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Breastfeeding

I am going back to work and plan to supplement my breastmilk with formula. Do you have any tips for mothers who are supplementing?

Our Parents' Resource Center (PRC) is available to help you 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Give us a call and we are happy to walk you through your options to continue to breastfeed while supplementing with formula.

Are there formulas that are suited for supplementing breastfeeding?

All formulas provide complete nutrition and can be used for supplementing breastmilk. GERBER® GOOD START® Gentle for Supplementing is an ideal choice for when breastfeeding moms supplement because it is specially designed to complement breastmilk. GERBER® GOOD START® Gentle for Supplementing is made with probiotics, good bacteria found in breastmilk that support digestive health. If you chose to incorporate formula, maintaining good digestive health may be important.  By supplementing with GERBER® GOOD START® Gentle for Supplementing, you are giving your infant probiotics similar to those found in breasmilk to support a healthy digestive system.  

What’s Gerber’s view on breastfeeding?

Gerber supports breastfeeding and believes that breastmilk is the best start a baby can have in life. Like the World Health Organization (WHO), Nestlé recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months, followed by safe and appropriate complementary foods, preferably with continued breastfeeding until at least two years of age.

Should I breastfeed my baby?

The benefits of breastfeeding for you and your baby outweigh all other formula alternatives. The American Academy of Pediatrics strongly recommends that breastmilk be the primary source of nourishment for the first year of life.

Baby's Health

How do I know whether my baby is getting enough Iron?

Babies are born with a good store of Iron, provided by you during a healthy pregnancy. Those initial Iron reserves need to be maintained by an Iron-rich diet of breastmilk or Iron-fortified infant formula. Around the middle of the first year, your baby's natural Iron stores may start to deplete. Iron contributes to your baby’s growth by helping to expand the number of red blood cells that help supply her body with oxygen. If you’re breastfeeding, your physician may prescribe a dietary supplement of Iron. If you are formula-feeding, use an Iron-fortified formula such as GERBER® GOOD START® Gentle. If you're supplementing, try a formula that complements breastmilk, like GERBER® GOOD START® Gentle for Supplementing.

What causes constipation in babies? How can I alleviate the problem?

Hard, dry stools are difficult for Baby to pass, and they aren't fun for you either. Keep in mind, though, that even some healthy babies go several days without a stool. Constipation is not caused by Iron in your baby's formula, but might be associated with a number of factors, including the introduction of new solid foods with varying amounts of sugar or fiber. If your baby has recurring bouts of constipation, be sure to check with your doctor.

Bottle Feeding

I'd like to occasionally feed my baby breastmilk from a bottle. Do you have suggestions?

The right time to introduce your little one to a bottle is only after breastfeeding is going well and your baby is around 4 weeks old. If your baby is having feeding problems, particularly with latching on, it’s best to avoid any bottle-feeding until she’s breastfeeding easily. Switching from breast to bottle too early may confuse a young baby because bottle-feeding requires a completely different sucking pattern. Start out by feeding your baby expressed breastmilk in a bottle once a day or every other day. If your baby is two months or older, it may be difficult for her to accept bottle-feeding because she has become used to breastfeeding. In this case, another person such as Dad or a relative may need to lend a hand. Your baby knows you and can easily sense your skin and touch as well as your presence. Some mothers may need to leave the room while another person bottle-feeds the baby. Be patient and calm. Try bottle-feeding your baby when she’s not hungry and somewhat sleepy so she will be more apt to take a bottle.

What's the best way to heat a bottle of breastmilk or formula? How should I warm my baby’s bottle?

If you’re breastfeeding, use sealed and refrigerated breastmilk within 48 hours. When feeding formula, we recommend preparing and feeding a bottle immediately. If you must prepare ahead of time, refrigerate unused bottles up to 24 hours. After feeding begins, discard any remaining formula left in the bottle within one hour. Once a baby has fed from a bottle, microorganisms from her mouth are introduced into the formula. Neither refrigeration nor reheating completely prevents these microorganisms from growing.


Many new moms have questions about preparing a bottle. First, be sure never to heat a bottle of breastmilk or formula in the microwave. It creates hot spots in the liquid that can burn her mouth, and it destroys breastmilk’s delicate nutrients. Safely warm a bottle with these steps:

Stand the bottle in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes or hold under running water.
Gently shake the bottle to distribute the warmed milk.
Test warmed breastmilk or formula by shaking a few drops onto your wrist. If the liquid feels just barely warm, it’s a safe temperature for your little one.

Our baby won't go to bed without a bottle. Can she get cavities this young?

Letting your baby fall asleep with a bottle filled with fruit juice, breastmilk, or formula can promote tooth decay. Infants are susceptible to tooth decay even before they cut all their teeth.

Follow these simple guidelines suggested by dentists:

Take the bottle away from your baby before she falls asleep.
Weaning your baby from the bottle may be completed by her first birthday.
Be sure to never put juice or sweetened drinks into your baby’s bottle.
Clean your baby’s teeth and gums with a clean, soft washcloth or fluoride-free tooth and gum cleanser after each feeding.

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