Breast milk storage can be confusing. Follow these practical tips on choosing containers, freezing breast milk, thawing breast milk and more. If you're breast-feeding and going back to work or looking for more flexibility, you're probably considering using a breast pump.
All A-Z health topics. View all pages in this section. You can keep germs from getting into the milk by washing your pumping equipment with soap and water and letting the equipment air dry.
So how do you store and use your milk safely? But good hygiene is vital to ensure that stored milk is safe for your baby — read on to find out how to store breast milk properly. Breast milk is better for your baby than formula — but freshly expressed breast milk is preferable to refrigerated, and refrigerated is better than frozen.
Label the date the breast milk was expressed on each container and include your child's name if you are giving the milk to a child care provider. Talk with your child care provider about how they require breast milk be stored and labeled. Store breast milk in small batches.
How much expressed milk will my baby need? Previously frozen milk may be kept in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours after it has finished thawing. Do not refreeze.
It is essential to properly store your expressed pumped milk to maximize its nutritional, immunological and antioxidant qualities. Human milk has anti-bacterial properties that help it to stay fresh and when stored per recommendations, human milk can maintain many of its nutritional qualities making it safe for use. Over time nutrients may break down in expressed milk lowering the quality and as such, it is important to try to give your baby the freshest expressed milk to ensure its rich quality.
By following recommended storage and preparation techniques, nursing mothers and caretakers of breastfed infants and children can maintain the safety and quality of expressed breast milk for the health of the baby. These are general guidelines for storing human milk at different temperatures. Various factors milk volume, room temperature when milk is expressed, temperature fluctuations in the refrigerator and freezer, and cleanliness of the environment can affect how long human milk can be stored safely.
Whether you're exclusively pumping, building a stash for when you return to work, or storing an extra bottle for baby to drink during late night feedings or the occasional date night out, it's important to keep in mind safe breast milk storage guidelines for your expressed breast milk. Remember to collect and store breast milk in clean containers specifically made for breast milk storage. Here's how long your liquid gold can be safely stored at different temperatures:.
When you breastfeed, your milk is always warm and ready for your baby. You can store pumped milk in the refrigerator, the freezer, an insulated bagand—for a limited amount of time—at room temperature. From temperature to timing, cooling and warming, this information can help you get started. Next to breastfeeding, freshly expressed milk is best.