 3ft of snow this winter and pfb's formula is only sold in a shop 45 minutes away.

If you do want to prepare for difficulties, I second the suggestion of finding out where your local Bfing support groups are and go to them before Lo arrives, you don't have to wait until after the birth smile

Stick the numbers for the Bfing Helplines in your phone, have you got the numbers?

Have a read of preparing to Bf and if you want to read any books avoid are here. Instead I recommend the Womanly Art of Bfing and Babycalming by Caroline Deacon, your library will probably have both smile

Franykins Fri 19-Jul-13 12:51:00

This is my first pregnancy and we are expecting twins. I am desperate to breastfeed but understand it might not happen. I have informed DP though that under no circumstance's are we having formula in the house as at the first sign of difficulty I am worried I will cave in. I will see what the midwife says at home visits re weight and any problems I may be having. They were very good with my sister who was having problems and soon told her when she had tried her best. She went onto formula milk after 3 weeks. She used Aptimal as she had been told this is what a lot of hospitals use (how true this is I don't know, maybe its just the hospitals local to us or maybe its b********)

With all the 24 hour shops around I am not worried about not being able to get some formula, and if its a Sunday and we've missed the shops, well its only one night to get through and they will be open again on Monday.

Having said this do what is best for you.

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 19-Jul-13 14:58:15

Congratulations frany thanks

Lots of hospitals do use aptimil but this has more to do with its aggressive marketing at HCPs than it does the quality of the milk.

If you are having problems with bfing, seeing your mw is good but you may need additional support. Are there any Bfing Support groups you can go to? You don't have to wait until the DT arrive or when you have a problem, you will be welcome now smile

Did you read my links up thread? You might like these articles on bfing multiples too smile

Mamabear12 Fri 19-Jul-13 16:12:21

I prepared ahead of time with medela breast pump, bottles, advent bottles, organic hipp formula, Sam formula (both cartons). I wanted variety (just in case!). Breastfeeding was fine for me, but after 2 weeks I need to go to gp for last minute appointment and didn't have time to feed my daughter who was hungry, so had my mom bottle feed her formula and it was just fine! She preferred organic hip formula and liked advent bottles. I only formula fed when absolutely needed. I breastfeed/pumped 90 percent of time. Milk flow was fine, I always had a lot. I breastfeed over a year and stopped only after I returned to work, was two months pregnant with second one bc I was getting tired and my daughter didn't REALLY need it anymore as she was well established on solids.

I always like to be prepared and think its fine, just bc u bottle formula feed doesn't mean u will give up breasfeeding! Do what works for you. But one thing, if u bottle feed, good to pump as well to keep ur breast milk supply up smile

TarkaTheOtter Fri 19-Jul-13 18:43:48

My dd had tongue tie and bfing was very painful at first. It got to the point where I asked dh to buy me some formula. He suggested I give it 24hrs and I went on to bf for 13 months.
I would have given up permenantly if I had formula in the house even though what I really wanted was to breastfeed.

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 19-Jul-13 23:56:01

Well done Tarka for getting through what must have been an extremely difficult start smile

lozster Sat 20-Jul-13 05:23:57

I am facing the same conundrum. I've been to a couples breast feeding workshop and to a support group in advance of the birth this coming week. My midwife has persuaded me not to buy anything in advance for the reasons already given. I hope she is right!!

JiltedJohnsJulie Sat 20-Jul-13 08:14:16

lozsrer so you're having your first baby this week? How exciting! I'm sure everything will be fine and if not you'll have the support of your mw, just put the numbers of the bfing helplines in your phone too, just in case smile

While you're waiting have a read of Preparing to bf, Bfing your newborn: what to expect in the early weeks and we don't Demand feed, we CUE feed! smile

lozster Sat 20-Jul-13 09:15:18

Yes, first (super lucky last chance after 13 rounds of assorted fertility treatment and 7 years) baby being induced on Wednesday. Good tip on putting the numbers in my phone. My brain has melted to mush so I need the guidance!

Canalside Sat 20-Jul-13 09:27:56

I'd get an aptamil starter pack with 6 little bottles and teats in. Saved my sanity on more than one occasion. Doesn't mean breastfeeding won't continue, in my experience made it more likely to as I relaxed a bit more! Good luck!

JiltedJohnsJulie Sat 20-Jul-13 09:54:10

lozster am so, so pleased for you. Think that makes your Lo a very special baby. I had difficulty in getting my DC, think it makes them extra special. Didnt stop that newborn phase coming as a huge shock to me and I'm from a big family so I though I knew what I was letting myself in for smile

One thing that really helped me with dc2 was to have a baby welcome party. My mw suggested it when I'd had dc1 and was absolutely inundated with guests. I'm talking disconnecting the phone and drawing the curtains and people still banging on the door, guests popping around and still being there 3 hours later. Was completely exhausted. So when DC 2 was born we let people know and invited them around to our for drinks and nibbles on the Sunday afternoon. Id got all thecstuff in while i was pg. My bf and dM helped with serving drinks, answering the door etc and it was lovely to see everyone. We did of course let close family see her straightaway. Just something to consider smile

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