Weaning from the breast to bottle feeding
Linda Drummond presents her top tips for an optimal weaning process
Breast to bottle

While the unique health benefits of breast milk are well documented there are a number of reasons why breastfeeding is not an option. 

Every little bit counts!

If you have breastfed your baby for the first three months they have had a significant period of time to benefit from your antibodies. The longer you can last feeding presents further health benefits so hang in as long as you are able.

Getting started

The first step in weaning is to gradually introduce a formula bottle (as opposed to your breast milk). If you are able to gradually cut the number of breastfeeding session per day your milk supply will slowly reduce and hopefully lessen painful engorgement. Many mums like to keep one or two feeds a day as part of the bedtime routine.

Engorged breasts

Use these tricks if you have painful engorged breasts:

  • Apply cold compresses eg a cold gel pack or the famous chilled cabbage leaves.
  • Try to avoid expressing any milk for relief.
  • Keep the circulation flowing with a well-fitting, supportive bra (most likely in a much bigger size than normal.) Binding your breasts could lead to a painful breast infection or clogged milk ducts.
  • Check with your doctor about taking a suitable pain reliever.
     
This article was written by Linda Drummond and adapted for Kidspot, New Zealand's favourite parenting resource for Early Life Nutrition.
 
Breastfeeding is best for babies and provides many benefits. Combined breast and bottle feeding in the first weeks of life may reduce the supply of your own breast milk. Always consult your doctor, midwife or health care professional for advice about feeding your baby. This post is part of the Early Life Nutrition story.
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