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Thread: BFing 11 (almost 12)-month old, bottle feeding, amounts

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
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    Default BFing 11 (almost 12)-month old, bottle feeding, amounts

    Hello helpful LLL ladies!

    I need some guidance on a handful of related issues. I'm writing a lot but want to be as thorough as possible, so please read on and bear with me

    I have returned to work and am home with my LO (now 11, almost 12 months) one day per week plus weekends. On the other 4 workdays he is bottle fed my breastmilk by husband, childcare, or family. He enthusiastically eats solids 2-3x/day - we don't push it, but he really enjoys food. If we happen to miss or skip a meal every once in a while, we don't worry about it. Up until about a week ago, he was nursing 6x/day on a typical day with me: wake, before AM nap, after AM nap, before PM nap, after PM nap, and bed, with meals in between. For about a week and a half straight he fought his PM nap and pushed back his AM nap to the extent that I think we've entered 1 nap/day territory. So he only just recently is nursing more like 4x/day - wake, before nap, after nap, and bed. Sometimes a little extra in between When I pump, I usually pump anywhere from 4-6 (sometimes 7) oz.

    1. Everyone says he "whomps" the milk down from the bottle. I know it's common for BF'd babies to take milk faster via bottle than breast and that paced feeding, sitting upright, switching "sides," etc., can all help with this. People have tried all of the above. I'm working on getting a slower-flow nipple also, though the ones we use (LifeFactory) are Stage 1 (on that note: anyone know the slowest nipple out there??). The tough thing, of course, is that when on the breast he can eat until he's done and unlatches himself. For instance, I gave husband a 6oz bottle for him to use for bedtime feeding last night, thinking roughly 25oz/day (a guesstimate) is about right. Husband said he took all 6oz and wanted more, so he gave him another 3oz, and he was STILL crying for more, so gave him ANOTHER 2oz (!!!) at which point he finally knocked out and went to sleep. Isn't all that at one time an enormous amount for a BF baby?? I said that he "probably just wanted to suck, not actually eat," and husband replied that "no, it was obvious he didn't want to just suck because he wouldn't suck on the empty bottle." Similarly, my mother gave him a 6oz bottle before a nap, and after waking gave him another 4oz which he happily took. My questions: how much milk should I actually plan for him to have via bottle per day? How do I balance providing enough milk that he can stop when he wants, as on the breast, while also not overfeeding? How can we be sure that after eating 5 or 6oz and crying, he DOESN'T actually want more?

    2. Is it a problem that he goes from the waking feed (6am) to the before-nap feed (12:00pm) with no nursing in between?

    3. Am I pumping the amounts I am (4-6oz usually) because that's the amount my LO eats every nursing session or because I have oversupply? If it's the case that my body has calibrated to his demand, it seems that a 6oz bottle at each feeding is not crazy (right?).

    Thanks for any help.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Default Re: BFing 11 (almost 12)-month old, bottle feeding, amounts

    Does baby ever nurse at night? I'm asking because it helps us know how much milk baby needs during the daytime hours. (night nursing babies typically need less than babies who sleep through.)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
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    Default Re: BFing 11 (almost 12)-month old, bottle feeding, amounts

    Hi, how long has your work situation been going on? I am just wondering if he is still adjusting to your absence? And just to clarify, everyone is doing paced bottle feeding techniques, right?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: BFing 11 (almost 12)-month old, bottle feeding, amounts

    So, not familiar with bottles. Curious if baby this age even needs a bottle rather than maybe a cup?

    Paced bottle feeding properly done is going to be your best bet for slowing down flow. All nipples drip. I suspect paced feeding is not being properly done as far as how baby and bottle are positioned. HOWEVER.

