Seeking Advice for Formula?? Please Help

Updated on August 03, 2012
M.H. asks from Lima, OH
18 answers

My daughter was on Similac Advance for the first 2 weeks of her life, but it wasn't doing well with her. Not only that she was ALWAYS crying & inconsolable. I knew something was wrong. Doctor had me switch her to Soy...that didn't do so well either. I ended up going with what I thought was best until her next appointment and I bought Enfamil Nutragen. I noticed less crying however I just wasn't sure if she really needed a hypoallergenic formula. Doctor told me to take her off of it and put her back on Simliac Advance with cereal in her bottle so I did and the crying has started all over again except seems worse. She cried ALL DAY AND NIGHT yesterday nothing we did soothed her. I know it has to be the formula. At this point, I really don't care about getting formula that WIC accepts, I just need to find something that will help her and I will go buy it. Did any certain formula work amazingly for your child?? I've heard sensitive formula does well, but I haven't tried.

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answers from Cleveland on

For some reason, the target brand of similac advance worked wonders for my little guy. The regular similac gave him gas, the walmart brand gave him gas. Plus the Target brand is cheaper and it comes in a bigger container (less trips to the store). I suggest trying the sensitive formula, of whatever brand you choose though.


answers from Detroit on

Similac Sensitive cleared up my sons screaming. :)

I dont believe in fillers for babies. I never did the cereal suggestion for a little baby with tummy problems.

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answers from Hartford on

She's too little for cereal. Crying all day and night means she's in pain because she can't digest the cereal.

We always had the best results with Goodstart, and the girls liked it the best too. With my middle daughter she did well with their soy version.

However, since your pediatrician is suggesting that you give your baby something that you already know doesn't agree with your baby I think you need to see a Pediatric Gastroenterologist. They'll examine her inside and out to give you the best advice, and also as part of your association with them hook you up with a nutritionist. There could be something more than simply needing a new formula going on.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Portland on

I feel for you mama!! I have been there, twice! I went through all the formulas, including good start (70% milk based), even the new soothe, and Enfamil, including Nutramingen, but the only one that worked was the Similac Alimentum. It sounds like you have a baby with an allergy to milk protein. This is not an allergy to the lactose like some think, the Sensitive would have worked them. It is the milk itself. Alimentum breaks this down. I would try that.

We are in Oregon, but WIC here won't pay for any Enfamil products, but they will do the others I believe. They helped with the Alimentum for mine, it was a financial lifesaver.
Is she spitting up a lot too? She may have relux if she is. This needs to be managed with Mylanta (1-2 ccs), Zantac, and/or Prevacid. The doctor will have to diagnose though.

If she does have reflux there are some other things to do that will really help. Remember to stay away from any milk products as she gets older and starts to eat. If they are going to outgrow it, it usually happens between 14 months and 3 years. Some people don't always outgrow it.
Good luck Mama, and remember, we are here when you need us. Also, feel free to check out the fussy baby site on facebook. It has a lot of good info if you need it.


answers from Iowa City on

You could try Gerber Gentle. Finding the right formula can be hit or miss. I think WIC will change your formula brand/type if you have a note from a doctor. Ask them about it.



answers from Knoxville on

Gerber good start. My younger daughter had fussiness and gas problems just like yours. I breast fed my first one so I didn't know anything aout formula. We tried everything (including soy and allemintium (sp?)), but nothing worked until we tried Gerber Good Start protect. it was amazing. Within 24 hours baby went from crying constantly to happy and sleeping hours at a time. I talked to my pediatrician about it and she said it's just as healthy as enfamil or similac. It just has easier digest proteins because of the way the proteins are 'encapsulated' (whatever that means...). Please try was literally a miracle for us.

But be warned...diapers will be NASTY. I'm talking toxic, stink-up-the-whole-house awful. And a really funny color. My DD's poop was a really weird green/blue almost teal color. The doc says this is normal too; it's because of the way the proteins are digested. But her first diaper scared me. Its like an alien pooped it...

Good luck your little one. I hope this works for you like it did for us!!



answers from Washington DC on

My babies were the same way. I switched to Similac Sensitive and gas drops which helped a lot. Since I have twins, I ultimately made the switch to Babies R Us brand Gentle and haven't had any problems. At about 5 months old, I was able to get rid of the gas drops. I tried, switching to the regular formula, one twin was okay, the other one started the crying again. Back to the Gentle I went. Be careful switching formulas a lot. My pediatrician said that the switching can cause stomach problems as well. I've used Similac Sensitive, Babies R Us Gentle and Enfamil Gentlease. As long as it was a gentle formula, my babies were okay. The sensitive or gentl formulas are broken down a little more than the regular and that seem to do the trick with my boys. My daughter had a milk protein allergy and we made the switch to soy no problem. If you do need to go with the hypoallergenic formula and WIC won't cover it, my friend needed it and found the best deal on Similac at Amazon M.. You have to buy in bulk but she said the savings was significant.



answers from Pittsburgh on

Are you mixing powder? If so, just O. thought--the powdered formula always made mine fussy & gassy. We switched to the prepared liquid and things got better. We used Similac Advance liquid.

