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Thread: When to give a bottle...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Default When to give a bottle...

    My little man will be 34 weeks gestation tomorrow/4 weeks old today. He loves to suck on his pacifier and is nursing using a nipple shield twice a day for about 5 minutes each time. He does get milk when he nurses. The nurses in the NICU said we can try a bottle this weekend and that when he gets a bottle he will probably not want to nurse as much. When we give him a bottle, I can't nurse for that feeding. I'm unsure of what to do. I know he has to take bottles well before he can come home, but I don't want to inhibit the progress we've made with nursing. Any thoughts on how to handle this?
    Mommy to:

    Emmalynn Marie
    Born at 37 weeks on 12/22/06
    5lbs 1oz 19 1/2in

    Owen Charles
    Born at 29 wks 6 days on 01/17/09
    2lbs 14oz 15in
    In NICU for 2 months


  2. #2
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    Default Re: When to give a bottle...

    What i did was always try to nurse beforehand. then after 5 or 10 minutes we would give the bottle. And you don't have to give bottles....depending on how long they expect him to be there, he can gavage feed (or dropper, spoon, etc.) if you are not BF. We did not know this and he was bottle fed after he got of the IV. Of course it isn't as easy for the nurses...
    I'm Hillary
    Wife to Gualberto
    Mom to Nolan
    Born at 32 weeks-3lbs/10oz
    11-25-2007
    Our precious early angel


    Remember, you are not managing an inconvenience; You are raising a human being ~ Kittie Frantz
    Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth ~ Albert Einstein
    First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi
    Looking for more information about vaccines?

  3. #3
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    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: When to give a bottle...

    I'd choose nursing over the bottle.
    Do you have good support at the hosiptal?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: When to give a bottle...

    *I* definitely choose nursing over bottles. But I was told he would have to take bottles effectively for his feedings in order to be discharged (even the lactation consultants said so) and that I can wean him off bottles and onto full breastfeeding when he's home. I will ask if he can nurse and then be fed the rest through the feeding tube but I don't think they will go for that. They like bottles because they can measure his intake and he can suck. And it's a "step in the right direction" that he can have a bottle instead of be tube-fed.

    I guess I'm wondering if I should postpone him having a bottle for a little longer while he gets better at nursing or if I'm just delaying the inevitable. He still has several weeks there since he still is on the hi-flow nasal canula.
    Mommy to:

    Emmalynn Marie
    Born at 37 weeks on 12/22/06
    5lbs 1oz 19 1/2in

    Owen Charles
    Born at 29 wks 6 days on 01/17/09
    2lbs 14oz 15in
    In NICU for 2 months


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    18,063

    Default Re: When to give a bottle...

    ask the lactation consultants and see what they say....
    getting him home quicker seams like a great idea. I don't know.
    You can do it!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: When to give a bottle...

    Giving him a bottle certainly isn't the end of the world, but they can measure his intake through the ng tube too ...

    We were able to transition to EBF with relatively no problems...after he figured out how. He didn't even really latch right until around his due date.

    So if your hospital is going to give you grief, and he can go home sooner if you give a bottle, then i guess *i* would just do it...then you can work on things at home, outside of the stress of the hospital and w/o people challenging your every decision.
    I'm Hillary
    Wife to Gualberto
    Mom to Nolan
    Born at 32 weeks-3lbs/10oz
    11-25-2007
    Our precious early angel


    Remember, you are not managing an inconvenience; You are raising a human being ~ Kittie Frantz
    Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth ~ Albert Einstein
    First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi
    Looking for more information about vaccines?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    1,081

    Default Re: When to give a bottle...

    Thanks ladies. We decided to try a bottle - they won't do a feeding tube until he goes home and part of why they want him on bottles is that babies who suck more go home faster. So at this point if I'm there I can choose to nurse or give a bottle and finish with the tube. They aren't going to give him bottles without us there yet. They understand I want nursing to be the forefront. My dh gave him a bottle tonight and he did o.k. - does better nursing. We'll see with more practice and time.
    Mommy to:

    Emmalynn Marie
    Born at 37 weeks on 12/22/06
    5lbs 1oz 19 1/2in

    Owen Charles
    Born at 29 wks 6 days on 01/17/09
    2lbs 14oz 15in
    In NICU for 2 months


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    meh....wherever
    Posts
    7,065

    Default Re: When to give a bottle...

    God...your NICU experience has been lame...to say the least!

    Good luck mama...whatever you need to do to get him home.
    I'm Hillary
    Wife to Gualberto
    Mom to Nolan
    Born at 32 weeks-3lbs/10oz
    11-25-2007
    Our precious early angel


    Remember, you are not managing an inconvenience; You are raising a human being ~ Kittie Frantz
    Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth ~ Albert Einstein
    First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi
    Looking for more information about vaccines?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Grand Rapids, MI
    Posts
    35

    Default Re: When to give a bottle...

    I realize that every baby is different, but my son, born at 31 weeks and discharged at 35 weeks, (and is 40 weeks this week!) was taking a bottle for 5-6 feedings a day and nursing for 2-3 feeedings a day at discharge. We have had no trouble with him refusing to nurse or anything - he loves nursing, and he does fine with the bottle too. I am currently nursing all feedings but one each day (DH does the 2am bottle feeding! YAY!)

    My LC at the NICU had a nursing scale that we would weigh him on before and after he nursed, and the difference is the amount he took in. The doctors/nurses can use this as evidence that he's taking in the amount he needs to at a breastfeeding session.

    I guess I felt that as long as he was learning to nurse AND take a bottle at the same time, he'd do okay. And he did. So, I hope that helps. Keep it up!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    1,090

    Default Re: When to give a bottle...

    I really dont see the problem... Gosh I wish I can find my books where I read about the importance of premmies learning how to suck successfully... Mama did you buy the books by any chance????

    If you are concern for nipple conusion dont worry, the bottle will teach him how to SUCK, but he will realize that the milk in the breast is the same he takes from the bottle.... I know you prefer nurning over bottle, but remember the baby is a premmie, and the circunstances are different... ( I really wish I knew where my books are)

    I personatly rather my baby feed from a bottle then have to see her with the G-Tube throught her nose.... It breaks my heart to remember those early stages....

    Your NICU expirience seems prety "comun" per say..... At least it seems to be similar to mine ---- The better he gets at sucking, the better he will get at nursing....

    S

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