Help please!(6 Posts)
This is a very open and stupid question but; can someone explain feeding a newborn to me!
I want everything in place to bottle feed incase I can't breast feed.
I'm assuming for both I'd need steriliser, bottles and if I can breast feed then it would be the case of expressing and using to the bottle to feed (or at least so my partner can help with feeds?)
Also how do I reheat bottles, I've heard mixed reviews on bottle warmers or using the microwave.
I'm only 22w5d, but I have nobody I know to help or advise me! Any advice would be really appreciated.
Definitely not a stupid question. I find that no one really tells you much about what happens after the birth, I remember looking at DS1 and thinking what do I do with you?
I haven't got any experience of bottle feeding but I can share what I know about breast feeding. Fed DS1 till 18 months and currently feeding DS2 14 months.
I was very lucky, both latched on quickly and took to feeding really well, I didn't have any pain/soreness with either. What I wasn't prepared for with DS1 was how non stop the early days can be, I did all the usual worrying about him not getting enough or my milk not being good enough when I know now that if they are having plenty of wet/dirty nappies and gaining weight they are fine. I did get upset as I felt a bit tied to the sofa so DS1 used to have 1 bottle of ready mixed formula a day to give me a break. He had this from about 2 weeks old and switched between breast/bottle easily. I had a microwave steriliser and a few bottles for this. I never found a way to express with DS1.
With DS2 (12 years later!) I was much more relaxed, I knew what to expect with the amount of feeding and I just went with it. I cuddled him and fed him and didn't worry about anything else. I got an electric pump this time but didn't try a bottle till about 4 months and he just refused it. Didn't really cause a problem as I just fed him before I went any where and as soon as I came back.
If you do breast feed the early days are the hardest, you can feel like baby is pemanently attached and if you are doing the night feeds you feel so tired too. But in my experience it's definitely worth sticking with it. My DP is really good, he always brought me drinks and snacks and he kept on top of the housework so I could just relax and feed. He used to bring my meals cut up into pieces I could eat with one hand. He would get up with DS2 at 5 so I could have a few hours uninterrupted after I'd done the night feeds. Find what works for you. Good luck
So, this time round with DS2, we got a cold water steriliser - a big tub basically which you put Milton liquid in. Things are sterile after 20 minutes, if I remember correctly. We also used microwave steriliser bags, which sterilise in a couple of minutes. Useful if you need things quickly.
To warm up expressed milk you can stand the bottle in fairly warm water (not too hot as you don't want to over heat it and destroy nutrients). We just used a jug, it doesn't take long. You should always swirl breastmilk rather than shake it. I don't think you should microwave breast milk as it get hotspots and destroy nutrients. Certainly I've never seen it suggested anywhere.
For formula, the advice is to make it up as you need it, so you won't be reheating it you'll be cooling it down with cold water/ice water. You can also buy ready made cartons or bottles of formula which are stored at room temp until they're open. Many babies would take formula at room temperature meaning you don't need to heat it up.
Many people make bottles up in advance, cool quickly and store in the back of the fridge. That's the suggested advice if you can't make them up as you need them. 24hrs is the limit on storing them. Reheating you could do with a jug of hot water, a bottle warmer or some people do microwave but you'd have to shake it well to guarantee no hotspots.
Have you got your breastfeeding stuff in place too?
My top things for breastfeeding
a couple of the helpline numbers stuck on the fridge
details of your local babycafe/dropin clinic
a friend or relative who has breastfeed that you know will support you during feeding if it's tough
a boxset or netflix subscription
For formula feeding you could just get a couple of ready to feed bottles in. That way you won't have made a big outlay if you do enjoy breastfeeding and want to keep at it.
Thank you for all your help!
I don't know anyone who's had a baby in the last 10 years so don't really have anyone to advise me! ICJump I don't know anyone who's managed to successfully breastfeed which is why I'm preparing for the worst case scenario!
I would express and feed as my partner wants to be part of the feeds, so I'd still need the same bottles and sterilisers as you would for bottle feeding? I keep coming across this set http://www.kiddicare.com/p/TommeeTippeee_Closertoo_NatureEssentialss_StarterKitt_in_Black.htm in various websites am I right in thinking something like this would be sufficient for bottle feeding and with the addition of a breast pump would enable me to express feed from the bottle.
It might be worth joining nct or lll now to hang around some breastfeeders. It's a learned skill so seeing others do it can be really helpful.
Also if you express and feed breastmilk you don't need to sterilise the equipment just a good hot soapy wash. This is beacause breastmilk has things in it that inhibit bacteria growth
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