Feeding your baby might seem tough at times, whether you’re nursing or using formula. There’s a lot to figure out, and it’s easy to make mistakes. Even when you try your best to keep everything clean, babies can still get sick from bottle-feeding.
Studies show that not feeding your baby the right way can lead to too much feeding, tummy troubles, and sickness. That’s why parents should learn the best ways to feed their little ones.
In this post, we’re going to share some easy tips to help you feed your baby the right way, keeping them happy and healthy. Let’s dive in and make feeding time a breeze!
But first, let’s look at the most common feeding mistakes that parents make.
Common Feeding Mistakes You Need To Avoid!
Rookie parents are bound to make certain feeding mistakes if they do not pay proper attention to it. It is always necessary to consult a healthcare professional for personalized advice.
Here are some common mistakes made when feeding newborns:
1. Not feeding on demand:
Newborns have small tummies and may need to eat often, sometimes every 2-3 hours. Instead of following a strict timetable, it is crucial to feed your baby when they indicate signs of hunger such as rooting, sucking on fists, or crying.
2. Ignoring hunger or fullness cues:
Pay attention to your child’s hunger cues and cues indicating that they are full. Forcing your baby to finish the nipple or breastfeed when they are not interested may lead to overfeeding; on the other hand, ignoring signs of hunger may result in poor nutrition.
3. Inconsistent feeding techniques:
If you are breastfeeding ensure that your baby latches correctly to prevent nipple pain and ensure efficient milk transfer. For bottle-fed babies be consistent with nipple flow levels so as not to confuse them or make them prefer one source.
4. Not burping the baby:
When babies swallow air while eating they end up feeling discomforted and gassy. Ensure you burp your baby after each feed especially if bottle-fed to aid in releasing any trapped air.
5. Introducing solid foods too early:
According to the research, exclusive breastfeeding should be practiced during the first six months. Early introduction of solid food might cause an increased risk of allergies and other digestive problems in infants.
Choosing the right bottle and nipple for your baby is critical because some babies will prefer different shapes or flow rates; therefore, you should try different alternatives until you get what fits best for your child.
If you have concerns or questions about your baby’s feeding habits or growth, always consult with your pediatrician. Every baby is unique and what may work for one, may not work for the other thus you should be observant and responsive to the individual needs of your baby.
10 Expert-Approved Tips For Feeding Newborns
Feeding your newborn is important, and here are some helpful tips to make it easier:
1. Only Breastmilk or Formula:
Stick to giving your baby either breastmilk or formula for the first few months. Skip water and juice until your baby is about six months old. They don’t need anything else to grow.
2. Comfy Feeding Positions:
When you’re breastfeeding, find a comfy position. Try different ways, like holding your baby in different holds. Use pillows to make it more comfy for you. Change breasts during the day to keep a good milk supply.
3. Latch On Right:
Make sure your baby latches on correctly. Help them open their mouth wide, and guide their chin to your breast first. When they’re latched right, it shouldn’t hurt. If it does, adjust their position.
5. Take Care of Yourself:
Taking care of yourself is important. Drink enough water, eat regularly, and get some sleep. Use gentle products like comfort balms and serums for your skin. This will help to keep your skin hydrated and prevent bruising.
6. Watch for Early Hunger Signs:
Look out for early signs that your baby is hungry, like rooting or sucking on their fingers. Don’t wait until they cry; start feeding when you see these signs.
8. Check Diapers and Weight:
Keep an eye on wet and dirty diapers to know if your baby is getting enough milk. Check your baby’s weight during checkups. Use gentle products like Mustela’s Cleansing Wipes, Liniment, and Diaper Cream for diaper changes.
9. Feed Often:
Babies eat a lot, especially in the beginning. Feed them every 1.5 to 2 hours. Pay attention to when they seem done eating and are calm.
10. Formula Amount:
If you’re using formula, start with 2-3 ounces. Adjust the amount as your baby grows. Increase it when they need more.
Stick to breastmilk or formula for the first six months. Introduce solid foods when your baby is ready, usually when they can sit up and pick up things.
By following these simple tips, you can make feeding your newborn a smoother and more enjoyable experience for both of you.
Read More: 3 Things Emotionally Intelligent Parents Do
Exploring Alternative Feeding Methods For Newborns
Exploring alternative feeding methods for newborns can be beneficial, especially if traditional methods pose challenges.
Here are some alternative approaches to consider:
1. Finger Feeding:
Finger feeding involves placing a small amount of breast milk or formula on a clean finger and letting the baby suckle from it. This method can be useful for babies who have difficulty latching onto the breast or bottle.
2. Cup Feeding:
Cup feeding is an alternative for babies who struggle with traditional nipples. Using a small, specially designed cup, you can gently pour breast milk or formula into the baby’s mouth. This method is often employed in situations where breastfeeding or bottle feeding may not be feasible.
3. Syringe Feeding:
Syringe feeding involves using a clean syringe to administer small amounts of breast milk or formula into the baby’s mouth. This method is particularly helpful for preterm infants or those with oral motor challenges.
4. Supplemental Nursing System (SNS):
A Supplemental Nursing System (SNS) is a device that allows a baby to receive additional breast milk or formula while breastfeeding. It consists of a container of milk connected to a thin tube that the baby can suck on along with the breast. This method supports breastfeeding while ensuring the baby gets enough nutrition.
5. Breastfeeding Aid Devices:
Various devices are available to assist with breastfeeding, such as nipple shields or breast shells. Nipple shields can help babies latch onto the breast more easily, and breast shells can aid in correcting inverted nipples.
6. Paced Bottle Feeding:
Paced bottle feeding is a method that mimics breastfeeding by allowing the baby to control the flow of milk from the bottle. Hold the bottle horizontally and let the baby suck and swallow at their own pace, which can reduce the risk of overfeeding and help maintain breastfeeding.
Before adopting any alternative feeding method, it’s essential to consult with a healthcare professional or a lactation consultant for guidance. They can provide personalized advice based on your baby’s needs and your specific situation.
A Word From Mind Family
Taking care of your new baby’s feeding is both important and sometimes tricky. Remember, every baby is different, and what works for one might not work for another. It’s okay to ask for help from doctors or experts.
Whether you choose traditional or different ways of feeding, what matters most is creating happy moments with your little one. Enjoy these times, trust your instincts, and embrace the joy of parenting.
At Mind Family we believe in paying attention to your baby’s needs and being open to trying different things. Feeding is not just about following rules but understanding what your baby likes and making sure they’re comfortable.
The Mind Family wishes you lots of patience, good choices, and the love that makes a family strong.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. What are some common feeding mistakes?
Common feeding mistakes include not feeding on demand, ignoring hunger cues, inconsistent techniques, forgetting to burp the baby, and introducing solid foods too early.
2. What are some tips for feeding newborns?
Tips for feeding newborns include sticking to breastmilk or formula, finding comfy feeding positions, ensuring a correct latch, watching for hunger signs, and feeding often.
3. What are some alternative feeding methods for newborns?
Alternative feeding methods include finger feeding, cup feeding, syringe feeding, Supplemental Nursing System (SNS), breastfeeding aid devices, and paced bottle feeding. Always consult a healthcare professional for guidance.