Feeding Your Newborn
The first nutrition choice you make for your kid is how to feed them. You may decide what is best for you and your baby by using these suggestions for breastfeeding and bottle feeding.
Or a bottle?
For about the first six months, babies should nurse for the first year of life and even longer if desired when they begin eating solid meals.
Not all new mothers, however, are able to or desire to breastfeed. The mother’s comfort level with nursing and her lifestyle are often the deciding factors in whether she decides to breastfeed or bottle-feed a baby. For a mother and her child, nursing may not always be advised. Consult your paediatrician if you have any concerns about whether to breastfeed or bottle-feed your child.
Whether you decide to breastfeed or bottle-feed, keep in mind that your baby’s nutritional and emotional requirements will be satisfied.
Advantages of breastfeeding
The advantages of breastfeeding a newborn are many. The fact that breast milk is the ideal diet for a baby’s digestive system may be the most significant. It is readily digested and contains the nutrients a baby needs. Commercial formulas attempt to mimic breast milk and get quite close, but they can’t quite duplicate it.
Antibodies found in breast milk can shield newborns against a variety of illnesses, such as diarrhoea and ear and lung infections. Babies who are breastfed have a lower risk of developing diseases including diabetes, high cholesterol, asthma, and allergies. Additionally, breastfeeding may reduce a child’s risk of weight gain.
Mums may benefit from breast feeding as well. Because it burns calories, it may aid nursing mothers in losing the pregnancy weight. Breastfeeding may also protect against ovarian and breast cancer.
Breastfeeding requires minimal preparation and takes less time than formula feeding, according to some mothers. You also won’t run out of breast milk in the middle of the night. Breastfeeding is also reasonably priced. In addition to purchasing nursing bras and pads, a medela breast pump covered by insurance, or other supplies, nursing women do need to eat more. However, these costs are often lower than the price of the formula.
Numerous emotional requirements are satisfied by breastfeeding for both mothers and infants. Skin-to-skin contact may strengthen the emotional bond, and giving a baby a balanced diet can give new mothers peace of mind about their capacity to take care of their child.
Obstacles to Breastfeeding
Why doesn’t every woman opt to breastfeed when there are so many benefits to doing so?
A mother must devote a lot of time to breastfeeding. Some new mothers feel constrained by the requirements of a breastfeeding infant. Newborns who are breastfed have a tendency to eat more often than newborns who are given formula because breast milk is simple to digest. This implies that during the first few weeks, mums may be needed as often as every two to three hours. Although this might be exhausting, newborns soon start to nurse less often and sleep through the night.
Some new mums must return to their outside jobs or may sometimes put their children away for various reasons. Some choose formula feeding so that other babysitters may give the child a bottle. In order to ensure that their infants get the advantages of breastfeeding even when their mothers are not around to do so, mothers who choose to do so may use a breast pump to collect breast milk to be given to their babies in a bottle.
It’s possible that fathers and other family members may want to help feed the infant. Dad or the kids may want to be nearby while mum is nursing. They may participate by helping mum feel comfortable or by offering a burp cloth when necessary.
When the breastfeeding process is going well, family members may assist by providing the infant breast milk that has been pumped in a bottle when the mother needs a break. Click here to choose your favourite breast pump online..
Some mothers could experience embarrassment or anxiety during nursing. Once an effective nursing procedure is established, these emotions often subside. Getting suggestions from those who have experienced the situation might be helpful. The majority of hospitals and birthing facilities provide new mothers with thorough breastfeeding training. You may ask questions or get in contact with a lactation consultant or a breastfeeding support group via your paediatrician, nurse practitioner, or nurse.
The capacity of a woman to breastfeed may sometimes be impacted by her health. For instance, mothers receiving treatment for cancer and those living with HIV shouldn’t breastfeed.
Consult your doctor about whether it’s okay to breastfeed if you routinely use medication for a medical condition or other issue. If you have to temporarily stop nursing, keep pumping breast milk to keep the supply of milk up. If you are able to, continue breastfeeding if you or your infant are unwell. If you have any worries, see your doctor.
Breastfeeding could not be an option under some circumstances, such as when a baby is very ill or delivered early. Mothers should discuss expressing and storing milk with their child’s paediatrician. An infant who is unable to nurse will often get breast milk via a feeding tube or bottle.
Some mothers with inverted nipples could struggle to breastfeed, but a lactation expert can typically assist them. Similarly, women who have undergone breast augmentation surgery ought should be able to effectively breastfeed. If you are worried, see your doctor.
