We all have the best intentions for nursing our babies as long as possible, however, sometimes life circumstances dictate that we make the switch to formula somewhere along the way. If you have found yourself in this situation, here are a few tips to make the transition a little easier.
Choosing a Good Formula
Sometimes the switch from breastmilk to formula can result in baby developing allergies, diaper rashes or an upset stomach. This is usually due to unfavorable components found in many formulas. So, your first step will be to choose a good, nutritious organic formula for your baby.
Not all formulas are created equally and unfortunately many formulas contain ingredients which can even harm your baby. Artificial ingredients, GMO’s, preservatives, chemicals and added sugar can wreak havoc on your baby’s digestive and immune systems. Choosing a high quality, grass fed, organic formula to provide the nutrients your baby will need can make all the difference in the world.
Making the Transition
After you have chosen a good organic formula, you can begin the transition. Breastmilk has a very distinct flavor, and tends to be on the sweeter side. Introducing formula to a baby who is used to breastmilk can be a slow process. The best way to start, is to first get baby used to drinking pumped breastmilk from a bottle. Once the baby is used to the bottle, you can begin to add formula to your breastmilk. Start by adding a small amount of formula into the breastmilk. Just as when introducing solid foods, watch your baby for any adverse reactions, such as diaper rash or allergies. If your baby is receptive to the formula and breastmilk mix, slowly increase the amount of formula, and decrease the amount of breastmilk in each bottle until there is no more breastmilk. This may take a week or two as your baby gets used to the taste of the formula. If your baby is particularly picky about the taste, you may need to go slower to get him used to it.
Dealing with Allergies
If you are using a cow milk formula and find that your baby is having an adverse reaction to the formula, such as upset stomach, excess gas, diarrhea, and skin or diaper rash, he may be sensitive to cow milk. Though this is less likely to occur when using organic grass fed formulas, some babies are allergic to cow milk in any form. If this should happen, you may need to make a switch to an organic goat milk or soy formula. We recommend you try the goat milk formula fist, as soy can have its own complications (see out article on choosing a formula).
Bear in mind also that not all organic formulas are free of added sugar and preservatives. Sometimes these ingredients can be the main culprit in causing stomach discomfort and diaper rash. If your baby is having an issue, check your label!
Tip for the Picky Eater
Some babies find that the naturally sweeter taste of goat milk formula is more suitable to their pallet, when switching from breastmilk to formula. Especially if your little one tends to get an upset stomach, goat milk formula is also easier to digest than most cow milk formulas. It might be just the thing when switching from breastmilk to formula.
Whatever your reasons for switching from breastmilk to formula might be, we hope that these tips will help you have the best success and keep your baby happy and healthy.