A random study at UC San Francisco, forthcoming in the journal Pediatrics, has found that giving babies small amounts of formula in the first few days following birth can actually increase the duration of breastfeeding.
"Based on our findings, clinicians may wish to consider recommending the temporary use of small amounts of formula to new moms whose babies are experiencing significant early weight loss," said lead author Valerie Flaherman, MD, MPH, an assistant professor of pediatrics and epidemiology and biostatistics at UCSF and a pediatrician at UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital in an article in Science Daily.
Although using formula has the potential to be "slippery slope" as far as breastfeeding is concerned, the research suggests that modest amounts won't necessarily discourage a baby from taking the breast. And ELF, claims Flaherman, "alleviates some of the stress new mothers feel about producing enough milk."
In other words: a quick fix that rather than curtailing breastfeeding, can actually lead to sustained breastfeeding for at least the first six months recommended by The American Academy of Pediatrics.
The idea is that mom can relax, and even if her baby is losing weight during the first couple days while her milk comes in, she can still provide colostrum, rich in concentrations of nutrients and antibodies, rather than give up nursing altogether.
Though small, the study of 40 full-term newborns had lost more than 5 percent of their birth weight. Those ELF babies were fed one-third of an ounce of infant formula by syringe (to avoid nipple confusion) following each breastfeeding session. The ELF babies stopped taking formula as soon as their mothers began producing "mature milk, approximately two to five days after birth."
One week in, all babies studied were still being breastfed, and three months later, 79 per cent of the ELF babies were still nursing, compared with 42 per cent of those who did not receive early limited formula.
Obviously a larger study is needed, and the intake of formula has to be strictly controlled in the days following birth, but ELF may provide a welcome solution for moms struggling to nurse.
Did you successfully combine breastfeeding and formula feeding? Do tell.
What's a parent to do when baby does his business and there's no change table in sight? It's a dilemma, for sure, and one which turned ugly for a Denver couple convening at their local Starbucks recently.
When Ruth Burgos realized the bathroom didn't have a change table, she took it upon herself to change her one-year-old son Thiago in the seating area.
"As a mother, you have to do what you have to do. Wherever you have to do it," she said in a Huffington Post article. "I just kind of wiped him off, cleaned him off as quickly as I could."
A Starbucks employee wasn't impressed, however, and by all accounts threw her a rag and a few rude remarks, before laughing with colleagues. The boy's father Alex, lost his temper and emptied his coffee on the floor, telling the staff, "You better clean that."
Tit went for tat, and soon police were called over the "disturbance." Though no arrests were made, and Starbucks apologized for failing to treat the Burgoses with "dignity and respect."
But the jury's out on this one... I have to say, I would never have dreamed of changing my son in a seating area where people were consuming food and drinks. I'd rush out of there like the place was on fire first. In any case, I always carried a fold-up change mat in my diaper bag for Desperate Measures. But maybe that's just me.
Besides, why wouldn't a chain as colossal as Starbucks ensure it has a change table in every single toilet of every single franchise?
Spill it: what would you have done in this scenario?
In a post designed to make your blood boil dry comes a story about Disney World: a place where dreams really do come true—that is, assuming you're wealthy enough to hire a “disabled” guide to skip all those pesky waiting lines.
For real. An article in Huffington Post let the cat out of the bag about a “black market Disney guide.” Yes, there's an adult 'on the inside' whose use of a motorized scooter allows certain minted families to jump the queue by taking advantage of the theme park's disabled privilege.
The Huffington Post article seeks to find a silver lining in a story that will disgust families with genuinely disabled members. Will this trickery lead to increased acceptance of the "lucky people in wheelchairs"? I'm decidedly more jaded than to think that.
I have no words. And yet, as I rest my head each night, a single word resounds and fills me with hope: karma. Karma, baby.