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What is the best way to transition from breast milk to formula?

My daughter is 15 weeks old and I have to go back to work in two months. I will not be able to pump at work and would like to begin the process of moving her from breast milk to formula. Any suggestions?

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Asked by bostonmom630 at 3:00 PM on Jun. 3, 2009 in General Parenting

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Answers (10)
  • I have heard that you can mix the two! for example...if you bottle feed, instead of 6 oz of breastmilk, do 4 oz of BM and 2 oz of formula, then progress to more every couple days till it is all formula

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:05 PM on Jun. 3, 2009

  • I would just go half and half for awhile, and then go all formula. So you could nurse less and less and give her a bottle with half formula, half pumped milk, probably for a few weeks before you go all formula. Shouldn't be too big of a thing.

    Answer by sfwilson at 3:06 PM on Jun. 3, 2009

  • You can pump at work. The law orders that all employers have time and a clean site just for pumping mothers. You can join a breastfeeding group and find ways to make pumping most efficient so that even if you do use formula, you can still use more breastmilk than anything. Start pumping now to make a milk stash. You can still nurse when you're home. When you use bottles, use wide slow flow nipples to avoid nipple preference. Don't start formula unless you know you have to. If you don't pump enough when you return to work (let me stress how this does NOT mean you aren't producing enough), THEN mix a little formula into her breastmilk bottles. Just enough to satisfy, but not make it taste gross.

    Answer by jus1jess at 3:08 PM on Jun. 3, 2009

  • I did what sfwilson said.

    I mixed 50/50 with formula for a couple of weeks, and then went to all formula and she hardly noticed.

    However, if your baby seems like she has a sensative tummy, I suggest weening slower than that by mixing first 1/4 formula with 3/4 BM, then go on to 50/50, then move up to 3/4 formula with 1/4 BM until you are on full formula.

    Answer by CarolynBarnett at 3:09 PM on Jun. 3, 2009

  • I would drop one breastfeeding for a bottle for a week then move to two BF a day for too bottles for the second week and keep this schedule...if you need to move faster just go about 3 days for each drop in BF then this will help you dry up also because you won;t suddenly stop and get engorged....I never got engorged when I switched an had no pain at all.

    Answer by Kimx3babies at 3:30 PM on Jun. 3, 2009

  • I did this two different ways. With my older daughter I pumped for her daytime bottles and nursed her at night. I gradually replaced daytime bottles with formula one feeding at a time and nursed only at night for several more months. With my twins I started pumping before returning to work and gradually gave them more formula and less breastmilk in their bottles as my supply decreased. However you do it, you will want to make it gradual for your own sake because suddenly stopping is painful! Good luck.

    Answer by TweenAndTwinMom at 3:54 PM on Jun. 3, 2009

  • thee is no best way, just pump milk! thats all she needs

    Answer by rozepyle at 6:20 PM on Jun. 3, 2009

  • Why can't you pump at work? By law, they must accomodate you.

    Answer by rkoloms at 8:15 PM on Jun. 3, 2009

  • Pump milk! It is so much better for the baby! I pumped with my 3rd child until he was well over a year old. I worked full time and then some but he never had to have formula! If you can't do it--then at least nurse at night when you are home with baby.

    Answer by beccimae at 9:30 PM on Jun. 3, 2009

  • I slowly started to eliminate nursing during the day and replaced it with a bottle of formula. It takes a little while, but your body will adjust and not produce milk then. Eventually when I went back to work (he was 4 months) I just nursed him in the morning, after work, the evening and through the night. We went on like this for 9 months. It really worked for us! I could not pump at work either. Good luck!

    Answer by mompam at 11:40 AM on Jun. 4, 2009

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