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Old 09-10-2006, 10:36 PM   #1
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Advice needed:) Need to introduce a bottle to a b****** nb

Okay...I know that this isn't necessarily the "ideal" situation, and I'm really hoping not to get flamed on this one.

I'm due in about 5 weeks, and plan to breastfeed. However, I will be gone 2 nights a week, for 7-8 hour stretches each. During that time DH will be home with the baby and DD, and will obviously need to feed the baby. This will start within one week of the baby's birth.

I have a Medela PISA and also a Avent manual (same kind I used with DD...it's an emergency back-up since I know I can use it successfully). We have a few Avent bottles, and are planning to buy a few Breastflow bottles.

So...I have 4 questions...

1) Is this even possible? Can a newborn successfully switch between breast and bottle? How can we make it easier?

2) If a bottle isn't a good option, what is a good alternative? This is DH's first baby and while he is confident and willing, I don't want to complicate matters too much for him.

3) How many times should I plan to pump in the 7-8 hours that I am gone?

4) How on earth am I going to pump enough early on while I'm establishing my supply to feed the baby for that long?

(The back-story: We had a partial molar miscarriage in 2004, and then struggled with infertility. In the meantime, I applied to law school. The same week that I got my BFP, I also found out that I had not only been accepted to law school, but had also qualified for a merit-based full scholarship. DH and I decided that there were definite benefits to the family, and worked it out so I could attend part-time in the evenings...but since the scholarship is merit-based, I can't afford to miss class.)

All suggestions will be very much appreciated. I'm a but lost on this one, and the LC that I called doesn't meet with moms until after the baby is born...because of timing I need the prepare before then

Thanks!

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Old 09-10-2006, 10:42 PM   #2
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Re: Advice needed:) Need to introduce a bottle to a b****** nb

My dd has been successfully switching beyween a bottle and boob since she was a week old. We had some latching issues early on and it was so painful at first that I would give my poor boobs a break once or twice a day and give her a bottle. Pumping wasn't a problem and it actually seemed to help my supply come in. We have been using the breastfeed bottles and they are wonderful! As far as pumping, I would pump one and feed from the other each time and we had enough, so generally I was pumping every 2-3 hours and freezing anything I didn't need right away. Hope this helps....
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Old 09-10-2006, 11:23 PM   #3
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Re: Advice needed:) Need to introduce a bottle to a b****** nb

I went through the same questions before DS was born...Momma, no worries!!! Ok, for the answers...

Q: Is this even possible? Can a newborn successfully switch between breast and bottle? How can we make it easier?:

A: Yes it is possible as the momma above me stated. My DS was 1 week old when I introduced him to a bottle! In fact although I know many say it is a big No-No I planned to introduce him to a bottle at 2 weeks old, but that changed when we had to go to the Dr's office, DS was actually 5 days old. He has not had any nipple confusion AT ALL and will take whatever feeds him!! He has 1-2 bottles every time I go to work which is 5 evenings a week.

Q: How many times should I plan to pump in the 7-8 hours that I am gone?

A: I actually don't have the oppertunity to pump while I'm at work, so I do it when I get home. BUT being that you do, after your baby is born, you'll have a schedule for the most part, even if it's not set in stone. My DS started out eating every 2 hrs for the first 2 weeks. You're going to want to pump whenever the baby is due to eat or at least you will want to in the beginning otherwise you'll probably end up hurting and leaking everywhere!!

Q: How on earth am I going to pump enough early on while I'm establishing my supply to feed the baby for that long?

A: You'll work this one out when you have your baby. I know that's not much of an answer. Before DS was born in March I was confused at even how I would know when to feed him, how much to feed him, etc...but it's amazing how your motherly instincts kick in and you'll have no problems. I personally don't get enough when I pump to last DS if he has a second bottle while I'm at work so I give him formula. I really wish I could STRICTLY give him breastmilk but realize that the only way to do that is pump numerous times a day, which would mean I'd be washing the pump and re-using it many times a day only getting about 2oz at a time. So I do it at night after 6 hrs of not feeding him and manage to get 8oz being that is how much he is eating at this time...

These are just a few things that work for us. I plan to breastfeed until he is at least 1 year old. You will know what to do as you get to know your baby.

