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Babies For Parents

Have you heard of these bottle feeding myths?

“Give your baby more formula milk so your baby can sleep better”.

You may have heard this bottle feeding myth from well-intentioned but misguided relatives, confinement nannies or friends. We collate a few bottle feeding myths from local parents and suss out the fact from fiction. Whether you’re feeding formula milk or breastmilk, watch out for the myths below.

Feed your baby the recommended stage of infant formula milk according to your paediatrician’s advice to ensure that your baby is fed adequately and appropriately.

#1:“Feed your baby some water after milk to let your baby get accustomed to the taste of water.

“My mother-in-law assisted me during my confinement period, and she insisted on feeding my newborn with water after every feed. Her reasoning was that children needed to be fed water early on to get used to the taste of water”, recounts Jaclyn, mom to son Keanan, 1 year old.

Not only is this bottle feeding myth untrue, it is dangerous. A newborn’s stomach is tiny and even a small amount of water can dilute the electrolytes in the baby’s bloodstream, leading to serious issues such as low body temperature, seizures and in worse cases, brain damage or death.

#2:“Feeding your baby while she is lying down is more comfortable for both of you.

As a first-time mother to Elysha, Yaz was unsure of the right way to feed her baby, and a relative told her that feeding her baby lying down was the most comfortable for both her baby and her.

The truth is that bottle fed babies should be fed at an incline to prevent painful middle-ear infections. These tips help you keep both you and baby comfortable during bottle feeding.

#3:“Put in more formula to make baby sleep better.

“My confinement nanny, who claimed to be highly experienced, confidently told me that she would add in a bit more formula in the bottle to keep babies fuller for longer. It wasn’t until later that my baby suffered from constipation that I realised it was a wrong practice,” says Esther, mum to daughter,Ellie.

 Formula milk is nutritionally adequate with essential vitamins, minerals and nucleotides for development but it has to be prepared in strict accordance to the manufacturer’s instructions that are found on each tin.Too much formula may cause constipation while watered down formula could create an imbalance of electrolytes in the baby’s bloodstream. Einmilk formula milk is available for babies and toddlers in shops in Singapore, and parents should pick the right stage for their children.

Babies under six months old drink infant formula milk, and do not require any water.

  1. “Formula fed babies don’t bond with their parents.

Mum-of-two Jasmine had a medical condition that prevented her from breastfeeding and used formula milk from the beginning. One of the most hurtful remarks she heard was from an ex-friend who told her that her baby wouldn’t be close to her because she was not breastfeeding.

While breastfeeding has its benefits for both mother and baby, it is not the only way parents can bond with their babies. Bonding can happen in various ways. Singing, cuddling, eye contact, gentle caresses and talking to your baby can build up a strong and unbreakable bond.

What’s the most surprising bottle feeding myth that you’ve heard and debunked? Share it in the comments for other parents to know!

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For Parents Health & Nutrition

Guide to Choosing Formula Milk for Your Children

With so many different brands of formula milk available in Singapore, it can be difficult to choose a suitable brand for your child. How should parents decide which brand or type of formula milk for their children? Read on to find out more!

 

According to the standards set by the Sale of Infant Foods Ethics Committee Singapore (SIFECS) Code of Ethics, nutritional information must be displayed in detail on formula milk tins.

The most commonly available type of formula milk is milk-based and made with cow’s milk, vegetable oil, vitamins, minerals and fortified with iron. There are also soy-based formula milk powders and specialty milk powders meant for infants with varying allergies and requirements.

 

  • Nutritional Level

All formula milk brands have been tested to be nutritionally adequate for babies and toddlers, and are in line with the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) requirements for milk powder sold in Singapore. From 6 months of age, although milk remains the main diet of babies, solid food can be gradually introduced to ensure that their diet is balanced and nutritious.

 

Formula milk is called “formula” milk for a reason. It simply indicates each brand of formula milk powder has their own formulation, made up with varying amounts of ingredients. Some may offer higher levels of certain ingredients such as Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA), which also leads to a different price tag. If your baby or toddler has a balanced diet, your child will obtain nutrition from fresh food sources too.

 

  • Manufacturing Process

There are two major ways of processing formula milk – wet mixing and dry mixing. As the names suggest, wet mixing mixes milk and other ingredients into a liquid form before drying into milk powder. In dry mixing, all ingredients have to be dried before they are blended according to the formula.

 

It is not uncommon to see brown specks in your child’s milk powder because high heat is required to turn wet ingredients into dry ingredients; it is part of a safe manufacturing process of milk powder and does not affect the taste or nutritional value of the milk powder.

 

  • Suitability

A major point to take note of is how well your child takes to the formula milk. Take note for any diarrhoea or rashes which may be a sign that your child is allergic to certain ingredients in the formula. Having said that, if you are currently breastfeeding, remember to consult your paediatrician prior to formula-feed your baby, let him or her offer recommendations based on your child’s dietary needs.

