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As with breastfeeding, which must be offered on demand, bottle feeding of artificial milk - or breast milk if it is expressed with a breast pump - should be on demand and without schedules, guided by the baby's needs.
Today what is recommended by experts the bottle on demand for baby and do not establish fixed and determined schedules.
From newborn, we must look for early signs that tell us that the baby is hungry, since crying is only a late sign. It is common for the baby to shake his head from side to side, turn it when something touches his cheek, sticks his tongue out or puts his hands near his mouth. If we wait for the baby to cry to offer the bottle, we will find a hungry and agitated baby, that you are more likely to swallow a lot of air when eating when you eat with great anxiety.
There is no specific pattern that tells us how often it is normal for a baby to demand, but we can be guided, at least at the beginning, by the recommended amounts in the bottle of artificial milk when preparing the bottle.
That we prepare a certain amount does not mean that the baby goes or has to eat that, but it is an indicative starting point, if you want more, multiple volumes of 30 ml will be prepared (as a general rule 30 ml of water need 1 scoop milk) and if it is not finished, the rest of the milk must be discarded. Milk that has been in contact with the baby's mouth contains bacteria present in the child's mouth, and milk, due to its nutrients and temperature, is the perfect breeding ground for them to grow, making it unsuitable for consumption.
Once we know our baby, we can be guided by his habitual consumptions to prepare his bottles, always being attentive to a possible growth crisis. When this happens, the baby will finish his milk and show signs that he would eat even more, either restless or crying, and in that case we must prepare and offer him more milk. When the baby, still awake, refuses the bottle and leaves milk in it, it is a clear sign that he has had enough.
Nor should you time how long it should take to finish the bottle, each child is different and while some take a long time, others will be slower. With age it is quite common that they eat faster. We must always give them enough time to satiate, and observe when it is the baby himself who is removed from the bottle - or falls asleep.
Offering the bottle on demand favors the autonomy of the babyAs you learn to listen to your body's signals for both hunger and satiety, and make your own decisions. Knowing how to detect and act against these signs is the best prevention against overweight and obesity.
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