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    Feeding from a Bottle

    7 Common Bottle Feeding Problems

    Written on 25 April 2019

    There are various reasons for a baby to refuse bottle feeding; the good news is that most of these reasons are behavioral in nature and can be addressed, sometimes, by simply observing the baby for vital clues. Given below are some common problems associated with bottle feeding and their solutions.

    1. Misinterpreting Hunger

    The most common and the most easily correctable problem related to bottle feeding is the misinterpretation of hunger by new moms. Babies tend to suck on their thumbs and other objects for various reasons other than being hungry. A baby may suck on things out of anxiety, boredom or simply being tired; many mothers misinterpret this reflex of hunger. Attempting to feed the baby based on this behaviour can result in the baby refusing to feed simply because it is not hungry.

    What to Do

    If the baby is refusing to feed, do not force it, accept that you may have misinterpreted and wait till the baby gives more clear clues of being hungry.

    2. Misinterpreting/Miscalculating Feeding Amount

    The second most common and easily correctable problem with regards to bottle feeding is miscalculating the amount of milk or baby formula a baby really needs. Sometimes parents make calculations based on expert opinion or simply guesstimate their baby’s daily requirement of milk or formula. And sometimes professionals make the mistake of not properly calculating requirements based on changing requirements as the baby is growing. Whatever the case may be, if a baby has had enough and is not hungry, it will refuse to feed.

    What to Do

    Commonly estimated feeding suggestions are only approximate figures and can vary from baby to baby. Some babies feed more than others and some less. As noted above, wait till the baby gives more clear clues of being hungry.

    3. Distracted Baby

    Humans are naturally curious beings; this curiosity is apparent as early as four months from being born. Once a baby is four months or older, his curiosity makes him take more interest in everything around him. Other children playing, pets acting up, and even music and television can distract a baby and make it lose focus on feeding.

    What to Do

    If you feel your baby is distracted, turn of all sound sources such as television, music, etc., better still is to find a quiet room without people, children or pets.

    4. Tired Baby

    A baby may refuse to bottle feed simply because it is tired. A baby that has not slept enough will tire quickly; while it is true that a hungry baby may sleep less, it is equally true for a baby deprived of sleep to avoid feeding. It will throw up a fuss, cry or fall asleep while feeding.

    What to Do

    Seek expert opinion on sleeping and feeding schedules, or create a balanced schedule to avoid overlapping sleeping time with feeding time. Also, ensure that your baby is getting enough sleep and try to feed the baby before it gets tired.

    5. Individual Feeding Pattern

    Like all mammals, humans tend to display individual personality types, behavioral patterns, and feeding habits from very early in their lives. Some babies like to consume large amounts of food at one go; others like to feed a little at a time but more often during the day. If your baby is frequently refusing to bottle feed, then it is prudent to consider that you may not have fully understood his/her individual feeding pattern. Constantly feeding a baby can put added stress on the mother. Ideally, a baby’s individual pattern should be respected, but if needed, an attempt can be made to gently and gradually encourage a change.

    What to Do

    A baby should be encouraged to feed much of what food it needs in about forty minutes, but given individual patterns, this should not be forced. Stop if the baby does not wish to continue. Another approach to a frequent feeding pattern is to try and create longer intervals between feeds. Encourage play or take the baby for an outing, or let it nap to gradually increase the time intervals between feeds.

    6. Bottle Feeding Aversion

    Some babies may develop an allergy to milk protein or may develop intolerance to milk or formula. There are many factors that may induce feeding aversions, such as certain physical or oral problems and reflux. Fortunately, most feeding aversions are a result of behavioral issues than actual physical problems or medical conditions.

    What to Do

    A feeding aversion can be a very complicated problem with no easy or straightforward solutions. If all else fails, then the only solution is to consult experts to try and identify the root cause of this aversion.

    7. Night Feeding

    New-born babies need to be fed frequently and even at night. Avoid feeding a baby, that has reached six months, at night. If night feeding continues beyond six months it could result in a formula fed baby refusing bottle. This is no cause for alarm; it may simply be that the baby relies on feeding to fall asleep. Night time feeding will not harm the baby, but given that a baby needs only a certain amount of food every twenty-four hours, she may simply refuse to be bottle fed during the day.

    What to Do

    Once the baby has reached six months of age, parents should consider slowly and gradually discouraging night-time feeding. This can be done by simply encouraging the baby to feed more during the day.

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    Written by

    LoveleenGupta

    LoveleenGupta

    Read from 5000+ Articles, topics, verified by MYLO.

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