Dos and don’ts through continued baby formula shortage
SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - The shortage of baby formula here in the U.S. is still going strong as it reaches the five month mark. Here in the ArkLaTex, mothers and children are still seeing those same struggles as well.
Some stores in the Shreveport area have limited quantities and even empty shelves.
Mothers are having to make compromises and sacrifices to make ends meet and keep their babies fed. Some parents are rationing the formula they use, while some are diluting formula or using additives to make due. While these quick solutions may be temporarily helpful, they could take a toll on a growing child’s health and development.
Shreveport health expert, Cyndi LaGrange, shared some tips for families in need during these hard times.
- Participate with your local SNAP and WIC programs.
- Speak with your child’s pediatrician about your need for formula. They may have cans in office that they can share.
- Check with local food pantries. While formula may not be your first thought when thinking of food banks, people do donate it to them.
- Join local Facebook groups for mothers in search of formula. A bunch of heads can work better than one!
- If you are capable of breastfeeding, do it! Nursing is much more nutritionally efficient than formula, so it’s a much healthier option for your child.
- Dilute formula, especially not with water. According to LaGrange, excessive water intake can hinder your babies sodium intake.
- Skip feedings. LaGrange also says that babies who miss meals will not get important calories, proteins and fats needed for proper growth and development.
- Use substitutes like cow’s milk or goat’s milk.
- Hoard or over-purchase. This problem is universal to everyone, so buying too much formula can limit others from buying or acquiring formula. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is advising to buy no more than a 10-day or a 2-week supply of formula.
- Make or use homemade formula. Failure to include (or maybe exclude) the proper ingredients could prove harmful or detrimental to your child.
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