Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SimplyBonding #CollectiveBias
This time of year certainly feels like a season of change in our home. The kids are heading back to school and we’re trading bathing suits and sandals for rain boots and sweaters. Summer’s end is always bittersweet – goodbye to long days and late nights, while also looking forward to apple picking, hay rides and cool mornings.
Coincidentally, I feel the same way about another big change in our house: Introducing my 8 month old to a bottle. As my hours spent working increase he will need to spend some days with a sitter. This will be a huge change for both of us, as I’ve only left him with a family member a handful of times in the last 8 months.
Thankfully being baby number four means we have some experience with this transition, so I do know there are ways to make the transition easier. Whether baby is a few weeks or a few months old, there are ways to make the switch to bottle feeding a positive one.
Here are a few tips for making the transition from breast to bottle easier on both you and baby:
- Take it slow. Begin introducing the bottle weeks before you need to make the switch. Start by introducing the bottle towards the end of a feeding, when baby isn’t hungry. This may sound backwards, but a hungry baby trying to figure out how a bottle works is a recipe for disaster. By introducing the bottle when they’re already content and calm, your baby will learn to associate the bottle with comfort.
- Give your baby time to explore the bottle. Especially if you have an older baby, they will want to chew on the nipple and play with the bottle first. Hold them on your lap and spend this time playing and cuddling together.
- Don’t stress. When you’re anxious your baby picks up on that feeling. If the first couple of feedings don’t go well, stay calm. Focus on spending time with your baby, and try the bottle again later.
- Choose a comfy spot that’s perfect for cuddling while you feed.
- Create a dedicated feeding area (like the one below!) this way you’re guaranteed a comfortable, soothing spot with everything you need close by so you won’t be searching for bibs, blankets or some water mid-feeding.
- Choose a bottle that is designed to mimic breastfeeding. In the past I’ve dealt with cabinets that overflow with bottles and countless trips to the store. This time I did my homework and found the right bottle the first time. NUK Simply Natural Bottles are designed to be just like Mom’s breast, so there’s less for baby to get used to, which means less stress for mom and dad! We had to switch to bottles just as my son was at his clingiest stage. He’d barely let me out of his sight, and I had no idea how I would manage the switch to bottle feeding. Before heading to the store I did as much research as possible, looking for a bottle that would mimic breastfeeding. The NUK Simply Natural bottles grabbed my attention for a few reasons:NUK Simply Natural bottles have nipples that are shaped just like mom’s nipple during breastfeeding, and have multiple nipple holes, just like mom’s breast, making switching between breast and bottle less confusing for your baby because the shape is so familiar. This was the biggest selling point for me.Think about it – the first difference your baby sees between breast and bottle are the shape of the nipple and single nipple hole. By designing a nipple that looks, feels and works like mom’s breast NUK is setting families up for successful bottle feeding from the start! The nipple also moves with baby for a continuous latch, which solves another common problem when introducing a bottle – getting your baby to take the bottle, only for them to struggle with latching until you’re both frustrated. Because the NUK Simple Natural nipples are designed to so closely resemble mom’s breast your baby can adjust with ease.
I’m also loving the built in anti-colic system that means no extra parts to keep track of, and the NUK Simply Natural Bottles are top rack dishwasher safe so I can run the days worth of bottles in the dishwasher each evening and wake up to clean bottles.
To make our transition even easier I like to create a feeding area that’s comfortable and familiar to keep both baby and myself at ease. I chose my favorite couch, and I keep some essentials handy so that I never have to interrupt a feeding (or a nap!) to find something I need.
To create your own ideal feeding area choose a spot that’s comfortable and low traffic. Make sure to keep some pillows handy for propping your arm up as you hold baby, and a blanket for snuggling on cooler days. I also keep a basket next to me, stocked with things I know I will need. Some of my essentials are:
- Extra Recieving blankets or burp cloths
- Extra Bibs
- Bottled Water (this is the one I use most, I always get thirsty just as my son settles in!)
- Snacks for mom or dad (especially if baby likes to take his time eating)
- A book for those after feeding naps when you don’t want to disturb baby
- A baby toy, for playing or distracting a fussy baby
- NUK orthodontic pacifiers for those after-bottle naps.
If you’re ready to begin your own breast-to-bottle journey head over to Babies R Us where NUK Simply Natural Bottles are brand new, and look for an end cap full of exciting products. I couldn’t believe how many great things I found.
I also stocked up on NUK orthodontic pacifiers and I even grabbed a Simply Natural Newborn Gift Set, which comes with 2 5oz bottles, 2 9oz bottles, slow and fast flow nipples and three orthodontic pacifiers, for a friend of mine who’s expecting.
I can happily report that after less than a week my son is happily switching between bottle and breast without any complaints, making this the easiest transition we’ve ever had! And I’m not alone, according to NUK’s independent market research 93% of babies accept NUK Simply Natural Nipples and 97% of mothers confirm that multiple nipple holes create a natural feeding experience and would recommend NUK Simply Natural to others.
NUK Simply Natural Bottles have made this big change so easy I find myself sharing our story with anyone who will listen, hoping to save another parent from piles of unused bottles, cranky babies and stressed out mamas. Follow and interact with NUK social channels for potential offers and giveaways, especially for Simply Natural September! You can follow NUK on Instagram or Facebook.
Do you have a bottle feeding story? Share your experience in the comments!