Cleft Palate - Special Needs Feeders

Disclaimer: This fact sheet is for education purposes only. Please consult with your doctor or other health professional to make sure this information is right for your child.

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Using the Pigeon® Cleft Palate Teat

Step 1:

Ensure that the white milk flow regulator is always used with the teat.  Push the teat into the ring cap or platform.  Ensure that the notch (air valve) on the teat is visible. Check that the y-cut on the teat is working (when teats are new there may be a layer of seal over the opening).


Screw the teat and cap onto the bottle.

Step 2:

Tip the bottle upside down. Squeeze the teat with your finger so that milk runs into the teat before starting the feed. The bottle is now ready to be used.


When feeding your baby, make sure the air valve (notch on teat) is in line with your baby’s nose.

 To ensure longer life of the teats, do not steam, sterilize or boil. Instead, soak in Milton solution as per the manufacturer’s instructions.


Medula Special Needs Feeder



Step 1

Insert valve membrane into the ridge of the disc

Step 2

Push the valve membrane until the entire pin has been guided through the central hole.

Step 3

Fill the bottle with the required amount of warm milk or formula.

Step 4

Push the teat into the collar.

Step 5

Insert the assembled valve membrane and disk into the collar. Ensure that the pin from the valve membrane remains facing you.

Step 6

Place assembled teat, collar and valve over the bottle and secure by turning the collar in a clock-wise direction.

Filling the teat

Step 1

Hold the bottle in an upright position, squeeze the teat to expel some air and develop a vacuum

Step 2

Maintain the squeeze and turn the feeder up-side-down.

Step 3

Release the squeeze.

Step 4

Milk/ formula should flow into the teat. If this does not happen, turn the feeder upright and check that the valve membrane is correctly inserted (see assembly instructions)

Step 5

The teat will automatically refill as the baby draws milk/ formula.

Feeding with the Medela

  1. Identify the three lines along the Medela teat, each of different length:
    • Longest line = fastest flow
    • Medium line = medium flow
    • Shortest line = slowest flow
  2. Turn the feeder until the required flow line is facing upwards. This should be in line with the baby’s nose.
  3. It is usually best to start with the slow flow line and move to the medium or fast flow if needed.

Squeezing the teat

Most babies that feed with this teat need the teat to be squeezed as outlined below:

  1. Hold the feeder by the barrel of the teat, gripping it as you would a pencil.
  2. Once the baby begins to suck, apply one moderate squeeze, then release. It is a good idea to practice this with some water prior to the first feed to get an idea of how hard you need to squeeze in order for milk to flow from the teat.
  3. Give the baby time to swallow this mouthful before squeezing again.
  4. Establish a rhythm of squeezing the teat every time the baby sucks.
The Children's Hospital at Westmead

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