how realistic is it to BF then switch to extended espress bottle feed(6 Posts)
So I am BF researching my tail off, count down is 2 months til my first LO arrives. Realistically after 8 months I plan to return to work but still not finding much luck about expressing breast milk and how long I could bottle feed the little one. I like to think I could express for a year (maybe 2), how realistic are my hopes?
Is there a reason you will need to fully express once you are back at work?
By 12 months, many babies can be encouraged down to maybe three feeds a day (morning, evening and when you get in from work) for example. So you can do these in person and just express for any extras.
I went back to work at 11 months and DD1 dropped her two day feeds - she wasn't interested in a bottle and just had cow's milk, water, other snacks, etc. We fed to nearly 2 without me expressing more than a handful of times.
At 8 months you'd probably need to do some expressing, but not necessarily that much. It could only be one or two feeds a day for the days you work.
Now of course, it gets a lot more complicated if you do long shifts, foreign travel, etc.
A lot of women now continue to breastfeed after they return to work. You can either express or just give formula for when you are not there and breastfeed before and after work and at night. Whichever works best for you By 8 months your supply will be well established and able to adjust quite quickly.
Some mothers find it easier to express than others. There are different options like hand expression (with no pump), a hand pump or an electric pump. You might want to try a few different things to find out which works best for you.
There's no need to start pumping or introduce a bottle really early. There are also other feeding options- an 8 month old will be able to use a sippy cup so you could skip bottles altogether.
This is a really good book with loads of stories in it from mothers who work and breastfeed. If there's an LLL group near you then they should have a copy you can borrow.
Thanks! The idea would be to move on to a sippy cup of expressed milk but its all early days so I am sure once the hurdle of early bf, months of bf and then go from there
I went back to work when DD was 8mo, expressed once a day at lunchtime and got 2 small bottles per session, which DD would have the following work day. She was bf in the morning, then at hometime and then one more time at bedtime (she slept through by then though there was the occasional night feed).
I really liked that I could keep feeding her without actually being there, it really made everything more positive for us both. Also she was starting to eat normal food by then (we did blw from 6mo), by the time she was 1 she didn't need expressed milk at all so the whole arrangement was relatively short-lived.
By the way it's great that you're researching all this, I went in blind and got lucky I think.
I went back ft when ds was 7m and expressed twice a day with a double pump. I was getting more than he was taking each day so froze some and sent some to the cms with him the next day. I carried on till 11m and then stopped expressing, used up the frozen during the day and just fed when I was with him. After 12m he had cows milk at the cm and bf at home and carried on like that till I weaned at 18m. It worked really well for us, is totally doable. I would say invest in a good pump, it makes a big difference. It's great you're thinking about this so early, good luck
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