While it is advised to exclusively breastfeed your Baby for the first six months of their lives, sometimes you may be forced to bottle-feed sooner than you had planned (1).
Even if that’s not the case and you’re introducing bottle feeding after six months of breastfeeding, you should still be careful about what you put into the bottle. In fact, you’ll be surprised to know that most of the things that you have bottle-fed your child are things that are almost strictly prohibited! Read on to know seven things you should try to never put in your baby’s bottle.
1. Gripe water
Gripe water is normally given to babies to provide relief from indigestion and other tummy problems. But did you know that it’s not scientifically proven that gripe water helps your tiny tot feel better? In fact, all that it does is put your baby to sleep, and that maybe because of the alcohol content, which can put your baby at risk of SIDS or sudden infant death syndrome.
2. Corn syrup
If you go by age-old home remedies for constipation in babies, you may have heard the use of corn or karo syrup to cure this common discomfort among infants. However, despite being used for ages, this remedy is no longer recommended as it can cause botulism (2). Botulism is a type of food poisoning, which is very harmful for your child.
This one may come as quite a shocker, but really, you don’t need to put water (mixed with formula or breast milk) in your baby’s bottle for them to drink, even when you feel that it’s too hot and humid and your little one needs a little extra hydration. Why? Studies have shown that diluting milk with water can prove to be deadly for your baby- a risk you don’t want to take (3).
Infacol is a medicine that is used to treat colic as well as excessive wind in babies. Even though it was previously recommended, it is something you should avoid. Not only is it ineffective, but it also contains ingredients that can cause allergic reactions in your baby (4). Besides, it also contains parabens as an ingredient, which is known to be toxic.
Some parents use thickeners, such as corn flour and rice cereal, to cure reflux in their babies. However, you should not add them to your baby’s feed as it doesn’t help cure reflux, and in fact, can make it worse (5). Besides, these thickeners can give rise to other discomforts too such as constipation and coughing (6).
6. Rice cereal
Even though it does fall into the category of thickener, it has one extra use – helping your baby sleep longer. At least that’s what was believed it could do. New studies have surfaced revealing that solid foods such as rice cereal make the baby’s sleeping worse rather than improving it, especially if the child is below six months of age (7).
7. Prune juice
Again, of the many home remedies for constipation in babies, giving diluted Prune Juice is one. Prune juice contains fiber, which can be helpful. However, giving too much fiber can have an adverse effect- it can decrease the absorption of other nutrients. So, unless your pediatrician tells you to do so, do not give prune juice to your child.
You can argue that you have done these things and nothing happened, but the fact remains that something could have. So, instead of putting your baby at risk, try and avoid putting the above seven things in their feeding bottle.
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