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does a top up with formula help a breast fed baby sleep better?

(18 Posts)
Lilliput Wed 30-Mar-05 11:26:49

a top up feed was suggested for my 6 week old ds as he is only sleeping in 2 to 2.5 hour stints. does anyone think this will work? I am shattered, any suggestions?

beansprout Wed 30-Mar-05 11:30:04

Some people swear by this, others think it doesn't work at all.
Please be aware though, that if you start supplementing with formula, it can affect your milk supply.

I expressed and got dp to do the last feed while I slept. Ds doesn't always like to feed from dp but it works if he is asleep (dp simply puts the bottle in his mouth while he is in his cot!).

Good luck. I know how exhausted you are!!

irishbird Wed 30-Mar-05 11:31:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MunchedTooManyMarsLady Wed 30-Mar-05 11:32:43

what weight is your ds?

beansprout Wed 30-Mar-05 11:33:51

Would second IB's suggestion. I feed ds every hour for about 3 hours before he goes to bed. He sort of naturally wants to do this anyway.
At 6 weeks it is ok to express. It really, really helped me. I didn't have the urge to be away from ds but I did feel like I had been untied as someone else could feed him.

Lilliput Wed 30-Mar-05 11:37:16

well it didn't really work last night! I feel as though I have been slightly pressurised to try the top up by hv and dh also out of sheer desperation for some sleep as I also have a 2 year old. I am determined not to get on the slippery slope of giving up breastfeeding, it would be desperately unfair to ds as dd was fed until 10 months when she decied she didn't want it anymore. maybe I should post something in the sleep threads.

MunchedTooManyMarsLady Wed 30-Mar-05 11:39:18

how much does your ds weigh? My DTs were small and as such fed at much more regular intervals.

Lilliput Wed 30-Mar-05 11:39:27

he was weighed yesterday and came in at a hefty 10lb 15oz

MunchedTooManyMarsLady Wed 30-Mar-05 11:42:26

Wow! Not small then. lol. I don't personally think that topping up makes much difference. My HV (spit spit) tried to pressure me into topping up the DTs by saying that I wouldn't produce enough milk to satisfy them. I ignored her and got on with bfing them. It could just be that your DS is going through a growth spurt and as such is just feeding a lot. I know that the DTs would go through phases of feeding at incredibly short intervals. It didn't last long but it was bl**dy knackering.

beansprout Wed 30-Mar-05 12:27:10

Same here on the growth spurts. They are horrendous but they do pass. I'm crap at recognising them though. Always takes someone else to point them out or I can see them in hindsight.

Wish I had something more constructive to say!!

kama Wed 30-Mar-05 12:49:28

Message withdrawn

hunkermunker Wed 30-Mar-05 12:53:23

Have also heard it can have the opposite effect and make your baby more unsettled as they're not used to digesting formula.

RudyDudy Wed 30-Mar-05 13:34:12

We gave DS a formula bottle feed at 10/11pm every night from about 5 weeks old. It didn't affect my milk supply and I breastfed him until about 6 months. I'm not sure it made any difference to how long he slept but it meant that I could go to be at about 8pm and get a good chunk of sleep before he woke again in the night and was a life saver for me.

It is shattering feeding them so much but it will pass. I think it is very important that you do what you are comfortable with and don't feel pressured. I didn't feel pressured and still I cried the first few nights DS had a bottle from someone else but I did feel that I was able to look after him better the rest of the time because I'd had some sleep. But it is very personal. Good luck

geogteach Wed 30-Mar-05 19:44:20

Hasn't worked for me but I have stuck with one formula feed a day largely to allow me to go out if I want to and to give him experience of a bottle - I had awful trouble getting DD to take one when I wanted to stop breast feeding.

aloha Wed 30-Mar-05 19:46:29

no, sorry not in my experience with ds and dd.

PrettyCandles Wed 30-Mar-05 19:55:19

At 6 weeks 2 - 2.5h stretches is not that unusual - though very rough on you! I think you'd be better off trying to stuff more into him during the day than topping up with formula. That would also have the effect of increasing your supply, which will help if he's hungry.

Try having a feed-a-thon, putting him to the breast every 2h, whether he asks for it or not.

Alternatively, you could try expressing after every morning feed and giving all the day's-worth in one go after the feed when you want to go to bed yourself. This worked for me.

PrettyCandles Wed 30-Mar-05 19:56:57

Another suggestion: take him into bed with you, sleep without a pyjama-top or bra, and let him feed whenever he likes. Different schools of thought, but, as with all things baby, there is rarely only one way to do things and you can combine both styles. I did!

tigi Wed 30-Mar-05 20:14:10

i am the same as geogteach, dreadful trouble with ds2 getting him to take a bottle, so ds3 had one bottle a day from fairly little, and I know that he did sleep a lot better from having this big bottle at bedtime. be ware that it can affect milk supply if you do more than one, but I successfully continued to breast feed until he was 9 months ish, and then getting to have a bottle was no probs.

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