How I chose a bottle that helped my baby nurse

Nuk bottlesHold your horses! I know bottle feeding is a controversial topic and so many of you are opposed to it, but the facts are simple: not every mom is blessed with enough breast milk or the ability to stay home and provide it to their babies. So here’s how I picked the perfect bottle for my kid, which involved some very inappropriate behavior in public.

A quick search through all the baby forums makes this abundantly and painfully clear, and despite my best efforts (and I have tried EVERYTHING to produce more milk! more on that later…) I have to supplement to keep my little piranha happy. Finding the perfect bottle do so was quite the challenge, and I wanted to share with you what I’ve found.

Initially I was using the Dr. Brown’s Glass Bottles, which I loved because they were low-colic and came in glass, two things I care dearly about, and for a long time they worked beautifully. I’d recommend them to anyone. But after a particular low spell I noticed that my boy was having a hard time going from bottle to breast, also known as nipple confusion, and I decided to do some research.

It turns out that bottle feeding does have an impact on jaw development, but truth be told, the supplemental nursing system was just too much for our demand, so I did the next best thing: I set out to find the best bottle for breastfeeding babies.

Amazon pointed me to the First Years Natural Flow bottle, but when I popped by the local Babies R Us it wasn’t available. I was about to pull out my phone to order them from Amazon, when I decided to do a little research and see which bottle felt best. There was a number of bottles to choose from, all with high-tech bells and whistles (or nipples and vents, rather!) and I soon found myself deep in analysis paralysis. After a few deep breaths it occurred to me that there was one surefire way to make sure my baby was getting an experience similar to nursing… So I did it! I went up and down the bottle aisle squeezing each bottle nipple with one hand and my own with the other until I found a nipple that was just right.

Eventually I came across the Nuk bottles (boys, girls or neutral design) which were just right. I’ll spare you the details of comparison, but their orthodontic nipple is shaped to resemble mom’s and support the palate while also challenging the tongue. I also purchased the infant nipples (0) at Babies-R-Us, as my LO was used to slower flows.

One added bonus is that they are easy to clean. The only downside is that they are only available in plastic, so I decided to come to a middle ground and use my old Dr. Brown’s bottles to heat the milk to room temperature before pouring them into the NUK bottles.

UPDATE: Apparently you can now get a Nuk glass bottle. YES! Time to make another baby.

advanced-nipple

Within a few short days my baby was latching like a pro and pinching less due to nipple confusion. He’s also gotten much better at emptying the breast without falling asleep.

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