    A baby this age should really be able to 'pace' themselves. Paced feeding is really more for younger babies, I am not even sure it will work with an almost one year old. But I would suggest have caregivers making sure bottle and baby are being positioned properly (so the nipple is never full of milk and rate of flow is reduced by gravity) and that pauses in drinking (by tipping nipple up/bottle down so the milk drains out of the nipple, in order to stop flow all together for a few moments) are being encouraged. If baby wants more, bottle can be re-tipped up just enough so there is a little milk in the nipple. Sometimes the key is to not totally remove the nipple from baby's mouth, but to instead stop the flow for a bit to see if baby really wants more or not while tip of nipple rests on baby's bottom lip or gently in the mouth. If baby does not start 'reaching' to take the nipple again, then bottle can be gently removed. If this is not making sense let me know, may be I can find a video.

    I suspect perhaps a little laziness is going on, and baby is being fed bottle after bottle rather than caregiver engaging in other comfort measures or baby entertaining measures, which are harder to do. I feel for anyone who has to comfort and entertain a nearly one year old without being able to rely on nursing, so I am not blaming anyone for figuring fussy baby just needs to keep drinking until they pass out. But I think that may be what is going on. Perhaps once baby has eaten 6 ounces there should be a stop to any more bottles for at least an hour, and other comfort measures or play activities should be employed.

    Can you encourage baby to nurse more when you are home? That may reduce baby's desire for milk when you are not. If baby has come to associate nursing with sleep, but has dropped a nap, it may help to encourage baby to nurse for other reasons- entertainment, comfort, etc.
    Last edited by @llli*maddieb; September 24th, 2016 at 03:53 PM.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: BFing 11 (almost 12)-month old, bottle feeding, amounts

    Thanks, all for your responses and help.

    Yes, LO is still getting up 1-3x per night but typically not nursing a full feed. Sometimes (more especially the first wake up) he will take a little more, but I've taken to not offering both breasts over night so as to gently encourage night weaning, also unlatching him perhaps a few moments before he might truly want. Usually he nurses a few minutes, I lay him down, he adjusts a bit and goes back to sleep.

    Work situation has been going on for a few weeks now, but baby has been fed bottles before (date nights, errands, etc.).

    Yes, parents and husband are doing pacing as much as they know how - holding bottle so nipple is more horizontal and not totally full of milk, giving him little "breaks," not encouraging him to drink and drink. I've asked that they also "switch sides" which I'm not sure is happening. @lli*maddieb, how often should one do the technique you mention (let all milk drain out of nipple and wait for baby to signal he wants more)? Every 3 minutes? 5 minutes?

    I agree that perhaps an "ounce limit" is in order to try other comfort measures to see if milk is being used as a "go-to." But not sure what that limit should be?

  6. #6
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    Default Re: BFing 11 (almost 12)-month old, bottle feeding, amounts

    @lli*maddieb, how often should one do the technique you mention (let all milk drain out of nipple and wait for baby to signal he wants more)? Every 3 minutes? 5 minutes?
    No, the pauses should actually come every few sucks. So every 20-30 seconds. When a baby is nursing they pause very frequently to swallow and just see what happens. They do not unlatch, and nursing mom usually makes no note of it. But that is the pattern that paced feeding is supposed to mimic.

    This video explains the positioning and pauses very well: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UH4T70OSzGs

    I agree that perhaps an "ounce limit" is in order to try other comfort measures to see if milk is being used as a "go-to." But not sure what that limit should be?
    How long are you at work and how often does baby get a bottle? That can give you the number. You are right the typical recommendation is baby needs about 25 - 35 ounces of milk total per day, and if baby is nursing at night and cue nursed when you are home, that translates very simply and effectively to baby's intake requirement being somewhere between 1 to 1.5 ounces per hour of separation. So, as an example, for an 8 hour separation, 8-12 ounces total. Broken into three bottles, that is about 3-4 ounces per bottle.

