Every woman should have all the information she may need in order to decide which breastfeeding experience she desires to have. Many women offer mixed feeding to their babies (breastfeeding plus artificial milk) so we think it is appropriate to talk today about how to prepare a feeding bottle.
We don’t know if you’ve been up to date with the latest news about babies suffering from salmonellosis, as the formula they were drinking was contaminated with the bacteria. Artificial milk is not sterile, and the contamination of batches of artificial milk is a cyclical event. In the same way, we learn food hygiene recommendations such as not refreezing food and maintaining the cold chain; knowing the recommendations for preparing a bottle is key.
- Wash your hands thoroughly for at least one minute.
- The bottle and teat must be clean and stored on suitable surfaces or paper, avoiding using textile kitchen cloths.
- Prepare the water for the bottle, which can be from the tap, heating it until it comes to a boil.
- Read the instructions on the formula can carefully and use the exact amounts of powder and water indicated. Reducing or increasing the amount of water or powdered milk poses a health risk to the baby.
- Fill the bottle with the indicated water; it is important that the temperature does not decrease lower than 70 ºC.
- Add to the water the amount of powder indicated on the package.
- Close the bottle carefully and shake it, so the powder dissolves and no lumps remain.
- Fill a container with cold water and place the bottle in it. This way, the temperature of the milk will come down.
- Check that the temperature of the formula is correct by putting a few drops of milk on your wrist. The milk must be warm; it does not need to be hot.
- To offer the milk to the baby, you must remember that artificial milk is also given on demand, both in quantity and frequency of feeding. The milk that the baby has not drunk can be saved only for the next two hours. If the baby does not drink it, it must be thrown it away.
There is another option if you want to leave prepared artificial milk feeds. Once the milk has cooled down, it can be left in the fridge at a temperature of fewer than 5 degrees. To heat this milk, it is only necessary to submerge it in a little hot water and stir it so that the content is heated in a homogeneous way. The prepared milk can be stored in the fridge for 24 hours only; if it is not used by then, it must be thrown away.
It is also very important not to leave traces of artificial milk in the bottles and wash them thoroughly after each use; you can use the dishwasher, as it happens very easily that traces of milk are left, that can cause cross-contamination. It is not necessary to sterilize the bottles if you can guarantee a thorough washing of all the elements.