DS is 15.5 weeks, weighs 14lbs 5oz as off today and so is pretty much following (just under) the 50th percentile line. He's been formula fed since birth and has always been healthy/gained weight. For the last 6 weeks or so he's been eating six 5oz bottles a day every 3 hours but we've only recently moved him up to 6oz. I'm not worried about weight gain.
I was speaking with the health visitor today and whilst she wasn't concerned as he's gaining weight steadily she was "surprised" that he was eating 5oz six times a day. Apparently it's normal for babies to eat up to 8oz at this stage. I have no idea if he would eat more than 5/6oz at a time as he doesn't seem particularly unsatisfied when he finishes a bottle.
As I say, I'm not worried about weight gain and if you go by the 2.5oz x weight then he's eating approximately the right amount. What I'm wondering is how to structure feelings if he was to eat 7/8oz a day instead of the 5/6oz? He's fallen into a pretty good routine of eating every three hours (we feed on demand, this is just when he is hungry) but I would like some sort of structure with feeding if I were to change.
Current routine is a bottle at: 7am, 10am, 1pm, 4pm, 7pm, 10pm then he sleeps through the night. If I was to give more at each feeding what is the best timing routine? Currently feeding every three hours works but it does make going out anywhere a bit of a nightmare sometimes.
I, personally, would not worry about increasing the oz until baby demands it. My twins are 19 weeks tomorrow and they are taking 4 oz and 6 oz about every other bottle. Their last weigh-in (@ 17 weeks) son was 13.9 lbs and daughter was 12.5 lbs which is the lower end of percentiles but is on their growth curves (they were born at 38 weeks).
If I try to feed more then they are ready for, they push the bottle out. And, if they want more than I've given, they cry and carry on for more. I feed according to their demands, not the "normal" amounts.
As for the timing. Typically, the babes will go longer in between feeds with more formula; but during the transition time, they may eat more frequently. I know mine have been feeding sometimes every two hours during the day, but then not eating as often at night (still working on sleep schedules). I would suggest to try and off set your current times, if your son will take the additional ounces, by feeding a bit later for the second feed of the day and feeding a bit earlier for the fourth (e.g. drop the third feed all together). That's only if you really want to try and time everything. I find though, that my babies will go contrary to all my best efforts at fitting them to a schedule of any sort.
I would just keep doing what you're doing. The timings of the feeds likely wouldn't really change because you increase the amount. He'll still feed on demand and likely around similar times (until those eventually change too, which they will). At that age, mine was probably having around 5oz per feed as well, though more like every 4 hours. Does he finish every or most bottles? The advice that was given to me was to make an amount every time that he finishes about half the time and leaves some the other half of the time. If he's finishing all or nearly all bottles, it's time to offer more per feed. But sounds like he's doing great so I don't think you need to think about it all too much. If he's still wanting more after a feed, start offering more at the same times he's always hungry and you'll see the pattern shift a bit if it needs too.
As for going out, I wouldn't plan it around feeds too much as you can easily take a bottle with you. I used to either make it up in advance if I knew she'd want to eat within 2 hours. Formula is fine at room temperature for 2 hours. So if I knew she'd want to eat about an hour, hour and a half after we left, I'd make the bottle at home and then just put it in my bag. It would cool to drinking temp by the time she wanted it. Or if we were out for the whole day, I'd sterilise bottles and close them up ready to go and then just use the ready made cartons. They're 200ml, so at this point you'll still waste a bit maybe, but never mind, it makes life much easier.
I upped my daughters feeds when she started getting hungry sooner. Plus it's only every 3 hours during the day but that is a fantastic long stretch at night so he has to get the milk in during the day. If he's gaining and content relax.
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