Wait until your infant has become acclimated to nursing and is proficient before introducing pacifiers or bottles. Until a baby is around 3–4 weeks old, lactation experts advise against giving artificial nipples of any type (including pacifiers).
Get More Information About Formula Feeding
The advantages of formula feeding
Infant formula made commercially is a healthy substitute for breast milk. Mums may have greater freedom and flexibility while bottle-feeding, and it may be simpler to monitor the infant’s nutrition.
A baby receiving formula may need fewer feedings than one receiving breast milk since infants digest formula more slowly than breast milk. Formula feeding may also make it simpler to feed the baby in public, and it allows the father and other family members to assist, which can strengthen the link between them and the baby.
Formula feeding restrictions
Both bottle feeding and nursing have certain requirements. It requires planning and organisation to bottle feed, particularly if you want to take your child out. Although infant formula purchased in stores might be rather pricey, you shouldn’t attempt to produce your own at home.
It’s crucial to ensure that you have adequate formula on hand as well as clean, usable bottles.
Following are some suggestions for formula feeding:
- When making the formula, pay close attention to the label’s instructions. Don’t use more water than necessary.
- Bottles that have been left out of the refrigerator for more than an hour and any formula that a baby hasn’t finished should be thrown away.
- Formula bottles that have been prepared may be kept in the fridge for up to 24 hours and gently reheated immediately before feeding. While a warming formula is not required, most newborns like it.
- You may reheat a bottle of baby formula by placing it in a pan of warm water or by putting it under running hot water. Never reheat a bottle of formula (or breast milk) in a microwave. The bottle’s uneven heating and “hot spots” might cause a baby’s mouth to get burned.
- How Frequently Do Babies Eat?
During the first several weeks of life, your baby will breastfeed 8 to 12 times a day. Mothers may wish to start by feeding for 10-15 minutes on each breast, and then modify as necessary.
When your infant is hungry, which is often every 1-3 hours, you should breastfeed. As babies become older, they’ll breastfeed less often and go longer intervals without eating. Formula-fed newborns typically consume around 2-3 ounces every 2–4 hours. Infants shouldn’t go more than 4-5 hours between feedings.
Indicators that a baby is hungry include:
- Moving their heads from side to side, sticking out their tongues, putting their palms and fists to their mouths, and sucking on their mothers’ breasts with their lips.
- There is no need for a feeding plan; both you and your child will develop routines. When a baby is hungry or tired, they are aware of it and will let its parents know. When your baby shows indications of being full, such as slowing down, spitting out the bottle or unlatching from the breast, shutting their mouth, or moving their head away from the breast or bottle, stop feeding them.
Babies may go longer between feedings as they become older and start to consume more at each feeding. Your baby could sometimes be more ravenous than normal. Continue nursing or feeding as needed. Breastfeeding boosts milk production, so nursing mums need not worry. Your supply of breast milk will adapt to your baby’s need for it.
How Much Is My Newborn Eating?
New parents often question if their infants are eating enough.
Infants are eating enough if they:
- Look content, have 6 to 8 wet diapers each day, defecate regularly, sleep well, are attentive while awake, and are gaining weight.
- When a baby is fussing, crying, seems to be hungry, doesn’t seem to be satiated after eating, and has less wet diapers, it’s possible that they aren’t receiving enough to eat. Call your doctor if you’re worried that your child isn’t eating enough.
A baby should not vomit after feeding; yet, most babies “spit up” a tiny quantity after eating or while burping. Vomiting immediately after each meal might indicate an allergy, digestive issue, or other condition that requires medical attention. Call your doctor if you are worried that your child is spitting up too much.
Should Newborns Take Supplemental Nutrition?
For babies, breast milk has the ideal ratio of vitamins and iron that is readily absorbed. With the exception of vitamin D, a healthy newborn nursing from a healthy mother does not need additional vitamins or dietary supplements. Vitamin D supplementation for breastfed infants should start during the first few days of birth and continue until they consume adequate vitamin D-fortified milk or formula (after one year of age).
Mothers who breastfeed and maintain a vegetarian diet devoid of animal products need vitamin B12 supplementation.
The correct amount of vitamins and minerals are present in iron-fortified formula, thus supplements are often unnecessary. A vitamin D supplement may be necessary for infants who consume less than 1 litre, or roughly a quart, of formula each day.
During a baby’s first six months, it’s often not required to give them water, juice, or other meals. Infants get all the nourishment they need from breast milk and formula up until they start eating solid meals. If you have any concerns about feeding your infant, see your doctor.