Are you a working mom and worried how to breastfeed your newborn? Storing breast milk is an excellent way to continue nursing and makes sure your baby gets his best nutrition
Breast milk benefits your baby in numerous ways beyond basic nutrition. It protects your baby from long list of illness such as ear infections, meningitis, allergies, lower respiratory infections and stomach viruses. It has all essential vitamins and minerals, helping to boost your child’s intelligence and protecting your child from obesity later.
How Can One Collect Breast Milk?
How to store breast milk is truly an art. Although it might take a little time to master the art, you may be able to accomplish it with your hands by following few simple steps.
- Firstly, clean your hands and then massage your breast with your fingers or apply a warm towel for at least 2 minutes before pressing.
- Sit up, lean forward and place your thumb on each side of breast and forming a C position with your hand below t
- Now gently and firmly apply pressure inward towards your chest wall and express your breast milk. As the saying goes, press, compress and then relax.
- Repeat the same process on the other side of the breast and collect it in a milk container(you can easily avail such small containers from the nearby kids retail stores).
[ Read: Breastfeeding Diet ]
Guidelines For How To Store Breast Milk For Baby:
Once you are done with collecting your breast milk, the question is how to store the collected breast milk? Listed below are numbers of ways to guide you to store your breast milk carefully.
- Before storing your breast milk, make sure your hands are clean. Wash your hands well with soap and water.
- Store the milk in a clean hard plastic container. Don’t use glass bottles as they may break and the white cells in milk tend to stick to glass. Hard container protects the milk and all its essential nutrients and immunities.
- Make sure the containers have a tight sealing with one-piece lid. Avoid using colored bottles due to applied dyes.
- Knowing how to store breast milk at room temperature is not a hard task.You can store it at room temperature not more than 25 degrees Celsius for up to 6 hours and refrigerate at 4 degrees Celsius for 4 to 5 days.
- Make sure you label the date, which is clearly visible for your baby’s nanny. This is to avoid mix up on containers after each pumping.
- Avoid bottle-shaking as it may disrupt some of the milks’ essential components.
- After collecting the milk, refrigerate it right away. Instruct your nanny to give your baby the old milk first and maintain the pattern. This is because breast milk has antimicrobial as well antibacterial actions that allows you to store it for a much longer time than cow’s milk.
Guidelines for Freezing Breast Milk:
Before freezing your milk in the refrigerator its better to check first for the taste and odor. In addition, make sure milk is stored in a clean area, away from eggs or uncooked food. Here are some more tips to freeze breast milk:
- It is ok to add small amounts of breast milk to the refrigerated container throughout the day but avoid adding warm milk to the already cooled milk.
- Do not heat stored breast milk in a microwave oven or on the top of stove.
- After your milk has been stored for some time, you may observe that it starts separating. Nevertheless, there is nothing to worry, it is very normal; just give it a gentle stir before using.
- Frozen milk if defrosted in the fridge can be kept for up to 12 hours. Once defrosted, it should NOT be frozen back.
- Don’t forget to wash and sterilize all the parts of the bottle after every use for the first few months because they can transmit bacteria if not cleaned properly.
- Store milk at the back of the main body of refrigerator or freezer, away from the door, where temperature is constant.
- It is best to use the expressed breast milk within two days as it reduces bacteria killing properties in it and if kept for a longer time it will lower the quality of fat in breast milk and great loss of vitamin C. So by now you must have known how to store expressed breast milk.
Guidelines to Thaw Breast Milk:
Frozen milk, once thawed can be kept in refrigerator for up to 24 hours but do not re-freeze. However, you can refrigerate it. Here are more tips on thawing frozen breast milk:
- Thawed breast milk is best up to 2 hours at room temperature and 24 hours in refrigerator.
- Avoid adding warm milk to the already refrigerated or frozen milk. You can cool the fresh milk and then combine with your previously stored milk. Breast milk never spoils until unless it tastes sour or smells badly.
- If you wish to warm frozen milk, simply place frozen milk on a cup of warm water.
- The only way you can be assured that all the important nutrients are preserved and bacterial contamination is minimized is only if you or the nanny thaws the breast milk correctly. If you are a nursing mother, follow the above storage techniques and maintain a high quality of breast milk for your baby to stay healthy. Wish you good luck!
Hope this post on how to store breast milk for baby & how to use stored breast milk was helpful. Do share your experiences with us in the comment section below:
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