Tips/Tricks You Need To Know When Feeding Baby
Your baby is coming and you’re starting to prepare. One of your most important tasks is going to be feeding your baby. As with most things parenting, the number of choices and the differing opinions can feel overwhelming. Really there are just 2 things you need to decide:
What to feed your baby
How to feed your baby
1) What to feed your baby:
There are 3 main options for food for baby. Breastmilk, powdered formula or pre-made formula. Each of these options has pros and cons to consider.
This is by far the best food a baby can eat. It provides far more than nutrition. There are antibodies to protect against illness and many other enzymes your baby can’t get any other way. When you’re not making milk yourself, getting breastmilk can be expensive and keeping it fresh can be tricky. Many gestational carriers are willing to pump milk for a time and give that to you and baby. You can also get breastmilk from a milk bank. Here in Colorado we have a great milk bank.
Just like when you are buying food for yourself--read the labels. Make sure you are happy with the ingredients of the formula. In our modern world we have the option of looking and ordering from anywhere around the world. Many families find the formulas made in Europe are made with higher quality ingredients.
This is the most convenient option. It keeps for a long time, it’s shelf-ready until you mix it with water. Once you find the kind you like you can stockpile or auto ship it. Because it is powdered and more processed, it does have a higher risk of contamination from the factories.
This formula is a little more expensive, and it doesn’t keep as well as but it usually has better quality ingredients. Because it’s pre-made, you eliminate a step in the preparation process. It takes up a lot of storage space and because of how much you need, most parents find it very difficult to use this option long term.
How to feed baby:
A bottle is the most obvious way most people think of to feed baby. Bottles are great, and there are many options available. What makes a bottle great is its ability to reduce the air intake while eating and the way it helps to support oral development.
The top 3 bottles on the market right now are Avent, Comotomo and Dr. Browns.
Avent has been on the market for over 20 years, and it is still considered one of the best bottles around.
Dr. Browns is known for its special valve that reduces the amount of air a baby will take in while eating.
The Comotomo is a much newer bottle that has taken the market by storm. Parents and babies are both loving this new bottle.
You will want to have about 10-15 bottles that hold 4-5 oz. Most babies only eat about 2-4 oz each time they eat. So while most bottles come in larger sizes, you don’t need the bigger bottles until baby is over 6 months old.
There is one other way you may not know you can use to feed your baby.
The SNS or Supplemental Nursing System: You may not realize but even if you’re not making milk, you can bring your baby to the breast to eat. This is a bag or plastic bottle with a small tube verses a nipple. The tube goes into the baby’s mouth while baby is latched onto the breast. This is a great option for people who want the experience of nursing. If this is an option you are interested in pursuing, it is important to talk with a lactation consultant or postpartum doula.