(And I wouldn't keep switching, switching, switching without a significant time period to see the transition happening.)



answers from Louisville on

Not sure about all current formulas, but try to find one that doesn't have the DHA and whatever the other additive is ... I think those were upsetting her tummy and causing bowel issues...



answers from Kansas City on

My daughter did well with Similac Lacto-Free. This was awhile back, so I'm not sure if they still have it, but you may want to look for it.

It wasn't that she was lactose-intolorant, it was more of a lactose "overload". The crying was dramatically reduced within two feedings.

Good luck to you and your sweet little one. I hope she (and you!) find comfort soon!

ETA: Brain freeze!! It was ENFAMIL Lacto-Free. I googled it and they still have it. Also, I must COMPLETELY agree with Oneand Done. Allow some time between switching brands. Keep us posted on her progress!



answers from Dallas on

The ONLY formula my son could handle was Similac Sensitive.



answers from Oklahoma City on

Any formula your doc orders can be covered through WIC. You just have to find the local tribe or state WIC office that carries it. We had to do the Osage tribal WIC for my grandson's formula. All the other grand kids did state WIC. His formula was only carried by the tribe. It was actually better than the state WIC. They did name brands and offered more options.

As for your doc saying to put cereal in a 2 week old babies formula, that doc is an idiot. Find a new doc.

A baby cannot digest cereal until they are very very close to 6 months old. Your baby was feeling gut wrenching pain with a substance similar to concrete in her tummy and no way of getting it out for hours and hours.

A baby cannot process any sort of food until much older. Do talk find some other way of getting samples though so you can try the formula's without buying a bunch of kinds.

I know that Nutragen is expensive but if she does well on it for now then keep her on it until her tummy matures some. After a few months you may be able to go back to a different formula.

Try putting a few gas drops in the bottle before adding the water. After than add the water then powder. Swish it around, not shaking it. Then let it sit for a couple of minutes. This should get all the bubbles out of the mixture and as she eats the meds will prevent gas from forming in her tummy.

She may need to see a specialist to help you figure out what is going on. My friends son did the reflux test at a young age and his stomach was re-flexing the whole test. They put him on liquid Reglan before each bottle and he was wonderful after that. It relaxes the stomach muscles so the tummy empties much faster so more formula goes into the intestines where it gets used for food.



answers from Dayton on

I used Goodstart for all 4 of my boys and never did I have any problem. I also put a couple drops of Mylicon in their bottles sometimes if I felt they needed it to help any gas that may have occured.

My oldest was on Similac and was miserable for 2 weeks and I changed and never told my Pediatrician and when she asked I told her and her comment - 'whatever works for him'.

Good luck.


answers from Chicago on

It seems to me that if Enfamil was helping, go back to that. It won't hurt her to be on a hypo formula, even if she doens't "need" it.
Regular Enfamil was best for both of my kids. I eventually switched them to Target's brand, once their little systems were sturdier.

It sounds like she might have reflux, if your doctor is suggesting cereal in the bottle. In some cases, it's bad enough where meds are required. If it continues, keep taking her back to the doctor. Your instincts are right.



answers from Chicago on

My husband's nephew was born over a month premature (don't really know exactly but do know he was a premie). They had to use Nutrigan also. It was not widely available 8 yrs ago and we had to search on the internet to find it. They finally got it approved through WIC with several doctor's notes. But he still had to travel a long way to actually get the formula. If this is what helped, then stick with it. And I agree with the doc advising cereal. At 2 weeks? That is nuts.



answers from New York on

Have you considered acid reflux? Perhaps she has colic? Nutramigen is the "best" formula and very expensive. Can you nurse her? You can try a sensitive formula but look into something medical going on.



answers from Cleveland on

I had issues with gas (not really fussines - he had a really hard time getting his burps out) with my middle child, and ended up putting him on soy when he was 6 weeks old. it worked wonders for him, and then when he tried switching him to normal milk we found out that he was lactose intolerant, which was why he had so much trouble with the milk formulas. He is 8 now and has mostly outgrown the lactose intolerance, however we keep him far away from ranch dressing/dips (HIGH amount of lactose!!!).

With my daughter, she also had gas issues, but was incredibly fussy as well. I didn't want to put her on soy, because it is so important for girls to get the calcium in the milk based formulas - soy has calcium, but not nearly as much, plus she had a rough start and the nicu doctors recommended keeping her on milk based formula as much as i possibly could. we tried the gas drops and nothing worked, but when i switched her to the enfamil gentlease formula, which has the proteins already partly broken down and makes it easier for the baby to digest, she turned into a completely different baby. She still had some fussy times, but she was soooo much better, which helped me so much, because i was having some PPD too. My understanding is that Similac sensitive is essentially the same as the enfamil gentleease.

Good luck - once you find the right formula, it will be so much better xoxo



answers from Cleveland on

WIC will cover ANY similac formula with a doc slip.

The cereal idea is outdated, and can actually make things worse if it's not given for the right reasons.

Thickened formula (which is what adding cereal will do) is good for spit up and in some cases reflux because it can help the formula stay down.

Fussiness and gas can be a digestion issue, in which case you want a partially broken down protein formula (good start, enfamil gentlease, or similac sensitive)

Or it can be an allergy issue (similac alimentum is hypoallergenic)

Or it can be a lactose issue in which case you want a lactose free formula

I'm not sure the age of your baby, but you need to try things for a week or longer to really know if it's going to help.

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