Bottle feeding is one of the most challenging forms of feeding a baby for most mothers, especially the first timers. It won’t be wrong to say that correct bottle feeding is an art which many have managed to master but there are still a lot of females who still haven’t been able to get it right.
Proper bottle feeding is very important to let a baby have sufficient quantities of milk and should be learnt straight after child birth. For a baby who is to be bottle fed, the following given tips, advice and suggestions would prove like golden words for a mother.
- It is important to know that babies must be bottle fed when their actions indicate hunger rather than feeding them on a schedule.
- To bottle feed a baby, you must first hold him/her in an upright position and then start feeding. Feeding a baby when he/she is lying down is the wrong way of feeding and can lead to choking. This wrong position can also lead to ear infections.
- Bottle feeding must be done 10-20 minutes at a time so that the baby feels that he/she is being breastfed. It is not right to try to feed as much as possible in a short interval of time.
- While trying to bottle feed, you must gently try to allow the infant to draw the nipple into his mouth rather than pushing the nipple into the mouth. This way, the baby can control when the feed begins. You must stroke the baby’s lips from top to bottom with the nipple so that a rooting response can be gained.
- The caregiver should encourage frequent pauses while the baby is drinking milk from the bottle as this helps to mimic the breastfeeding process or procedure. This also discourages a baby from guzzling down the milk from the bottle.
- The baby must be fed according to his/her satiation level and trying to feed him till the last drop may not be the best of ideas. If the baby tends to doze off while feeding then that means that the baby is done. You must not wake up the baby in order to encourage him to finish the milk from the bottle.
- It is important to switch from one side to the other midway through the bottle feed as this helps to provide eye stimulation and also its development. Moreover this also avoids the development of the side preference which can also impact the process of breastfeeding.
- It is important to wash hands as well as the bottle before bottle feeding.
- It is best to sanitize the bottle along with its nipples in hot water and soap. Rinsing it off later with extreme care is a point that must not be missed.
- Never mix formula and breastmilk in the same bottle. First feed the breastmilk and then the formula rather than the other way round.