Tools for supplementing

How is extra milk given?

Milk supplements can be given by bottle, cup, spoon, syringe, a tube-at–the-breast system, or a feeding tube through the baby’s nose or mouth and into the stomach. The tool must be acceptable to the mother and baby and effective in getting milk to the baby.

A) Describing feeding tools

Babies may need to be given milk supplements:

Feeding tools are needed in these situations and include:

Each tool has advantages and disadvantages. Tools need to be effective in getting milk to the baby and must be properly stored and cleaned to avoid contamination with bacteria. Tools may need to change as the baby grows and situations change. It is also important that both mother and baby like the tool and that it is not overwhelming (Penny 2019).  

Please speak with your health-care providers if you need more information.


Penny F, Judge M, Brownell EA, et al. International Board Certified Lactation Consultants' Practices Regarding Supplemental Feeding Methods for Breastfed Infants. J Hum Lact. 2019;35(4):683-694