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thinking of giving a formula top up at 10pm feed tonight

(57 Posts)
pipoca Mon 18-Jul-11 14:27:10

DD is 9 weeks old and ebf. She sleeps 10pm ish til 3am ish and then feeds again at 6am ish but doesn't settle again for hours and I'm so tired and have a 3 yr old to look after and no childcare from next month in 40 degree heat (we live abroad). Getting a bit desperate for DD to drop a feed so thinking of trying to fill her up with formula tonight and see if she'll sleep longer.
Don't know why I'm posting really...just needed to vent. I know you'll all tell me it's pointless and she'll wake anyway and I'll have boobs like over ripre melons.

Jojay Mon 18-Jul-11 14:31:53

It might work, it might not. You won't know if you don't try.

You really really don't need anyone's permission you know wink

marzipananimal Mon 18-Jul-11 16:16:42

Sounds very tiring - especially in that heat!
It might help but don't forget to factor in the benefits of exclusive bf that you would lose. I'm not saying you shouldn't do it - if it made her sleep through it could be worth it - just think about it if you haven't already. Maybe you could try a bottle of expressed milk? Tbh, 10-3 sounds pretty good for a 9 week old (but still knackering!)
Hope she gives you a good night tonight smile

pipoca Mon 18-Jul-11 16:18:11

I can't express more than a tiny amount, never could with DS either. I know 10 til 3 isn't that bad, I know people have worse but it's still killing me.

marzipananimal Mon 18-Jul-11 20:00:31

no I can't express more than a few mls either annoyingly

I hope you find something that works for you. Sleep deprivation is so horrendous, it really puts me off having another baby

organiccarrotcake Mon 18-Jul-11 22:18:22

Given that formula isn't really a guaranteed way of getting a baby to sleep longer, and there are clear health implications to doing it, are there are ways you could look at to get more sleep? Do you co-sleep for instance? Can you possibly, in any way, get a nap during the day or get an earlier night?

In the end your sleep is essential and when you're really suffering from sleep deprivation it's just horrendous, but I'm just suggesting thinking around the problem and seeing if there is a better solution. smile

pipoca Tue 19-Jul-11 09:02:11

I don't co sleep as she is so noisy in her sleep that I can't sleep at all. I've tried it and it's worse than getting up, so I sleep in the next room and go in to her to feed her. I know they should be in the same room as far as SIDS goes but it means NO SLEEP for me whatsoever. I do try and nap during the day but it's not always possible as I have a 3 yr old DS too. I can't get an earlier night as I can't express enough for someone else to feed her.
Again, I know it's not that bad but it's been killing me. I had a very bad pregnancy with HG so was starting from a low point anyway. cut a long story short. Last night I gave her a bf (offered both sides) at 10pm and she was still awake once she'd finished (by that I mean, wouldn't go back on the breast) so I made up 120ml of formula and she took most of it. Took a while to get her to sleep as she was windy (usually is, even with bf) but then she slept from 1130pm til 5.20am. So, as far as I'm concerned it worked and I'll be doing it again tonight.
I hope I can maintain a supply of bf but as it's a top up not a replacement, I don't see why it's not like she's just dropped that feed and to be honest if it means I get some sleep, I don't care as I have to go back to work when she's 4 months and I can be up all night.

pipoca Tue 19-Jul-11 09:02:44

I can't be up all night

pyjamalover Tue 19-Jul-11 13:42:11

lots of mums give a bottle once a day, if it works for you great, and at 9 weeks your supply should be fine.

organiccarrotcake Tue 19-Jul-11 13:47:17

pipoca certainly the evidence shows that SIDS is reduced when babe is in your room - but you know, the risk of SIDS is ever so tiny anyway so if you need her to be in a different room for you to sleep then that's what works for you. Sleep deprivation IS that bad. And if you just can't nap to get around it, it's horrible horrible horrible.

Just another thought - to minimise the risk of introducing the formula, maybe you might look at doing it every other night or something like that instead of every night? Just a thought really smile A bit of trial and error may be beneficial.

pipoca Tue 19-Jul-11 13:53:10

I'm going to try again with bf followed by formula on top tonight as that way it's as if she's just dropped a feed naturally. She's a great feeder and sleeper and I know 10pm 3am and 6am is a dream for some people but I've found it too much to cope with personally 9 weeks in with no sign of a let up.
Thanks for not shouting at me or sucking thru your teeth in a disapproving way or anything and thanks for the reassurance about SIDS. She honestly is like a baby elephant with all the grunting and snorting she does in her sleep!

organiccarrotcake Tue 19-Jul-11 14:20:31


Cheria Tue 19-Jul-11 14:27:37

No reason you shouldn't top up with formula. It won't harm her in the slightest.

organiccarrotcake Tue 19-Jul-11 14:37:43

cheria sorry, but while I don't want to get into a debate about this, the scientific fact is that introducing formula IS introducing a risk.

