We first learned about the feeding problems of preemies from research in the NICU. Studies clearly showed that you can dramatically improve bottle feeding with a method that avoids the hydrostatic pressure and vacuum buildup of traditional bottles and gives the baby control of the pace of feeding. We thought of it as self-paced feeding. We reasoned then that any method that helps the most fragile of babies is almost certainly good for all babies.
When we pivoted toward the development of a product for all babies, we were pleasantly surprised to find widespread recognition of the value of what is known as Paced Feeding among health professionals and mothers. Turns out the academic world and real world had started to reach agreement that Paced Feeding is a good idea.
Paced Feeding seeks to minimize the potential for medical interventions, to accelerate development of feeding abilities and to reduce the stress on mother and baby.
It made abundant sense to us that babies are perfectly adapted to breast-feeding and that any bottle is just substituting, at least temporarily or perhaps permanently, for nature’s ideal baby feeding system. Paced Feeding seems like the closest alternative to breast-feeding. We really don’t understand why the big bottle companies have done so little to support it.
You should not be surprised that our primary design goal for the Smart Feeder is to make it the optimal bottle for paced feeding!