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Old 10-09-2007, 12:48 PM   #1
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Formula Question

How did you decide what type of formula to use (powder or concentrate)? What are the pros & cons to either one? It seems that it would be easier to use the "already made" cans of formula. I'd love to hear your thoughts.
cmarie
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Old 10-09-2007, 01:29 PM   #2
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Re: Formula Question

I always use the powder. If you are on a budget, powder, I find, is MUCH cheaper. You only get a few bottles out of a prepared can of formula. I buy the generic powder. The FDA has to approve all baby food. My pediatrician even suggested going with the generic. To buy a can of Similac Advance powder it's approx $24. To buy the same size can in Parents Choice (Walmart Brand) it's $12.89. When your buying a can a week, it helps out a lot! Not to mention that if I am going out, I do not need to pack a cooler with pre made bottles that need to be used by a certain time. I put powder in each bottle and fill it with some bottles water when I am ready to give it to the baby. It makes, for me, traveling much easier. You also don't have to heat it, which can be a huge pain when in a car.

 
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Old 10-09-2007, 02:45 PM   #3
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Re: Formula Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by cmarie313 View Post
How did you decide what type of formula to use (powder or concentrate)? What are the pros & cons to either one? It seems that it would be easier to use the "already made" cans of formula. I'd love to hear your thoughts.
cmarie
I agree, the RTF (ready to feed) is by far the EASIEST way to go. You can even get RTF in single serve sizes now. I use a combination of different forms. If your baby is able to take regular milk based formula you might think about using Parent's Choice. Around here, it's available in all 3 forms, so you could be able to feed RTF for the price of powdered name brands. (My son has to have hypo-allergenic formula so that's a no go for us.) Anyway, the only disadvantage to Parent's Choice is that they don't have nursers (single serve RTF bottles you just open when you're ready and screw a nipple on.) Anyway, my son gets really constipated off the powder (don't worry, it's not very common) so we only use that when the liquid concentrate starts to run low. The liquid concentrate is the most expensive form of the type of formula I use. (Most formulas, it's in between the powder and the RTF in price.) So, once DS doesn't need extra calories in his food I'll switch to the RTF because it's less per ounce. It's ultimately up to you, and plenty of people never use ANYTHING except powder but it's whatever works for your lifestyle.

Last edited by baj406; 10-09-2007 at 02:46 PM.

 
Old 10-09-2007, 03:13 PM   #4
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Re: Formula Question

Hi cmarie,

I use Similac formula powder. It is really easy to use/measure and definately less expensive than the concentrate liquid formula. I do have a few of the liquid concentrated pre-made formula bottles on hand just incase I need (if I run out of powder etc). My pediatrician recommended the Similac brand. It is a little pricey but we definately like it. similac also sends $5 coupons often in the mail so that helps out a bit too! If you have a costco or sam's club near by you get can a much larger can for the same cost of a small can at a regular grocery store =).

I used to boil the water before mixing the formula but recently my pediatrician told me to use bottle water. I buy 3 gallons of distilled water for about $2 and use that to mix the bottles...much easier and less time consuming than boiling the water.

I don't really think it matters what kind of formula you buy the important thing is to stick to one kind. You can't just change a brand of formula b/c that can cause your baby to have some GI upset. I started my dd out on Similac regular milk brand (blue can) and she was lactose intolerant, so the pediatrician told me to switch to soy and we have been on that ever since. If you do have to switch brands or types of formula you are suppossed to give it about one week to determine if there is improvement.

Good luck!

Koukla

P.S. when r u due?

 
Old 10-10-2007, 08:15 AM   #5
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Re: Formula Question

I think the brand you choose is completely up to you. I supplement the bf with Enfamil Lipil.
I wanted to use the powdered kind since I thought it would be the most practical and cheaper, but my DD is allergic to it and can only drink the ready made (not concentrated) kind. The company says the two kinds are identical, but clearly they're not.
As for the cost, I think it depends on how much your baby is drinking. In the beginning I remember comparing how many 6 ounce bottles I could make with a can of powder versus how many 6 ounce bottles I could make with a 32 ounce ready made formula. After comparing the costs, the 32 ounce can of ready made was actually cheaper! It shocked me and I had to check again, but that is what was cheaper in my area.
So, don't naturally think the powder is cheaper. Check ounces per ounces in the cost if you're really concerned about price.
As for ease of use, I ge tthe 6 ounce glass jars and throw them in the bad with an empty bottle. When it's time to feed, I just empty the formula into the bottle and voila, done. No need to make sure I have water, or mix or anything.
Otherwise, you can always ask your Ped. if she/he recommends a certain brand.

Last edited by liloulou; 10-10-2007 at 08:19 AM. Reason: add info.

 
Old 10-10-2007, 10:15 AM   #6
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Re: Formula Question

Thank you all so much for your help! You all had great points to consider.

