If you can’t breastfeed directly, pump during your baby’s feeding periods. This will help you make milk. Wash your hands before pumping. In the absence of soap and water, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Make sure your pumping area, components, and bottles are clean. Neither washes your breasts nor nipples before pumping.
- Before operating a pump, inspect it. Look for broken or unclean pieces that might contaminate your milk.
- Once the milk is pumped and stored, clearly label the number of ounces, date, and time. Consider using a permanent marker that won’t wash off if it rains.
- To avoid mold and bacteria accumulation, always clean and dry your pump parts thoroughly before storing them.
- The tubing on most electric pumps should never be damp. It’s too difficult to dry, allowing mold to form.
How to Freeze
- If you don’t consume newly extracted milk straight away, freeze it quickly to keep it fresh.
- Try freezing 2–4 ounces of breast milk. You won’t squander milk your baby doesn’t drink.
- When freezing, leave an inch of space at the top for expansion. Wait until the milk is entirely frozen before tightening the container’s cover.
- Store milk in the freezer’s rear, not the door. You’ll be protecting your milk from temperature variations.
How Long Can Breast Milk Be Freeze
The sort of freezer you have will have an impact on how long you can keep your frozen breast milk frozen.
A freezer with its own door attached to a refrigerator: Breast milk can be kept for up to 6 months in a regular side-by-side refrigerator/freezer unit, or in a top-and-bottom refrigerator/freezer unit.
A Refrigerator Freezer Compartment: Breast milk can be kept frozen in a freezer compartment of a refrigerator for up to two weeks, depending on the temperature.
A Self-Contained Freezer: Breast milk may be kept in a deep freezer without the need for a defrost cycle for up to a year without refrigeration.
- Hands should be washed before handling breastmilk.
- Use sterilized screw-on plastic or glass bottles or zip-seal breastfeeding storage bags to keep breastmilk. Most supermarket shops have these in the baby department.
- Mark the containers with the date and the baby’s name. This is useful if your baby is in a group child care setting or if several mothers are pumping at work.
- Cooldown your pumped breastmilk quickly. It may be refrigerated or kept cold with ice packs. If not used immediately, the milk can be frozen.
- Store breastmilk in usual feeding quantities. Since you can’t re-freeze breastmilk, start with 2–4 ounces of each bottle or bag. Weigh in!
- Many mothers realize that the breastmilk in their refrigerator has turned blue, yellow, or brown and wonder whether there is something wrong with the milk. That is normal; the color of breastmilk might vary based on the things that you consume throughout pregnancy.
- Also usual is for breastmilk to separate, resulting in the fatty portion of the milk rising to the top of the container.
- Tilt the bottle or the sealed bag back and forth gently, and the fat will return to the liquid in the bottle or sealed bag. Keep the bag or bottle from being shaken.
Frozen Breast Milk
- When using frozen breast milk, follow the recommended thawing and warming instructions.
- Check the dates and follow the safe storage instructions. Thaw the oldest collection first.
- After thawing frozen breast milk, do not refreeze it.
- Refrigerate frozen breast milk overnight to safely defrost it.
- 2 To defrost it faster, put it in warm water or hold it under warm running water. Never defrost frozen breast milk at normal temperature.
- You can use defrosted breast milk immediately or refrigerate it for up to 24 hours.
- No microwave or hot water should be used to thaw or reheat breast milk.
Point of view
Once you get the hang of it, your baby can enjoy your breast milk whether you’re in the next room or out with friends.
Still, overwhelmed with choices? Before you buy, test out a few different storage containers. Examine your budget, pumping collecting method, and infant feeding regimen. Having alternatives may provide you with the most freedom.