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Simple Formula Feeding Tips

There are books on breast-feeding and rightly so. It is a wonderful experience for most mothers and extremely natural once you get the hang of it. But it seems for every mother that finds success with breastfeeding over the course of the first year, there is one that struggles and turns to formula either immediately or after an initial period of breastfeeding. Learning to use formula after the simplicity of breastfeeding can be simple, but experienced formula feeding moms know a few tips to simplify the process.

Serve bottles luke-warm. Unless you’re changing back and forth from the bottle to the breast there is no need to warm a bottle. If you serve your baby his bottle at room temperature, you can skip a critical few minutes while your baby is fussing. This is only possible, however, if you haven’t pre-made and refrigerated the bottles of formula. Very few babies will drink cold formula, so you’ll need to at least heat those to luke-warm.

With a can of power and a gallon of baby-safe water, you can whip up bottles in no time. Pre-measure the water before bed or in the beginning of the day. Scoop in the right amount of formula and shake gently. There will likely be foam, but turning your bottle on the side will keep the foam out of the nipple area where baby will be sucking.

Use a pre-packaged dispenser. There are single packages of formula that you can use to make four ounces at a time, but few babies eat exactly four ounces. While those are lovely to keep in the diaper bag for emergencies, pack a sectioned off formula container with the right number of scoops for your bottles. Then you need only turn the lid, open the top and pour the formula directly into the waiting bottle of water. If it needs to be warmed on the go, use a bottle warmer that plugs into the car or just stick it next to the skin for a few minutes.

Don’t expect formula to work miracles. Too often moms will try formula to help their children sleep better at night. While it can help fill a little tummy for an extra thirty minutes or an hour thanks to a longer digestive process, it’s not going to help a baby sleep through the night. For that matter, neither is cereal in a bottle.

Formula is constipating. Fight back with water. You’ll want to talk to your doctor about the best ways to fight off constipation for your little one, especially in regard to feeding, but formula is rich in protein and iron making it rather constipating. An easy fix is to include more water in the bottle. Instead of including four ounces of water for two scoops, include four and a half ounces.

The extra water dilutes the formula marginally and gives your baby a bit more oomph in the digestive department. Those who eat very little, however, should not sacrifice any nutritional value for a bit of extra water during meal times. Talk to your doctor to be sure.

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