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I honestly dread transitions. In our house, a big transition means extra crying and less sleeping. It’s not normally a fun thing. Sleep transitions, schedule transitions, transitions to school and one that I am currently doing for the third time now – transitioning baby to a bottle. I have to admit that he is my most stubborn out of all three children when it comes to the bottle. He has been breastfeeding now for 5 months and knows no different. This process has been a struggle with him which brings me to a valid point:
Every baby is different. I know you hear it all the time, and I do too, but it’s really true. I have three kids, three and under and they are all so different. Hampton has issues sleeping, but no issues with food. Sophie is my easiest when it comes to sleeping and eating, but she gives me serious attitude and Weston has been refusing a bottle up until just a couple of days ago when he reluctantly took it for the first time.
Here is what I have learned so far when it comes to transitioning baby to a bottle:
- Start by letting them teeth on a bottle. This will get them familiar with it.
- Use Playtex Baby™ Nurser with Drop-Ins® Liners for the first while (for sure while you are still breastfeeding because it is the most natural. I have used these bottles with all three of my babies. They are the only ones my babies would take at first. They were great for transitioning baby to a bottle.
- Pump breast milk into the bottle for a while, that way it’s not too much new all at once. I tried the cold turkey bottle and formula with my oldest and he freaked out on me. Once I pumped and gave him a bottle with breast milk, he was a happy camper.
- Get someone else to feed the bottle to your baby the first coupe of times. More than likely, if it is you trying to give them the bottle, they will get mad at you. No one wants that. I let my husband do it the first several times. I had to leave the room the first time because Weston kept looking at me with puppy dog eyes.
- Try adding a small amount of formula into your breast milk to gradually get them used to the taste.
- When you feel like you and your baby are ready for formula-only, make the switch! Just make sure that you have your cabbage leaves ready to go! They really help you dry up. Of course, if you start supplementing slowly and feeding your baby less and less, that will help you slowly dry up as well. At least, it did for me because I produced less and less. It wasn’t as painful when I did this process with my second child.
Playtex Baby™ Nurser® with Drop-Ins® Liners are designed to reduce colic and you can mix and match the bottles and nipples depending on your baby’s preference! I also love that you can dispose of the liners after use making clean-up on-the-go super easy! These bottles stimulate the same suck, swallow and breathe patterns as breastfeeding because as the baby eats, the pre-formed and pre-sterilized liner collapses and expands like the mother’s breast does naturally to reduce air flow and therefore reduces colic. When you are shopping for these bottles at Target, be sure to match the liner size to the size of the bottles (4oz. or 8 oz.) If you are going back and forth between breast and bottle (like I currently am) try the Most Like Mom® NaturaLatch® Nipple as it is wider and has a raised texture that feels more like the real thing to the baby.
If you are interested in other Playtex bottles, check out the Playtex Baby™ VentAire® that offers tummy comfort for your baby!