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Is it okay to alternate between breast milk and formula?

It seems that I can't keep enough breast milk for my baby's appetite.

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Asked by Anonymous at 5:06 PM on Nov. 27, 2009 in Babies (0-12 months)

Answers (36)
  • you just have to see if it settles well with your little ones belly. Around the 7 month my milk started becoming less and less and then i started breastfeeding only in the evenings, when my son would wake up throughout the night. plus it was very convenient. I figure mommies milk is of course better so what little i could did :) good luck


    Answer by 31angelmommy3 at 5:12 PM on Nov. 27, 2009

  • My friend does and she has had no problems :)

    Answer by Domsmom2009 at 5:13 PM on Nov. 27, 2009

  • You will lose your milk supply if you start to supplement formula.

    What makes you think that your baby isn't getting enough? Most of the time when moms feel that they aren't producing enough milk, they really are. As long as your baby is wetting 6 or more diapers a day and seems basicly happy, then they are getting plenty to eat. If your baby is wanting to nurse often it may simply be a growth spurt. If your baby's nursing session are more often than every hour and a half and last less than 10 minutes, then they may be using you as a pacifier.

    Join the breastfeeding groups here on CafeMom for some great advice and support.

    Answer by ThrivingMom at 5:14 PM on Nov. 27, 2009

  • Like PP asked, what makes you think you're having trouble producing?

    Answer by LeanneC at 5:17 PM on Nov. 27, 2009

  • I did towards the end of my breast feeding with my DD. at this time was working and pumping so my supply slowly was getting less and less. that's not true for all women though. Now if you are EBF with only occasional then I would not try to supplement yet. Keep in mind that breast feeding is supply and demand. So the more oyu nurse the more you will make. If Your LO seems like she is not getting enough she may be going through a growth spurt. If she is you need to go ahead and demand feed for those few days this is what will ensure your body will still be making enough to keep up with her when her appetite settles in it's larger meals. If you are pumping frequently and just not making enough for her demand while away or just really seem to have 'lost some of your supply there are things you can try to boost it. Like power pump days or herbs like fenugreek root or blessed thistle. If you have more Q's you can PM me :)

    Answer by But_Mommie at 5:18 PM on Nov. 27, 2009

  • I agree with thrivingmom...what makes you think your baby isn't getting enough? Every time my son went through a growth spurt, he would want to nurse almost every hour. I thought to myself...there is no way he's getting enough and he probably wasn't getting much sometimes, but because he nursed so much, it got my milk supply up ALOT. After that I had MORE than enough for him. To answer your question though, yes it is okay to supplement with formula but like thrivingmom said, the more you supplement and the less you nurse, the less milk you are going to produce, which will eventually cause you to have to exclusively formula feed...also some babies realize that it is much easier to get milk from a bottle than from the breast because they don't have to work as hard, and they might refuse to nurse altogether.

    Answer by Ash9724 at 5:21 PM on Nov. 27, 2009

  • That's what I'm going to do with my 2nd daughter, I was having the same problems as you, my milk turned clear, and wasn't producing hardly at all and then my milk dried up, but I was doing everything possible to keep my milk supply up for her.

    I would cry b/c I thought my daughter was going to starve, I was pumping and hardly getting anything too, so this time I'm doing both so she gets my nutrients and nutrients from formula too.

    Answer by MommaRox4683 at 5:23 PM on Nov. 27, 2009

  • When my son was born 5wks early and in the NICU the nurses had me pump and add 1 tbl spoon formula to every 2 ounces BM so I think supplamenting W/ formula would be fine.

    Answer by daralynn at 5:47 PM on Nov. 27, 2009

  • I did both. I went back to work and she had formula. When I was home I nursed. If I was out in public she had formula. It worked for us!

    Answer by mompam at 5:49 PM on Nov. 27, 2009

  • If you think you are having problems producing enough, then I would not. Not because formula is bad or evil, but because your production is linked to how your baby eats. If baby has gone 3 hours and is suddenly nursing every 2 hours s/he is likely going through a growth spurt and bumping up your production as well. And just because you feel less full doesn't mean you are producing less, just your body is getting used to the amount. If you do decide to supplement, pump after the formula bottle. and the amount you pump may very well not be a good indication of your production. Pumping is a lot harder than bf'ing.

    Answer by balagan_imma at 5:51 PM on Nov. 27, 2009

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