switching from breast to bottle (also in bio)

Biba has been exclusively breast fed and is now 9 weeks, I have taken the decision (not lightly) to stop this at 12 weeks as i am just finding it all to difficult. Try as i might i just cant feed her in public, even in designated breastfeeding areas - this is a problem that i cant get over and is starting to make my life very lonely as i barely get to go out for more than an hour before having to turn back as she is due a feed. I also spend some days chained to the sofa as in the last coupld of weeks she has been poorly and feeding more frequently.

The real questions that i have are has anyone else tackled this? I would like to move her on to formula rather than expressing but dont know which formula to choose, what would any of you recommend? How do i know how much formula to give at each feed as i have no idea how much she takes from my breast? How should i start to introduce bottle feeds - she has taken a bottle only a few times of ebm (usually when she had just thrown up a full feed and i needed to top her up again before bed) and to be honest she has not been a fan, i have TT CTN bottles.

Any help gratefully received!

moominmama x


  • Hi Moonminmama,

    I can help with some of your questions.

    In terms which formula to choose, it really is up to you. My LO was early and when in SCBU, my expressed milk needed to be supplemented with formula. The nurses asked what brand I wanted to use and I said I didn't have a clue as hadn't got so far as researching that! They suggested Aptamil as being the best (though in honesty I'm not sure for what reason?). When we came out of hospital we continued to top up with Aptamil as it was what she'd been used to. Of course it is the most expensive of them! But it really is up to you any of them would be fine.

    How much? I would take a look on the tin, there are guides of how much for baby's age and weight. So I'd start by making up a bottle to the suggested volume for her weight and see how she does. If it's too much make the next bottles up an oz less or if she drains it then put an extra oz in next time.

    In terms of how to go about the change I can't help really as my daughter had mixed breast and bottle from the very first time she could take feeds herself (rather than through a tube). You may want to think about gradually swapping over, dropping a feed every couple of days rather than going cold turkey. This would gradually reduce your supply, reduce your discomfort at stopping and hopefully reduce the risk of mastitis etc which I believe can be a problem if you just stop altogether suddenly (though may be wrong).

    I believe some people find baby is more receptive to bottle if given by someone other than yourself, so they don't have the confusion and temptation of your boob being there. So maybe your OH could start giving her bottles till she gets more used to it?

    I hope some of what I've said helps? I know from personal experience and conversations on here that the decision to stop BFing is always an emotional one. You don't have to justify your reasons for wanting to stop and you shouldn't feel guilty (always easier said than done).

    Best of luck

  • I BF my twins for 4.5 months - then I was just too tired to carry on! I used to express and bf equally, because I didn't like to bf with anyone else around either.

    We tried Aptamil, but both boys sicked it up all the time. Swapped to Cow&Gate which was better for them. I had to introduce it slowly. Took a little while, but they happily have formula now.

    Really think the brand of formula doesn't matter too much - you just need to try one and see if it works.

    Mt sister used Cow&Gate now after finding Aptamil didn't fill her little one up as well, but i'm sure it all depends on the baby.

    We tried several bottles. One of my boys took any one, the other was fussy, but we settled on Dr brown. We started using bottles fairly on by introducing them with expressed milk (we had to as one was out of hospital before the other, so I couldn't be there for all feeds). It didn't take long for them to pick it up.

  • Hi

    I am just going through with my daughter she is now 21 weeks old, I EBM fed her for 15 weeks and introduced a bottle of formula at 4pm for 2 weeks, then 2 weeks later introduced another bottle at 1pm and just this week introduced another bottle at 7pm. I am using Amptimal, found it hard at first introducing formula milk as had worked so hard on breastfeeding her and I actually enjoy it although feeding her in public and the frequency of it when they are young is not always great, so can sympthaise with you. I am still breastfeeding her in the morning and if she wakes up in the night and occasionly on a her last feed to comfort her back to sleep. My advice is take it slowly in stopping your breastfeeding and take it at your own time, but most importnat is you have done a fanstastic job giving your little one a great start and you need to be happy and a happy mommy equals a happy baby.

    Good luck

  • Thanks for the replies, we will probably make a start with the aptamil as she had this in hospital when she had trouble feeding at birth, i think it will be a hard transition because even though i feel like a weight has lifted having made the decision to stop, i also think that i will miss the closeness. However my husband is looking forward to being able to feed her so there is a positive.

    Charlotte, i think i will try and adopt a similar pattern to you - the afternoon is often the hardest for me as that is when i am usually out and about but probably one of the easiest to start her on. As DH works part time we will start when he will be around the most so that he can feed her so to try and help with her transition.

    I think that i may be happy still doing bedtime and morning feeds so may go on to mix feeding for the time being.

    Thanks again for all the advice xx
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