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EBF baby, giving formula now and again

(15 Posts)
DirtyDancing Tue 11-Feb-14 12:54:43

I have been EBF my baby for 6 weeks and it is going well. I have not left his side the entire six weeks, but I do need to be able to leave him on the odd occasion. I am talking about in the next month I just want to go to the hairdressers and a meal out for a best friends engagement party. I feel guilty about this, but I also think it will do me good.

We introduced the bottle of breast milk at 4 weeks and its been going okay, and he gets a bottle every other evening. But I am not getting on very well at all with expressing at all. A. I can not find the time to do it (my baby does not like to be put down at all, he even sleeps on me- I am working on this!) B. I find it quite uncomfortable / bit of a chore in addition to BF C. as a result of this I only get about 60ml on a good day. So it takes me about 2 days to get enough for one bottle.

I know these questions are again, coming from the guilt, but what are the consequences of feeding my baby formula say for two evening feeds a week? And If I go out for 4 hours, and I left my DH one bottle of breast milk and one of formula? Could it result in him rejecting the breast? Would two bottles a week change his poo dramatically and make him consitpated?

My husband is off next week for part two of his pat leave, so its a good chance to try it, when I am around, in case baby hates it.

In the meantime I am really going to try harder with expressing!

Rachie1986 Tue 11-Feb-14 13:59:17

My dd has had 1 bottle a day since she was a few weeks old - she's 6 weeks now. I did express for a bottle night feed my dh could do, but once he was back at work I couldn't find the time to express. It has not affected her poos as far as we can tell, she takes both bottle and breast, breast or formula no problem. We might just have an easy baby on the feeding front though! Xx

HelenHen Tue 11-Feb-14 15:12:06

We gave him a bottle of formula before bed every night and I breastfed the rest of the time. This worked brilliantly til he was about 9 or 10 months and he weaned himself off! It also meant we could give him the odd bottle of formula during the day and it didn't affect my supply at all. We also used two different types of bottles... He would take any kind of milk from anything! grin . If it's really what you wanna do, just try it! His poo was exactly the same as other solely breastfed babies! It's a myth that breastfeeding has to be all or nothing!

Shatteredmamma1 Tue 11-Feb-14 15:15:05

Go for it. If you can't express enough (lots of people can't) formula Is Fine. Much better that you get a see bit of time to yourself than not. Enjoy!!! smile

Shatteredmamma1 Tue 11-Feb-14 15:15:15

Wee. Not see!

hooligancorner Tue 11-Feb-14 16:13:08

Can I ask why you chose to introduce the bottle? With my dd I would just express if I knew I was going to be away from her and if she was hungry she would take a bottle even tho she wasn't used to it(although you will find that they will just take enough to keep them going then will have a really big feed when you get back!)

Also have you tried expressing on one boob while feeding on the other, and if you manage to get any spare you can start to build a freezer stash so you don't have to worry if your leaving enough!

DirtyDancing Tue 11-Feb-14 17:29:53

Hooligan - on the advice of the health visitor, she told me to introduce it at 4-6 weeks, otherwise some babies can refuse it if you try it later than that.

Thanks everyone for the votes of confidence. In going to take a deep breath and try it tonight and try not to feel guilty!

MsJJones Tue 11-Feb-14 17:49:04

I think the biggest issue with mixed feeding is that HCPs always seem to advise 'topping up' ie giving breast and formula in the same feed. Once I'd figured this out I separated the ff and we mix fed successfully till 9 months. He had horrible CMPI formula too and still switched between the two plus a bit of expressing (but like you I didn't get on with this despite hiring a hospital pump). So it's perfectly possible.

DirtyDancing Tue 11-Feb-14 21:44:13

One more question - do I need to give any water with this much formula?

HelenHen Tue 11-Feb-14 21:56:05

I didn't typically give water til 6 months. I think the answers no!

BocaDeTrucha Tue 11-Feb-14 23:13:08

I bf but have given him one bottle of formula every night since more or less day one. It meant dh could take part in his feeding and have me confidence knowing if ever I couldn't be there for a feed, things would be OK. I also had to return to work at 4 months so the need for the bottle was inevitable.

I expressed when dh was giving him his bottle feed at bed time and we built up quite a supply of milk in the freezer. However, I did find that changing from a manual pump to an electrical one made all the difference in the world. Before getting 100 ml was a huge achievement but now with the electric one I can manage 180ml easily.

It's so much easier having an adaptable baby and for us, I feel introducing a bottle early on helped a great deal.

murphy36 Tue 11-Feb-14 23:39:58

Don't kill yourself. We had to mix feed due to DS dropping from 75-25%, 13% body weight by 3days.

He tracked around 25% the entire time, so was probably just well nourished by the placenta.

Anyway, expressing was tough and frankly a little depressing. The odd bottle especially when a pattern forms and 1+ night feeds from daddy is a god send.

Nipple confusion and all that is BS IMHO. Baby will adapt their technique, they can see the difference between a boob and bottle and they pick it up quickly enough.

Ilovemydogandmydoglovesme Wed 12-Feb-14 00:09:27

Yep I mixed fed dd2 (dd1 and I didn't get on with bf) and it didn't affect her in the slightest.

TheScience Wed 12-Feb-14 00:24:06

The one issue you might want to consider is that the best health outcomes are for exclusively breastfed babies, and introducing anything other than breastmilk interferes with the "virgin gut".

Exactly what/how much of an effect this has is a matter of debate though.

Occasional bottles are unlikely to damage the baby's latch or cause confusion, though as with introducing dummies it's something you just have to keep an eye on and re-evaluate if it's an issue for you.

Anecdotally, I know lots of people who gave their babies occasional or even one daily bottle without them rejecting the breast, but a couple of friends who gave 2 bottles a day found this meant breastfeeding stopped sooner than they'd ideally wanted.

murphy36 Wed 12-Feb-14 19:16:38

I don't exactly disagree with science. But you should also be aware that 'EBF babies have best health outcomes' is a MILLION miles away from 'Formula fed babies will get sick with gut disorders'.

The significant impact of genetics, socioeconomics and environmental factors subsequent to any 6-12 month period of 'milk feeding'.

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