Friday, April 2, 2010

Playtex Drop-in Debacle!

We introduced formula to our daughter a few weeks ago, and after trying three difference kinds (while feeding her frozen breastmilk the majority of the day) we decided on Similac Sensitive RS. In order to see if it actually worked, and curbed her spit-up/reflux as advertised, we decided to just feed her the formula for a week and see how she reacts.

The first 3 days of our test were miserable. She seemed more agitated than normal, the feedings were longer as she struggled to take the formula down. She was still spitting up massive amounts of chunky fluid during and after each feeding - so much so that I was worried she wasn't keeping anything down.

And then one night my husband went to prepare a bottle in the kitchen. "When you put the water in here do you measure it on the side of the liner? Or the side of the bottle?" he asked.

(Now since day one we have been using Playtex drop-ins, per the advice our our lactation consultant. We have also used the Playtex Vent-Air bottles because I thought they looked cool, and happen to get a free one somewhere. Since we started using the formula though we have used the Drop-Ins solely as they are 8 ounces to the Vent-Airs 6, and were easy to mix the powder formula in. As for the actual liners, we have used Playtex brand, Target and most recent the generic brand at Rite-Aid that specifically say on the box "Use with Playtex Drop-In Bottles") Cut back to the conversation the other night...

"I use the numbers on the side of the bottle...and fill it up to the 6 with 3 scoops of formula...why do you ask?" I enquired.

"Because there are measurements on the side of the liners too, and they don't match up to the ones on the bottle," he said.

I rushed in to the kitchen (because I was baffled) and we did an experiment. We poured 6 ounces of bottled water into the Vent-Air bottles and then poured it back into the Drop-In bottles. What was 6 ounces of water in the Vent-Air was actually at the 8 ounce mark on the side of the Drop-In Bottle!!! The markings of the liners were actually correct, and the 6 ounces of water lined up with the 6 ounce it is the liner bottles that are incorrect. We then got out my liquid measuring cup in the kitchen and confirmed that the measurements on the outside of the bottle are indeed wrong.

So this entire time we had been giving her 3 scoops of formula with only 4 ounces of water, a concentrated mix of liquid, which was making her terribly uncomfortable. Ever since this revelation feedings have been significantly easier...I wouldn't say like night and day, but she does not struggle to take down the formula like she had those few days on the concentrated mix. She still spits up, but we have just come to grips with the fact she is a happy spitter.

So the moral of this tale is that if you are using Playtex Drop-In Bottle System, please do yourself a favor and measure the water outside the bottle to make sure you are using the correct water to powder ratio!!


  1. PICO! Couple of things on this topic....

    I too noticed the difference in the markings on the bottle and on the liners. There are two different types of Playtex bottle liners, the regular ones (for 8 oz.) and the "expandable" ones (for 10 oz). so if you have the expandable ones the markings are not going to match up. Since the liner is wider, it "expands" and can fit more, so you have to go by the markings based on that size. There are two sets of markings on the bottle. On one side it goes up to 6, and on the other side it goes up to 8. With the expandable liners you need to use the side that goes up to 8. (If you buy just generic brand bottle liners, use the side that goes up to 6). I have done numerous tests using a measuring cup to figure this out!! LOL

    Secondly, we used the powdered formula for about three days before switching (and this was also with Similac Sensitive RS). Chase spit up so much after we started using the powder and the first question our pediatrician asked was if we were using powdered or RTF (ready-to-feed) formula. She said some babies just don't handle the powder very well (especially reflux babies) and suggested we try the RTF. Yes, it's more expensive but it's SO worth it in my opinion. We've been using RTF bottles the whole time now. They come in 32 oz. jugs and are about $5.50 each, so depending on how many ounces she takes in a day, you will probably go through one whole jug a day, but it's VERY well worth it. Just pour the bottle, put the jug back in the fridge, and that's it. (We warm the bottle after pouring it by just placing it down in a big cup of really hot water). Formula that is warmed is supposed to help with spitting up (I think I read that somewhere).

    Anyway, just wanted to add my $0.02 :)
    Good luck!!

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