Preparing to bottle feed your baby can involve a lot of decisions. As you shop for bottles, nipples and accessories, consider your baby's age and needs and what products will be most helpful to you.
Babies of different ages need different bottles and nipples. From birth to three months, your baby will need a nipple with a very slow drip. From three to six months, a medium-flow nipple is best. At six months, it's usually time for a fast-flow nipple. Older babies also need larger bottles because they tend to drink more at a time. For children under six months, a four-ounce bottle is a good size, while a baby over six months may need a nine-ounce bottle.
In addition to standard bottles, you'll find bottles with special designs to meet particular needs. Angle-neck bottles and vented bottles are designed to prevent air from flowing through the nipple and being consumed, which can cause gas and discomfort. Natural-flow bottles prevent air bubbles from forming and are ideal for babies with gas. Breast-mimicking bottles are good for babies who breastfeed as well as bottle feed.
In addition to bottles and nipples, you'll need certain accessories. Bottle brushes are crucial for cleaning, and bottle drying racks can also be helpful. Bottle sterilizers can make sterilizing easy, and bottle warmers can quickly bring breastmilk or formula to a temperature that's pleasant and safe for your baby.
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