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If you mix feed....

(7 Posts)
lechatnoir Thu 16-Jul-09 16:41:27 do you work it? Do you top-up after every b/f or replace entire feeds with a bottle? I'm currently b/f at every feed for 30/40mins then offering bottle top-up when LO (4 weeks) is taking 1-4oz depending on the time of day or time since last feed. My HV seems to think 20mins feeding is ample & TBH he does usually start to nod off after 15/20mins & it would be a godsend to reducing the time it's taking to feed but, don't want to risk my supply even more.
Any thoughts or advise especially from those who have/are successfully mix feeding longer term.
PS no desire or intention to exclusively bf (tried & failed) or indeed totally bottle feed so please don't try & persuade me otherwise & yes I am aware it may cause my milk to deplete & stop before I'm ready grin

redtabby Thu 16-Jul-09 19:47:15

I am mix feeding: largely breast, with a once a day bottle of formula (usually mixed with some expressed breast milk produced a little earlier) given by DH last thing at night (around 11-12). My LO is seven weeks, but was IUGR and prem so is still only 3kg. It seems to be working fine so far, though, he is putting on over 200g a week and is happy with either breast or bottle, whatever arrives under his nose first.

They started me topping up with formula at the hospital because he was so tiny. To be honest, I could no doubt manage him on only bm if I really wanted (although it does take 40 min to an hour for each feed so very time consuming), but I am glad to have a little rest at night, especially as I am suffering with quite problematic nipple vasospasm (Raynauds), which makes it sore at times (and I have to constantly wear heat pads on my nipples even in this weather).

I am also going back to work when he is just over 3 months, so want him to be well used to the bottle, I will be expressing for him at work but have the feeling there is going to have to be formula as well sometimes.

ladyhelen2 Thu 16-Jul-09 20:05:14

Hi. I'm mixed feeding too but I think my days are numbered.
My DS is now 10 weeks. He went from 8lb9 to 7lbs in his first 5 days as I was trying to BF and clearly failing. Anyway to cut a long story short, despite trying to BF, my milk supply was never going to get there to be able to exclusively BF so we ended topping up at every feed.
I'd try and let him BF for as long as poss ( usually 30 to 40 mins like you) and then would add formula afterward. At 4 weeks he was having about 4oz each feed. He is now 10 weeks and having between 4 and 6 oz, but I only BF once in the morning and once afternoon or evening. My supply is diminishing now so I think I will be done with BF by middle of next week.
I hope this helps. Your situation sounds just like mine. If you have the time keep going as long as you can. With a 4 year old around, I find it v difficult to BF and enjoy it which is why we only do twice a day now when I can take me and DS2 upstairs for peace and quiet.

HumphreyCobbler Thu 16-Jul-09 20:25:26

I mix fed for a year and I kept breastfeeding going by replacing a breastfeed rather than topping up with formula. Ds had a bottle every evening at seven, all other feeds were breastfeeds. At about six months I added a formula feed after lunch. I think maybe this is more sustainable way than adding formula onto every feed, although I don't know that for sure.

ladyhelen2 Thu 16-Jul-09 20:31:05

I think you are right on that one Humphrey. I'd have done it your way if my supply was satisfing him at each feed but I had to top up as there was no way I could give him enough. Topping up tends to suggest that there are supply issues. There are in my case anyway/

Happymum2be Thu 16-Jul-09 21:15:05

I am topping up in the evening (6pm feed) as ds (13wks) does not seem satisfied after this feed and will scream to let me know. I exclusively breastfed til 8wks and despite letting him feed for longer my supply did not seem to increase so I could see no harm in giving a formula top up. I give a full feed, which still takes up to 50 mins and then have 3oz formula ready in case ds is not content - he can take anything from half an oz to the whole 3 oz bottle. He then happily sleeps from 7 until 11 when i wake him for another feed before settling for the night. This works for us, I know it isn't advocated! I also give the odd bottle feed if I have to be somewhere and can't manage to give the full 50 min feed so express for 15 mins instead - this is only once a wk at most so I don't think this can be affecting supply too much. I know it is believed that top-ups/mixed feeding can lead to the end of bf but I feel we are still going strong. I often think i'm doing something wrong as there isn't much advice/support re mixed feeding.

ObsidianBlackbirdMcNight Fri 17-Jul-09 09:16:21

I gave a bottle after each BF, so about 6x per 24hours, I made them up at about 1/2 the recommended amount for his weight so I was trying to give him 1/2 BM. This kind of worked but we had so many problems and one was latch - and he stopped latching on properly and it tailed off gradually until I was just doing morning and afternoon - then just morning - then stopped at 4.5 months. I always tried to BF first so I got him when he was hungry - but that stopped working too and I ended up topping up the FM with BM. I know it can work for some people but for most it will be the beginning of the end of BF.

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