Breast-feeders: did you / do you give a bottle of formula at bedtime?

(65 Posts)
Angelico Thu 22-Nov-12 20:25:36

Just curious about this. Have a few friends who found it helpful for getting babies to sleep through the night a bit sooner. Our daughter is 8 weeks old and usually does one longish 5-5.5 hour stretch (had one blissful 7 hr night but has a cold this week and not doing so well.) Did you find a bottle of formula useful for filling tummy more?

Welovecouscous Sat 24-Nov-12 15:05:25

Diet maybe it was less stressful for me because I gave into lying there in the bed and forced DH to come and spend his eve with me there - cruel wife grin when I finally realised co sleeping made life easier for me it was even better as I could just drift off while feeding if I was short on sleep.

Angelico Sat 24-Nov-12 17:20:30

I don't mind the evening feeds as I just sit and watch a bit of telly but then she's maybe only feeding every 1.5 hours in the evening rather than 2.5-4 hrly so not constant. Constant would be draining in every sense! grin

If she gets to the 'consistent 9 unbroken hours stage' I'll be happy forever smile She only did 5 last night but she slept loads yesterday and for most of evening - probably getting rid of the last of her cold. Hoping to get a little bit longer tonight...

Angelico Sat 24-Nov-12 17:21:08

And thanks for the encouragement btw smile thanks

Nancy54 Sun 25-Nov-12 16:35:56

i have 8 week old twins and i give them a bottle of formula or ebm (depending on if ive expressed or not) just before bed and it does seem to be helping them sleep. also means dp can give to one of them so i get a bit of a break from the constant feeding!

i say do whatever works for you and makes life more managable! i know it helps me a lot.

Angelico Sun 25-Nov-12 22:21:04

Nancy I reckon with twins you do whatever you have to do to survive...! thanks

Feeding and looking after one is definitely much easier. I can't even imagine cluster feeding two! I do cradle hold and I imagine with twins I'd need a different hold to feed two at the same time? Or is it one after te other? I can't imagine the hard work with two crying either!

Skiffen Mon 26-Nov-12 08:03:22

No, neither dd has ever had a bottle or any artificial milk - they're both rubbish sleepers though! I consider 5 hours good now and dd2 is 17 months!!

We have a big family history of allergies, so I subscribed to the virgin gut theory, and didn't wean until after 25 weeks either. I personally think that you're obviously doing amazingly with ebf, so why change anything? The health benefits of bf are maximised by ebf, so if you can do it without going mad, do.

Everyone has to do what's right for them, their dc and their family.

Nancy54 Mon 26-Nov-12 09:22:51

Yeah I think two is prob a lot more difficult! Having read this thread though I am now feeling guilty about the formula. Was not aware of the "virgin gut" tithing and though that. The fact I was beast feeding them all the time apart from evening bottle was just as good!

Sioda Mon 26-Nov-12 09:34:39

DD was mixed fed from birth. Sometimes had a bottle before bed and sometimes not. It definitely made no difference with her!

Nancy please don't feel guilty about the formula. The 'virgin gut theory' is a pile of that only gets respect in the weird world of the internet. The evidence for bfing being protective against allergies etc. beyond the bfing period is weak and conflicting. Your babies having a calm, well rested mum is far more important to them and to you.

Sioda Mon 26-Nov-12 09:38:20

Sorry "pile of c**p"

Nancy54 Mon 26-Nov-12 09:47:27

well thanks for reassurance sioda. still feeling biy guilty though.....must keep away from google i think....

Skiffen Mon 26-Nov-12 10:21:12

Nancy, I'm slowly coming to terms with the fact that parenthood involves always feeling guilty about something! Every single time you breastfeed your babies benefit, and you've taken practical steps to help you cope with twins, be proud!

Sioda Mon 26-Nov-12 10:22:14

Nah Dr. Google is great!! Try Pubmed instead though. If you read the actual research papers you can make decisions for yourself. Relying on blogs, forums and journalists is not wise. Most either have an agenda when it comes to this issue and/or don't understand or have never read the actual research. You could get tied in knots reading analysis of the contents of breastmilk and theories about what it might or might not do. The research about its benefits (or as the current framing goes - the risks of formula...) is the bottom line really so I'd start there. Try the Kramer study and the follow ups to it about the IQ issue. Not easy to start looking into this with 8 weeks old twins though!!

Bfing is protective against gastro infections and the causative mechanism may include differences in bowel flora among other things. No one is quite sure yet. What people rarely bother to mention is the magnitude of the protective effect. Something like 1 in 1000 fewer babies would contract a stomach bug per year if bfed rather than ffed. Protection only lasts for the duration of bfing. Plus the overwhelming majority of gastrointestinal infections in babies are mild and self-limiting. The protective effect of keeping your kitchen clean is astronomically greater. The risk to their health of driving them in a car as opposed to walking is also an order of magnitude greater. People lose perspective about this. If you don't have time to look into it for yourself just try to keep a skeptical mind about what you read. Be warned the whole area is a quagmire of ethics, politics, vested interests on all sides and bad research.

Iggly Mon 26-Nov-12 10:30:46

No formula for either of mine. I actually found the long feeding thing was usually because they were overtired and actually wanted to be asleep by 6pm. So if I worked towards that, they settled much quicker. Otherwise it would be tricky!

I found that they got overtired very easily - think being awake more than 45 minutes once a day would result in them being unsettled - it would be worse the longer they were awake, despite having naps. Got better quite quickly after 3 months though.

Angelico Mon 26-Nov-12 19:39:51

I had honestly never even heard of the whole 'virgin gut' thing pre-mumsnet and as our DD is already putting her hands in her mouth at every opportunity God knows what's going into her confused I'm also a bit concerned that because I'm on ABs my breastmilk is probably doing more harm than good for these few days.

Basically I am coming to the conclusion that motherhood = guilt about pretty much everything so I have decided to concentrate on keeping us all alive and reasonably content and then paying the kid's therapy bill when the time comes... wink

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