As a new mom how do you choose the best baby bottle? It’s not as easy as it sounds. You just can’t pick any bottle from the store as there are a lot of factors that you would need to consider before you buy the baby feeding bottle. In our 2020 ultimate guide, we are going to talk about the factors that you need to consider before you shortlist a particular type of baby bottle.
Also Read: The Ten Best Baby Bottles
How To Choose The Best Baby Bottle
Size Of The bottle – The first thing that you must consider is the size of the bottle. Now, this is basically dependent on the age of the baby. Ideally, you can go ahead and buy a bottle with a capacity of 150 ml if your baby is between 0 to 3 months old. Once the baby crosses the 3-month mark, you would need to upsize the bottle to one that can hold up to 330 ml of fluid. Ensure that you do not buy a bottle for the baby which is bigger than it needs to be, as it would turn out to be too heavy for your baby to hold.
The Shape Of The Bottle – You can very much opt for a standard shape as it would not really make much of a difference. Just ensure that the shape of the bottle is in such a way that it offers a good grip to the baby. In addition to this, to choose the best baby bottle shape, check that the base of the bottle is not very wide for the baby to hold the bottle properly.
The Bottle Material – There are generally three types of material available in the bottles. The first one is the most common one which is the plastic material. The second one is the glass and the third one is steel. If you wish to buy the plastic bottle then ensure that the bottle is BPA free. The glass bottle is expensive and they can be heavy. You can give it to the baby who is at least 2 months old and lastly, you can consider the stainless steel bottles which are lightweight and the safest option in the list. Also, the steel bottles may be a little expensive but they are the best ones.
The Development Stage Of Baby – You also need to consider the development stage of the baby. This would not make a difference if your baby is in a normal development stage but this could be a major point of differentiation for pre-mature baby. Since the baby born prematurely would have a poor reflex, it would be difficult for him to suck on the nipple with normal force. These specially designed bottles for premature babies requires a limited force and some of the better versions can help the baby in switching from the feeding tubes to the bottles.
Silicone Or Latex Nipples – There is two basic material in which nipples are available. One of them is silicone while the other one is latex. Until now latex nipples had been popular but the fact is that silicone nipples are much better than the latex nipples. They are long-lasting and they are much stronger as well. Apart from this, the silicone is bacteria resistant which adds on to the benefits of the silicone nipple. You would have to pay a premium for buying the silicone nipple buy again, you must go ahead with these ones.
Size & Shape of Nipple – Next factor to consider is the shape and size of the nipple. This also determines the flow. The shape and size of the nipple should be chosen as per the age of the baby and to explain it better, we have listed the table below for your reference.
|Age of Baby||Shape||Size||Flow|
|< 1 Week||Regular or Cherry||Small||Slow|
|1 Week to 2 Week||Breast Mimicking||Wide||Slow|
|2 Week to 2 Months||Natural or Breast Mimicking||Wide||Slow|
|2 Months to 4 Months||Regular or Natural||Regular||Medium|
|4 Months to 6 Months||Regular or Natural||Regular||Fast|
|6 Months to 9 Months||Orthodontic||Regular||Very Fast|
Compatibility of Bottle and Nipple – Another factor that you must consider is the compatibility of the bottle with the nipples. Check if the bottle supports the wide base nipples or the narrow base nipples. Bottles which supports the vents to do away with vacuum build-up will only support silicone nipples. Consider this point before you are buying additional nipples for the bottle.
Cost – Next factor to consider is the cost of the bottle. The bottles can start from a very cheap range but they can go up to a very high range. The glass and steel bottles are the most expensive ones. Similarly, check out the price of the nipples as well and ensure that everything fits into your budget.
Ease of Cleaning and Sterilizing – Also check the ease of cleaning the bottle. A bottle with a lot of curves will be difficult to clean and deposits may build up in such a case. While you are investing in a bottle, ensure that you also buy a good cleaning brush for your bottle.
These are all the factors that you need to consider while buying the bottle. Also, while you are purchasing the bottle, it would make a lot of sense to purchase extra nipples because you will find yourself in a situation where you are changing the nipples frequently. This would save you from taking trips to the market in a later stage.
