Breastfeeding is extremely important for new born baby and it’s recommended by doctors to exclusively breastfeed infant for first 6 months . As breast milk is unique and the super combination of necessary vitamins , proteins , fats for baby and it cannot be replaced with any other available food. It provides complete nutrition for the development of a baby and makes baby resistant to infections , diseases and builds her immunity as well.
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Sometime mother can’t breastfeed due to some undesirable conditions or while starting top feed bottle feeding is necessary There are advantages of bottle feeding also , like you can monitor the exact amount of milk baby is taking in. Besides, other members in the family can also experience the joy of creating a special bond with the baby by feeding her. Also as any member can feed baby and mommy may do other work or rest for that time.
For healthy bottle feeding, proper care has to be taken to maintain hygiene of bottles . Leftover milk in bottles if not cleaned may become the reason for baby’s illness. Follow some very easy techniques to for cleaning bottles and happy bottle feeding to your little one. Here are some helpful tips for bottle feeding your baby.
# 1. BPA Free plastic bottles
Always use BPA free milk bottles. BPA free bottles are made up of high quality food grade plastic. These bottles are expensive than normal bottles but they are durable too. BPA free milk bottles can be sterilized easily also as it’s very necessary to maintain hygiene of bottles. There are a number of good quality BPA free bottles available in the market. Choose wisely and continue with only one brand milk bottles as it’s easy to mix and match bottle parts. Also, it’s of comfort for baby.
# 2. Number & Size Of Bottles
If you’re bottle feeding a new born, you can start with small 4-ounce bottles and once your baby is around three to four months old, you can switch to 8-ounce bottles. As the baby grows the number of bottles and size of bottle be can increased depending on the requirement of milk. Use bigger size bottles after baby grows as she/he needs more milk per feed. Always keep a few spare bottles – ideally at least half a dozen baby bottles are necessary. It’s easy to avail clean bottle when there are many bottles for baby. Some time it’s not possible to clean the bottle as soon as it’s used. So when baby needs to be feed clean bottle can be used if many bottles available.
# 3. Cleaning /washing bottles
Dirty bottles , spoiled milk in it may lead a baby to infection /illness because of the bacteria. Washing as well sterilizing bottles after every use is necessary. Use bottle washing brush to clean unreachable area of bottles and teat cleaning brush for washing teats. Use bottle cleaning liquid for washing bottles. After washing keep bottles upside down position for drying. Bottle dryers, stands are helpful for bottle drying.
Sterilizing bottles is necessary to kill bacteria in bottles if any. For sterilizing use bottle sterilizers available in the market. There are varieties of sterilizers available which can be used to sterilize many bottles simultaneously. Or can be used traditional way of using boiling water . Keep bottles in in hot boiling water for 10 minutes and cover the hot water pot . Dry washed bottles by keeping on bottle stand or keeping them in upside down position. Always use a sterilized , clean bottle while feeding baby.
# 5. Check teats /nipples of bottles
Use proper teats/ nipples . As per baby’s age, different nipples are available like for new born baby very slow flow one whole teat, for 3 months old 2 whole teats, for 6 months old, for 1 year old fast flow teats . Using proper nipple helps to avoid choking as it controls milk flow. Baby can drink milk comfortably using appropriate nipple. Always use a bottle cap to cover its nipples when not in use to protect it from exposure to dust , flies, mosquitoes or any other harmful things. Check bottles and its nipples often for cracks if any and change it in case of cracks.
# 6. Leftover milk
Discard leftover milk(Fresh milk, formula milk , breast milk ) from the bottle to avoid feeding spoiled milk . Milk gets spoiled easily inside closed bottles . Never refrigerate / re- use leftover milk for next feeding. Also, don’t reheat formula milk if gets cold. Make another feeding with fresh powder and feed the baby.
# 7. Decide Formula milk/fresh milk
Use formula milk or fresh milk as prescribed by doctor /paediatrician. There are many different brands of formula milk available in the market. Use formula milk as per baby’s age . Use and follow all instructions mentioned on formula milk pack. If giving fresh milk then make sure fresh milk is boiled and cooled before feeding it to the baby.
# 8. Temperature of milk
Always check the temperature of milk before feeding it to the baby. Never give milk without checking its temperature. For checking temperature drop some milk droplets on the wrist of hand. Feed milk to baby only when it’s lukewarm and not very hot or cold.
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