Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The First Years Breastflow BPA Free Baby Bottle Review

Manboog and I have been trying very hard to find a bottle for the baby that does not let him suck down all the milk I pump in one swift guzzle. Seeing as I have been also trying to promote him to better latch onto me, I saw The First Years Breastflow BPA Free Baby Bottle for sale at our local Wal-Mart and decided that the 4 or 5 bucks I was going to spend to try the bottle out was worth it.

The Good: This bottle really does mimic breastfeeding, at least in the highest capacity that a bottle might. The nipple collapses and resembles a 'sandwiched' boob, both upper and lower lips flange out (as they do when a baby is properly latched upon a breast) and the very tip curves up after being sucked upon by a voracious little monster (like my son). The measuring scale on the side is dark and, with quite a few washes, the numbers and lines have yet to fade. Overall, the bottle does what the makers say it will do as well: less colic, fussiness, gas and spit up. I have noticed quite a few less spit-up accompanied belches from the little man and towards the end of the bottle, and sometimes even in the beginning or middle, he will fall asleep, just as if he were at the breast. I truly believe this helps him not overeat; the fact that a baby has to work to suck and get the milk out of the bottle, I feel, very much assists in the true capacity that a baby's stomach might have at that moment, causing less stomach bloating, discomfort and all of the mess that goes along with overeating!

The Bad: That's not to say I don't have a few issues with the First Years Breastflow BPA Free Baby Bottle. The fact remains that the bottle is -bulky-. It is large and almost too large for me to comfortably hold while feeding the baby. It makes the bottle also hard to store with freezer packs if I have to go anywhere, since most of the bags used to keep bottles cold are meant for slimmer designs. Also, when the baby is sucking and sandwiches down on the nipple, a lot of the milk gets stuck inside the nipple and within the blue plastic insert that goes inside (which is the mechanism to make a baby suck harder). And, because the bottle is so plump, it is also a pain to angle it enough to get all of the milk out without laying the baby down, which is a no-no (or so sources say) if you want to help prevent ear infections for your child. There are extra parts to clean, and for some reason, the plastic that comprises this bottle retains a milk smell, even after a good scrub. Hopefully that will disappear after a rinse in the top rack of the dish washer!

The Verdict: While Sol has experienced less gas associated with drinking expressed milk from a bottle, the bulky design and the fact that there almost always seems to be milk that gathers in the wide nipple that is unable to come out bother me. If he continues to do well with this bottle, I suppose I will have to suck up the fact that the aesthetics do not please me and that a little milk (about a half ounce) is wasted nearly every time, no matter how hard the baby sucks. I would say this bottle is worth a shot and that maybe, after being spoiled by not having to work hard to get milk out of the previous bottles we have used, that Sol might just need to get used to working his jaw harder for that delicious boob-juice. The First Years Breastflow Bottle would probably be a great way to introduce a breastfed baby to a bottle and so far, despite my son not being exclusively on my breast at every feeding, he has done well compared to everything else we have tried.

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