Feeding the baby with a bottle requires correct positioning. Without proper position the babies are more susceptible to choking. There are other health problems associated with improper bottle feeding. Read here to know the correct positions and health problems associated with improper positioning.
Bottle-feeding should be opted only when breastfeeding is not possible at all. There are many problems that are associated with bottle feeding. If babies are not positioned properly, they may face problems. Therefore, parents who have no choice but to bottle-feed their babies must make a note of the right way to position the baby while bottle-feeding her.
Is it OK to bottle feed the baby on her back?
Although, many parents bottle feed their babies while the babies are on their backs, it is not the ideal position. Babies are more susceptible to choking when feeding on their backs. They may also be more susceptible to ear infections in this feeding position. They may fall asleep with the bottle in their mouth which could lead to tooth decay once the teeth start coming in.
How do I ensure that the child does not swallow air?
Seat yourself comfortably holding the baby on your lap. Support the baby with your left arm making sure that her head is kept above the level of her stomach. Tilt the bottle up so that the formula fills the teat completely. If you do not do this, air fills in it and the baby will swallow the air. If the teat becomes flat while the baby is feeding, pull on the bottle gently to release the vacuum.
Which are the best positions for bottle-feeding the baby?
Holding the baby with your arm in semi-upright position by placing her in your lap is the best position to bottle-feed her. You can also hold your baby in a sitting position in your lap while letting her head lay on your chest or in your arm. This position can help to prevent the gas or acid reflux in babies. Place the baby in your lap with your legs curled up in such a way that she is in an upright position. In this position her legs will touch your stomach and head will rest on your knees. You can bottle-feed your baby comfortably in this position as well.
What are the alternatives to bottle-feeding?
In India, a cup called bondla or paladai or jhinook is used instead of bottle-feeding. This cup has a narrow tapering peak like structure through which it is easier to feed the small infant as well as prevent bottle-feeding problems. Similarly, a cup and a small spoon can also be used to feed the baby if breastfeeding is not possible. While using these methods, make sure that you feed her gently by holding her comfortably in an upright position. Avoid the pouring the milk in her mouth and feed the milk little by little to her. A sipping cup or a spouted feeding cup can be used for feeding the baby when she is 6 to 7 months old.
How to take care of the feeding equipments?
Right care must be taken of the feeding equipments in order to prevent infections from getting passed to the baby through them. You must wash all the feeding equipments in hot water. You can use detergent to clean them but make sure that the traces of detergent are not left in them. You can boil these equipments for 20 minutes in water after cleaning them thoroughly. A cleaning brush is very useful for cleaning bottles from inside. Always keep the feeding equipments in a clean and safe place after cleaning them.
Nowadays, electric sterilisers are also available in market for sterilising bottle-feeding equipments. You can use them as per the instructions mentioned on their package for sterilising the bottle-feeding equipments of your child.
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- The Indiaparenting Team