Your bottle feeding baby faces different challenges from a breast feed baby. A bottle feeding baby can suffer from gas, colic and may not tolerate formula very well, requiring you to try different kinds until you find one your bottle feeding baby can digest easily.
A bottle feeding baby on formula may start sleeping through the night earlier than a breast fed baby if he does not suffer from gas or colic. The trick is to try and stretch the night feedings so that the baby does not expect to eat in the middle of the night and can last until morning for the next bottle.
Try this only with babies who are at least 8 or 9 pounds and a few weeks old. You might also want to consult with your pediatrician first.
What you want to do is make sure baby has a full bottle and fills up before bed. Make sure he or she is properly burped. Play some soothing lullabies and create a bedtime routine that may also include a short story or book. This should be done every night at the same time if possible.
After putting baby to sleep, leave the room and give your baby a chance to settle down and fall asleep on his own. He may cry for a few minutes. It is better to put an awake baby to bed than one who is sleeping.
If your baby cries out in the night, do not rush in. Wait about 10 minutes and see if he will fall back to sleep on his own. If not, go in and try and give your baby a pacifier. Pacifiers can work wonders for small babies, soothing them back to sleep. If your baby needs a diaper change, do that quickly and put baby back in the crib as soon as possible.
If your baby is crying and obviously hungry, try giving him some water in his bottle so he gets out of the habit of drinking formula in the night. If that does not work, try cutting down the amount of formula you give him each night.
You may even secretly feel guilty about not breast feeding your baby and wonder if that is the reason for your baby's sleep problems. With all of the pressure new moms face these days to breast feed their babies, it is no wonder that may new moms feel guilty and embarrassed when they choose to bottle feed their babies.
Breast feeding, although best for baby, is not always possible, and new mothers should not feel guilty. The most important thing you can do for your new baby is to be a calm, happy mother. Your baby intuitively picks up on your moods and is directly affected when you are nervous, depressed or agitated. If breast feeding causes you to be frustrated and nervous, then it is not helpful for your baby. Your baby will become fussy and cranky and will not sleep well.
Relax and ignore what the media and other well meaning and some not so well meaning people may say when they see you bottle feeding your baby. It is your baby and your choice.
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Article Added on Wednesday, December 10, 2008
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