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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
DH and I have a 3 wk old son that is exclusively breastfed. However, due to various reasons, I have to be away from him for 3-4 hrs at a time once or twice a week so we started pumping and giving him breastmilk by bottle once a day. DH is the only other person that will be feeding him and I won't be feeding by bottle.<br><br>
Cameron is becoming a big boy, we went in for his 2 wk check up and the doctor said he was gaining average of 2 oz a day (29 oz in 15 days) which is phenomenal. We have no spitup or reflux issues and his latch on breast is fair to good (I have a let down that tends to drown him a bit).<br><br>
So, according to EVERYTHING I've read, we should be giving him <b>2-3 oz</b> by bottle. <i>Yeah, that ain't happenin'.</i> The first time DH gave him by bottle, he ate <b>10 oz</b> and then DH gave him to me to finish off at breast because he was still hungry, screaming and sucking on his fingers. We called a lc Saturday morning and she said that we needed to 'slow' down his feedings (ie: take him off bottle sev times during <b>2-3 oz</b> feeding and burp him, but don't give him a whole bottle)...DH tried that tonight and had a screaming kid on his hands. <b>12 oz</b> later, baby is still screaming and drank from me for another 1/2 hour. There was no spit-up, nothing to suggest that he ate too much. Once he finished eating, he fussed a bit (this is normal, it was during the 'witching' hour of 8pm) and then went to sleep with a pacifier (he will rarely take one of those, only when he's full and still sucking on fingers).<br><br>
SOOOO, we are all frustrated. My gut says to just give him as much as he'll drink by bottle, but I don't know if that will cause problems later or what. He is a happy healthy baby otherwise<br><br>
EDIT: Adding to clarify that we do use a slow flow nipple we got from a breastfeeding store. The fussiness we see is always in the 7-8 pm time-frame whether we use bottle (have only done that twice) or not. He's done THAT since birth.<br><br>
I definitely think that drinking from a bottle is not very 'stimulating' for him as sucking from breast is...That being said, my being gone for 4 hrs several times a week is in exchange for my resignation from a full-time job. I have no intentions of returning to full-time work and the 4 hr time frames I am gone are at a horse ranch 1/2 mile away from my house so at least we're close and they're only 3-4 times a week. He is being breastfed all other times.
 

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jeez! That's a lot!<br><br>
When I leave ds with dh the most he's ever taken is 4oz and he's about 21lbs and 6 months old!
 

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At this point I wouldn't do a bottle every day. If he's switching back and forth fine then I'd only do one a week or so until you need to be away. That said, you could weigh before and after nursing to see what he's getting that way and plan bottles accordingly.<br><br>
-Angela
 

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If that was his first time by bottle... he does not know how much he needs because it probably came out a lot faster than it does from you. The first time I gave dd a bottle she drank 4 oz. Way too much!!! Try a bottle and nipple that have a slower flow so that it takes longer for him to eat it. He should only have 1-2 oz at 3-4 weeks old. It's hard for him to adjust so you'll have to help him. I use the playtex vent air bottles for dd.<br><br>
The first time I gave her a bottle I took the bottle from dd every 30 seconds and patted her back then gave it back. She fussed a little, but it helped her understand how much she actually needs. After she drank from the bottle 3 times she understood 2 oz was plenty.<br><br>
After dd's first bottle, I felt like I neglected her. It sounds weird, but I felt like she didnt get the cuddle time that she needs. So, I hold her and rock her for about a half hour afterwards so she feels the same comfort she gets from being bf. Maybe it is more for my sake than hers...<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
Also, he might be going through his growth spurt right now and maybe that's why he ate so much??
 

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Those are unbelievable amounts of milk for a 3 week old, or ANY age baby for that matter. I am shocked he wasn't vomiting! I totally second changing the nipple. Get a slow flow made for newborns and slow down his feedings. The average amount in oz is half their weight. So if he is 10lbs he could take up to 5oz at a feeding. DS was 12lbs at 1 month, and he would not take more than 4oz if he took an occasional bottle. Now at 17lb and 4 1/2 months old, he will take 7- 71/2 oz per bottle while I am at work.
 

