Parenting Tips

Storage of breast milk: essential rules for the safety of the baby

Can you add fresh breast milk over the milk in the fridge or freezer?

If you are breastfeeding your baby but want to go back to work or simply need a more flexible schedule you can use a breast pump to get the required amount of milk. Storing breast milk should be done by following the basic principles for choosing the vessel, freezing, or thawing it.
A special breast pump can help you increase the interval between direct breastfeeding and give you a chance to recover if you need a break for medical reasons. The storage of breast milk obtained with the help of the pump must be in accordance with clear rules, detailed by mayoclinic.org, so as to prevent the risks for mother and baby.

What kind of bowl should you use for breast milk?

First you need to wash with soap and water before using the breast pump. Once you have obtained the milk, you can store it in a glass covered with a lid or in a thick plastic container, marked without BPA. You can also put the milk in plastic bags created especially for this purpose.

However, it is not recommended to use the bags too often because they can break, the milk will flow, and bacterial contamination is much more likely. To ensure that you do not endanger your little one’s health, it is a good idea to put the milk bags in a tight, hard plastic container.

Avoid storing breast milk in regular plastic bags or disposable plastic containers.

Labeling and placement of breast milk

It is advisable to use waterproof labels and permanent markers. Write on each container when you got the milk, and if the milk will be kept in the baby’s nursery, add your name on the bottle. Put the container on the back of the refrigerator because it is the lowest temperature there.

If you do not have access to a refrigerator, a refrigerated box or a freezer, you can temporarily use a refrigerated bag.

Fill different containers that represent the amount the baby needs for a meal. Start from 60-120ml and adjust the amount according to the needs of the little one. Also, consider small portions of 30-60ml for unexpected situations or delays from normal mealtime. Remember that breast milk will increase in size when it freezes, so do not completely fill the containers you want to put in the freezer.

Can you add fresh breast milk over the milk in the fridge or freezer?

Yes, you can combine milk that has recently been obtained with a portion of breast milk from the refrigerator or that has been frozen, provided that both types of milk were obtained on the same day.

Be sure to cool the milk fresher before adding it. You can put it in the fridge or in a special milk bag, surrounded by ice cubes. Do not add hot milk to frozen milk because it will cause partial thawing.

How long does breast milk last?

How long you can use breast milk depends on the storage method:
– at room temperature: breast milk can be kept at room temperature for up to 6 hours, but it is best to use it in 4 hours. Also, if the temperature inside is high, the limit will be 4 hours;
– in an ice-cold refrigerator: breast milk can be used within 24 hours;
– refrigerated: pumped breast milk can be optimally refrigerated for 5 days, under strict hygiene conditions;
– in the freezer: frozen breast milk can be used for up to 12 months, but it is best to observe a period of 6 months.

 How do you defrost breast milk?

Put the container of frozen milk in the refrigerator the night before the day you want to use it.

Do not heat the container in the microwave oven or using the usual one because overheating will adversely affect the antibody content in the milk. Discard thawed breast milk that has not been used in 24 hours.

Storage of breast milk: essential rules for the safety of the baby

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