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Introducing formula

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    Gataloca's Avatar
    Gataloca is offline Registered User
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    Introducing formula

    Some may remember me from my other post about breastfed baby not gaining weight. Well, it has been almost another month since then, and my baby is soon turning 5 month old. Although now I am offering both breasts on each feed, my baby is still not gaining much weight. Probably I don't have as much milk as I thought. I have never pump that up, I am not very skillful with the pump. However, I have tried manually expressing some milk after a feed to mix it with his rice, and sometime I can hardly get 3 teaspoons!. In other occasion however, specially when I manually express to get rid of a lump or a blocked duct at the end of the day, I can squeeze a lot of milk.

    Sometime I think my baby is just a lazy sucker. After sucking for a while, he is more interested on what is going around than on my breast.

    Anyway, the doctor told me to give formula, as he wasn't gaining lot of weight. As I have been breastfeeding exclusively for almost 5 months, he said it was OK to switch to formula. Although I don't want him to wean breast milk yet. I would rather do combined feeding at this point.

    I know I have lot of milk early in the morning. So I think I will just give breast in the morning. Probably for the rest of the feed, I will breastfeed on both breast, and after that, offer him formula.... Does it sound as a good plan? I think I should not replace a breastfeed completely, as I may get engorged, or my supply may drop, right?

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    lesliefu is offline Registered User
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    when i started to introduce formula, i did it gradually, kind of like you are talking about - breastfed when i was engorged and let my milk supply decline "naturally" so it was not painful, as I hear it sometimes can if you stop cold turkey. it took me about 1 mth to completely wean off breast milk and use 100% formula, perhaps because I didn't have a lot of milk to begin with...not too sure - what you're planning on sounds fine...you will find if you feed only when you are engorged your milk supply will decline gradually - if that is what you want....even your supply in the mornings.

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    prone_to_wander is offline Registered User
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    is your doctor using the WHO weight graph? sometimes they use a graph that is based off of formula fed babies. breast milk is the best for your baby and the most calorie dense food for him/her. I would hold off the formula, contact the le leche league www.lllhk.org and here is what kelly mom has to say http://www.kellymom.com/babyconcerns/growth/index.html

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    Looked at the table, and according to there, it took like 3 weeks for my baby to gain what an average baby would have gained in 1 or 2 weeks.

    Really sad now. Suddendly I (my milk) get blamed for all the bad things that is happening to my baby: poor weight gain, eczema... My mom has always suggested that my milk was not good enough, cause according to her, I don't eat "right". And my hubby blame that something on
    my diet is causing the eczema, so suggested we try formula for a week or two to see if there is any improvement. The problem is that switching from breastmilk to formula is not like trying different type of formula. If I stop brestfeeding for 2 week, my supply would drop... And even if I keep pumping, probably the baby would not want to suck on my breast anymore!
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    oi0io is offline Registered User
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    My son has always been tiny for his age. He was discharged from the hospital weighing just less than 5 lbs. When he was a newborn, I exclusively breastfed, but he wasn't gaining much weight either. Then I breastfed him only in the morning when I was most engorged and when my supply was at its peak. The rest of his meals were formula first and then topped off with the breast. I also pumped in the evening just to try to keep my supply, but my supply just wasn't the same anymore. Soon after my son cut his first tooth, he suddenly didn't want anything to do with the breast. I'd offer him the breast but he'll just turn his head away. Now he's exclusively formula fed.

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    lesliefu is offline Registered User
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    Gataloca - I hope you can try to stop worrying so much because all the stress will give you pressure and affect your milk supply. Please don't feel guilty if you DO switch to formula...unless you plan to breastfeed for 1 year, you will be using formula sometime along the line. Yes, breast is best they say...if you can get your supply up! By 3 mths I stopped breastfeeding because no matter what I did...I mean I pumped, I drank soup, I slept! My milk supply did not fulfill my babies needs...so, I had to supplement with formula! Eventually my LO wouldn't suck from me as the bottle was SO much easier to get milk out of, and at that point in time, I decided to slowly introduce 100% formula. THere is absolutely nothing wrong with giving formula! Don't feel like you MUST give breast milk in order to be a good mom - that's not the case! Believe me! Many people give formula, and many others yet don't give breast milk either...a doctor friend of mine had twins and she's never breast fed for a single day! Her reasoning is because she has skin allergies she doesn't want to pass it on to her kids, furthermore, she reasons that formula is just as healthy for your kid as breast milk.....anyhow, don't feel like you HAVE to breastfeed...

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    Gataloca's Avatar
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    Thanks a lot for your feedback, ladies!

    Sometime I wonder if I am being selfish for wanting to continue exclusively breastfeeding when the baby is not gaining enough weight, or he may have allergy to something that is on my diet. I started combined feeding... nothing against formula. In a couple of weeks I switched to breastfeed exclusively and later I started enjoying breastfeeding. Really breastfeeding for me is more than just feeding the baby... is more than the convenience of not having to carry milk/water when I go out, or having to boil bottles and teats. It is the closeness I get with my baby each time he sucks, and this is something that neither my husband or my mom understand. My mom would tell me not to breastfeed as my baby would become very attached to me. She would tell me to use formula or express milk, as other people would be able to feed the baby for me as well....

    ...well, I do enjoy my baby being attache to me. I love the look on his face when he is sucking. I love how he would play with my nipples (sometime he would take my nipple with his mouth, then take it out, and then look at my face and smile.... really cute and silly) when he should be feeding from there. I love how my breast can call him down, when nothing else works. I love when he fall asleep sucking.

    I read on some other forum about breastfeeding how some women would become very sentimental when they decide to wean from the breast, and breastfeed for the last time. Other woman became very sad when his baby suddenly refuse her breast. So she breastfed for the last time without even knowing it.

    Well, I better start taking some pictures of my baby breastfeeding and cherish this moment while it lasts. Initially I was thinking about breastfeeding till 6 months. Then I thought I would exclusively do it on the first 6 months, and then just giving a morning and evening feed (when I am back at work) till he is 12 month old.... but now..... :-(

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    LOJITT is offline Registered User
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    Gataloca- you obviously really cherish bf your baby and there's no reason to stop- if he really needs to gain weight, you can just top him up with a bit of formula after bf (just offer a few oz and see how that goes). Just make sure you give the formula last, and dont force it if he doesnt want it. I bf and in the evening when my supply is low I will give him a couple of oz formula if he's still hungry, and sometimes at 10pm as well. The rest of the time I just bf, or express and he takes a bottle.

    It is GOOD to be attached to your baby- that's how it's supposed to be. Attachment parenting (feeding on demand, co-sleeping, baby wearing) is coming back into fashion in the UK. Dont let anyone tell you that wanting to be with your baby all the time is wrong.

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