How Many Oz Of Breastmilk Should 3 Week Old Drink Bottle-Feeding Guidelines

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Bottle-Feeding Guidelines

In every doctor’s surgery and hospital reception the walls are plastered with breastfeeding advice. What you don’t often see are best practice guidelines for mothers who choose to bottle feed their baby. So, to get this right, here are some pointers.

Don’t let your baby’s crying be the cue to start feeding. If your baby is fussy before you start bottle feeding, then she may fuss during her feeding. Nursing mothers are told to breastfeed often and the same advice applies to bottle feeding. One important point to remember though is that formula milk takes about four hours to digest compared to two hours for breast milk, so the interval between feedings should be longer for bottle feeding.

A newborn baby will take up to about 85ml (3fl oz) per feed. As she gets older the amount of feeding will increase as will the period between meals. Babies know when they’ve had enough, so don’t worry if your baby hasn’t finished all the milk. Discard any milk remaining in the bottle; never, ever try to feed this to your baby later. Formula milk that is left sitting is a perfect breeding ground for bacteria. If your baby still seems hungry after emptying the bottle, offer her more milk. You will not overfeed your baby.

The best way to hold a baby for bottle feeding is simple. You hold the baby as you would for breastfeeding, but in a slightly more upright position to make it easier for her to swallow and to prevent formula from spilling into her nostrils and ears.

Don’t just put the bottle’s nipple directly into the baby’s mouth. Rather, gently rub your baby’s cheek and lips with the nipple, just as breastfeeding mothers are advised. This gentle rubbing stimulates your baby’s “rooting reflex”.

You can reduce the amount of air your baby takes in by tilting the bottle to make sure the nipple contains only milk. Wind is uncomfortable for babies and, after feeding, they will let you know all about their discomfort. It is best to avoid baby wind, both for mother and child!

Take your time and allow your baby to take a break from time to time. It is completely normal for babies to stop drinking for a while before continuing. As they get older, they may also have a tendency to lose concentration and look around instead of eating. Therefore, before you feed your baby, make your surroundings as peaceful and relaxing as possible. If you feel uncomfortable during feeding, then change positions. Remember, if you are uncomfortable or distracted while feeding, your baby will be too.

Feeding is not just about giving your baby food; it’s also about providing comfort. Hold your baby close to you and maintain as much skin-to-skin contact as you can. During the feeding, stroke, caress, talk and maintain eye contact with her, and most of all, smile.

Feeding a baby is a special time for mother and child. It can be a relaxing and comforting experience for both. To make sure it is, follow the points above, and most importantly, follow your baby’s lead; they often know better than we do what is the best way to do things.

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