Oh and BTW, we LOVE, LOVE, LOVE our Avent bottles ) And pacifiers too, they're the only ones he'll take
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Old 09-11-2006, 02:54 PM   #4
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Re: Advice needed:) Need to introduce a bottle to a b****** nb

My DD #2 had her first bottle at 1 week, used the wide mouth type and she did fine. When she was 3 weeks old we took a 12 hr trip and I pumped on the road and bottle fed her.

Actually if you start pumping the first week, you will have more milk because that is when your milk is coming in and your regular supply isn't established. But, with pumping too, you will be more likely to be engorged if you skip pumping.

Your baby will probably fall into his own little routine of nursing, my DD nurses every 2 hrs (sometimes more!) during the day and 3 hrs at night. She has pretty much done this from several days old on her own.
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Old 09-11-2006, 04:01 PM   #5
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Re: Advice needed:) Need to introduce a bottle to a b****** nb

We had some issues this time with gaining weight, latch, painful nipples, etc. I use shields, so it may help the bottle situation a little, but we did have to give them ebm in a bottle and supplement some formula in the first week.
My LCs gave me some "pur" (sp?) nipples that worked w/the bottles I have with my PIS. SHe said those are the preferred nipples to use if you have to (uh, can't tell you where to get them - try an LC?). After that she said we would have to use Avent if they weren't doing well with the Pur.
I don't have experience with the rest of it. But they can do it!
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Old 09-11-2006, 06:45 PM   #6
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Re: Advice needed:) Need to introduce a bottle to a b****** nb

I had tons of extra milk in the beginning - way more extra than I do now, with an established supply. What you might want to do is, from day 1, do a pumping session every day at some time when you have a lot of extra milk. That way you won't have to try to get a specific amount in between your classes - you can just pump enough to keep comfortable and maintain supply, without concentrating on how many ounces you need.

I pumped every morning when I woke up, and because I had so much extra milk in the mornings, I'd get 8-10 oz in a single pumping session. Go figure - we had *all* that milk, and ds never would take a bottle...

2 nights a week really shouldn't cause a problem for your supply as long as you pump and don't have any other problems with nursing (IMHO, anyway, but I am not a LC). I would definately work really hard on making sure that your dc has a good latch. If you nursed your other dc, it will be easier because you won't both be figuring it out at the same time.

If you *are* having latch issues, you might look into syringe feeding - I've heard it works well even with newborns, and probably wouldn't be much harder for dh than a bottle.

PS - you won't get flamed for this sort of thing here - it's great that you are so comitted to b****** even though you are going to have to do some juggling, and it might be a little hard at first. Once you have some milk stored up in the freezer, it won't be nearly as stressful.
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Old 09-11-2006, 06:56 PM   #7
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Re: Advice needed:) Need to introduce a bottle to a b****** nb

Congrats on your babe and law school!!!

It certainly can be done! no worries (and no flaming!!)

1) Is this even possible? Can a newborn successfully switch between breast and bottle? How can we make it easier?

I breastfed my first (twins) and from the first week on Dh took them for about 4 hours a night to let me sleep and they'd get a bottle. They had NO trouble switching back and forth. And since they usually had the breast, they didn't get to perfer the bottle. I think the same will happen with yours. I found it MUCH harder to intoduce a bottle later (like 5 months - as was the case with my youngest. She would not take it.. )


2) If a bottle isn't a good option, what is a good alternative? This is DH's first baby and while he is confident and willing, I don't want to complicate matters too much for him.
I used a bottle. I think it's personal preference. They do make the bottles that look like a breast.. but I found the playtex nurser bottles worked well for us.

3) How many times should I plan to pump in the 7-8 hours that I am gone? I'd say at least once.. maybe twice - depending on your feeding schedule at home. If you fed your dc right before leaving and right upon your return you can probably get away with once. When I worked I tried to pump at a minimum of every 4 hours to keep my supply going.

4) How on earth am I going to pump enough early on while I'm establishing my supply to feed the baby for that long?