 

  • Price

And do you know all formula milk has to be sent to AVA for approval to sell in Singapore, prior to distributing out to the market? All formula milk sold in Singapore, regardless of price, has been tested to be safe according to the standards set by the AVA. Formula milk brands sold in Singapore meet the nutritional values required for your child’s developmental stage, regardless of the different formulas, made up with varying amounts of ingredients.

 

All formula milk sold in Singapore is safe for consumption.

 

  • How to prepare Formula Milk

Formula milk should be prepared in strict accordance with the instructions on the tin. Einmilk range of formula milk powder, for example, has specific instructions listed on the back of the tin along with the water temperature required to prepare milk. Always prepare the milk powder in the right proportion for your child as recommended by age, using the accompanying scoop which is included in each tin.

 

In general, all formula milk brands sold on supermarket shelves in Singapore are nutritionally adequate and a higher price does not necessarily mean that it is superior. With a tighter marketing budget, Einmilk’s pricing is kept affordable so that more families are able to nourish their children without fretting over the rising costs of raising children in Singapore.

Have you tried Einmilk for your baby? Let us know in the comments!

Categories
Babies Toddlers

Checklist – Things to Prepare for Bottle-feeding

An alternative to direct latching is bottle feeding with formula milk or expressed breastmilk.

Bottle feeding can be a great way for other caregivers to bond with the baby. We have a list of what you should get to make sure that you’re all set and prepared for convenient, fuss-free bottle feeding.

 

Bottle-feeding offers the convenience of allowing any caregiver to feed your baby, anywhere and at any time.

 

At Home

 

  • Bottles

Newborns do not have the ability to burp out excess air that they take in, therefore after each milk feed, they need a helping hand with burping. These days, anti-colic milk bottles are aplenty – some anti-colic bottles have physical valves but unscrew into four or five parts, whereas other bottles have an air vent at the teat to let air out. If you are using the latter, be sure that the air vent faces upwards when feeding your baby.

 

  • Bottle & Teat Brush

Both expressed breastmilk and formula milk contain fats which will cling onto the inside of the bottle. Use a bottle brush and give the insides a good scrub with bottle liquid cleanser and some water.

As bottle teats are narrower, use a special teat brush to clean the entire teat to ensure milk remnants are removed to prevent bacteria breeding.

 

  • Baby-friendly Bottle Liquid Cleanser

Milk leaves an oily residue and it is necessary to wash it off with baby safe bottle cleaning liquid. Select plant-based formulations with no artificial fragrances or colouring and preferably free from Sodium Laureth Sulphate (SLS), a chemical which may cause skin irritation even in small amounts.

 

  • Bottle Steriliser

Newborn babies have sensitive tummies and although you can use the traditional method of boiling bottles in water, you will need to be extra careful to prevent scalds and the bottles will have to be dried on a drying rack.

Steam sterilisers are commonly used but unless they have an inbuilt drying function, the bottles and teats will also need to be taken out to dry separately.

If you have the budget, invest in a UV steriliser which is convenient, doubles up as a drying and storage cabinet and can be used even for cutlery, toys and toothbrushes!

 

  • Bottle Warmer (Optional)

A bottle warmer may come in handy to warm up cold breast milk to a temperature suitable for a baby. However, we’ve found that swishing the bottle of cold milk in a pot of hot water does the trick too.

 

  • Handkerchief

Newborn babies tend to regurgitate a lot, so keeping a handkerchief close by will be useful to wipe up vomit.

 

Bring along a thermal flask filled with hot water to prepare milk feeds when your baby is out and about.

 

Outside

 

  • Bottles

Bring enough bottles for the number of milk feeds, to serve as a backup. You can pour warm water in the bottle, store it in a thermal bag and simply add formula milk before serving.

 

  • Thermal bag

If you are feeding your baby expressed breastmilk, you will require a thermal bag with ice packs to keep the milk at a cool temperature so it doesn’t turn rancid.

 

  • Milk powder dispenser/Breast Pump

You can store formula by serving size into milk powder dispensers for convenience, or use formula milk storage bags. Exclusive pumping mothers will need to bring along a portable breast pump to express milk directly into bottles for feeds.

 

  • Thermal Flask

A thermal flask is handy to have to store hot water for milk feeds when baby needs to drink milk urgently and there is no hot water dispenser nearby. The hot water can be used to rinse milk bottles when needed.

 

  • Handkerchief

Keep a handkerchief with you to wipe up spills, or tuck it into your baby’s top as a bib during milk feeds.

 

Bottle feeding can be a breeze with the right equipment!

 

With the right equipment and this checklist, bottle feeding will be less of a hassle. What is your must-have item for bottle feeding?