When formula-fed babies are spitting up or feeling gassy or fussy, parents often consider switching baby formulas. But is there a right way to make the switch? We posed this commonly asked question to Rebecca Charlton, M.P.H, R.D., C.L.E., a clinical dietitian at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. Here are her best tips:
- Be sure a change is needed. Babies need time to adapt to feeding routines. “Switching formula too often is the biggest mistake formula-feeding parents make,” says Charlton. If your child is vomiting, has diarrhea or seems colicky, make sure your doctor has investigated the cause and agrees that switching baby’s formula is the right thing to do.
- Always transition gradually. Charlton suggests phasing out baby’s old formula by gradually increasing the amount of new formula in each bottle over four servings. If you usually give your baby a 4-ounce serving, you’d mix the next four bottles like this:
o 3 oz old prepared baby formula + 1 oz new prepared baby formula
o 2 oz old prepared baby formula + 2 oz new prepared baby formula
o 1 oz old prepared baby formula + 3 oz new prepared baby formula
o 4 oz new prepared baby formula
For more on baby formula, visit Baby + You