You are twenty weeks now. You are half way through your pregnancy. There are so many choices to make between now and the time you deliver. Over the next few weeks, our newsletters will be focusing on the different choices you will be making for your baby and your birth. Right now, you might be trying to decide whether you want to breastfeed or bottle feed your baby. You have probably heard that breast milk is best for your baby, but you still might not be sure what you want to do. There are pros and cons to breastfeeding and bottle feeding. In this week’s newsletter, we are going to discuss your feeding options. We will give you the advantages and disadvantages of breastfeeding and formula feeding and hopefully help you to decide what you want to do.
What Is Going on with Mom & Baby
Baby is the size of a pomagranate!
Baby: Baby’s crown to rump length is around 18 cm. (about the size of a pomegranate) Your baby weighs about 300-350 grams. Your baby is covered with a white lanolin-like coating called vernix. Your can see your baby’s nipples on her mammary glands now. If you are having a baby girl her uterus is formed now and she has eggs in her ovaries now.
Mom: You may be anxious to find out your baby’s gender if you haven’t already. At night you may have difficulty sleeping or be troubled by nightmares. You may have shortness of breath when sleeping in certain positions. Your baby is pressing against your lungs and other organs, which may cause you to feel short of breath.
This Week’s Pregnancy Checklist
- Sign up for a breastfeeding class if you are planning to breastfeed.
- Select paint and/or wallpaper for your baby’s nursery.
- Purchase bedding for your baby’s crib.
- Make a list of phone numbers to call in case you need an emergency babysitter or petsitter.
- Write a list of addresses to send out birth announcements to.
- Take a new belly picture for your scrapbook or journal.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Breastfeeding
- Your breast milk’s nutritional composition is ideal for your baby.
- Your breast milk changes to meet your baby’s needs.
- Breast milk is easier to digest
- Breastfeeding is virtually free.
- Breastfeeding may help protect your baby from asthma, allergies, diabetes, and SIDS.
- Breast milk contains antibodies that protect your baby from infections such as ear infections, respiratory infections, and diarrhea.
- Some women have problems with latch on pain during the first couple weeks.
- Breastfeeding may require more time from mom. Breastfed babies may feed as often as every hour and a half to two hours for the first few months of life.
- Because breast milk is made on supply and demand, you can’t just take a couple days off from breastfeeding (without pumping).
Advantages and Disadvantages of Formula Feeding
- Anyone can help with feedings.
- It may be more convenient because there is no need for pumping, if you want to go out and leave your baby with someone else.
- Formula is digested slower than breast milk. Formula fed babies often go longer between feedings than breastfed babies.
- Most women don’t have problems getting baby to latch on to bottle or take milk out of a bottle as a newborn.
- Formula is expensive.
- Formula does not contain the protective antibodies that breast milk contains.
- It may be inconvenient having to make trips to the store if you run out of formula or if you forget to pack a bottle when you travel away from home.