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Anyone successfully combined breast and formula feeding? Lock Rss

Hi all,
Just wonder if anyone out there could give me any tips or ideas on combining both breast and bottle feeding? or if anyone been in a similar situation to this....

To start the story my little man is currently fully breast at 5 weeks old. Right from birth pretty much he has had diarrhoea which I have consulted 2 GP's, a pediatrician and neonatal pediatrician about to which all have said it's completely normal in some breastfed bubs and to continue to feed him as he is thriving and not dehydrated. No-one has suggested anything to help to situation (ie diet change on my behalf or medication or something to help ease his pain etc) I just have to go back around 8 weeks to the neonatal ped for a check up.
Now these doctors don't have to put up with listening and watching helplessly to my little man crying and screaming while trying to get most of these poo's out! I have started him Colic Relief which has help a lot with getting the wind and gas out but the pain is still there....don't know why it's so hard for him to pass diarrhoea? He is feeding quite well but when he needs to do a poo his feeds can be a little erratic.

So all this being said I thought I would try him a couple bottles of formula combined with his breastfeeds to see if they help in some way, if it can be done. i would more than likely express the feeds I have missed due to giving him a bottle to help my supply keep up and if I need to go back to fully breastfeeding. If need be I will end up putting him on the bottle if it helps easy his pain as it's quite distressing to us both and I think I am borderline PND so I am willing to do so to give him a happy mummy and hopefully a happy bum.

Hope you can understand all my ramblings and thank you for your help in advance. Kel smile

Kel, WA Jebediah 18/7/05, Balendin 10/10/07

As someone who also had feeding problems can I first of all say that I know how you are feeling but keep your chin up, you are trying your best for your wee man. I am a little mistified as to why they told you that this was normal when I personally do not think that it is. My first thought would be to get in touch with a lactation consultant and look at your feeding to see if something can first be done to get the exclusive breastfeeding going better before trying a bottle. I know that the symptoms you are describing might be related to lactose intolerance (in which you might need to examine your diet) or even just to much fore milk and not enough hind milk. A breastfeeding expert may be able to help you with either of these possibilities. If you do decide to bottle feed then I can assure you that it is possible, I did it for a while with my DS. The hardest thing is keeping up with the expressing, people always underestimate how tiring it is. A pump never stimulates as well as a baby so you might find that your supply will drop regardless (mine did but I had to express all my feeds where as you will still be breastfeeding for some). Also be aware that formula is no cure. I would think carefully about the type of formula as well. You might need to consider an HA formula, the formula companies are easy to ring and talk to if you need their advise.

Lastly can I just say that if you are like me and just can not get the breastfeeding to work then do not feel guilty. Your baby will be fine either way, it is not worth your own mental health to worry about the 'what ifs'. Good luck.

Hi Kel,
Although my situation is a bit different, I sympathise with your problem.
I breast and bottle feed my boy, due to a low milk supply. But it's been a long, hard road to get to where we are now. He did develop nipple confusion after a little while, which (apparently) is pretty common when you first introduce bottles. I was told that introducing bottles sometimes causes breast rejection, too.
That being said, it IS possible to successfully combine the two.
Have you thought about talking to a lactation consultant, or the Australian BreastFeesding Association? There may be another cause to the pain and diarrhoea that you don't know about (eg reflux, lactose intolerance).
Good luck. PM me if you want more details about combining br and bottle feeding.

