Using the right products and following the right methods can be a lot to think about when we look after the welfare of our children. A lot of newborn parents, like you, overthink how much they should feed their babies.
They get anxious thinking about what milk is best for their babies. They also worry about how it must be fed to them.
In the first stage of pregnancy, you get to critically decide what bottle is best for your little bundle of joy. Of course, most moms would prefer breastfeeding their babies but you still would like to buy bottles to help you around when your angel arrives. Choosing the right bottle can be a little stressful and overwhelming.
First, you have to choose the right size and design that fits your age and needs. Remember, there is a standard amount of milk you should feed your babies at a certain age so avoid buying in bulk and wasting your time and money. If you don’t want to wash baby bottles from time to time, 3 – 4 bottles could help you get through the day.
Another important thing to consider is whether your baby’s bottle can be sterilized without leaching its material onto the milk. This does not go on bottles alone but also on other feeding tools you need for your babies such as breastmilk storage bags, and pacifiers. Sterilizing depends on your preference but can surely help.
However, it does not end with purchasing the right bottle for you. Choosing what is best for your baby always has a snowball effect. Your first decision leads to more questions.
Thus, some of you may still be anxious a lot more after purchasing your baby’s bottles and ask questions such as what is the best milk for your baby.
You will also wonder if the baby bottles should be warmed. Should it be sterilized regularly? Or, should I feed a warm bottle of milk to my baby?
Worry less because here are a few things to help you decide what is best for your little angel!
Babies and children change their needs as they grow. Choosing the right milk depends on the nutrients needed at a certain age and the ability of your baby to digest them.
Two types of milk are considered safe for babies ages 0 – 12 months which are (1) breastmilk and (2) formula milk.
Mother’s breast milk is the best option to meet the nutritional needs of your baby. It contains a natural and sufficient proportion of nutrients needed by your babies such as calcium, protein, carbohydrates, and fat. Its natural components make it easier for their small and sensitive digestive system to digest as well.
Breastfeeding has both short-term and long-term benefits for your baby. It is not merely for soothing their hunger. Here are a few of its benefits:
It can help improve your baby’s cognitive development. Breastfed babies have higher levels of choline, a vitamin-like nutrient that helps brain development. Studies show that breastfed babies are linked to a more developed memory and cognition.
It can lower the risk of long-term diseases. About 20% to higher than 200% of non-breastfed infants are more at risk of chronic diseases. Breast milk contains a good proportion of vitamins and minerals that may not be found in other types of milk.
Breast milk can lower the risk of your baby acquiring long-term diseases such as allergies, asthma, being overweight, diabetes, leukemia, Hodgkin’s disease, and a lot more.
It can help against illnesses. Breast milk contains natural antibodies that help fight infection. It is less likely for a breastfed baby to acquire illnesses such as nose and ear infections, colds, and flu.
It keeps their digestive system functioning better. A Baby’s digestive system is more sensitive than everyone else’s. It only requires a certain level of proteins and minerals. Breast milk provides the right level of nutrients that is suitable for your baby’s needs and system.
Indeed breast milk provides a lot of health benefits for your baby. Thus, its convenience and availability are only just a plus for every parent like you.
Some parents opt to choose formula milk when it is difficult for the mother to produce breast milk. This may cost more than the free magic of breast milk but it also has good benefits for both you and your baby.
It contains nutrients your baby needs. Formula milk is built with the right amount of nutrients your baby needs. Like breast milk, it also has a good amount of protein, carbohydrates, calories, vitamins, and minerals that can help in its growth.
Although formula milk contains the same nutrient, it lacks the antibodies and immune factors that are contained in breast milk. This means that it can be good for your child’s development but it does not help prevent illnesses and diseases.
It is convenient and practical. Unlike breast milk, formula milk takes longer to digest. This means that you don’t have to constantly feed them after an hour or two, and you can have your feeding schedule for your baby. This also means that there is less waking up in the middle of the night for you!
Feeding your baby with formula milk can also help moms with busy home and work schedules. You don’t have to constantly pump and be cautious of what you eat and drink. With this, you can also take rounds in feeding your baby at home and have your moment with them.
Babies’ feeding preferences depend on what you repeatedly do for them. There is no standard rule on how cold or warm baby bottles should be. The nutrients of the milk do not change with temperature so you don’t have to worry about that.
Giving your babies room-temperature or cold milk is perfectly safe, and so is warm milk. However, if your baby is transitioning from breastfeeding to bottle-feeding you would prefer warming it and making it closer to normal body temperature. This will keep your baby secured and well-adjusted in the transition.
You can gradually change from high to low temperature if you wish to. Just make sure you do not do it abruptly because your baby might reject it. Give them time to adjust.
To keep your baby healthy, it is important to know how to properly prepare and store the milk they consume. If you prefer warm milk for them, here are two methods that you could easily apply:
Use a Bowl of Warm Water. This method is applicable with baby bottles and breast milk storage bags. Simply, fill a bowl with warm water and put the bottle or bag of milk on it. Wait for the milk to have the same temperature as the water in the bowl.
Use a Bottle Warmer. If you want to go above and beyond and choose a faster and more convenient way then this is for you. Bottle warmers are electric-generated machines that can easily warm up your baby’s bottle in no time and at the desired temperature.
If you are warming your baby’s bottle before giving it to them to sanitize it then you might be doing something wrong. Sanitizing baby bottles and warming them are both different processes. The latter could be done once you are certain that you have properly sterilized it.
If you prefer sterilizing baby bottles and giving your baby nice warm milk, then the first thing you should do is to look for bottles and/or breastmilk storage bags that are microwaveable or could be heated. This is to avoid chemical leaching from the container.
Afterwhich, make sure to sanitize your baby bottles by sterilizing them. Manufacturers would advise you to clean and sanitize bottles and milk bags before using them. This is to get rid of germs and bacteria that could cause infection to your baby.
Germs are more likely to grow in an unclean bottle of milk because of the moisture and the components milk has. Thus, it is not wrong to sterilize your baby’s bottle.
Regularly, you could sterilize baby bottles at least once a day. Although, like warming baby bottles, sterilizing is also a preference and optional. Some parents do not sterilize their baby’s bottle but make sure that they have cleaned it thoroughly.
However, it is necessary to sterilize your baby bottles and even milk storage bags if:
- You are using a hand-me-down bottle and milk bag.
- Your baby is suffering from health problems.
- You don’t have access to safe and clean water.
Keeping your baby healthy and safe means you have to know what product and method are best for them. It needs you to know the right milk, the right bottle and even storage bags, and the right way to use it for your baby.
To keep you more at ease, here are additional tips for you!
Be Attentive in Feeding your Baby
You can have the most nutritious milk or the most expensive bottle in the world. If you fail to attentively feed your baby, they might still get sick or hurt.
Give your baby the attention that they need when you are feeding them to avoid them from choking. Too much consumption can also lead to being overweight, so be attentive.
Spot Hunger Cues
Your baby can give you different cues through crying. It can be discomfort, distress, hunger or they might just be sleepy. Babies should be fed whenever they need to and not always when your schedule dictates.
Feeding your baby on-demand can help in their growth. It gives them sufficient nutrients for their body to fully develop. It is quite challenging but you have to know how to spot their hunger cues.
A lot of feeding tools are available in the market today that are beneficial and practical. Thinking about all of these and how to properly use them can be nerve-wracking for some. But it can be easier if you know what you are looking for.
Always remember to look for bottles, other containers, and machines that help you do the job. You may check the Nuliie store for great and safe milk storage bags, bottle warmers, and more!