Breast Feeding and Formula
It is this practice’s philosophy that our patients’ parents should make their own decisions about breast feeding or using baby formula. However, breast milk or formula should be your child’s sole nutritional source* for about the first six months, and the major source of nutrition throughout the first twelve months. In order to provide your baby with adequate nutrition, sometimes breast feeding mothers may need to supplement with an infant formula. Lactation Consultations are also available to ensure your child(ren) is getting everything he/she needs to thrive and develop. During the first year of your child’s life, you and your provider will need to pay attention to your baby’s feeding patterns to make sure that the child is consuming enough breast milk and, or formula for growth. Providers monitor and track each child’s growth at scheduled Well Child Visits.
We recommend the following guidelines to prevent babies spit up and discomfort after feeding.
- Make each feeding calm, quiet, and leisurely.
- Avoid interruptions, sudden noises, bright lights, and other distractions during feedings.
- Burp your bottle-fed baby during feedings. If your infant is less than 3 months, burp him/her after he/she consumes a ½ oz -1 oz. If your infant is 3-6 months of age, burp him/her every 1-2 oz. For babies ages 6-12 months, burp him/her every 2oz – 3oz.
- Avoid feeding while your infant is lying down.
- Hold the baby in an upright position for 20 to 30 minutes after each feeding.
- Do not jostle or play vigorously with the baby immediately after feeding.
- Try to feed him or her before she gets frantically hungry.
- If bottle-feeding, make sure the hole in the nipple is neither too big (which lets the formula flow too fast) nor too small (which frustrates your baby and causes her to gulp air). If the hole is the proper size, a few drops should come out when you invert the bottle, and then stop.
- Elevate the head of the entire crib with blocks (don’t use a pillow) and put him/her to sleep on her back. This keeps his/her head higher than his/her stomach and prevents him/her from choking in case he/she spits up while sleeping.
You can call the office at (207) 784-5782 during regular business hours to schedule an appointment or ask questions about any complications you may encounter with formula or feeding.
*Please note that cow’s milk should be introduced only after 1 year of age. If cow’s milk is introduced too early it can cause anemia and developmental delay due to microscopic blood loss in the stool because of an irritant effect of proteins in whole cow’s milk. However, these proteins are not present in breast milk or infant formulas.
If you need help with the expense of formula, the WIC Nutrition program may be a resource for you and your family. Please click on the following link to learn more about the State of Maine’s WIC Nutrition Program.
Introduction of Solids
Please click on our Pediatric Feeding Guide handout for detailed information about introducing solids into your child’s diet.
Nutrition and Exercise
With regards to nutrition and exercise, Pediatric Associates has partnered with the Let’s Go 5210 Program and support their 5210 Guidelines.
5 – fruits and veggies a day
2 – hours or less of recreational screen time
1 – hour or more of physical activity
0 – sugary drinks, more water and low-fat milk
Providers will continue to monitor and track your child’s growth at scheduled Well Child Visits as he or she continues to mature into adolescence. If you have concerns about your child’s health and nutrition, you can call the office at (207) 784-5782 during regular business hours to schedule an appointment or ask questions.