Expressing - do I need a bottle insulator?

(26 Posts)
ElleDubloo Mon 04-Aug-14 17:32:25

The changing bag I bought doesn't come with a bottle insulator, and I'm wondering whether I should buy one separately or not. I plan to express breast milk and carry a bottle with me for convenience, to feed on-the-go. Obviously after expressing into a bottle at home, the bottle goes straight into the fridge. When I later use the bottle to feed baby, do I need to warm it, or does the baby drink it cold, or do I wait for it get to room temperature?

In other words, what do I need to buy in order to feed my baby with expressed breast milk on-the-go??

Thanks smile

puddock Mon 04-Aug-14 17:35:43

I relied on Kellymom's storage guidelines:
kellymom.com/bf/pumpingmoms/milkstorage/milkstorage/#storage
and my son was happy to drink EBM at room temp or even chilled (though that may vary, some babies might be more particular!)

leedy Mon 04-Aug-14 18:45:17

Yeah, DS1 was pretty fussy about the temperature of his EBM (though mercifully didn't care what he drank it out of) - needed it pretty warm.

Agree with using Kellymom storage guidelines, EBM is fine at room temperature for a few hours. Though if you don't mind me asking, why are you going to use EBM for out and about? Will you be exclusively expressing?

SaggyAndLucy Mon 04-Aug-14 19:34:05

get a little coke can sized cool bag. you will need an ice block in it if you're going out, it'll warm up quickly in this weather.
A small thermos of hot water is useful too. I got a tommee tippee one, it's got a large cup which covers the whole flask for putting the bottle in.

feeona123 Mon 04-Aug-14 20:29:14

I've never heated bm that I've taken out of the fridge (never kept it chilled either!!).

By the time baby wants it, it's at room temp. Fortunately mine isn't too fussy! She loves her milk however it comes!!

puddock Mon 04-Aug-14 20:31:29

Just coming back to say that my not-fussy-about-temp son was older (over 6 months) when he was having the EBM, a new baby might need it warmed especially from the fridge...

It sounds like your baby hasn't arrived yet - wait and see how feeding and expressing go, you may find that feeding directly from the breast (perfect temperature all the time!) is easier for you after all. Apologies if you're planning to exclusively express and this suggestion is irrelevant.

PenguinsHatchedAnEgg Mon 04-Aug-14 22:20:53

Agree with others re storage. But do you want to talk about why you think expressing will be best for out and about if not exclusively expressing? It is quite a lot of extra work generally speaking. smile

SaggyAndLucy Mon 04-Aug-14 22:22:52

I've been exclusively expressing for 5 months for medical reasons. its bloody HELL! Anyone who thinks it's a good idea or an way option needs their bumps read!

squizita Mon 04-Aug-14 22:40:34

I'm interested in this because due to a bad back, I tend to have to wrap up a LOT (as in a stupid amount, hassle when not BFing let alone getting through those layers to a boob, I'm like the Michelin Man) in midwinter.
Therefore might end up expression Dec-Feb for outside trips...

leedy Mon 04-Aug-14 22:43:08

squizita, you need one of these fine garments! I have one and it got a fair bit of use on very cold days. Once you have a compatible BF top under it, you basically just have to sort of stuff the baby under the flap - minimal exposure to the elements involved! It's really warm.

shop.boobdesign.com/en/product/305/ready-flex-fleece

squizita Mon 04-Aug-14 22:50:38

Thanks. smile Just realised almost-here-PFB will be a little older by then anyway so FX everything will work itself out!

museumum Mon 04-Aug-14 22:53:24

Bm is remarkable stuff and if it hadn't been frozen it lasts ages out if the fridge due to the natural anti-bacterial properties.
Lansinoh breast milk storage bags have good info on them (or the box, can't remember now) about storage times.

ElleDubloo Tue 05-Aug-14 08:39:26

Thanks everyone! So am I correct in understanding that cold breastmilk is not bad for the baby, it's just that she might not like it?

For the record I'm not planning to exclusively express, but I'd like to express occasionally for convenience, e.g. when going out without my baby, or taking her to somewhere I can't breastfeed in public.

leedy Tue 05-Aug-14 09:17:03

Exactly, it's just a matter of baby's preference.

Really, there are very very few places where you can't breastfeed in public (speaking as someone who has breastfed, eg, clinging to a scree slope on the side of a mountain in Mallorca), you'll probably get used to it very quickly indeed. Expressing is a bit of a time-consuming faff if you're trying to fit it in as well as feeding and it's definitely easier to just have baby drink "straight from the tap". Obviously yes, if you're going out without baby it can be handy to have some expressed milk (though I actually found I needed it less often than I thought I would, for some reason - was often able to time outings between feeds).

PenguinsHatchedAnEgg Tue 05-Aug-14 09:49:38

There really isn't anywhere you can't breastfeed though smile. I have breastfed in church, in shops, in restaurants, in cinemas. I think the only places I have felt uncomfortable and taken myself off somewhere private is visiting my office (just felt odd there, not that I couldn't) and during a funeral (again, I just felt a bit weird).

