Formula is food for your baby and enough of making our new mothers feel guilty about giving babies formula.
Food standards Australia New Zealand is considering placing a “warning” on tins of formula about the risks to infant health of not breastfeeding.
Formula is food for babies. Breastfeeding rates will rise if we provide new parents guilt-fee information that includes giving formula to babies are hungry or in need of extra calories.
I am a strong advocate for breastfeeding and encourage women to breastfeed their babies for up to and beyond a year but there are plenty of situations where formula is necessary.
Babies who are born premature, women who have had breast surgery, babies born of diabetic mothers are just some that may require formula at some stage.
Also some women don’t want to breastfeed. That is their choice and right and we must respect and support them not make them feel like they are poisoning their baby with a safe product.
Not every woman lactates the same. Its news to some women that they will not make enough milk for their baby, as the information given to women is you must breast feed and breast feed only.
In my practice I see babies that are starving, yes starving. No weight gain and crying day in day out. Once the baby is given some top up formula after a breastfeed the baby gains weight, the mother feels better and will continue to breast feed for longer. Fact.
I often ask new mums “what is your alternative” when they are upset about giving the baby top up formula. There is no alternative other than formula. Pumping is not an alternative. It is not sustainable; it is not natural and causes anxiety and distress to mothers. Medications do not help either. Again this gives new mothers a false sense that they will lactate more.
Giving formula will not decrease breast milk or confuse a baby. It’s all about food and women will breast feed longer of they give some formula to babies if the baby require added calories in the early weeks.