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When to resort to formula milk

All specialists agree that, whenever possible, the best option is to breastfeed your baby. However, there are a number of situations that make this very difficult or even impossible. The most common reasons for which a mother decides to feed her baby formula milk are:

- When the newborn has a weak sucking reflex, especially if the baby is premature.

- When breastfeeding is very painful for the mother.

- If the mother and child are kept apart by unforeseen circumstances.

- When the mother has health problems that require the administration of drugs that are not compatible with breastfeeding.

- Due to the need to return to work.

- When the mother does not have enough milk, although this case is not at all common.

The main advantages of bottle feeding are:

- It gives the mother greater flexibility and freedom of movement.

- It allows you to know exactly how much milk your child is having.

- The mother does not need to alter her own diet because of breastfeeding.

- Babies fed on formula milk do not need to eat as often because it takes longer to digest.

However, you do not have to resort to formula milk alone; it can be used to complement breastfeeding. In this case, it is called mixed feeding. Mothers tend to resort to this type of feeding particularly when they return to work. It is worth bearing in mind that:

- It is best to wait until the baby is at least 3 or 4 weeks old, as he might be reluctant to accept a new way of sucking before then.

- It is advisable for someone else, as well as the mother, to give the baby the bottle in order to make sure that he does not reject the milk when the mother cannot feed him.

- If you resort to using formula milk only sporadically, it is best to give your baby just one bottle every 24 hours so that the mother's milk supply is not interrupted.

- If the mother has to go back to work, start substituting one of the feeds for formula milk every 3 or 4 days.