    Of course that number is the recommendation for a baby who is living entirely on breastmilk and gaining very rapidly as a baby does between 1-6 months or so. It is entirely possible your baby, who is eating lots of solids and most likely headed for (or already in) the big gain rate slow down that is typical at about a year, does not need anything like that amount of milk over 24 hours. It is very hard to find evidence based intake recommendations for babies this age, and except for the book My Child Won't Eat I am not sure where to send you for that info. (iirc correctly, he suggest that about 17 ounces per day is the low end, or maybe even the average.) But you can be assured it is either the same or LESS than younger babies. Not more.
    Last edited by @llli*maddieb; September 24th, 2016 at 08:52 PM.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: BFing 11 (almost 12)-month old, bottle feeding, amounts

    When I'm on a work day, I nurse him at wake up (6am) and bedtime (usually 6:30/7pm) and now with the new 1-nap schedule have him set to have a bottle before and after nap. I'm open to better suggestions, though! I was mostly just trying to mimic with a bottle what I do with nursing:

    Home day:
    6am wake, nurse
    7am breakfast
    11am lunch
    12pm nurse/nap
    2:30/3 wake, nurse
    6pm nurse/bed

    Work day:
    6am wake, nurse
    7am breakfast
    11am lunch
    12pm bottle/nap
    2:30/3 wake, bottle
    6pm nurse/bed

    On a good night, there will be a 12am wake/nurse, a 3am wake/nurse, and then a wakeup at 6am. On a bad (teething!!!) night, there might be a 9pm wake/nurse, 11pm wake/nurse, 2am wake/nurse, and 5:30am wakeup.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: BFing 11 (almost 12)-month old, bottle feeding, amounts

    Are you actually separated from 6 am until bedtime? If you are home earlier than that, what happens if you offer to nurse when you get home?

    Some babies will nurse less often at night if they have the chance to nurse more during the day. So that is one reason to see if baby might nurse more during the day. Also more nursing would quite possibly mean baby takes less in bottles, if that is what you are looking to do. Overall, more frequent nursing so that nursing frequency is more or at least on par with bottles may increase the chances of the nursing relationship lasting longer, should that be something you would like.

    I see no reason nursing and bottle feeding have to match, at least not very closely. So, you could try increasing baby's nursing frequency when you are home with baby if you like and leave bottle frequency as it is. And/or, try increasing the frequency of bottles, as it may be that more frequent bottles will mean that they are smaller overall- that is how it works with older kids and adults, as typically, small meals more often helps reduce overall intake when that is needed. (Of course, you will have to watch any tendency to just keep giving baby the same huge bottle more often.)
    Last edited by @llli*maddieb; September 24th, 2016 at 10:33 PM.

  9. #9
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    Sep 2016
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    Ohio
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    Default Re: BFing 11 (almost 12)-month old, bottle feeding, amounts

    We use Lifefactory bottles for our 11 month old with size 1 nipples. The ladies at LO's daycare know how to pace feed and we have had zero issues with our bottles there. With some family members, and the same bottles, we have had issues.... One family member I showed her a video of paced feeding on my phone and it made a big difference.

    Check out Kellymom.com's expressed breastmilk calculator to help you figure out the number of ounces. The shorthand is 1-1.25 oz per hour away from mom. For example, my LO gets 13 oz per day, 4/5/4, and occasionally a *little* bit less if I have a low volume pump day the day before. Technically, my LO is overfed at those numbers because she is away about 10 hours.

    The other suggestion I have is to leave your caregivers with instructions to feed the bottles (say 3-4 oz at a time) and follow it with a solid food served BLW style. If your LO is truly still hungry, he will eat the food. If he is not, the caregiver will need to try something else to provide comfort. Maybe leave a list of comfort measures to try, in order.

    If that still does not help, consider a milk/meal schedule with times that have some limited flexibility (breakfast bottle/solids given between 8:30 and 9:30 am, lunch bottle/solids between 11:30 - 12:30, etc.). Schedules are discouraged for BFing, but some caregivers really struggle with understanding baby's hunger from other cues, and your baby is old enough that a little structure would probably be ok.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
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    28

    Default Re: BFing 11 (almost 12)-month old, bottle feeding, amounts

    Is the 1-1.25oz per hour of separation for EXCLUSIVELY BF'd babies, or does this formula apply for babies who take solids? Mine usually eats 2-3 solid food meals per day, mostly BLW-style (with occasional spoon feedings of things like yogurt, soup, etc.).

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