18 answers

6 Month Old Baby Boy Will Not Take Formula

My 6 month old baby boy only takes breastmilk. I nurse or pump every 3 hrs to continue to produce, but it seems like my baby is not getting full. Keep in mind he eats cereal in the morning and he is given 1st foods about dinner time. I would like to give him some formula but he will not take it. I will also be returning to work in about a week and would like to leave formula with babystiiter just in case. I also started my menstrual and noticed that my supply was low, but only thankful that I had breastmilk stored in freezer. I once had 3 bottles with 3 different formulas (Infamil, Similac, & Good Start) and he refused to take it. I also tried to give it too him when he was really hungry but still would not take it. Any advice?

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Smart baby. Many kids wouldn't have the food allergies or allergies in general if they hadn't had formula. I find that mixing a milk based (whey) formula with goat's milk makes it much less allergenic and the babies handle it better.

Also, as far as the supply goes....it's based on demand. If the demand goes down, by feeding solids, then the supply does. Also, after around 6 months with my first baby, I didn't think he was getting enough, but in reality, my breasts just didn't engorge anymore and they felt "normal" again. I had plenty of milk....in fact, my 10 month old has had nothing but breastmilk and growing like a weed. My first son had solids at 8.5 months and my 2nd had solids at 4.5 months - I wait until they have teeth to introduce solids, so I know that their digestive system is ready to assimilate it.

1 mom found this helpful

I had the same problem with my newborn. He wanted to only drink the milk from my breast. After a while he took the formula because I too, went back to work. I had a cabinet of about 150 cans of formula and he wouldnt drink it. Eventually he will when he gets really hungry.

More Answers

At 6 mos old, your baby should just be starting on solids. The majority of his food and nutrition is from your breast milk or formula. Keep in mind the "food" he's eating now is basically just to train him to the feeling of it in his mouth and to determine if any food allergies. Are you feeding him too much solids? He should just be beginning with them, and as such, just eating a few teaspoons a couple times a day. Do you nurse him first thing when he gets up, so he's starting the day with your milk? It sounds like your productions might be down, which is why your period started. Shouldn't your baby still be nursing about every 4 hours? If that's the case, you wouldn't need to pump.... Do you not have enough milk to freeze and that's why you need to start him on formula? (Breast milk is so much better and cheaper!!) You might try mixing it with your milk--50/50. If that doesn't work, lower the % of formula, when he gets used to that, gradually lower the mix until you've worked up to all formula.

2 moms found this helpful

Have you tried to mix some formula with breast milk? You could play with the ratio to have it be mostly breast milk at first, then gradually increase the amount of formula. I also work, so I can understand the juggling act of pumping etc. I found that my nanny is really the only person that can give my toddler formula. He only wants to nurse and has always refused formula when he's around me. Maybe your babysitter will have better luck?

2 moms found this helpful

Smart baby. Many kids wouldn't have the food allergies or allergies in general if they hadn't had formula. I find that mixing a milk based (whey) formula with goat's milk makes it much less allergenic and the babies handle it better.

Also, as far as the supply goes....it's based on demand. If the demand goes down, by feeding solids, then the supply does. Also, after around 6 months with my first baby, I didn't think he was getting enough, but in reality, my breasts just didn't engorge anymore and they felt "normal" again. I had plenty of milk....in fact, my 10 month old has had nothing but breastmilk and growing like a weed. My first son had solids at 8.5 months and my 2nd had solids at 4.5 months - I wait until they have teeth to introduce solids, so I know that their digestive system is ready to assimilate it.

1 mom found this helpful

Ask your pediatrician about mixing breastmilk with formula to make the formula more palatable. In the beginning, use mostly breastmilk, then increase the ratio of formula to breastmilk as he becomes accustomed.

It is true that some babies refuse anything but breastmilk, but you are wise to try to get him to accept formula--it was a relief to me to know that my baby would be able to be fed even if I wasn't available and there was no store of breastmilk.

A bit off topic from your chief request for advice, but:

If the issue seems to be inefficient supply, and you also want to increase your supply in addition to acclimating your son to formula, my advice is to use fenugreek pills. You can get them in a health food store and they did WONDERS for my milk supply.

A PP said your son may be going through a growth spurt, which is why he may not be satiated, and I totally agree that you should try to keep up with his demand by nursing him more through the growth spurt. Your breasts will increase production according to his demand (again, fenugreek may help accelerate this process).

If you are returning to work, two great tips people gave me to help build up the supply of breastmilk in the freezer:
-wake up early (I know, I know) and pump just before your baby's first feeding. Your breasts are fuller in the morning and can take the extra demand.
-have your baby nurse and pump the other breast at the same time. It requires a bit of gymnastics to juggle everything comfortably, but the nursing at one breast stimulates the production of the other breast, and you can take advantage of this fact by capturing the milk through pumping. When your baby needs to switch breasts, just move the pump over to the breast he was just nursing on.

That was more than you asked for, but I hope it helps!