Hi Koukla!
My actual due date is Dec.3rd, but it looks like I am going to be having the baby around 34 weeks (which is in about 2 weeks). The amniotic fluid is low and the baby is only in the 27th percentile for size. I am 50% effaced and my cervix is opening So it looks like we will be having a little peanut. We are having all these complications because I was pregnant with triplets (a set of identical conjoined twins, and the little girl I am pregnant with now). I lost the twins at about 15 weeks. I have been on bedrest for 24 weeks of my pregnancy DH and I are just praying for a miracle and hoping I can make it to at least 36 weeks, but we just have to take it day by day. I go to the high risk dr two times a week for ultrasounds, internals, and non-stress tests. So that's my story in a nut shell
cmarie
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*Olivia Grace born 10/23/07...our little miracle!

 
Old 10-10-2007, 11:23 AM   #7
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Re: Formula Question

Oh, I'm so sorry you lost your twins. I hope your little peanut does well. My son was a 34 weeker himself. I'll keep your family in my thoughts.

 
Old 10-10-2007, 02:44 PM   #8
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Re: Formula Question

Hi Cmarie,

I am so sorry to hear about your twins! I remember reading your story on the infertility board. I used to be on that board as well...we went through treatments for awhile before we got pregnant with our little dd! All of the waiting and treatments, meds, etc are worth it! it is such a miracle that we have our little princess and we are so thankful for her everyday. I really think that going through infertility really make us much more appreciative of the blessings that we have received and we definately are much better parents because of it! I often visit the infertility board to see how everyone is doing. I probably will be back on there shortly. We are probably going to start to try again around April (that is when dd is going to be 1). I haven't gone on birth control and my RE told me that I needed to try on our own again before we can do treatments. They never found a true cause for our infertility except that my cycle wasn't that regular. So hopefully we will get pregnant on our own but if not then we will definately try more treatmentsfor #2.

I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers and I hope you can hold out for a few more weeks with your little one!

If you have any more questions, feel free to ask!

Good luck!

koukla

 
Old 10-10-2007, 02:53 PM   #9
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Re: Formula Question

Cmarie--My DD was born at 36w6d because of low amniotic fluid. It suddenly dropped within a week so the high risk OB said she had to come out. Incidently she also was small, kept measuring also with a small abdominal circumference and she was breech the entire time (so it was c-section for her too). I'm glad you have a high risk OB to watch over you closely--I was figuring you probably did. But those men and women are good and I'm sure he/she will take very good care of you and your little peanut! At least you are past the riskiest time, but I know how relieving it is each week that passes by, you think how much stronger your little one will be. Please keep us posted on your progress.

Also, on the formula issue. Some other things you MIGHT want to prepare for just in case. Preemies tend to be at higher risk for acid reflux--no guarantees it will happen, but don't be too worried if it does. Also some babies with acid reflux can have protein allergy and this can worsen symptoms--so a special formula may be needed. So, I don't know if you were really planning to stock up on formula. My point is, I would just wait and see how it goes at the hospital on their formula first (or breastfeeding), then go from there. I had all this formula at home go to waste!

Also, something else to think of, if your baby is really gassy (as mine is)--bottles may help, but also using the liquid RTF formula may be better than the powder because the powder stuff retains lots of little, tiny bubbles for a long time that may contribute to gassiness. My pediatrician told me this, and then I noticed this seemed to hold true for my DD (unfortunately, I ended up putting her on a special formula with digested proteins and it only comes in powder, boohoo).

Good luck cmarie. I can't wait to find out how the next few weeks go. I am excited for you and your little one!
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Last edited by Heyknack; 10-10-2007 at 02:53 PM.

 
Old 10-10-2007, 04:04 PM   #10
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Re: Formula Question

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Originally Posted by Heyknack View Post
Also, on the formula issue. Some other things you MIGHT want to prepare for just in case. Preemies tend to be at higher risk for acid reflux--no guarantees it will happen, but don't be too worried if it does. Also some babies with acid reflux can have protein allergy and this can worsen symptoms--so a special formula may be needed. So, I don't know if you were really planning to stock up on formula. My point is, I would just wait and see how it goes at the hospital on their formula first (or breastfeeding), then go from there. I had all this formula at home go to waste!

Also, something else to think of, if your baby is really gassy (as mine is)--bottles may help, but also using the liquid RTF formula may be better than the powder because the powder stuff retains lots of little, tiny bubbles for a long time that may contribute to gassiness. My pediatrician told me this, and then I noticed this seemed to hold true for my DD (unfortunately, I ended up putting her on a special formula with digested proteins and it only comes in powder, boohoo).
I second this. My DS was born at 34 weeks and is having a terrible time with reflux. He also projectile vomits anything except Nutramigen, so don't EXPECT it, but don't be surprised if there are little hurtles. I hope everything goes well, but I agree on not stocking up on formula yet. Go ahead and choose what you'd LIKE to use, but maybe only buy about 1 - 2 cans. (It took 4 weeks for DS's problems to rear their ugly head.)

 
Old 10-10-2007, 04:11 PM   #11
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Re: Formula Question

Thank you ladies for your support and thoughts! It has been a very rough road, but I know in the end it will all be worth the hardships!

anhyre- Would you mind sharing what happened with your son that was born at 34 weeks? How long did he have to stay in the NICU? Did he have any short term health issues? I would love to hear your story so I could know what to expect if the baby does come that early!

