Breast AND Bottle feed...who does both???


I wanted to know if it's ok to breast and bottle feed a newborn...

I'm 20 weeks pregnant and worried I won't be able to keep up with a hungry baby if I breastfeed. My last lo wanted feeds all the time during the day and night and I ended up so sore because it was like she was using my breast as a comforter as it was constantly in her mouth.

My friend who has recently had her baby said she does breast during the day then tops her baby up at night before bed and the formula milk keep her full during the night so she can have a decent nights sleep without being woken for night you think this method will work for most people? Also, can the baby's tummy cope with both breast and formula milk changing all the time? Also, issues with the teat and breast will the baby get confused? I was going to top off my daughter with bottle when she was tiny, but my mum said don't do it because she'll get confused...??? is this really true?

Also, my health visitor said when she was born 2 years ago to either do one or the other...are they right? Sorry for all the questions, just wanted to know your opinions about this.

I would love to breast feed this baby, but if he or she's going to be demanding, I might not be able to cope with another child to look after too....HELP! :\?


  • My lo is 7wk and I introduced a bottle from 3 1/2wk (expressed) just to get her used to a teat then gave her formula at 4 1/2 wk to give me more time to get everything done! It's worked well and I'm now just starting to give her bottles during day, bf once at night and 1st feed when we get up. Must say I think she prefers the bottle now and def goes longer between feeds when on it!
    With my 1st the paed said I had to top up my son as he became dehydrated. He had bottle from day2 and I honestly think it caused our bf probs. Leaving it a bit longer with nos 2 and 3 didn't confuse them....then again, every baby's different!
    Hope this ramble helps?!
    ps my hv said it's fine to combine!
  • That's another thing I'm afraid of, that they'll prefer the bottle and not want to breast feed anymore. I'd find that heartbreaking.
  • hi
    best to bf exclusively for first few weeks to get your supply going. After that you can work whats best for you. I on to number 5. I bf the first 2 only for week. The last 2 i bf one for 3 months then I mixed and the next I bf exclusively till 6 months.
    Mixed feeding does work but dont try too early. Tomee Tippee bottles are good as they look like boobs (well sort of) and baby should not get too confused. Just try bf as you may find it easier. I do with each baby. My boobs just seem to make whats needed and I dont leak. Always best to have some sort of formula in for days when you just dont seem to satisfy baby. Usually about day 10 ish and then again at 4 weeks when they have spurt.
    Have a go and you will find the best way to mix feed that works for you.
    good luck
    d x
  • I'm just coming up to 20 weeks and I'm having the same debate but our ideal plan now is to combine breast and bottle. But I'm going to try expressing rather than formula.

    I've heard the thing about babies getting confused but I'm sure it's all down to timing. If you start too soon then may be it's more likely but the later you leave it the more difficult it can be to get them to take a bottle at all (my brother and his wife had real problems with their first - she'd just refuse a bottle totally). I also think there is a danger that they could prefer formula milk because it does fill them up more and the less you breast feed, the less milk you produce. So they may end up not get enough through breast feeding if you do both. That's why I'd like to express, so my own milk production doesn't let up!

    I like the idea of being able to share feeds with my husband. I know he'd love to do it and I know I'll appreciate the break! I think I'll have to resist the pressure from midwives and hvs to stick just with the breast but you've got to do what's right for you. I may have changed my mind completely by the time I give birth and the reality dawns! But for now this is my plan and if I get grief for it then tough!
  • Thanks dee dee. I'll keep that in mind. I remember when my last one was tiny about 2 weeks old and I couldn't cope with her demands my sister and oh were trying to sort out bottles and formula to help out...I just stormed into the kitchen and had a right good go at them, I was so possessive over the baby and couldn't stand the thought of not being able to bf her and that someone else was making my decisions for me!!! Must have been my hormones lol!

    But after they made up the bottle she drank it fine and slept for hours and I got a nice rest so I thanked them in the end.

  • Hi soniamc... I've thought of expressing too and freezing what I produce incase I go out so someone else can feed. I did express before it feels really weird...felt like I was a cow being milked (it was one of those electronic powered the mains socket so it was quite powerful) I was sat there for about 30 mins and only a small amount of milk came I thought stuff this!

    Then again, my milk production might not have come properly in at the time.
  • In Greece they don't let you feed the baby straight away. They make it wait a few hours and then the MW gives it some glucose drink from a bottle. It is supposed to make them clear out all the black stuff they have inside them. I don't really know but it does seem to work.
    After that they bottle fed mine for the first 4 days in hospital and I was only allowed to start breast feeding on the 4th day. Both my children didn't notice the difference. I could swap them between bottle and breast whenever I felt like it.
    I think it is possible to mix feed but it depends on your baby. Luckily both mine had no problem.
  • I've been mixing feeds for my lo since he was about 2 weeks old when we realised that he wasn't full enough feeding from me. We had bottles and pump and some cartons of aptimil in the house anyway so we were prepared for anything - and he guzzled that first bottle and then fell asleep! He had a couple of lots of formula in hospital too cause he was jaundiced and they said it would help flush it through his system as he was sleepy and not feeding from me too well. They gave it to him in a little cup thoug cause they said it caused less confusion for babies to have a cup than a bottle - perhaps you could get hold of some of those cups if you are worried.

    We have tommy tippee bottles and he has been fine switching between the two and he's only been waking up once at night since we started giving him formula at night. He's 5 weeks old now and putting on weight just fine.

    It works well for us cause hubby can give lo a bottle which makes hubby happy...and means I get to sleep in sometimes too image I'm also expressing milk and he has that in a bottle too - I think I'm producing less milk than I was but I make sure to bf lo throughout the day too so that at least he gets some breast milk and it seems to work for us.

    I'd say that you could start off with breastfeeding but have some cartons of formula ready just in case - they aren't expensive just to buy a few in for emergencies and if your lo seems hungry then try formula - it certainly won't do them any harm
  • If your daughter was constantly bf-ing for comfort then you could try using a dummy with this one. You can get the Tommee tippee closer to nature soothers that don't confuse them and are shaped like a boob, lol. We have bought those kind of bottles. I plan to mix feed for the first few weeks and then go to bottles xxx
  • I've never seen those dummies before, I'll have to try them out!! When we tried dummies with Evie we put them in and she didn't know what to do with it lol, it was in her mouth but she wasn't sucking on it and eventually it fell out of her mouth.

    I'll definitely give them a try though.

    When did you go for your 4D scan Tiger Lily??
  • Yeah some babies seem to love soothers but others arent bothered, its weird.

    I went to babybond in bridgnorth, it was brilliant! xxx
  • I got some of those dummies too. I also got the milk dispenser for tommee tippee bottles. They are so clever. You fill bottle with boiled cooled water and insert the milk holder into the bottle. When baby needs bottle you just pour the powder in and give as room temp or warm up...ingenius!!! Still think bf easier though as dont have to fiddle with all that..just get boob out!!! I just bought them for just incase and also thought when I stop at 6 months or so I will need and sods law they will be non in at shops.
    Greek baby...never heard of that before. I live in Bahrain and they try to give sugar water but I wont let them. I am the mad brit woman who wants baby with her at all times while locals want them in nursery! funny!!!
    Think we can all make best laid plans but best to go with baby and your body and not to be too upset if bf does not work. Formula is so good these days that all our babies will thrive no matter what way we feed them. Just dont let anyone make you feel guilty.
    d x
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