Sterilization Of Baby Bottles
It is important that you sterilize your baby’s bottle before each use. Check with the manufacturer as to what’s their recommendation. But essentially, you can use hot water and/or steam to kill off the harmful bacteria. You can try disinfectant solutions; the first thing that you need to do is to wash off the remains of all milk, brush it on the inside, and then soak it in a solution of disinfectant and water.
Once you have done that, you can air-dry the bottle and reuse it. Or you can fill it with water, and drop it in the microwave especially if the bottle comes with a self-sterilizing feature. And as for other bottles, just use hot water to clean it, and take it out and wait for the bottle to cool. This should effectively take care of any bacteria. Additionally, you can also steam the bottles to sterilize them, it’s your call.
How To Bottle Feed Your Breastfed Baby?
Babies are innocent, curious and ready to learn new stuff. Whatever happens near to them, they learn. For a breastfeeding mom, teaching their baby about bottle feed seems like a big task and it may require lots of efforts.
However, if you choose a simple method by tricking babies then it became easy to feed your baby. The below given are some basic steps that you should follow to teach incorrect manner –
- Offering Bottle After Regular Feeding
The simple and easiest method to teach your baby about breastfeeding is by offering him/her the bottle and play with it. As you will feed your baby with breast in the evening, then offer him/her the bottle.
It will take time to catch the nipple but you can correct and make sure that you give half an ounce of milk. This practice should be followed on a daily basis until the end of the week. After such a long time, the baby will get used to bottle feeding.
- Slow Flow Nipples are necessary for Smooth Flow
Babies may not like the regular bottle nipples because they can fill the mouth in a quick time. Even, the chances of getting flooded with milk are higher for babies that’s why it is important that you go with slow flow nipples.
These nipples require the baby to try harder and then they can get milk out of it. Use the slow flow nipples for the first week and then you can change with the better one for quick feeding.
- Do not Feed Yourself to Baby
As the baby is used to the smell of your body and baby knows that who you are then feeding with the bottle is hard. Baby will deny and won’t listen to you that’s why to ask someone else do the same work.
Make sure that you do not go closer when the baby is playing with the bottle and learning how to drink milk out of it. Once the baby starts loving breastfeeding option then you can rely on it without a single issue. You can take help from your partner, friend or nanny of the quick time learning.
- Try Staying out of Reach of baby
Babies know that who their mommy is and if mom is inside the house, baby can smell them from a distance. Staying out of house or reach will make them try something new like a feeding bottle.
A good feeding bottle with proper shape and accurate size can help. If the flow is near to yours then the breastfeeding bottles are reliable and they can kill this habit of feeding with breast. After a couple of months, you can try out offering formula milk.
By using these methods, it becomes easy to teach a baby about bottle feed. If the baby is stubborn and hates preferring bottle then you can keep him/her hungry for a few more minutes or half an hour.
ut, don’t be too rude. As the baby will be hungry and want milk then you can try offering a bottle by putting the nipple in his/her mouth. This may feel hard but you can try out this basic and easy option.
Bottle Feeding Do’s & Don’ts
Bottle feeding is safe if you follow all the basic precautions. Most of people forget to look at Do’s and Don’ts if they are facing issues. So, you should check these points out to avoid the common mistakes.
- Do make sure that you boil bottle and nipple for five minutes when using for the first time. After the use, keep both in hot soapy water for one minute before using it.
- Do wash your hands before preparing formula or pouring milk inside the baby bottle so that you can avoid any bacteria or germs.
- Do sterilize the water before using and keep it hot. After that, let it cool and then prepare a formula for safe use.
- Do place the bottle in the mouth of the baby and make sure that you choose slow flow for the better feeding.
The List of Don’ts
- Don’t – Don’t put the bottle in the microwave to heat milk inside it. You can buy baby bottle warmers which can preserve the quality and heat milk at an accurate temperature.
- Don’t – Don’t use the existing formula that the baby left. The existing formula can feel stinky or it can cause a problem. The taste will be different also. So, you should avoid that.