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Yeah, I'd weigh him before and after bf to help plan how much he needs in a bottle. My DD never took more than 4 oz. at a time. That sounds like way, way, way too much for a baby his age. Sometimes little babies seems to be hungrily chowing down with a bottle when actually they are just trying to keep up with the different flow. Maybe he is fussy after bottle feeding b/c it's just too much too fast?
 

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DEfinitely go with your gut, mama! The books say what is normal for an average baby or child... they don't address the differences we encounter in our personal experiences with our children. You know him better than a LC and probably better than DH.<br><br>
One thought I had while reading your original post is that it's entirely likely your DS is not getting the KIND of suckling he needs from the bottle. BFing is harder and requires more effort and even skill on the part of the baby. It's one of the BIG reasons it's supposed to stimulate brain development and cause so MANY more synapses to form... because it's harder and requires MUCH more muscle movement all over the baby's head. So, it could be that he's just not having that stimulation need met by the bottle! I know with my DD that was a big issue with bottles when I had to work. No matter how full or empty my boobs were when I got home from work, she nursed for about an hour and then every hour after that until she went to sleep all the way until she was a year when I quit!<br><br>
hope others posters ideas help. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I agree only do the bottle when you have to. The action of BF is so much better on their jaws. Dont give up BF while returning to work. I pumped a lot before and after returning to work, and I had to work 24 shifts(due to being a firefighter/paramedic) so keep it up.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Wow! That is a lot... My babies have never taken more than 4 oz. at a time...<br><br>
Slow flow and hopefully baby will learn to wait for mom.<br><br>
My super-eater did this (with some encouragement from the sitter), so now he eats a lot more at night than when I am away.
 

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We found the Second Nature nipple to be the slowest-- it was really work for DS....he had a nice slow meal <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
After a LC reco, we tried the Avent 3 month, variable nipple on SLOW, but it still flowed too fast (she said it had worked really well for preemies in the NICU)....even without sucking it was flowing. He finished his 3 ozs in about 3 minutes (if I had let him, perhaps he too would have eaten 10oz!), so we scrapped that.<br><br>
And re: PP OBnurse.....I never knew that baby's should have about half their weight. The other PP had said that 3-4 ozs was enough for a new baby. But what would you both recommend if the baby was (for ex.) born at 10 lbs and weighed 12 by 3 weeks. I can't imagine a newborn staying awake long enough to eat that much! Just curious.....
 

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No way does a newborn need to eat 5 oz at a feeding (much less 12). Their stomachs are the size of their fists! Like a golf ball.<br><br>
Your baby may have not been fussing for more milk from the bottle, but fussing b/c of nipple confusion. You took him and calmed him with your breast after the gigantic bottle feeding. He didn't need more milk then, he wanted his familiar mommy boobie.<br><br>
When do you go back to work? It is recommended not to intro bottles or pacifiers til 4-6 weeks.
 

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OMG, 12 oz??!!<br><br>
Please realize that when you turn a bottle upside down it drips without stopping. Babies will often keep eating so as not to choke on the liquid. Especially since they don't know how to stop the flow. He may have been upset because of a tummy ache and wanted to soothe by sucking, not necessarily eating more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Am a little frustrated, feel like I'm being told that I'm being 'bad' for leaving the short time that I do. I also have clarified several things in the post so they make more sense as I would assume they haven't been. Please understand that I do a lot of research on my own and am really trying to make it a more pleasant experience for both DH and DS. So far, that hasn't happened.<br><br><b>I am already back at work</b>. Going back <b>now</b> 4 hrs 3-4 times/wk was in exchange for returning full-time at 6 wks. The reason I was home when baby was fed the two times was b/c DH had just started feeding him when I came home.<br><br><b>DS always fusses at 8 pm</b>. He doesn't cry, just squirms 'round and whines for 'bout 30-60 min. This is done on nights when he is breastfed and bottlefed.<br><br><b>We are not having latch issues</b> at my breast with using the bottle and pacifier.<br><br>
After the first initial feeding that DH did, we talked to lc who said to slow down by taking bottlefrom him during the next bottlefeeding. DH did taht and spent 1/2 hr feeding. He screamed and screamed every time DH took bottle away and would not take pacifier or other comfort measures (swaddle, diaper change, swinging/rocking in arms). DH was in tears.<br><br><b>We are using the slow-flow nipple</b> recommended by the breasfeeding store we have in town. They are who we have the lc through.<br><br>
We haven't tried a bottle again because of the fiasco and because I'm not working this week due to DH's new job. We are also terrified of it being an ordeal again so we are trying to get DS to take a pacifier a little more consistently so we can use that after a bottle feeding.<br><br><b>We are doing the best we can right now</b>.<br><br>
Jen
 

