I received product and compensation from Mead Johnson Nutrition to create this post written by me. All experiences and opinions expressed in this post are my own and not those of Mead Johnson Nutrition. You can contact Mead Johnson Nutrition with product related questions or comments toll free at 1-800-BABY-123 (1-800-222-9123).
I mentioned in the twins’ Two Month Update that I would do a post with my story and thoughts on breastfeeding, pumping, and supplementing with formula and I’ve partnered with Enfamil® to share the Realities of Feeding Twins! For more information about Enfamil® and to request a free sample, please visit enfamil.com While I was pregnant, several friends had asked how I was planning to feed the twins, and I always replied that I was planning to breastfeed them, but if it didn’t work, I wouldn’t feel bad and we would switch to formula. Many of my friends shared their own stories – that they had tried to breastfeed and it didn’t work out, or they breast fed their babies for one or two months and then stopped and switched to formula.
Hospitals really push the “breast is best” message. I understand why they do; however, I know a lot of moms feel bad when they have to switch to or supplement with formula, and they shouldn’t feel that way. Honestly, a fed baby and a non-stressed mom is best. I don’t think this message is put out there enough, so I’ll say it again, fed is best!I thought that I had prepped for the babies as much as possible. I had researched, registered for, and purchased everything they might need, designed and decorated their nursery, stocked up on all the household essentials as if I was preparing for a natural disaster, took CPR classes, bought a new car, etc., but looking back, I did NOT prepare enough for feeding the twins.
When it comes to any new baby, you never know if they will latch or if your body will produce enough milk. And had the twins arrived prematurely and spent some time in the NICU, there may have been other issues such as me having to pump and then syringe and bottle feed them, and then if they were bottle fed, they may have become accustomed to whichever bottles the NICU used, so I wasn’t going to buy any bottles until we got home, etc. Plus, I couldn’t get my breast pump from the insurance company until after the babies were born and I was unsure of which model I could get or if I could rent a medical grade pump, so I didn’t purchase any of the accessories I would need for breastfeeding/pumping.
Basically, because nothing could be planned, I simply didn’t prepare.Once the babies were born, I was having difficulties getting the babies to latch and NOT fall asleep on the boob. While this was happening the doctors and nurses were reporting the babies’ diminishing body weights in seeming alarm and the on-call pediatrician eventually recommended that we supplement with formula, a decision we had already personally made because being in the hospital and getting the babies to eat was simply stressing me out. We started feeding the babies using what the hospital provided: Enfamil® Nursette bottles. They are these handy dandy, 2 oz. bottles of premixed, ready to eat formula. You simply open it up, put a nipple on it, and it’s good to go. I still keep a few in our diaper bag just in case someone is hungry when we’re out and about.When we came home from the hospital, I continued to try breastfeeding the babies and I would also pump in order to increase my supply since I was feeding two mouths. We hired a lactation consultant who came out a few times and helped me get the babies to latch and taught me a few things about breastfeeding and supplementing with formula.
Unfortunately, shortly after her visits, I developed nipple thrush, although I didn’t know it at the time. I simply thought that the breast shields for my breast pump were too small and were causing me pain. Because of the thrush, it became too painful and stressful to breastfeed the babies, so I became an exclusive pumper. I was pumping every 4-5 hours and I would produce enough milk to feed the babies a little over half of their total diet. The other half we supplemented with formula.
Enfamil® is the #1 brand of infant formula recommended by pediatricians and has been trusted by hospitals for over 25 years. Because we started with Enfamil in the hospital, we continued feeding the babies with Enfamil when we got home. And now I’m excited to be trying the new Enfamil NeuroPro™ formula which is the first formula that has an exclusive MFGM and DHA blend for brain building benefits similar to those of breast milk*. MFGM has been clinically shown to help close the gap in cognitive development between formula-fed and breastfed infants**. Cognitive development relates to the way a newborn learns, acquires knowledge and interacts with his/her surrounding environment. This includes the areas of memory, concentration, attention and perception. There is a growing body of research that indicates that nutrition early in life may be important for learning later in the preschool years. (Source Enfamil®.) Enfamil NeuroPro™ is the first and only formula to add MFGM as an ingredient in amounts supported by clinical research.While breast may be best, supplementing with formula meant that we had to use bottles, which made it easy for their dad, their grandmas, and their grandpa to all participate and feed the babies which allowed them to all bond with the babies and gave me some much needed time to sleep and heal following their delivery.
We’re coming up on the babies being 4 months old and my husband and I have discussed that I stop breastfeeding (pumping). I know how important breastmilk is, so I’ve been hesitant to stop until my little girl is a little bigger, but I know that when I do stop that my babies will be perfectly fine, happy, and healthy being bottle fed exclusively formula. Plus, I will be able to get more sleep and will be a happier, healthier mama. It’s been really difficult being an exclusive pumper these last few months. I’ve been hooked up like a cow to a machine 6 times a day for 20 minutes each session. The entire process from set-up to clean-up takes 30-40 minutes. That’s at least 3 hours a day that takes me away from caring for my babies or sleeping. I’m still feeding my babies some breast milk, but I don’t make enough milk to 100% feed both of them, so I’m very grateful to be able to feed them Enfamil® formula that has an MFGM and DHA blend for brain-building benefits similar to breast milk.*Enfamil® is dedicated to understanding the nutritional benefits of breast milk, and NeuroPro is born of that dedicated focus. Enfamil® is backed by decades of research on breast milk and multiple clinical studies on its brain building power.
Visit Enfamil’s website or call 1-800-BABY-123 (1-800-222-9123) for more information and to request a free sample. Visit Enfamil.com for more information and education on Enfamil NeuroPro.
*In amounts supported by clinical research. As measured by Bayley cognitive scores.
**As measured by Bayley-III cognitive score at 12 months in a different formula with MFGM added as an ingredient.
This is sponsored by Enfamil® Infant Formula.