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When oh when can I start trying a bottle?

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
For the sake of my sanity I need to have the option of leaving for an HOUR once in a while. My DS is only 2 weeks old...I'm sure it's probably too soon to try pumping and giving DH a bottle to try on him. I just can't be away from him at ALL because his sleeping/eating is unpredictable and don't want to leave DH with a screaming baby and no way to soothe him.
post #2 of 33
6 weeks, I believe. That is if the baby will even take a bottle.



It gets better, really.
post #3 of 33
Bottles are fine "when breastfeeding is well established" which is typically anywhere from 3-6 weeks. And yes, don't be surprised if the baby rejects the bottle at first.
post #4 of 33
There will be a lot of people who will disagree with me, but with my kids I started with one bottle a day early on. With DS I had to go back to work (I work 4 hours every morning) at 6 weeks PP, so we started with one bottle a day at 4 weeks. It took him a few days to get used to it, but never had nipple confusion. With DD, I had to go back at 2 weeks PP. It's cruel that I had to go back so soon, but that's life. We started with one bottle each morning (2 hours after I nursed her and 2 hours before I would be home to nurse her again) when she was only 1 week old. It never hurt our nursing relationship, and she never had nipple confusion. I had extra milk in the fridge/freezer in case she needed an extra bottle. She easily went back and forth between the two without any problems. Maybe it was because it was just the one bottle a day, so she never got used to how easy the milk would come with the bottle compared to the breast?? I don't know. But it worked for us! I never gave either of my babies formula - only expressed breast milk. DD is still nursing and has never had formula or cow's milk yet.

I know every baby is different. But my sister had to go back to work early on too. She is an orthodontist and owns her own practice. With both of her kids, so started them at 2-3 weeks with one bottle a day and increased those bottles of expressed milk as needed when she had to go back full time. Neither of her kids had any problem switching back and forth either.
post #5 of 33
I've een away from my ds a total of 4 hours--and thats 15 minutes here and there, never longer. You can start a bottle if you have a good bfing relationship, but I prefer not to in the early months.
post #6 of 33
I started giving a bottle about 2 weeks.
If you leave it to 6 weeks, there is a real risk the baby will reject the bottle totally.
Just watch out for nipple confusion. If your baby is bf most of the time with only one bottle a day i don't think you will have a problem. I know far more people who have a breastfed baby who refuses to take a bottle at all than ones who refuse the breast!
What I used to do was give about 2oz of expressed milk every evening - that way I knew ds would take a bottle if he had to when I was away.

When I left ds with dh in the early months I would leave 3 bottles with 2oz in them -ds was big "sucker" (but didn't like pacifiers) and that worked out fine- as long as he could suck on something with milk coming out he was contented
post #7 of 33
My thought is to wait until at least 6 weeks, preferably longer, so it doesn't interfere with bf'ing. Do you have a good sling or mei tai? That helps SO much in the early days and you can get around AND be with baby. Good luck!
post #8 of 33
The consensus among the experts seems to be three weeks (if all is going well, no nipple pain, good supply).

Six weeks is late, you risk them rejecting it.
post #9 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoulaLMT View Post
For the sake of my sanity I need to have the option of leaving for an HOUR once in a while. My DS is only 2 weeks old...I'm sure it's probably too soon to try pumping and giving DH a bottle to try on him. I just can't be away from him at ALL because his sleeping/eating is unpredictable and don't want to leave DH with a screaming baby and no way to soothe him.
i did it at 12 days...left DD with my mom and dad for about 2 hours while DH and i went out to dinner. we had no problems from this. i think it's a personal call; once you are confident in your nursing relationship, go for it
post #10 of 33
I started DS on a bottle at 5 weeks, as I was planning to return to work at 7 weeks. I never used bottles consistenly with the girls.

Would you say that BF is already well established, or do you still feel like you're both learning how to nurse well? You might be OK introducing a bottle now, or you might be better off waiting another week or two.

Also remember that bottles aren't the only ways to feed ebm to a baby. I wouldn't hesitate to feed a newborn with a syringe or finger feeder if for some reason BF wasn't possible for that particular feeding. This can certianly work for a 2 week old as well, as long as your DH (or mother or whoever is with the baby) is willing to use whatever feeding method you've selected and you're able to pump an ounce or so before leaving.
post #11 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by forestrymom View Post
I've een away from my ds a total of 4 hours--and thats 15 minutes here and there, never longer.
i never find comments like this to be very helpful when people post things like the OP posted. it's great that you are comfortable only being away from your baby for 15 minutes at a time during the first 4 months, but for many people that's not possible, and for many others, it's not desirable. FWIW, i fall into both camps
post #12 of 33
The first few weeks really can be miserable.
We started a bottle at around 5-6 weeks (would have tried earlier but the holidays got in the way).

In the meantime, try carving out some time for yourself anyway you can. After you feed the baby, hand him off to dh and take a nice long shower, or go for a walk, or have some really good chocolate or whatever. You're there in case of "emergency", but can get some solitude, plus it will help dh learn how to be a good parent too.
post #13 of 33
Breastfeeding-supportive sources say wait 6 weeks.

-Angela
post #14 of 33
We started at 3.5 weeks with my DD because I will be returning to work at 8 weeks, but I did make sure that our BFing relationship was well established before we introduced the bottle. FWIW, we use the new Medela bottles and have not experienced any problems switching from bottle to breast. Good luck.

Jenn
post #15 of 33
i thought it was 6 weeks.
post #16 of 33
kellymom says 3-4 weeks. That is what I tried and it worked for about a month. Then she refused a bottle. Next baby did same. :


http://www.kellymom.com/bf/pumping/a...e-feeding.html
post #17 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by alegna View Post
Breastfeeding-supportive sources say wait 6 weeks.

-Angela
Oh, silly me, I thought kellymom, Dr Newman and LLL were breastfeeding supportive organisations. They all say three weeks, and no later than six.

http://www.kellymom.com/bf/pumping/a...e-feeding.html
http://breastfeeding.suite101.com/ar...arting_bottles
post #18 of 33
i think 4-6 weeks. i wouldnt do it before 2 weeks personally. plus i just never wanted to leave my baby until he was about a year old. i know that sounds weird but its just how i felt. i have two friends who both nurse their kids and they both left baby for a couple hours at 2 weeks. so to each their own. the one friend has been successfully nursing for 2 years now, the other for 5 months.
post #19 of 33
I waited until DD was 10 weeks and then had the DH give her a bottle. She did fine.
post #20 of 33
We started our DS with a bottle at 4 weeks (one per day from DH). There were no problems with nipple confusion until we used a pacifier on a long car trip. Directly after having had the pacifier this one time, he couldn't get the hang of my nipple at the next feeding and I wound up with a horrible blister! We have not used a pacifier since and the bottle continues to work just fine (once sometimes twice a day when I work)
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