Feeding your baby can be a happy time for you and your baby. If you feel calm and relaxed during the feeding, so will your baby. Newborn infants need to be fed every 2 to 4 hours. As your baby gets older, he or she will be able to go 4 to 6 hours between feedings.
1. Wash your hands before feeding your baby.
2. Sit in a comfortable position. Hold your baby in the curve of your arm close to your body (Picture 1). Hold his head and back tilted up. This position will give him the comfort he needs to enjoy his food and help keep him from choking.
3. Always hold the bottom of the bottle up so that the formula fills the nipple. This keeps your baby from sucking air.
4. Let your baby eat until he is full. Depending on age, babies will take 1-1/2 to 8 ounces at each feeding.
5. To get rid of swallowed air, "burp" your baby 2 or 3 times during the feeding.To do this, hold him in a sitting position on your lap and support his chin and chest with one hand while you gently pat his back with your other hand until he burps air. Or you can hold him up against your chest and pat his back until he burps. Place a towel or burp cloth under baby's chin. Sometimes a little formula comes up when the baby burps.
Rinse the bottle, nipple, rings and cap in cold water to keep formula from sticking to it. Then, wash items in hot water with dishwashing liquid or in a dishwasher (nipples should not be washed in a dishwasher). Rinse thoroughly and allow to air dry. Avoid using a bottle brush to scrub the bottle. The brush may damage the bottle.
Don’t put honey or corn syrup in your baby’s formula. Caution: Infants under one year of age should not be fed honey. Honey is not sterile. It may contain harmful bacteria that can cause food poisoning in infants.
If you have any questions, please ask your doctor or nurse.
Bottle Feeding (PDF)
HH-IV-5 8/80, Revised 9/07 Copyright 1980-2007, Nationwide Children's Hospital