I successfully combined breast and formula feeding with my DS. I was always feeding him, i was tired all the time, never had any quality time with my DD who was 2 at the time. So i started him on formula top-ups, just so i could have a break. When he was 4mths I stopped breastfeeding as he was more content after a bottle of formula. I had no problem with putting him on formula as he seemed to need more then what i could him.

hi, i too think you should see a lactation consultant. the poor little man is probably just getting everything inside trying to work properly. He's only 5 weeks old so his digestion is so immature but day by day it is building. formula wouldn't be any cure.. much heavier on his gut so i reckon try to stick with the breastfeeding. Even offering one breast (not sure if he takes two or not) and seeing if he is content that way or wait a little while until you offer the other. i was taught entree on the first breast, then offer the main on same breast, and only if he wants desert you go to the other one. wind is something unfortunately they all experience and i know its hard, but id does pass as his digestive system matures.. will be no wories in a couple of months time. I know you've tried ped's and doctors etc, and not sure if you are into it, but my little man had alot of success with a chinese doctor i went to when he was the same age with his wind..... i swear by it.. not for everyone, but i just wanted to explore all avenues, and that's what worked for us. good luck


hi i have just started to sup with bottle as my DD is a little on the small side and it was suggested that i top her up i dont bother to express as i feed her from both breasts then when she has finished i offer the bottle she didnt like it at first but now will drink 90ml i mainly do this at night before bed and late arvo
i also thought liquid poo was normal in newbies myDD is 4mths and still has liquid yellow with milk curds mid wife said it was norm is this not so as its been 13 yrs since my first and i cant remember but DD is healthy and deveoping well started comando crawling today
Hey Jebs Mum
My wee girl is nearly 7 mths old. I have breast feed her from birth wen she was about 3 mths old I tried her on formula as well as I went bk to wrk part time & gt sick of having to express all the time. i found she gt a sore tummy from normal formula(cows milk) so my nurse suggested to try her on goats milk formula and she has been fine ever since. now she is mainly breast feed with 2-4 feeds per week of formula and also has solids nw 2. so maybe try goats milk formula to start with suppose to be nt so harsh on their tummy. maybe try it as his last feed at nite thn shld sleep betta at nite as fills them mre.
Sounds like you are and bubs are having rough time there Jebs Mum - i completely sympathise with how stressful it is. My situation is a little different in that my DD (now 3 months) has reflux, so like you we spent day after day screaming because of pain. I too spoke to ECN, Paediatricians, GPs etc for advice, i read all the books looking for a solution - they all just confused me and made me feel guilty when i started to combine breast milk with bottles and anti reflux formula in an attempt to stop the regurgitation. I can't actually express breast milk - no idea why and my let down seems a bit slow, but anyways, i started comp feeding when DD was 10 weeks old, (offer breast and then top up with formula), did it for 2 weeks, DD was so much more settled, stopped throwing up heaps, stopped screaming and put on a tonne of weight, I then was told to go back to fully breatsfeeding as DD settled, and after doing so her reflux deteriorated and so have been comp feeding every second feed (2 out of 5) each day, have decided to do the "right thing" for DD and me rather than the "right thing" as dictated by others - as they are not in my home listening to DD scream as though bones are breaking! I am going to try and breast feed as long as i can, but if it comes to it and DD is preferring formula then so be it, not going to beat myself up about it anymore. As a side note you can get bottles that are designed to assist in easy switching between bottle and breast - i use the tommee tippee ones and have found them to be great. anyways not sure if that is helpful at all, but we're always here if you need to debrief and vent wink

DD born 17/08/2007

Hia ll

Thanks very much for all the replies! Unfortunately though Balendin has made the decision to go full-time on the bottle. i started trying to give him one or two bottles a day to see if it would help his situation and he decided that was the way to go for every feed. He weened himself off me in about 2 days much to my disappointment. it got to the point where when I did put him on the boob late last week he would only feed for 5 mins tops then throw most of it back up (not in pain though) and then refuse to go back on.
Since being on the bottle he's been absolutely great though and guess what....REAL POO!!! And he can do then all by himself (I used to have to help him relax and "push" then out most of the time)
As much as I'm disappointed that it didn't work out for me again this time I'd much rather have a happy bub and mum than keep going down the path we were heading.
Once again thanks for everyones suggestions and support smile

Kel, WA Jebediah 18/7/05, Balendin 10/10/07

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