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There are advantages and disadvantages to both breastfeeding and bottle-feeding. Ultimately the decision should be made by the parents. The following table outlines several of the issues that need to be considered when making the decision on whether to breastfeed, bottle-feed, or a combination of the two.

Breastfeeding vs. Bottle-feeding





  Perfect balance of nutrients Not as efficiently utilized as breast milk
  Contains high levels of nutrients Nutritional content depends on proper preparation
  Easily digested and absorbed Some babies have difficulty tolerating certain nutrients
  Content varies according to milk production stage, which meets the changing nutritional requirements Pediatrician/care-giver determines amount
  Infant determines amount  


  Free Formula ranges from $54 to $198 per month depending on brand
  Nursing pads, nursing bras, etc. Bottles, nipples, etc.
  Breast pump (optional)  


  Always the perfect temperature Anyone can feed the baby
  No preparation time  
  Milk is readily available at any time and any place  


  Mother must be available for feeding or to provide pumped milk if she is absent Warming formula
  Mother must pump if feeding is missed Preparation time varies
  Early breastfeeding may be uncomfortable  
  Certain medications can interrupt breastfeeding