I too had tons of extra that first month or so of nursing (when the milk comes in). I'd feed on one side and pump on the other (with a singeton babe with the twins they pretty much drained everyting I could make)
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Old 09-12-2006, 06:21 AM   #8
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Re: Advice needed:) Need to introduce a bottle to a b****** nb

1) Is this even possible? Can a newborn successfully switch between breast and bottle? How can we make it easier? Yes, it is possible. My dd is only 2 weeks old and has no issues at all with switching between breast and bottle. The main thing that made it easier was finding the bottle that worked best. Lilly seems to only like the playtex and the Gerber nipples (can't remember what they are called but they are oddly shaped if that helps), both are NB flow and latex, not silicone.

2) If a bottle isn't a good option, what is a good alternative? This is DH's first baby and while he is confident and willing, I don't want to complicate matters too much for him. I think a bottle would be fine. We give 1-2 a day (generally at her 11pm feeding because she is so darn cranky that she won't latch on and on occasion one more if the need arises. I can not think of any other alternative.

3) How many times should I plan to pump in the 7-8 hours that I am gone? You will need to pump twice, possibly 3 times but not likely. I pump once in the am and once in the pm and I produce enough for about 3-4 bottles (2 1/2 ozs each bottle). Lilly breastfeeds every 2 hours but when we give her it from a bottle she will go 4 hours before the next feeding. I think your body will let you know, mine certainly does.

4) How on earth am I going to pump enough early on while I'm establishing my supply to feed the baby for that long? It was easier than I thought. My breast got VERY full on day 5 and that's when I HAD to pump, since then it's just routine. I am freezing most of it for the future. Your body will make what you need so once your boobs fill up, pump and save and your body will make more.


I also wanted to let you know that I have one of those Breastflow bottles if you'd like it. I just got it on Friday and then I realized she will not use a silicone nipple. It was steralized but never used and it was like $6 so I hate to just throw it away. LMK
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Old 09-12-2006, 07:30 AM   #9
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Re: Advice needed:) Need to introduce a bottle to a b****** nb

These mamas have great advice. I was told to wait and daughter still will not take a bottle at 10 months!! So try it earlier IMO. That is what I am going to do with the next one. Good luck with law school and the babe!!!
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Old 09-12-2006, 08:35 AM   #10
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Re: Advice needed:) Need to introduce a bottle to a b****** nb

My three oldest dc never had a problem taking a bottle from birth, and it only became an issue when I discontinued the bottle and tried to reintroduce it, or gave it very rarely. We never had problems with latching on as a result of giving a bottle.

Ds2 had a bottle and dd3 had a cup of formula (I wanted a bottle but the nurses refused) before they ever nursed (delivery complications). ds1 may have also, as I know I wasn't able to nurse him for hours after delivery, but I don't remember. My milk takes awhile to come in so ds1 ended up dehydrated and had to take a bottle of formula after nursing when he was 4 days old, for about a day. I went back to school when ds1 was three weeks old, so dh gave him bottles of EBM a few nights a week. As long as we were consistent with giving a bottle, we had no problems. I only gave bottles to ds about once a week, and at 6 weeks he started refusing them. He had issues with feeding in general, screaming hysterically whenever I tried to nurse him, and ended up weaning to formula twice, around 3-4 months when he was willing to take a bottle again, and again at 5-6 months. Dd3 I stopped giving a bottle to when my milk came in, and regretted it because she then refused a bottle when I tried to reintroduce it at 4 months, and never took one again. I had a hard time finding babysitters who would watch her for a few hours even at 8 months, because she wouldn't take a bottle or cup. Dd4 has sensory issues, and always gagged on bottles. I don't know what I would have done if I couldn't have nursed her because she couldn't handle a bottle from birth. The nurses in the hospital would just jam it in her mouth, but to me she looked like she was gagging.

I had tons of milk early on, so pumping was never a problem with ds1. He could guzzle milk, and when he was a month old I went out for about 6 hours with 20oz of milk or so that I had pumped before I left and he went through it all and was still hungry. When I came home at night from school (only gone for one feeding that I skipped) I would nurse him on one side and pump on the other with the Avent Isis, and was usually able to get about 12 oz. of milk in the bottles. I did find that since I would fill up one bottle, stopping pumping to switch bottles seemed to make the milk coming out slow down.
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