New mums take an average of three months and 13 days to feel they have got the hang of motherhood.

According to a new study that examined the confidence levels of 2,000 American mothers in the first few months after having their baby, women said that the first few weeks of parenting passed in a complete blur, because they were so panicked about getting things right, reports Daily Mail.

In fact, more than half of those studied (53 per cent) said the first few months of their child's life whizzed past because of the extent to which they were fraught with worry over learning the ropes - and not making any mistakes.

The top concern for moms was the worry their baby might get sick, followed by worries over feeding - specifically how much to feed their little one.


And new mums aren't just concerned about their baby's health and welfare, as 33 per cent of new mums worry about all the costs associated with having a child - the third most common worry on the list.

The study of 2,000 mums of children three years old and younger was conducted by OnePoll in conjunction with Store Brand Formula and found that more education is needed about formula feeding baby and overall formula safety.

One in five (21 per cent) moms did not feel prepared by hospital staff on how to feed baby even though two in three moms end up using formula in baby's first year. In fact, a third of new mums said they learned about infant formula feeding by teaching themselves.

When it comes to properly feeding their child, 23 per cent of mums revealed they were unsure about the process and their options.

Half of mums revealed they have thrown a partially used infant formula bottle back in the fridge to use for the next feeding time.

According to the study, the top concern for moms was their infant getting sick. Photo / Getty Images
According to the study, the top concern for moms was their infant getting sick. Photo / Getty Images

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, formula made with powder not fed to baby can be stored in the refrigerator for 24 hours but must be discarded after one hour from start of feeding.

But that's not all, one in five mums said they have used more water than required by the instructions when preparing infant formula with nearly half stating their primary motivations for doing so was to help save money or make formula last longer.

"Many new mums have the misconception that diluting formula with water will help save money or make it easier for baby to digest," Dr. Jennifer Gardner, pediatrician and co-author of The Mommy MD Guide to Your Baby's First Year, said.


"This is a serious misunderstanding not to be taken lightly because diluting critical nutrients in formula at a time of rapid growth can be dangerous for baby.

"No cost savings is worth the risk of poor health or infant mortality, which is why parents should always follow preparation instructions on the product label or consult with their pediatrician to talk through infant-feeding options."

Half of mums also said they use the microwave to make a bottle for their baby. Another 26 per cent said that they have skipped washing their hands before preparing baby's bottle.

"Parents should always follow the preparation instructions on formula packaging. Microwaving formula bottles can affect ingredients in formula and cause hot spots that can burn baby's mouth," Dr. Gardner said.

"Navigating motherhood is tough. And the pressure to have it all together is all too real. However, keeping your baby safe and healthy is always key. Which is why it's important to know how to properly feed baby, so they grow strong and healthy."

More mums are reading parenting books than taking prenatal education classes. Yet only one third of those moms feel that parenting books totally prepared them when it comes to feeding baby.

Store Brand Formula wants to act as a resource for moms – they have joined forces with various partners to help build the website to include helpful articles, engaging videos and an E-book to help inform both mums and dads.

Sixty two per cent of new moms were surprised by the amount of time it took before they felt like they got the hang of motherhood.

So what factors lead to Mum confidence the most? Results suggest time to get in the swing of things is a huge factor- simply having a good routine was the number one marker of mastering motherhood.

Being able to know what to do when their baby is crying, and knowing the difference between a baby's cries and the meanings behind them were also distinct markers for mothering confidence.

But while mothers eventually got the hang of motherhood, that doesn't mean they didn't feel judged along the way. In fact, one in five new moms has fibbed about their baby sleeping through the night when they weren't quite there.

Other fibs mums were guilty of telling include claiming that their child hit a developmental milestone before they actually did (18 per cent) and claiming to be breastfeeding when they really weren't (9 per cent).

Mums also shared insights on formula purchase preferences. Twenty per cent of mums worried about what formula to purchase in the first few months of baby's life.

When it comes selecting a formula, nearly half of mums stated they don't believe store brand formula provides complete nutrition for baby and 33 per cent don't believe store brand formula meets the same FDA standards as nationally advertised brands.

"New mums can feel confident that store brand formula will provide complete nutrition for baby just like any other brand name formula," Dr. Gardner said.

"All infant formulas are required to meet the same FDA standards, which means Store Brand formula has the same quality as other brand names, at less of a cost."