1 mom found this helpful

i cannot tell you how much money i spent trying different formulas and different bottles and nipples. My daughter NEVER took the bottle or pacifier, for that matter. Eventually she did take some formula from the sitter or my husband, never from me, and from a sippy cup (after i bought a few different styles as well ;) Not only her favorite formula was Soy based but also she digested it better. Enfamil, i think, and i always checked with the pediatrician. Yet, I was still throwing away a lot, some days she'd want it, some days not. I was desperate, too, due to going back to work, and increased solids gradually and started dairies such as yogurt and babybel soft cheese as soon as the doctor said it was ok. Then she would not take milk after 1, and i had to continue with formula! - there is a mix for 12-24 months. I too had my period around when my baby was 5 months but i never dried up. NEVER! LOL! My little baby was a sucking little beast, and i imagine she saw me as a wind up breast with legs. :) Yes, she might suck the life out of you when you get back home... then perhaps you won't dry up. I did not like pumping, so i'd just do a little for relief of my engorgement and pain. She might have been picky with her formula, and very attached to me and breastfeeding, but the good news is she never had weight problems, never fat, never skinny, and now at 3 she eats a variety of healthy foods, even veggies - still, does not drink much milk, but loves cheese and yogurt. I wanted to share with you my experience because if i had another one i'd perhaps worry less based on knowing babies are all really different and have a mind of their own. But you already know that from your own baby... ;)

1 mom found this helpful

For the 1st year of life, breastmilk/formula is the PRIMARY source of nutrition for a baby- NOT solids, not water, not juice. This is per our Pediatrician.
ALSO, breastmilk/formula should be given BEFORE solids...not after, or the baby will be too full afterward to nurse, and usually giving solids 'first' is done to WEAN a baby off of breast. I imagine this is not something you want to do yet... and being that he is so young.

You can continue to pump and bank bottles on the side to give to the babysitter. Then, nurse on demand once he is home and once you are home.

Now, if he 'never seems full..." it is either: (1) he is going through a 'growth spurt' and thus, his intake needs are increasing to keep up with his growth. This is normal and natural...you must STILL nurse on demand through these spurts. (2) He is 'not' getting enough intake... which would be indicated by his constant hunger, and he would not be gaining adequate weight/growth at his well-baby check ups. (3) your milk output is not keeping pace with him or is not enough (4) he is not latching on properly or efficiently...THUS even if he IS at the breast, he is not getting enough intake (5) He is not staying at the breast long enough to get enough intake (6) He is "cluster-feeding" which is what nursing babies do at times... and it means they even nurse EVERY hour. This is completely normal. It occurs 24/7. Thus, you still need to nurse on demand. (7) he is constantly 'hungry' because if not fed 'on demand' and only by a 'schedule'...then his feeding needs are not being met, for proper intake & growth.

Do not rely on the 'solids' to make up for his 'hunger.' Nursing should be his primary intake source. You NEED to also tell your babysitter/daycare provider that he NEEDS to be fed on demand- NOT ON A SCHEDULE...and I'm talking about his bottle/breastmilk, not solids. Solids at this stage is merely for getting 'acquainted' with 'food' not as a main source of nutrition and serving size is only in terms of tablespoons or teaspoons.

Always have a "plan B." And if you need to give him formula... don't feel bad about it or insulted. You do what you need to do, and per your situation.

If your baby will not take formula... ask your Pediatrician for advice. Your baby cannot go all day without breastmilk/formula... or they can get dehydrated. Not to mention not get nutrients or proper caloric intake. Very important to keep in mind.

Some babies, will not take anything- breastmilk via bottle or formula ALL day while at a sitter. But... this is not real good. Then once the baby gets home, all they do is nurse ALL NIGHT to make up for not getting anything all day. I don't know if your Pediatrician will think this is "good" for a baby or not... but I know some babies are this way and supposedly do this.

I know it's not easy.... but ask your Pediatrician for other types of formulas he/she can suggest. I used the Kirkland one from Costco myself. My son had no problems with it. And think of a "Plan B" just in case.

All the best, and I hope it works out, take care,
Susan

1 mom found this helpful

A.,

Have you consdisered that he is allergic to certain things? Sometimes allergies do not manifest in hives or rashes. Sometimes it is an upset stomach.

I recommend that you log on to NAET.com. These are a group of allergists around that world who treat allergies. They are the ONLY group of doctorsin the World who eliminate allergies. You can locate an NAET allergist in your area who can test your baby and you. Most likely if you and your spouse are allergic to something, your child is.

I am currently seeing an NAET allergist once a week for my allergies. I have many and they are severe but they are being eliminated. Please contact me should you have any questions. N. - ____@____.com

I think some people have already given you good advice as far as mixing your milk and the formula until you slowly wean him over, but there are other things that could help as well. My son would not take a bottle from me when I was nursing him. I had to leave him with a friend and he took the formula just fine for her. Once he would accept it he let me feed it to him as well, but she had to start it. Try letting someone else feed him the formula. The catch is you cannot be in the room or possibly the house when someone tries this. That is why my husband did not do it. The babies can smell the breastmilk and if you are around they know that the milk is there and available. If you are trying to feed him the bottle he is really close to your milk and will not try something else. I am not saying you must abandon your baby for hours to get him to switch, but when he is hungry next time maybe go for a walk and let someone else try. Keep a cell phone handy incase he still refuses but don't rush back thinking he will not survive without you. I had a ball that I had to attend so leaving mine with a friend a six months was a must. They said he did just fine without me, and I was relieved to see that he would be okay without me there to feed him. If you are about to go back to work as a first time mom, it may help to start with short trips away from him anyway, versus doing this cold turkey.

The other suggestion I wanted to make is possibly trying different types of nipples and bottles. Sometimes it is not the formula, but a baby can be really picky over the feel of the nipple in their mouth. Especially when going from nursing to bottle feeding.

1 / 3
Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.