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Fireshifter,<br><br>
I don't see that anyone is criticizing you for returning to work and I'm sorry that you feel that way. On the contrary, we are trying to support you.<br><br>
Your question was "how much breastmilk by bottle?" You say your gut tells you to let him drink as much as he wants. I'm all for gut feelings, but 12 oz is not a healthy amount for a newborn or an 18 month old.<br><br>
I know its very difficult to have an inconsolable baby, but think about the possibility of intestinal distress after consuming that much milk.
 

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Jen, all I can say to you is I am so sorry you have to return to work so soon. In the best interest of your 3 week old baby (who might just be having a little growth spurt) I would skip the bottle completely or only give 1-2 ounces to hold him over until you return. My reasons are:<br><br>
3-4 hours isn't very long.<br><br>
this is still a very delicate time for your milk supply and for the baby getting nipple confused etc.<br><br>
there are a lot of other ways to soothe baby and usually the first thing a caregiver wants to do is give a bottle when there a lot of other things that might make baby uncomfortable.<br><br>
the baby will miss you and want to nurse when you return for food and comfort, so if he is filling up while you are gone then it is more uncomfortable since they want to nurse but full from a bottle<br><br>
other babies will wait a long time for a breast and skip bottles. By a long time I mean 6 to 8 hours even. Look at some of the threads about babies who won't take bottles.<br><br>
if you are consistently gone the same time each day for only 4 hours, baby will most likely learn to make up for it at other times of the day, look up reverse-cycle nursing. Many babes whose mother is gone 8 hrs will wait for mama to return before eating. When I work a 12 hour shift my 3 month old will only consume about 4-8 ounces the whole day, and she doesn't even act unhappy, she just prefers to nurse.<br><br>
That is my 2cents. Just like any other input take what you like, leave what you don't.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>GatorNNP</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">this is still a very delicate time for your milk supply and for the baby getting nipple confused etc.<br><br>
there are a lot of other ways to soothe baby and usually the first thing a caregiver wants to do is give a bottle when there a lot of other things that might make baby uncomfortable.<br><br>
the baby will miss you and want to nurse when you return for food and comfort, so if he is filling up while you are gone then it is more uncomfortable since they want to nurse but full from a bottle<br><br>
other babies will wait a long time for a breast and skip bottles. By a long time I mean 6 to 8 hours even. Look at some of the threads about babies who won't take bottles.<br><br>
if you are consistently gone the same time each day for only 4 hours, baby will most likely learn to make up for it at other times of the day, look up reverse-cycle nursing. Many babes whose mother is gone 8 hrs will wait for mama to return before eating. When I work a 12 hour shift my 3 month old will only consume about 4-8 ounces the whole day, and she doesn't even act unhappy, she just prefers to nurse.<br><br>
That is my 2cents. Just like any other input take what you like, leave what you don't.</div>
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</tr></table></div>
Thank you, I think this is kind of what I was trying to figure out,despite my title to original post. Sorry to everyone if I seemed like an ingrate, this mommy-thing is hard work. :0)<br><br>
Jen
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2"> I'm so sorry that dh had a hard time feeding ds. If it makes you feel better my dh has problems too. He was so frustrated when I left dd home with him for 3 hours. She is such a mommy's girl. He tried to give the bottle to dd, but dd kept going in for his boob so he refused to be home with her alone again until she got used to the bottle better. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
With that said, it took dd 2 weeks to understand the bottle... After that dh will be fine. It's frustrating at first, especially for men. They get upset faster than we do when they see their lil ones cry. Good luck to you mama!
 

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One more mini-tip. If your baby is refusing the pacifier, many bfed babies love to suck on one of Dad's fingers. Let baby suck it in, pad side up. It is skin so feels (and probably tastes) more comforting than one more piece of silicone.<br><br>
Good luck. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/innocent.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shy">
 
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