- Don’t – If the bay does not like formula milk and leave in between then try out prepared baby formula milk to ensure that if baby hate the formula or you are not mixing properly.
- Don’t – Do not keep the empty bottle in the baby’s mouth to play with it because this will make the baby bite harder on the nipple to get milk. If you do not follow and try feeding with your own nipple, then the baby can bite.
After following these basic methods, you can ensure safe feeding to a baby. One last thing to keep in mind is to choose a reputed brand for quality rubber nipples.
Choosing poor quality can cause an issue like the baby will chew it and damage in the future. So, try out preferring other reputed brands during the purchase. And, do use a baby bottle warmer to heat the milk and sterilize the formula in an effective manner for safe use.
Bottle Feeding Vs. Breastfeeding: Pros and Cons
It solely depends upon the mother which is best for her little one. To be very frank the whole thing entirely depends upon her. But at the same time, it is always said that breastfeeding is the best one for each and every baby. It has ample benefits and advantages.
But many times it is seen that women choose bottles while feeding their little ones. This is because it can save the time and keep the mom’s free for a long time. However, there is a long conflict on the issue which is better, bottle feeding or breast feeding.
In the nest few lines we will try to find out that which one is the best for the new born. You should take utmost care on feeding the baby in proper time. It is very vital. Without proper food a baby cannot grow properly. It is sole responsibility of the mother to look after the actual and right diet of the baby. Now let us try to explore which is better and why.
Breast feeding is always best for both the baby and mother. It helps to increase the immunity level among the babies. Now let us have a small discussion on this issue.
Pros Of Breast Feeding
- Firstly, breast feeding is a cost-effective process of feeding the baby. If you use bottles or pumps then that can be a costlier one.
- Breast feeding does not require any types of earlier preparation. It is always ready.
- Breast feeding is also presumed to be the purest form of feeding and it is the only way by which you can provide some fresh foods to your baby.
- It can also help in proper development of baby. It can also help in providing proper nourishment of the baby and that too in a wonderful way.
Cons Of Breast Feeding
- Sometimes it may happen that the mother can feel a little discomfort at the time of feeding. It usually takes place during the first feeding periods.
- You may not be able to measure how much milk your baby is taking. It is perhaps impossible to measure the exact quantity.
- Most of the new born babies usually take milk within a short time. It is not always possible to keep in mind the exact timings and amount.
Breast feeding is the most advanced type of feeding that is usually followed by the modern moms. It is mainly done so that the time is saved and the mother can stay absolutely free for a long time. It is also said that bottle feeding is easier and smoother at the same time. It is certainly preferred by the working moms. You may need to locate a baby formula which tastes similar to breast milk.
Pros Of Bottle Feeding
- It is very easy to feed a baby with bottles. If the mother is busy with some work it can be done by any of the family members.
- You can get approximate measurement of the milk that is consumed by your baby.
- Moms who feed their baby with formula milk should not worry about the proper diet of the baby. It is mainly found within the milk.
- You will get the correct estimate of the milk temperature as it is mainly prepared by the mom.
- The process of bottle feeding is quite easy as the baby can easily consume the food through nipples.
Cons Of Bottle Feeding
- Regular consumption of milk through bottle can cause digestive problems among the babies. It can also cause constipation to them.
- Formula milk or bottle feeding can be an expensive process. The milk is purchased and it is a very expensive one for many.
- Formula milk can also hamper the health of the baby. Research has proved the fact that formula milk may not develop immunity power among the little ones. So, they can often fall ill and it may affect their health to a great extent.
- The nipples and the bottles are to be washed on a regular basis. It also needs to be boiled so that there is no infection on both the bottle and nipple. Thus us the whole process is a lengthy and prolonged one. It also requires a good effort.
- On the other side, you should also change the bottle and nipple after a certain time. It has an expiry date and it should be changed within that date. Otherwise it can affect the baby and its health. You should always keep a good and regular watch on it.
In short, there are definitely tricks to choose the best baby bottle. Both bottle feeding and breast feeding have pros and cons. It mainly depends upon the mother which one is comfortable and of course practical for her.