How Do I Know What Formula Is Right For My Baby? A Guide For New Parents

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When you’re a new parent, choosing the best baby formula for your newborn can be simple if you know what to look for.

And thankfully, trusted infant formula brands like Enfamil make it easy to educate yourself when you’re wondering, “How do I know what formula is right for my baby?”

It may have been hard enough making a decision around the breastfeeding vs. formula debate.

Whether breastfeeding was just too painful, your baby won’t latch on, or you have other reasons for choosing to bottle feed, no one takes this decision lightly. If you decided that breast milk is just not an option, we can help you find the type of formula that will be best for your baby.

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If you decided that breast milk is just not an option, we can help you find the type of formula that will be best for your baby.

Believe it or not, breastfed babies and bottle fed babies aren’t all that different!

In partnership with Enfamil, we break down how to find the best infant formula for your newborn, the benefits of infant probiotics (and if your baby needs them,) and answer all of your baby formula questions.

Here’s how to figure out which formula is right for your baby.

When shopping for infant formula, there are a few key factors to consider.

Keep in mind that there are certain aspects that make up a quality formula as well as additional considerations to ensure you’re purchasing from a qualified baby formula company.

Choosing The Formula

1. The formula is similar to breastmilk.

There’s no doubt that breast milk is ideal for newborns. However, if you need to use an infant formula instead, choose something that’s inspired by breast milk.

Enfamil formula options, like Enfamil Enspire and Enfamil Enspire Gentlease (for babies having feeding issues,) are great options. They are designed to be inspired by breast milk, as they’re made with the following components:

-Lactoferrin: Key immune-supporting protein found in breast milk.

-MFGM: Found in the fat of human milk and is shown to support cognitive development.

-DHA: An omega-3 fatty acid found in breast milk.

2. The formula provides complete nutrition for babies.

Proper nutrition is key for infants to grow and thrive. Stick with a formula that has all of the necessary vitamins and minerals, and fatty acids that are important for brain and eye development. Keep an eye out for formula that has:

  • Lactoferrin
  • MFGM
  • DHA
  • Choline
  • Vitamin D, C, and E

Formula that has iron, or iron formulas, can be beneficial to your baby as well, since iron helps infants with neurological development.

3. The formula is easy to digest.

It’s important to find a formula that can be easy to digest. Specialized formulas, like Enfamil Enspire Gentlease, are specifically created to ease gas, fussiness, and crying, and have easy to digest proteins.

4. The formula has been approved by your doctor.

Before choosing an infant formula, it’s always important to check with your doctor, especially if you’re worried that the baby could have allergies.

Options like soy based formulas may be problematic if your new baby has a soy allergy that makes them sensitive to soy protein.

An allergy to milk proteins is a possibility as well, so a soy formula, or hydrolyzed formula, could actually be a great option.

5. The formula is in the proper form (or your baby.

Baby formula comes in various forms, so you’ll need to choose the one that’s best for your infant. These forms are:

Powdered formula: This formula comes as a powder and is mixed with water to prepare for use.

Liquid concentrate formula: This type of formula will require you to mix with equal parts water and shake before using.

Ready-to-use formula: This type of formula is ready for the baby as is. You won’t need to measure or mix. It’s quick, easy, and isn’t as messy.

Choosing The Company

1. The company is tried and true.

Always buy baby formula from a company you can trust. Ideally, you’ll choose a company with a great track record, and who’s been around for many years.

Brands like Enfamil have been around since the 1900’s, and have garnered status as the #1 trusted brand for brain-building and immune support.

2. The company offers convenience.

What’s better than a quality baby formula for newborns? A company that offers convenience for new moms.

New moms are busy, and often stressed, so getting your formula delivered easily is ideal.

Brands like Enfamil offer a subscription service so you can have formula delivered to you automatically!

3. The company offers education.

New moms need a whole lot more than just formula. Brands like Enfamil offer tons of education that mothers can use to prepare themselves for their new baby. This education is continuing, as the site offers blog posts for moms to learn about how to feed their babies. They also have a hub of content covering feeding issues and how to deal with them, as well as an educational video series, “Ask The Experts.”

4. The company offers tools.

Interactive tools come in quite handy as well. They can offer education, convenience and more. The Enfamil brand has tons of tools available to new moms.

Check out their Formula Calculator, which helps you figure out how much formula you’ll need for your baby for extended periods of time.

5. The company's formula is affordable.

The average baby formula price is around $0.19/ounce according to The Simple Dollar.

What’s the use of a quality baby formula if no one can afford it? Brands like Enfamil offer a low price guarantee:

“It's our goal to provide you with a great price on your baby's formula. If you find a lower price at another retailer (third party sellers excluded) please give us a call at 1-800-BABY123 and we will offer a discount to match or beat it.”

The brand also offers a Rewards program for loyal customers, and a 10% discount for signing up for the subscription service. And, if you sign up for their newsletter, you’ll receive a 10% offer pop up for new customers.

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What are infant probiotics (and does your baby need them)?

Baby probiotics are supplements that offer nutritional support for your infant.

They have a whole host of benefits, and can contribute to all around better health for your little one.

These probiotics come in a liquid form so you can just add a few drops to a spoon to feed your baby or drop them right into your baby’s bottle with their formula. Enfamil Infant Probiotics can even be bundled with their baby formula for an even bigger discount.

Benefits of probiotics for babies:

*According to the American Family Physician

FAQs

Where can I find Enfamil infant formula coupons?

The Offer hub on the Enfamil website is a great place to find coupons and free samples of baby formula.

What are the side effects of feeding a baby formula?

In some circumstances, your baby may experience tummy pain, gas, or have trouble sleeping. If you notice your baby has diarrhea, vomiting, or is not gaining weight, be sure to get in touch with your doctor.

How do I serve a baby bottle to my newborn?

Make sure to wash your hands before getting started. Then, make sure to clean the baby bottle, prepare the formula, and warm up the baby bottle in a pot of hot (not boiling) water, only if your baby prefers the warmth. If not, stick with a cold or room temperature bottle.

Be sure to test the temperature on the inside of your wrist, and never warm your baby’s formula in a microwave.

How do I know what formula is right for my baby?

Always look for formula from a trusted brand when formula feeding. You’ll also want to try and find an infant formula that is close to breast milk. And most importantly, always talk to your baby’s doctor first about which formula is best for your baby.

What do I do if my baby isn’t tolerating the formula?

If your baby isn’t tolerating the formula, double check with your doctor to make sure there isn’t an allergy issue.

Some formulas may cause gas and tummy troubles, so you may need to switch to a formula that’s easier to digest. You can also call into the Enfamil call center to report this.

How do I switch baby formulas?

If you found that your baby is allergic to a formula, it’s best to switch immediately after consulting with their pediatrician.

You can try switching gradually as well, by mixing the formulas or supplementing with the new one. Enfamil offers a great formula comparison tool to help you out with this process. As always, talk to your pediatrician first.

How do you wean from breast to bottle?

This process is best done gradually so your baby has time to get used to it. It’s best to bottle feed when your baby is least interested or distracted, such as during the morning or mid-afternoon.

How long do babies stay on formula?

In general, you may want to wean your child off of formula after 12 months. However, this timeline may be different for everyone. Always check with your doctor.

Are probiotics safe for newborns?

Probiotics are generally safe for newborns. However, always check with your child’s doctor before introducing them into their diet.

Becoming a new mom can be intimidating, but if you’re armed with the right information and ongoing education, things can get a whole lot easier!

If you need a good place to start with educating yourself about baby formula, check out Enfamil’s education hub.

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Shannon Ullman is a writer who focuses on parenting, family, and women’s health.

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