Weaning from breast to bottle can be a difficult time for both the mother and the baby. The breast produces the milk according to the requirements of the baby. The switch from the breast to the bottle should be a gradual process for both the mother and the baby. If it is done suddenly, the baby may become sick and you can also get a breast inflammation.
As the baby stops demanding for the milk gradually, the production of milk in the breasts will also become less. This will prevent the breasts from become lumpy, hard or inflamed. A little planning will help you with this ongoing procedure.
For mothers that need to return to work, they should plan accordingly. As working mothers, you may still wish to feed your baby in the night and in the morning or do so during the weekends. Plan accordingly. Before you return to work gradually stop giving your baby the breast feed for afternoon, evening and in between feeds. You will have to either give the bottle or the cup. The baby may like formula milk or may prefer some other milk such as goat’s milk (that has been watered down). A baby is also an individual and has likes and dislikes.
When weaning from breast to bottle, the baby also needs to be comfortable with the bottle or the cup. Let the baby feel comfortable with the teat and cup. You should also warm the milk to your body temperature or the temperature at which the baby is comfortable before giving them the milk. The bottle or the cup feed should be given, when the baby is very hungry or wants to go off to sleep. This will make the baby more receptive towards the bottle.
When feeding the baby through the bottle, hold the baby in the normal manner and ensure that the teat has enough supply from the bottle. This will ensure that the baby doesn’t take in gulps of air as this can be painful for the baby.
Some babies can be more difficult that the others. Try giving half breastfeed and then the bottle or the other way round. You can also change the teat or the nipple of the bottle. Change the formula milk as the taste can make the baby more amenable towards the bottle. The hole of the bottle teat should be just right and enable the baby to suck the milk. If it’s too small, then the baby will remain hungry, if the hole is very big, then the baby can easily choke.