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Infant feeding

15 week old mixed feeding eating lots of formula

5 replies

TheBestSpoon · 31/03/2019 21:07

My 15 week old DS was EBF until 9 weeks. We then introduced one bottle of formula at bedtime, so my DH could feed him and so that he would take it before my return to work at 26 weeks. It took a while to find a bottle he was really happy with, but for the past two weeks he's been taking a NUK bottle with no problems, usually about 6oz, split before and after his bath. He weighs about 15lb and eats 6 or 7 times a day (fed on demand). So far so good!

The last three days, he's been much more distracted at the breast, but I've done my best to get a full feed into him and he hasn't been asking for food any more often in the day. But two of the last three days he has taken 10oz over the split feed before bed, which seems like a lot. Is this typical for his age? He's been sleeping and eating the same overnight as previously (roughly 10 hours sleeping with one wake up to feed, which seems to be a full breast feed).

I guess it could just be a growth spurt? Or could he not be getting enough food in the day? I can't force him to stay on the boob though! I'm planning to gradually introduce more formula in the day over the next few months as my DH will be feeding him this when he's on parental leave after I go back to work. So I'm not overly concerned if my supply does start to diminish, I just want him to be happy and well fed in the day so he's not famished at the end of the day...

OP posts:
Elizabeth2019 · 01/04/2019 11:08

So babies who are breast fed can’t be over fed (apparently) but by introducing a bottle he is no longer feeding on demand. I’m assuming you don’t pace feed, which if you want to continue breastfeeding you should probably look at. The bottles are like a free flow compared to breast, take a lot less effort so babies develop a preference.

This leads into the demanding less feeds in the day, if he knows he will get a bottle feed then he might start refusing breast. This isn’t an issue if you want to drop breastfeeding completely before you go back to work.

I’ve been told that you shouldn’t give more than 210ml / 7oz in a single feed. Not sure where that’s written down but that was the advice MW gave.

You will find you fairly quickly loose your supply at this age as it’s not fully established, also he’s due a growth spurt and the 4mo sleep regression. Look up wonder weeks - either the app or the book. I’d be hesitant to loose the ability to boob to sleep too until you need to.

Finally, if you want to switch to formula then express some of the missed feeds and slowly drop as you can risk blocked ducts / mastitis etc.

TheBestSpoon · 02/04/2019 11:56

Thanks! I should have mentioned that I am expressing during his bottle time, to start building up a supply of breast milk in the freezer for when I go back to work and to keep the supply up - although I don't manage to get anywhere near 10oz out! I'd like to keep feeding him overnight as long as possible (that's the only time he boobs to sleep). He's been much better back on the boob again the last couple of days, but he did take 9oz in total across the split feed yesterday again.

Perhaps I should do the first part of that feed back on the boob and start introducing another bottle in the day next month (which was the plan anyway as a gradual move to ~3 bottles and 3 breastfeeds a day at 6 months). Really don't want to stop the bottle entirely now we've finally got him to take it!

OP posts:
Elizabeth2019 · 02/04/2019 15:43

Ahhh good to hear your still expressing to match feeds! Babies will reverse cycle if you’re not around too, so just have that in your mind. This means they will feed as if night time is day so won’t demand much milk during the day until you’re back then cluster feed all night. Lots seemingly do this when they go to nursery or mums at work - i am just trying to prepare myself for this 😩

If he’s happy taking bottles then I’d keep him on maybe one a day and give breast first, you can pump straight after feeds anyway so you can start to build a supply up. I just mix the various sessions together (at same temp) then freeze once I’ve got enough (using the oldest date on). And freeze in no more than 3-4oz so that you don’t waste loads if he won’t take it when defrosted.

Equally if your happy using formula don’t put too much pressure on expressing too much, I’m combi feeding and am happy with getting 2-3oz a day to save. Once I’m away I’ll be expressing more during her missed feeds.

TheBestSpoon · 05/04/2019 16:18

Oh dear, I'm not looking forward to the reverse cycling! Yes, I'm trying to express, but finding the time to do it more often is challenging - I can usually express about 3 or 4oz in the evening during the missed feed, which is why I was a bit concerned he was drinking much more formula than that.

Feeding in the day has got better, but he's now started waking up more at night the last few nights, so I think it might all just be a sign of the dreaded four month development leap - fingers crossed it improves soon!

OP posts:
Elizabeth2019 · 05/04/2019 20:51

Yes that leap isn’t quite so fun but ours was mercifully short!

I find the morning is the best time to try and get a quick express session in and can usually get 5-6oz in a day that way.

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