Mothers want to get a breastfed baby to take a bottle of formula for various reasons. Introducing formula to breastfed baby might be hard at first, but the tips below on how to transition from breastmilk to formula will make it easier.
Babies should be breastfed exclusively for six months. After the six-month mark, you can supplement your breast milk with other solid food for one year, after which you can choose to continue to nurse or switch to baby formula. This is easier said than done as it can be pretty hectic getting a breastfed baby to take a bottle of formula.
So how to introduce formula to breastfed baby? Don’t worry; this article gives you various ways to smoothly prepare your baby to transition from breast milk to formula. Before that, let’s discuss multiple reasons mothers want their babies to take a bottle of formula.
Top Reasons Why Mums Introduce Formula to their Breastfed Babies
There are a few reasons why many moms are formula-feeding their babies. As a mom, you should do what you feel is suitable for your baby, and if that means giving your breastfed baby formula, then so be it. There is a vast collection of baby formula on the market, and choosing the right formula to start your breastfed baby on might be challenging.
You must consult with your pediatrician as there is no one formula fit-for-all. For a start, Enfamil formula comparisons offer parents a chance to compare and find the right formula.
Low milk supply
You may have started your nursing journey smoothly, but along the way, your breast milk production dwindles to the extent that your baby doesn’t get satisfied. The big question in your head is, can I give my breastfed baby formula? If you find yourself in a low milk supply situation, formula feeding may be the better option.
Going back to work
After nursing and cozying up with your baby for six months, it might be time for you to go back to work. You might wonder about a formula to start your breastfed baby on, but don’t worry, as your pediatrician will provide you with a list of the best baby formula to wean your baby.
Your baby goes on a breastfeeding strike.
Sometimes babies refuse to breastfeed after weeks or months of breastfeeding, and mothers are forced to find alternatives. You can start by expressing and feeding your baby breast milk from a bottle. This will make it easier when you need to transition to baby formula. You can always ensure that the milk is warm by using portable bottle warmers.
This is the most fundamental reason mothers feed their babies formula. After one year of breastfeeding, you can opt to continue or stop breastfeeding altogether. However, this doesn’t happen overnight and stopping breastfeeding cold turkey isn’t the best solution. You must slowly introduce your baby to a bottle by starting with breast milk and then switching to baby formula.
7 Ways to Get a Breastfed Baby to Take a Bottle of Formula
How to introduce formula to a breastfed baby is not that difficult but you need to be well-prepared when transitioning from breast milk to baby formula. You can do this by following the steps.
Consult with your pediatrician.
The best part about the baby formula is that the market is highly regulated; therefore, it is pretty hard to find a fake baby formula in the market. Before switching your baby from breast milk to baby formula, it would be best to consult with your pediatrician.
There are four categories of baby formula, and it would be best if you familiarize yourself with all of them. These include:
Cow milk-based formula: this baby formula is made from cow milk and supplemented with lactose, oils, and sugars.
Soy-based formula: This baby formula contains soy protein and glucose. Soy baby formula is best for children with a rare disorder known as galactosemia.
Hypoallergenic formula: Hypoallergenic formula is cow milk that has gone through hydrolyzation, where the proteins are broken down into minute proteins to a point where the baby’s body doesn’t recognize them as cow’s milk. This baby formula is suitable for babies who are allergic to milk proteins.
Specialized formula: These formulas are made for prematurely born infants or have special conditions such as heart defects and fat digestion problems.
Find the right bottle for your baby.
Having the right baby bottle is critical to smoothly transition your baby from breast milk to baby formula. Finding the right one won’t be easy as the nipples come in various forms, materials, and ages. Therefore, you’d need trial and error until you find the right one.
Start with breast milk.
Getting your baby to take a bottle of formula may be too sudden, and the taste may put them off. Most breastfed babies do not like baby formula, so start by putting breast milk in the bottle, and as your baby gets accustomed, switch to baby formula.
You could consider getting baby formula that tastes like breast milk to ease the transition. Mixing formula and breastmilk is also a viable option before making the switch to formula fully.
Let someone else other than you do the first few feedings.
As your baby is used to your scent, they may resist taking the baby formula and insist on nursing. It’s advisable to have someone conduct the first few feedings; it can be your partner or another family member.
Use paced bottle feeding.
When you or your partner start bottle feeding, use the paced-bottle feeding method, which helps control the amount of milk trickling through the nipple, making it easier for your baby to swallow and not choke.
Replace one of your breastfeeding sessions with a bottle of formula.
The easiest way to introduce your baby to the formula is by switching one breast milk feeding session with the formula. This will make it easy how to transition from breastmilk to formula after the one-year mark.
Breastfeeding is the most incredible bond a mother has with their child, and it’s pretty challenging for a baby or the mother to stop completely. Consider setting up a breastfeeding and formula feeding schedule to help alternating breastmilk and formula for combination feeding. You can start slowly by breastfeeding during the day and feeding formula at night.
You should be close to your baby because breastfeeding is not the only way to be close. You can cuddle and engage in more skin-on-skin contact to successfully wean your baby.
What Kind of Formula is Best for a Breastfed Baby?
There is no one formula fit for all, and choosing the best can be challenging. So before buying formula, you must consult with your pediatrician. The best part is most of the formulas contain the required essential nutrients.
how to transition from breastmilk to formula Final Thoughts
Getting your baby to take a bottle of formula is not easy but not impossible with lots of practice and persistence. Ensure that you have the right formula and bottle to get started. Also, a partner or another caregiver should conduct the first few feedings as the baby may reject the bottle and insist on nursing.
Do not force your baby to take the bottle; start slowly with breast milk and switch to formula.
Hope these tips help you with how to introduce formula to breastfed baby smoothly and easily. Good luck with the switch!