Many mothers prefer to store their breast milk in the fridge. It is a lifesaver, particularly for working moms. But has ever the thought of storing breast milk in baby bottles with nipples crossed your mind?
Can you do it, and most importantly, is it safe? Well, here’s the essential information you must know before giving this idea a second thought:
You should never store breast milk in a bottle with nipples. The bacteria and microbes can grow within the nipple. Then, when your baby sucks the milk out of the nipple, the bacteria will enter their body and cause illness.
The rule of thumb is that breast milk must always be kept in sealed containers. But worry not; we got some hacks to make your daily routine fuss-free and easy.
Can You Store Breast Milk In Bottles?
Yes, you can store breast milk in food-grade plastic bottles. But there are some essential conditions you must follow:
- The bottle or container must be either made of glass or plastic.
- Be assured that the lid is tightly closed.
- Ensure that the baby bottle is not made of BPA material.
- Always sterile bottles with hot water for up to 10 minutes.
Then, if you’re not planning to use it within 10 minutes, you must put it into the freezer right away.
How Long Does Breast Milk Last In A Bottle?
If you’re planning to store the freshly pumped milk, then here’s how long it will last:
|At Room Temperature (75°F)
|In The Fridge
|Stored In Freezer
- As per the CDC and NHS guidelines, you must feed the freshly pumped milk to the toddler within the first three hours.
- If it is kept in the refrigerator, then it can last for a maximum of four days.
- You can warm the frozen milk in the hot water bowl.
- Keep in mind that you must not put breast milk in a microwave as it will destroy nutrients.
Why Can’t You Store Breast Milk In A Bottle With Nipple?
Many mothers get confused that storing breast milk in bottles is okay, but okay when stored directly in a bottle with a nipple attached. Well, here’re the two main reasons why you should avoid it.
1. Potential Sickness Threat
As mentioned earlier, the nipple is exposed to the atmosphere. Regardless of how you wash and dry it, there is a potential threat of bacterial growth at the tip of it.
When your baby sucks the milk, it will transfer into the blood system and harm their health.
2. Lack Of Container Lid
Most of the feeding bottles don’t have a container lid attached to them. So, without the tight lid, the milk will overflow.
Apart from it, the nipples also have a tiny opening through which the air can pass, making it a suitable place for bacterial growth.
How To Store Breast Milk After Pumping?
Once you have decided to store the breast milk, you must do it in a proper way to avoid it from spoiling. Here’re the essential steps you must follow:
- Take a food-grade storage bag or a BPA-free glass bottle.
- Wash it with warm water for a minimum of 10 minutes.
- Dry it using a clean paper towel.
- Pour the freshly pumped milk into it.
- Leave it open for 1 minute in the open air.
- Tightly seal it using the container lid.
- Write the date and time on the bottle.
- Store it in the refrigerator or in the freezer as per your preference.
- Always store it in small proportions.
The spoiled milk usually smells like soap and gives a pungent odor. Never feed the baby breast milk that has been stored for over 18 months, even if it is okay.
How To Warm Breast Milk From Freezer?
Many new mothers directly heat up the breastmilk in a pan; that is not the right way. Similarly, you can’t put it into a microwave oven even for 10 or 20 seconds. Here’s the right way:
- Take out the frozen milk from the freezer and place it in the refrigerator overnight.
- Then, take a pot and fill it with water, and put it on high heat.
- Turn off the flame and place the bottle in the pot.
- Let it sit for 20 minutes.
You can also place the bottle directly under the hot running water if you need to feed the baby immediately.
Can Warmed Breast Milk Be Refrigerated Again?
Yes, you can put it back into the refrigerator for 24 hours. Be assured that you cannot refreeze it. Likewise, you must not put back the remaining milk after feeding the baby in the refrigerator.
It is also worth mentioning that you can’t keep it at room temperature for a long time after warming it.
Storing Breast Milk In Feeding Bottles FAQs
Can you store breast milk in baby bottles with nipples?
No, it is not recommended by doctors to store breast milk in bottles with nipples, as there’s a potential threat of bacteria.
How long does breast milk last in the fridge?
You must use it within 4 days. As the milk stored in the refrigerator will start to spoil after that.
How long is breast milk good for after thawing?
Once you’re done with the thawing, you can only use it for 24 hours. Keep in mind that the 24 hours period starts when it comes back to the liquid form at room temperature.
Why is the thawed breast milk only good for 24 hours?
Once thawed, then it is the ideal place to inhibit bacterial growth. It is best to utilize it within the first 2 to 6 hours for safety.
Wrapping It Up!
The breast pump is truly a blessing for working mothers. It helps a lot during the baby’s daily routine and breastfeeding weaning schedule. You can store it in plastic or glass bottles that have tightly sealed lids.
But doctors don’t recommend using a bottle with nipples as it is a health hazard. Keep in mind that it is not okay to warm frozen breast milk using a microwave, similarly, you should never freeze the leftover milk.
We hope that this article helps you to clear all your doubts. While in the meantime, be happy and keep on loving your toddlers.