We suggest that instead of daddy-bottles, partners consider other ways of reducing the mother’s load and supporting breastfeeding for the following reasons.
1) Risks of skipping breastfeeds without expressing
Breastfeeding mothers should not skip a breastfeed without expressing as doing so increases the risk of painful illnesses and a reduced milk supply.
2) The work and risks of expressing
For most mothers, the process of expressing requires more work than breastfeeding. Breastfeeding can be relatively quick when compared to expressing and bottling. Mothers who are pumping need to prepare the pump, clean it, and put it away after use. Bottles or other feeding tools also have to be obtained, prepared, washed, and put away.
Expressing can be less effective than breastfeeding at removing milk from the breast and may cause the same problems as skipping breastfeeds.
3) Risks of not breast milk-feeding the baby
Ideally, the baby’s supplements consist of the mother's own expressed milk and not infant formula as partial breastfeeding can affect the baby’s health. However, even bottling breastmilk can have risks.
Many babies do not settle as well and fall asleep after being bottle-fed as they do when breastfed. If daddy-bottles are given at night, they can result in a baby who is unhappy and may wake the whole household.
Frequent bottle use can result in the baby rejecting the breast.
4) Lack of benefits
If daddy-bottles are used to allow the mother to have more sleep, many mothers wake anyway when their babies cry. If daddy-bottles are used during the night, both parents may be sleep-deprived.
If the mother is not expressing, her breast will fill and may become painful, which can prevent sleep. To fix this, she will either have to breastfeed or express.