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Infant feeding

9 week old formula feeding - help!

5 replies

LittleTalks · 07/06/2016 10:55

I'm really hoping someone on here can give me so advice about this as I'm struggling to get any info from the health visitor or advice from anyone I know as they all seem to have BF!

DS is 9.5 weeks old. I desperately tried to BF, but had a lot of issues with him never latching on and my milk never really coming in. Consequently he was topped up with formula from very early, but didn't gain weight at all until after 4 weeks I started topping up regularly. At 6 weeks I stopped trying to BF altogether. Since then he has but on 3lb in 4 weeks and is flying across centiles. He seems to be almost constant hungry. During the day he will never go for more than 3 hours between feeds, but often it is more like 2 or 2.5 hours. I wonder if I'm misinterpreting his cries for something else as hunger, but nothing else seems to make him happy and his lips look dry which makes me think he probably is thirsty. Overall he's taking a bit over 1 litre in 24 hours and weighs just over 5kg (or did a week ago, he feels like he could have put on another pound).

I obviously don't have an issue with giving him what he needs but surely he can't keep on gaining weight at this rate. People have started commenting on how chubby he has got so quickly! I love a chubby baby as much as the next person but am scared I'm overfeeding him and setting him up for a life time of problems.

I'd really appreciate some advice/reassurance from to wise seasoned formula feeders.

OP posts:
Peach1886 · 07/06/2016 11:19

Just checked in the red book, at 8 weeks DS weighed 5.6k, and the HV advised 5-6 formula feeds daily, 150mls each time. I remember at that point feeling like I was a worker bee feeding a little fat grub, it was endless, and he always seemed to be hungry - I think feeds were about 3 hourly at that point.

The HV also said to give him cooled boiled water in between feeds if he was asking for more, but he was obviously disappointed when it wasn't formula, as he didn't take very much!

A month later he weighed 6.4k, and I remember that we went through clothes very fast, as they would fit him one week, and then not the next.

They were very happy with his progress, so it doesn't sound as if there is anything wrong with your little one, he's just busy growing; I don't think you can over-feed babies this small, they want what they want!

tiktok · 07/06/2016 11:36

Little, sorry you have had a difficult start :(

I think it's quite common, and understandable, for anxiety and stress to continue, even after a switch to formula, as confidence can plummet after an unhappy breastfeeding experience.

Dry lips - no need to be concerned about that, as dryish lips are common in babies, and it's not possible to draw the conclusion that this means your baby is thirsty all the time. Babies' lips sometimes peel a bit, even. Do ask your HV about that, of course, in case I am leaping to conclusions that this applies to you.

Two to two and half hourly feeds are well within normal for this age. Babies feed to check in emotionally and socially with you :) He may be doing some catch up weight - and a litre is not really more than you might expect at this age and weight. The rough rule of thumb is between 150ml and 200 ml per kg of weight in a day.

All this is something you'd need to check with the HV.

Hope you get some good support and info.

LittleTalks · 07/06/2016 13:03

Thanks both.

I did speak to the health visitor but she wasn't very helpful. She just kind of shrugged and told me to carry on feeding on demand. She didn't seem sure if the weight gain was too much, in fact she didn't seem too sure about any of it! Maybe I should take him to the clinic and try and speak to a different one.

Tiktok you're right about the continued anxiety after the BF problems. I'm still really struggling to come to terms with what happened. I hope that time will help to heal this weird grief that I feel and I'll start to feel more confident in my parenting.

OP posts:
tiktok · 07/06/2016 14:24

Maybe the HV appeared to be shrugging 'cos there is really nothing wrong with what's happening :) . She was not very good at exploring with you ways of feeling better about the whole thing, and the result was you had very little confidence in whether she knew 'the answer' ...but where there is no problem, there is no 'answer' :)

Yes, your idea to go to the clinic and speak to another HV is a good one. Explain that the situation is anxiety-making for you.

I hope it works out.

tiktok · 07/06/2016 14:28

It's not 'weird' grief by the 'grief after stopping breastfeeding' and you will see this is a known phenomenon, especially acute when you had hopes and plans of breastfeeding longer.

Be kind to yourself, LittleTalks Flowers

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