In this case the OP feels that the risk is worth the sleep she gets, and that's what informed choices are all about. I support her all the way. No matter what you do, you take risks with your children and their health, and you balance your needs with theirs (quite rightly).

But, let's stick to facts. Without it people are unable to make informed decisions.

Marwoir Tue 19-Jul-11 19:30:08

organiccarrotcake what risks are you talking about? Any links? (Not wishing to get into a debate either but any links to scientific facts would be appreciated - I'm considering one ff a day and have mentioned this to my doctor, HV etc and no one has discussed 'risks' with me). Ta!

twinklegreen Tue 19-Jul-11 19:35:05

marwoir have a look here, there are some good link re. risks of formula

pipoca Wed 20-Jul-11 07:01:17

Well last night she had a really good bf and then wouldn't take more than about 50ml of formula so she woke at 3.30 and 6.30 again. I'm going to try just giving her formula tonight (no bf) and seeing what happens. If she wakes I'll bf her and if she wakes the same on the formula (like at 3 and 6) then I'll just go back to ebf, but I need to try something.
Anyone happen to know whn bf babies tend to drop a feed on average?

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Wed 20-Jul-11 07:07:48

I don't think there really is an average. Mine didn't sleep for more than a three hour stretch at a time until, hmm, 4 or 5 months? And I fed her at every wakeup.


Cheria Wed 20-Jul-11 10:49:39

organiccarrotcake I don't want to get into a debate about this either, but your link is flawed - it is hardly a neutral site, and hardly gives links to neutral sites.

I have spoken to many many doctors and midwives on this subject, and other than the good hygiene needed with the bottles and the formula powder (ie heating up sufficiently to kill any bacteria) , they have never mentioned any risk, and were nothing but reassuring on the whole ff issue.

I am not denying breastmilk is best, but panicking people over so called risks of ff is not helpful.

Clueless79 Wed 20-Jul-11 11:26:47

In response to your question about when ebf babies may drop a feed - my ds started sleeping through from 8.30/9 till 4 at about 10 weeks and has even done a couple of nights when he's slept till 6 so that would be dropping 2 feeds. Prior to this he woke every 2/3 hours. I guess they really are just all different. Good luck!

tiktok Wed 20-Jul-11 11:43:51

cheria the best health outcomes are seen with exclusive breastfeeding. If breastfeeding is not exclusive (and it isn't, when formula is introduced alongside) there are risks.

It's going too far to say, as you did, that formula will not 'harm your baby in the slightest' - you have no way of knowing this. And that there is ' no reason' why she should not top up? Again, hugely overstating the case.

I don't know what you mean by a 'neutral' site - but perhaps the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health is 'neutral' enough for you, though maybe you think they are 'biased' because they are in favour of protecting infant health and so can't be trusted? Maybe you would prefer a site or an organisation that didn't care much one way or the other? You know, so you were sure they were neutral smile is a link to the RCPCH recent statement which endorses exclusive breastfeeding and cites research to show the health effects of not exclusive breastfeeding (otherwise known as risks of formula!).

EvelynBakerLang Wed 20-Jul-11 12:02:33

tiktok, I have no problem with the RCPCH position statement on breastfeeding. Makes perfect sense. It's the 'virgin gut' malarkey which is still up for debate scientifically speaking - I guess that's what cheria was refering to. Nothing is without risk (even exclusive breastfeeding to six months).

tiktok Wed 20-Jul-11 12:15:57

No, cheria was cavalling at the citation of the kellymom page on formula which has a number of references (not just the 'virgin gut' one).

Cheria Wed 20-Jul-11 12:30:06

As I said, I agree breastfeeding is best (and thanks for the link to that statement - it's interesting). BUT introducing one bottle of formula a day (as per OP) is extremely unlikely to harm the baby in any way.

Thre is a big difference between using one FF a day to top up and exclusively not breastfeeding.

However, I will caveat my first comment:

It is most unlikely that topping up with a FF will harm your baby in the slightest.

Agh this is the one topic I try and stay away from on this site. Now I remember why wink Just don't get me started on the virgin gut concept.

EvelynBakerLang Wed 20-Jul-11 12:33:57

The Just One Bottle (i.e. supplementation, which is what we're talking about) links from kellymom are 'virgin gut' related, is what I was getting at...

I don't know why this exercises me so much... I blame Bad Science, I think! It just makes me crazy that most of the data are so bad and most of the claims are so definite. Looking on the bright side, I have just read a really good and balanced NHS leaflet about VBAC vs c-section, so maybe there is hope for decent health advice!

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