For breastfeeding mothers, especially who have to work routine or have lots of activities outside the home can give exclusive breast milk. Dairy breast milk is the milk squeezed and stored to give to the baby. This is an effective way done by breastfeeding mothers who have outdoor activities. Working mothers are not an obstacle to breastfeeding.
You can continue to give milk by flushing and storing the milk in the refrigerator. However, pay attention to several conditions that must be considered because if you keep the milk from the wrong milk. It is done to not make the milk damaged. Mothers can store milk properly so that the benefits are not reduced.
Preparing for milk
- Wash your hands first with soap and water or hand sanitizer can also be used as long as the use does not cause dirt/bacteria. We know that unclean hands can become viral and bacterial transformers, and maybe some of them can cause disease.
- Breast milk can be done using a hand or a breast milk pump.
- Prepare containers. The containers made of glass and polypropylene have the same effect on dissolving nutrients, immunoglobulin A, and white blood cells in breast milk. There are concerns about the possibility of contamination of breast milk stored in polypropylene bags because of the risk of plastic contamination. To avoid that, use plastic bags for storing breast milk sturdy, properly sealed and stored in a place. These steps can minimize the potential for container damage.
- Containers for storing breast milk do not need to be sterilized. They can be washed in hot water and soap, then rinsed or washed. If soap is not available, boiling water can be used.
- Do not discard the first and last breast milk in preparation. Also, we do not need to wash or clean the breast/nipple before milking the milk.
Mother’s milk storage area
There are choices of places to store milk, such as glass bottles, plastic bottles labeled free of hazardous materials, or special plastic packaging for breast milk. It is better to avoid storing dairy milk in bottles or plastic used for general use. This is because the breastmilk storage also affects the quality of the milk stored.
A good place for storing breast milk is a place made of glass or plastic with an airtight lid. For example, milk bottles with tight caps, or special breast milk bags. Do not use bags that are not specific to breast milk, because they can break when frozen in the freezer.
Keep the packaging of breast milk safe
To maintain the quality of stored breast milk, it is important to previously sterilize the baby’s bottle or pack milk container. Perform sterilization by boiling the bottle and part of the breast pump that comes into contact with the skin. Boiling water for about 5-10 minutes, the water is sterile which is 20 minutes from the moment of boiling.
Besides manually boiling, you can also use electric sterilizers. Before that, don’t forget to check the security and durability of the packaging on the label. Be careful when sterilizing bottles made of glass, because this material is more at risk of rupture.
For dairy milk to be frozen, put the bottle directly into the freezer immediately after milking. It is recommended not to fill bottles or plastic packaging. The reason is that breast milk tends to expand in a frozen state.
Especially for plastic containers for breastmilk, place it in another box or packaging box before putting it in the refrigerator. This is because plastic packaging is more at risk of leaking. Finally, don’t forget to give a label that lists the date breastmilk taken, on bottles or plastic packaging.
Tips on how to store breast milk
- Immediately cool the milk in less than 1 hour after pumping from the breast.
- Label storage dates and hours so they are easy to remember.
- The method of storing good milk is to divide it into small amounts. Since milk that is not used up will be discarded and not good if stored again.
- Do not mix new milk with milk that has been cooled before.
- Do not fill the milk too full in place, leaving a space about 2.5 cm from the top.
Temperature and storage time of breast milk
Storage of dairy milk should be adjusted to its use. Breast milk will be used as soon as possible, it is better to put it in the refrigerator avoiding to make it frozen. Dairy milk can be stored from a few hours to several months, depending on the temperature of the placement. Below are principles of breastfeeding:
- Dairy milk lasts up to 6 hours if placed at room temperature around 25˚C.
- Dairy milk lasts up to 24 hours when stored in a cooler which is added to an ice pack (ice pack).
- Dairy milk lasts for 5 days when placed in the refrigerator with a minimum temperature of 4˚C.
- Dairy milk lasts up to 6 months if stored in a freezer with a temperature of -18˚C or lower.
Keep in mind, the freezing process of dairy milk may eliminate some important substances used to prevent infection in infants. The longer storage of milk, both cooled and frozen, will eliminate the vitamin C in breast milk. However, the nutritional value of frozen milk is still much better than formula milk.
Tips to Melt Dairy Milk
Melted frozen milk is likely to experience changes in color, odor, and consistency compared to the fresh milk milked. Therefore, it is only natural for mothers to find breast milk settling after being stored in the refrigerator. This condition is normal and just shake the storage bottle to mix it again. Some babies refuse frozen milk. If so, the mother can try to shorten the shelf life of the milk or warm the milk before giving it to the baby.
- To liquefy frozen breast milk, can use electric breast milk warmers that can be used at home or in other possible locations. If it is not available, you can place the milk storage bottle in a pan or bowl of warm water. Let stand a few moments. Remember, do not put the pot or basin on the burning stove.
- The frozen breastmilk should not be immediately removed at room temperature. Some studies reveal rapid temperature changes that can affect the content of antibodies in breast milk that is beneficial to the baby. Frozen milk from freezing can be placed first in the refrigerator in the refrigerator, then warm it as before.
- If milk is needed immediately, then you can place it under running water with normal temperature. Then it flows with warm water. If it’s not warm enough, place the bottle in a bowl of warm water. To check whether the temperature of the milk is suitable for the baby, drop it on the wrist. If the temperature is appropriate, breast milk can be given directly.
- Even though it seems easy, avoid heating or melting the milk from the milk using a microwave. This tool can create spots on the bottle of milk that might be harmful to the baby. This spot appears because of the heat. Changes in milk that are too fast in milk can eliminate the antibodies needed by babies.
Breast milk is the best nutrition for babies. Proper storage of dairy milk can help to breastfeeding mothers who work or move outside the home to keep the nutrition of the baby’s needs. If necessary, consult a doctor for more information.