Koukla- I remember you so well from the infertility board! I wish you lots of luck with your second baby. I hope that you won't have to go through fertility treatments again and that nature will just let it happen on its own

Heyknack- Our stories sound so similar!!!! How low did your fluid get before they took the baby? I hope I can make it as long as you did!!! Did your little one need to stay in the hospital or did she get to come right home? How was the c-section? I am really getting anxiety about having surgery while I am awake I am not going to buy any formula because I figure I won't know what she will tolerate until she is here. I know what ever formula I end up using for her I will definitely use the liquid RTF.

Thanks again ladies!
cmarie
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*Olivia Grace born 10/23/07...our little miracle!

 
Old 10-10-2007, 04:27 PM   #12
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Re: Formula Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by cmarie313 View Post
anhyre- Would you mind sharing what happened with your son that was born at 34 weeks? How long did he have to stay in the NICU? Did he have any short term health issues? I would love to hear your story so I could know what to expect if the baby does come that early!
I don't mind. Basically, I went to the hospital for minor stomach pains. Honestly, my doc said it was just a precaution and he was sure everything was fine and they'd just check to make sure there was no labor and send me home. That's NOT how it went. It turned out that the baby's heartrate was dropping into the 90's (lower at times) but I wasn't contracting. They kept me in the hospital on continuous fetal monitoring for the next 2 days. They did a fetal stress test (induced about 3 contractions) to see if it'd be safe to go into labor. If it were, I could go home. NOPE...the contractions sent his heartrate to 70 or lower. The doctor left the final decision to us but my husband, the doctor, and I ALL agreed that the baby was likely better off outside where at least the doctors would KNOW what they were dealing with. So a c-section it was.
He was born @ a hospital w/out a NICU. Actually, he is the EARLIEST delivery they're capable of dealing with. We were very fortunate that his lungs were developed and he never had to be on oxygen. Most of his problems were blood sugar related. He stayed in the NB nursery (though they consulted w/ the doctors at the Children's Hospital daily) @ the hospital where he was delivered. On his third day, I think, he ended up in an isolette b/c he couldn't keep himself warm. They also put him on a 22 cal formula until I started producing milk. (I pumped for him) After that they used my milk and added Human Milk Fortifier to it to give it the extra calories he needed. He got to come home after 10 days, YAY!
Then it was weekly (or bi-weekly, I can't remember) weight checks until 2 months. At 4 weeks he started projectile vomiting EVERYTHING he ate after every bottle. After some changing of things we wound up at Nutramigen and he's done beautifully in that aspect since. The problem now is with the reflux. Hopefully they'll find the right medicine to make him feel better and then he'll just be a normal, happy baby again. He's still on extra calories, 24 cal/oz and a bit on the tiny side, only 10lbs 9oz @ 3 1/2 months but he's getting up there.

Last edited by baj406; 10-10-2007 at 04:30 PM.

 
Old 10-10-2007, 04:48 PM   #13
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Re: Formula Question

Oh my goodness, how scary!!! I am so happy that everything turned out well. How amazing that he didn't need oxygen. How big was he when he was born?

I hope that his reflux starts to get better, that has to be awful for both him and you Poor little thing. I hope the doctors can find the right thing to stop it!

Thank you for sharing your story, it really gives me hope
cmarie
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*Olivia Grace born 10/23/07...our little miracle!

 
Old 10-10-2007, 04:55 PM   #14
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Re: Formula Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by cmarie313 View Post
Oh my goodness, how scary!!! I am so happy that everything turned out well. How amazing that he didn't need oxygen. How big was he when he was born?

I hope that his reflux starts to get better, that has to be awful for both him and you Poor little thing. I hope the doctors can find the right thing to stop it!

Thank you for sharing your story, it really gives me hope
cmarie
Oh, he was 4lbs. 6oz. The nurses said he was a good size for a 34 weeker, but this was also at a hospital that didn't deal with preemies.

I also hope it gets better soon. It WAS better, for 2 days. *sigh* I'm at a loss right now. It's really too soon to call his doc again but he's clearly miserable again. I really hope things turn out well for you!

 
Old 10-10-2007, 06:42 PM   #15
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Re: Formula Question

On the formula issue --

We got samples of the three major kinds (Nestle Good Start, Enfamil, and Similac) and tried them out the first week or two. The hospital gave us Similac sample bottles that were pre-made. During our testing we decided to go with the one that seemed to be easiest to dissolve in water and the one that had the least amount of bubbles. We also looked at how baby reacted to it (and found that she didn't really care one way or the other).

In the end we went with Similac, until she was about 6 months old when we switched to Members Mark (Sam's Club) brand that is comparable to Enfamil, but only half as much.

We make up all 30 oz. at one time and put it into bottles to use over the next 24 hours. When I go out of the house I just take a bottle or two with me in a lunchbag-sized cooler bag with an ice pack in it. It's nice not having to mix formula when I'm out and about and the best part is that when baby is crying there's no delay! I guess it also helps that we never let her get used to having bottles warmed, so she likes 'em straight out of the fridge.

 
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