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Protect Breastfeeding

Protect Breastfeeding

Your body is designed to make milk. Work with nature by avoiding things that get in the way, such as formula, bottles, nipples, and pacifiers. If your doctor thinks baby needs a little extra, use your own milk when you can and feed it to baby in a dropper or spoon.

No Formula Unless Medically NecessaryNo Pacifiers or Bottles


There’s no greater pride as a mom than seeing your baby grow healthy and strong because of you! Mother Nature gives you all you need to feed, comfort, and protect your baby without using formula, so you and your little miracle can enjoy being happy and close.

How to do it

Here’s how to make plenty of milk and keep your baby calm without using formula.

  • Hold your baby skin-to-skin in the first hour until he latches by himself.
  • Pump or hand express your milk if you are not able to be with your baby in the first hour.
  • Keep your baby in your room and hold him skin-to-skin so he can feed when he wants.
  • If baby is fussy, hold him skin-to-skin instead of giving formula or a pacifier.
  • If the doctor advises giving baby extra milk, feed your own milk from a spoon or dropper, whenever possible.
  • It’s the second night of my life, and I have had enough of the lights and noise.
  • I cry to tell my mom I want to be in her arms where I feel safe.
  • She brings me to her and holds me heart-to-heart.
  • Now I feel calm and content again.

Your support will help mom breastfeed without using formula.

  • Help mom keep baby in her room with her so she can feed baby often.
  • Talk with visitors about her need for privacy to breastfeed.
  • Remind well-meaning family and friends that it’s best not to use formula in the early days and weeks.
  • If your doctor or nurse advises extra milk for the baby, ask if mom can use her own milk. Help her feed it to the baby from a spoon, cup, or dropper.
  • Praise her. Often! She needs to hear she’s a great mom.

You’ll love breastfeeding without formula!

It’s great to know you can feed and comfort your baby with your milk. When you avoid formula, you are able to protect breastfeeding with the best start possible.

  • Baby is able to breastfeed better.
  • You protect your baby from illness, disease, and allergies.
  • You are able to make more milk.
  • You become more confident you are a great mom.
  • You have fewer breastfeeding problems.

You can breastfeed without formula even when…

Your Baby Wants to Eat All the Time

Many babies “cluster feed” or eat several meals back-to-back. This is normal! Your new baby’s tummy is very tiny, and the milk goes through her system quickly. Just follow your baby’s cues and hold her skin-to-skin. Your baby will take the lead and show you when she needs to eat.

Your Family Suggests You Give Formula

Your family and friends mean well, but may offer advice that does not help you meet your feeding goals. Explain to them that you want to breastfeed. Tell them that giving formula will make it much harder.

You Want to “Do Both”

Your milk is all your baby needs for the first six months. If you decide to use formula, too, it’s best to delay it until your baby is around 3 to 4 weeks old. This gives your body time to get your milk flowing well. It also gives your baby time to learn how to breastfeed well.

You Are Going Back to Work

Moms in all kinds of jobs keep giving their milk after they return to work. Today, laws require your employer to give you a private space to express milk at work. Talk with your nurse or your local WIC office to find out how to get a breast pump.

You aren’t sure your baby is getting enough.

Baby gets enough if he eats at least 8 to 12 times every 24 hours. Let your baby nurse as long as he wants until he drops off on his own. You can also watch for soiled diapers. Baby should have at least one poop on the first day, two on the second day, and three on the third day, and beyond. By the fifth day, the color will change from black to greenish brown or yellow, and stools will be looser.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if my baby acts hungry?

Your baby has a very tiny tummy in the first few days. He can only hold around 1 to 2 teaspoons of milk at a time. That’s just how much your body makes for him! You may not feel like you have any milk, but you have what he needs. This small amount of milk passes through your baby’s tummy quickly. Follow your baby’s lead and nurse when he shows signs he wants to eat.

What’s going on the second night?

Many babies become very fussy on the second day or night. This is because they start to wake up more on the second day. The people and noise in the hospital begin to bother babies and they become annoyed. If your baby is extra fussy on the second day or night, just give your baby what she wants most – to be held and comforted in your arms skin-to-skin.

Does formula help my baby sleep better?

Studies show this is not the case. Formula is harder to digest so babies might eat slightly less often. But drinking formula does not make them sleep. Formula also has many risks. For instance, babies who get formula are at higher risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Breastfeeding helps lower the risk of SIDS. Babies need to eat very often, even at night, to grow and gain weight. As they get older, they will sleep for longer stretches at night.

What does “medically necessary” mean?

You will be able to fully breastfeed in most cases. If a medical situation occurs, the doctor or nurse might suggest that your baby get some extra calories. Ask about using your milk when possible. If formula is needed, you can often go back to full breastfeeding again after the medical issue is resolved.

If my baby needs extra milk, what should I feed him?

The best milk to feed your baby is mom’s own milk. You can pump or hand express your milk to feed to your baby. Once your milk volume grows, you can try using a breast pump to remove milk. If you are not able to get extra milk, ask if your hospital uses donor milk provided by an approved milk bank. Formula is the last choice to consider.

How should I feed the extra milk?

In the early days, breastfed babies should get extra milk in another way besides a bottle. Try a spoon, dropper, cup, or tube. The easiest way is to express milk directly onto a spoon and place it near the baby’s lips. The baby will lap it up with his tongue. Your nurse or lactation consultant will help you find the best way of giving extra milk for your baby’s situation.

And there you have it

Your baby only needs a few things after birth – safety, warmth, comfort, and food. You don’t need formula. You only need your arms and your love.