How to start the switch
To be honest, switching to the baby formula is not an overnight process; it takes time, a bit of trial and error, and a lot of patience. The switching process works best if you do it gradually, not only that your baby will have all the time they need to adjust. The gradual process will also benefit you since it will give you and your breasts time to adjust little by little. If you suddenly stop with the breastfeeding and pumping, your breasts will tend to be painful and engorged since they continue to create the usual amount of milk even though you suddenly stopped. Through a gradual process, your body will also slowly adapt and will eventually slow down milk production.
As mentioned, a gradual transition is recommended and is beneficial to both mother and child. You must take it easy when introducing the new milk and observe how your baby takes it. Even if your baby has no problems with the formula milk, never drop the breast milk directly. Always note that their teeny tiny digestive system is not fully developed yet and may need some time to adapt to a new meal completely.
Breast milk in a bottle
Offering the same milk through a different medium is also part of the transition. Offering expressed breast milk will also greatly help your little ones get used to bottle feeding. It is important that you start bottle, feeding them with the milk that they are completely familiar with. Once your little bundle of joy gets the hang of being bottle-fed, transitioning to the formula will tend to get easier. We also suggest that you choose only the best baby bottles for your babies.
A tasty concoction
Once your baby have gotten used to taking expressed breast milk through bottle feeding, then the job just got easier. Mixing the formula milk with expressed breast milk makes it something that your baby is more familiar with. This will then help your baby adapt better before completely switching to baby formula milk.
Picking a good bottle and nipple
Not only that you need to give your baby the best meal ever, but you also need to feed them using only the best feeding bottles and baby bottle nipples. Always bear in mind that you choose only those bottles that are of high quality and can be held and used ergonomically by either your and your baby. If you are still staring your bottle-feeding journey, we suggest that you pick and use wide nipples since this type of nipples mimics mother’s breast. This technique will help avoid confusion and a sudden new experience during the baby’s feeding time.
Directing attention to the bottle
Getting your baby’s to focus on the baby bottle might be tricky, but it is necessary. This can be not easy, especially if you have been strictly breastfeeding your baby. What you need to do is distract your baby in a fun and enjoyable way through singing, telling a story while showing them the baby bottle, that is a good way to distract your little one and eventually redirecting their attention to the feeding bottle.
Feed with formula milk when hungry
Offering only formula milk when your baby gets hungry is also a great strategy. Basically, babies will take in what is given when they are really hungry. This is a great way for your baby to be introduced to the new formula milk.
Get other family members involved.
Breastfeeding will make babies think and get used to their mothers being the only source of food they have. Allowing your partner or other trusted family members bottle-feed your little one will help them learn that other people, apart from their mom, can feed them. This will also help babies adjust and become at ease while being fed with a bottle by another person.
Observe and take note
As we have said, being a keen observer is best when it comes to determining your child’s feeding schedule and preferences. Observe and take note, and you’ll never know what you will eventually discover about your baby in a day.
Consult your pediatrician
If you notice that you are having a hard time when it comes to introducing baby formula milk to your child, there may be underlying causes to it. That is why it is really important to consult your pediatrician for professional guidance and when making big decisions that might affect your babies’ health and development.
Transitioning from Breast Milk to Formula
If you are looking to transition from breast milk to formula and would like to learn more, please refer to this other related post on How Long Does It Take For Baby to Adjust to Formula Change? which goes into the subject in much more exhaustive detail
Maintaining the Mother and Child bond
Some mothers might worry that switching to formula might decrease or lose the bond between her and the baby. But let me tell you, bottle feeding won’t result in loss of intimacy with your child. Even when you are bottle-feeding, you can create moments with your little one through these tips:
- Hold your baby close while bottle-feeding, snuggle your baby and always make eye contact.
- Sing or talk to your baby while bottle-feeding. You may tell stories or sing them nursery rhymes.
- Soothe your baby with a massage or cuddle before bedtime, also do skin to skin contact every once in a while.
Those are the most common things to do to maintain the maintain mother and child bond. As you start to bottle-feed, we are definitely sure that you’ll be able to take advantage of the free time to think about other ways to bond and have fun with your baby even during feeding time.
Avoid these mistakes
- Transitioning too quickly and skipping a whole lot of process.
- Keeping your partner and other family members out of the feeding picture.
- Using the wrong nipple and the wrong feeding bottle.
- Giving the wrong formula.
Read this article if you need a little help when it comes to choosing the perfect formula milk for your baby.
- Not knowing how long should a formula last, or when it should be consumed.
- Force-feeding your child or supplementing way too early for your baby’s age.
- Not reading the label resulting in too much formula or not enough formula.
There are millions of reasons why mothers choose to breastfeed, and there are tons of reasons as well, why mothers choose to bottle-feed. Whatever the choice is, always remember that it is the right thing to do for you and your little one. Your precious bundle of joy is loved and is given the right amount of nutrients and minerals, and that’s the only thing that matters!