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Introducing formula-newborn(14 Posts)
DC2 is almost 2 weeks old and I've been exclusively breastfeeding; he's a very hungry baby and the feeding is pretty constant at the moment-I've yet to leave the house for even a short walk
He never lost any weight post birth and in fact has put on tons, does loads of heavy and dirty nappies so essentially I think he's doing well
I, however, am a total wreck. The day times I can do but I'm really not coping at night, he's having long periods of being awake and just feeding constantly. Last night was the worst so far, he slept from 11-1.30 (which was great) and was then awake from 1.30-5am just wanting to feed, my husband got him down to sleep shortly after 5.....and he then woke half an hour later like he hadn't been fed in days. I got him back off at around 6.30ish and he then did 2hours; am sat here feeding him again
I just don't think I can do it. I feel so overwhelmed and completely mentally crushed by the sleep deprivation. I was always told newborns did these lovely long sleeps in the early days-I'm now on my second baby who only does a max of 2 hours and then will only do this a couple of times a day. DC1 turned out to be a shit sleeper who didn't do a full night until he was gone 1 year old
I'd be interested to hear if anyone has introduced a night time bottle of formula at this stage and if it made a difference at all? I really really wanted to exclusively breastfeed again but something needs to give in the night times 😔 any advice greatly appreciated
We tried with the night time formula for the same reasons. My boobs are sore and I’m tired. I know I’m on leave so in theory can sleep during the day but I have things to do etc...
The last 2 nights ds has slept from about 10 to 1.30. Dh has fed him formula. Then it’s taken him ages to settle again. And he’s still wanting milk from me. He got back to sleep this morning at 3.30. Sigh.
We’re going to persevere with formula/mix feeding though but do the “dinner time” feed as formula not boobs and see if that makes a difference.
The guidance I read (aside from don’t introduce formula breastfeeding is better and if you stop your baby will be unintelligent and will have a ton of social issues....paraphrasing slightly...) was to introduce formula/bottle feeding gradually. Drop one breastfeed a week.
I did also read that you’re not meant to do anything until breastfeeding has been established which can take up to 6 weeks. But balls to it. I’m frazzled. Dh is frazzled. I want to get out and about etc. And don’t feel I can with a constant feeding baby.
Although midwife did say that cluster feeding at this point Is very normal. He’s having a growth spurt.
Oh and congratulations on your squishy new baby. Xx
Thanks and solidarity to you!
It's either formula or I'm chucking Gina Ford at him-one of the 2!
I did formula and gina ford (when babies were older, I had twins)
The advantage of formula is that dh can do a night feed. We used to go to bed at 9pm, both get up to do 11pm dream feed then dh was on duty till 3am and then I was on duty after that so he could get some sleep before work.
The gina ford routine is the same as the nicu routine, that's what it is based on. My babies were in nicu for a month so I continued the routine when we got home. It worked for us. One of my twins slept through every night from 4 months the other took longer. They do say babies can't sleep through till they hit 9lb and this is exactly what happened to us.
What your describing is why I gave up BF with my first, but if he is growing, plenty of wet and dirty nappies he isn't "too hungry" to be breastfed. Breast milk digests much more quickly than formula milk and at this age their stomachs are still tiny so it is completely normal to be feeding almost constantly.
If you aren't getting on with BF, or want to stop that is totally fine but if you want to continue it does get better if you can get over this hurdle. By about 4 weeks my DS (2nd child) was in a nice routine and after 6 weeks it got lots easier and it is worth peservering. We are still BF now at 14 months and by the 3/4 month time we were finding it a lot easier than my FF mum friends who were washing/sterilising like crazy, waiting for kettles to boil at night and having to bring along FF supplies to go out the house. Thats without bearing in mind the massive health benefits to baby and you and the fact its free!
I only exclusively breastfed for the first few days (whilst in hospital), I then switched to mix feeding.
I probably do more breast but throw in a bottle overnight or in the evening to give myself a break.
The only issue I’ve had is I have to take a little more care latching him on as he has a tendency to not open wide enough, I think that’s probably from not having to do it for the bottle.
I’m happy with the balance we’ve struck.
Oh, just to add though, I’m of the mindset that if formula feeding disrupts breast feeding too much I will go to fully formula, I’m totally at ease with that.
It just so happens it’s working out at the moment.
We introduced formula in the later afternoon and bedtimes with our son (now 2.5) and have just done the same about 2 weeks ago with baby boy who is 5 weeks now, he always seemed so hungry and would be up every 45mins/hour and I selfishly just couldn’t do it! The first night with current baby he slept through! (10-7 anyway!!) and since then he wakes once a night, sometimes twice, usually 2.30ish and 6am which I can totally deal with! He seemed so much more content and I was less tired! He doesn’t have much, he started with 2x2oz and now has about 2x3 oz and I still breastfeed when he wakes and throughout the day, it’s exactly what we did with our 2 year old and I still breastfed until he was 18months with no issues. We tried a few bottles to find a good match! He has the first lot of formula about 4.30-5.30 depending on when he’s awake and the next around 8.30-9.30, if he wants more in the time I bf and sometimes do right before bed to calm him down! Good luck!
I could have written your post OP! 2 weeks of EBF and my mental health was seriously depleted. I started combi feeding and he went 3 hours between night feeds. Then I breast fed during the day and it was every 45mins - 90mins max! I went fully formula fed at 3 weeks and within a week I felt so much better! My son was doing 3-4 hours between feeds and us now a very happy and contented baby who often sleeps through the night. He's 5 months old and switching his food was definitely the right decision.
Ultimately you have to do what is best for both of you. No point having a EBF baby with a strung out destroyed mother. He'll be full and nourished either way. I'm thinking of you.
Are you offering both sides at each feed? I would make sure he takes both sides (nappy change in between if you need him to wake up) then dummy in and into a swing/sling/pram - I have found with all of mine that if we are just sitting around at home then they want to be constantly attached but if we are going out and doing something then they can go 2-3 hours after a good feed with a dummy and motion.
Dc3 is 3 weeks and a couple of nights a week I go to bed at 9pm and DH stays up til midnight with the baby and a bottle. That way I get to sleep 9-3 then doze and cosleep til 7ish and DH gets up with all three then and I get another hour or two uninterrupted.
I suppose what I would say is that this phase doesn't last. If you continue to EBF things will get easier and easier daily from now on. You will still have to cluster feed in the evenings but it doesn't last forever. This truly is the hardest part so it might be worth persevering a bit longer if you'd prefer to EBF.
Remember that breast feeding provides so much more that just nutrition; the comfort, closeness and non nutritive sucking. Might a dummy be worth a try at the end of a feed?
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