Obviously going out without the baby is different. But it is pretty unlikely to be more convenient to express at times when you are going out with the baby. smile

squizita Tue 05-Aug-14 11:13:58

Many of my BF friends do express a bottle for trips out (obviously once supply is established and they have a baby who takes breast and bottle/sippy cup) and carry it with them. I assume they express it before hand then take with kept cold. I take it there's nothing wrong with this (in terms of hygiene, nutrition etc' as opposed to personal preference)?

I'm not really thinking in terms of psychological comfort - more literal! - and TBH this seems to be the only side of BFing that anyone advises me about is feeling shy (and sometimes - not here I hasten to add- almost a hint I will be letting the side down if I don't). If it's warm enough I'd just find a Starbucks or similar I guess, I live in London no one bats an eyelid at anything and Westfield, Brent X etc' have all the shops.

I'm literally talking about what if, for example, I'm going to a farmer's market or car boot sale and I'm wearing an all-in-one under my clothes glam to keep the sciatica at bay! grin

squizita Tue 05-Aug-14 11:16:57

...if I don't BF directly without a shawl at all times I mean. Someone did say it would be letting the team down basically. [cross] My baby my business was what I thought TBH.
Come to think of it I never saw this person BF out of their house though...

ElleDubloo Tue 05-Aug-14 11:20:28

Yes, you're right. I wouldn't have any qualms about BF in a restaurant if it was just me, OH, LO and a roomful of strangers. But if we're going out with extended family, I don't want to pop my boob out in front of my FIL. Or even my own father, for that matter. Maybe I'll get used to the idea smile

ElleDubloo Tue 05-Aug-14 11:22:41

Squizita - you squeezed a couple of posts in there while I was typing smile I agree with you - bringing a bottle would also allow us to wear whatever we want.

leedy Tue 05-Aug-14 11:40:04

There's absolutely no problem with feeding a bottle when you're out and about if that's what you want to do, it's just an awful lot more work, particularly in the first couple of months. You need to find a time when baby doesn't need to be fed directly (and is asleep or otherwise does not require entertaining, and/or you have someone to entertain them), get out the robobaby, ensure all appropriate bits are clean/sterile, pump on both sides into the bottle, and then you still have to actually feed the baby later. Basically you will have to take the time to feed the baby, twice. More than twice, actually, as it always took me far longer to get set up for expressing and express than it would to just feed (the pump is not as efficient as a hungry baby!). Don't get me wrong, it's definitely worthwhile for times you're away from baby, but for me would be waaaaaaaaaaaay too much hassle for any time when I'm actually there with my boobs anyway, especially as free time in the early days can be few and far between.

It does restrict what you can wear a bit, but I have a fairly good wardrobe for all seasons at this stage (BF dresses and tops, loose tops over vests, wrap dresses where you can push aside to feed, the abovementioned GENIUS FEEDING FLEECE etc.), and there's no harm in using a shawl or cover at first if it makes you feel more comfortable. And once you're used to it you'll be surprised at how little flesh you actually show - generally you're not (as the tabloids put it) "whipping out your boobs", you're pushing up a bit of top, pulling down a bit of bra, possibly revealing your nipple for about two seconds if baby is cooperative (alas sometimes isn't, but I find just facing away from people works), then baby basically covers everything.

PenguinsHatchedAnEgg Tue 05-Aug-14 11:49:01

I agree with Leedy. Of course you can choose to bottle feed at times, but it's not really for 'convenience'. In fact, as her detailed description shows, it's a lot more inconvenient. It's valuing other things above convenience, which is fair enough smile. Also bear in mind that this method might tide you over for a bit, but if you are going a long time without feeding, you are likely to get very uncomfortable/leaky. So it isn't really a plan for a whole day, and probably not even for a whole afternoon in the early stages.

If we are talking 'off to the farmer's market for an hour', then honestly I would try and convince the baby to take a feed at home before you go, even if they aren't asking for one. Sitting in the cold is a pain for anyone, even if they don't have masses of layers.

squizita Tue 05-Aug-14 12:15:54

Leedy and Penguins as I explained upthread, this would be from 5 months onwards under specific circumstances i.e. outdoors trips in midwinter. smile Basically I wear clothing akin to ski gear under my clothing to prevent back pain if it's frosty Jan/Feb!
That was why I explained I was not talking about everyday trips to shopping malls.
It wouldn't be all the time at all.

I did't mention doing anything for convenience - just said what some people I know did? Sorry if I was unclear.

PenguinsHatchedAnEgg Tue 05-Aug-14 12:22:33

Sorry Squizita. I was still responding to the OP, who mentioned convenience in her first post. smile

The only bit to you was meant to be about being outside. I was trying to reassure you that, for short trips and slightly older babies, you can often prompt them to not need a feed when you are all wrapped up rather than have the hassle of bottles. smile

leedy Tue 05-Aug-14 12:31:12

Yes, a baby over five months will usually be able to go a couple of hours without a feed - if I was heading out somewhere I'd often do a "just in case" feed before I went. And once they're over six months they can have a snack if they do get peckish while out and about when it's awkward to sit down and feed.

I do still recommend that fleece, though. smile (I swear I am not in the pay of people who make them...)

squizita Tue 05-Aug-14 12:33:01

Thanks Penguins TBH that is very likely what I will do! For all we know we will have another mild winter (I was the only person in the UK who loved 4 months of drab 10 degree weather) so it will be a moot point. smile

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