Should boiled, cooled water for formula be kept in fridge....

(35 Posts)
Clarabell78 Wed 24-Jul-13 21:22:09

Or is it ok left on the side if the bottle is sealed and sterilized? If ok on side how long before I should throw away if unused? Thanks! :-)

InMyShreddies Wed 24-Jul-13 21:26:09

The important thing is that you always add formula powder to water that is over 70 degrees. Because it will kill any bacteria in the powder.

There is no benefit in this country in boiling water only to let it cool right down.

When preparing formula, you are taking care to ensure you kill bacteria in the powder, not in the water.

ilovepowerhoop Wed 24-Jul-13 21:29:04

the water should be hot to kill bacteria in the milk powder - the powder needs sterilising rather than the water itself

As the PP said, it's not the water you need to worry about, it's the powder. There is no benefit to making the water up in advance, you need to heat the milk itself to about 70 degrees and let it cool to kill bacteria.

nextphase Wed 24-Jul-13 21:31:06

I though you were supposed to add the milk powder to hot water. You can then rapidly cool, and store in the fridge for 12 hrs??

Surely adding powder to cold water defeats the point of boiling it???

nextphase Wed 24-Jul-13 21:31:36


Woopdedo Wed 24-Jul-13 21:34:50

You can keep it on side sealed for about 12 hrs. We leave it overnight.

Clarabell78 Wed 24-Jul-13 21:59:02

So you can store the bottle made up into milk in the fridge? I thought that was a no no?

Figgygal Wed 24-Jul-13 22:03:52

Make bottle with slightly cooled boiled water store made up bottle in fridge heat to serve I did with my DS no problem!!

VivaLeBeaver Wed 24-Jul-13 22:06:56

The advice is that you should not keep pre made up bottles in the fridge for any length of time.

The water needs to be 70degrees or above in order to kill off any bugs in the milk.

So make the feed up with a recently boiled kettle, cool rapidly to appropriate temp and give the feed.

Fairylea Wed 24-Jul-13 22:07:02

You can make batches of formula in advance and store in the fridge for up to 12 hours BUT as always the formula MUST be made with water that has just been boiled or left up to 30 mins, the water needs to be hot.... to kill bacteria in the powder.

You're not boiling it to sterilise the water.

You need to make the bottles fresh if you possibly can. The danger is the potential bacteria in the powder (which can't be made sterile). And it isn't just normal kitchen-floor type bacteria.

Fairy130389 Wed 24-Jul-13 22:08:56

Just spoke to midwife about this - she said to oil kettle, leave for 30 mins, put it in sterilised bottles, seal. Leave on side (specifically not fridge!) and add powder when needed. The boiling of kettle and leaving to cool is also what instructions on box say. Hth x

VivaLeBeaver Wed 24-Jul-13 22:09:25
maja00 Wed 24-Jul-13 22:10:13

That's poor advice Fairy as the bacteria is in the powder, not the water. The powder needs to be sterilised with hot water.

VivaLeBeaver Wed 24-Jul-13 22:10:20

Fairy, your midwife is wrong.

Fairy130389 Wed 24-Jul-13 22:15:55

She also went and checked with a colleague? I bloody hate all this shut advice from professionals, the other d a gp advised watering down formula and it was only mn that raised the alarm bells in my head!

InMyShreddies Wed 24-Jul-13 22:19:00


Sorry for shouting but this topic makes me angry

It is fine to make up bottles in advance and rapid cool them, store them in fridge and reheat when needed. Ideally make them up with slightly cooled boiled water (still crucially above 70 degrees) fresh each time, but making them in advance within 24 hours is fine.

What is not fine is using cold water to mix with powder. You may as well mix it with water straight from the tap.

We have this topic like every week. If you don't understand how to make them up safely then buy a Tommee Tippee gadget that does it for you smile

ilovepowerhoop Wed 24-Jul-13 22:19:03

nhs guide

from another nhs page

If it isn't possible to follow the advice above or if you need to transport a feed (for example, to a nursery), prepare the feed at home and cool it for at least one hour in the back of the fridge.

Take it out of the fridge just before you leave and carry it in a cool bag with an ice pack, and use it within four hours. If you do not have an ice pack, or access to a fridge, the made-up infant formula must be used within two hours.

* If made-up formula is stored in a fridge, use within 24 hours.
* If made-up formula is stored in a cool bag with an ice pack, use within four hours.
* If made-up formula is stored at room temperature, use within two hours.

Woopdedo Thu 25-Jul-13 06:54:58

The question wasn't about making up FORMULA though was it - it was about the water. I leave cooled water made up, so that in the night when she wakes for a feed I add they powder to half boiling water (in a thermos) - kill all the bacteria, then add half of the cooled boiled water so it is the perfect temp.
So to answer the OPs question - yes, you can leave WATER out on the side, but make sure you add the formula to, at least part, boiling water.

Woopdedo Thu 25-Jul-13 06:56:32

Oh sorry I didn't see the OP came back to ask another question.

Woopdedo - the OP may have asked about the water rather than the formula itself, but what we're saying is that there is absolutely no value to boiling the water and letting it cool in advance of adding the powder, so why do it at all?

Zara1984 Thu 25-Jul-13 08:52:44

World Health Organisation say it is ok to make bottles up in advance and this is seen as ok in most other countries.

NHS advice is very extreme and obviously best practice

KittieCat Thu 25-Jul-13 09:00:02

This subject makes me very cross. How hard can it possibly be for HCPs to learn that it is the powder that needs to be 'sterilised' by the boiling water?

Our tap water is ok to drink straight from the tap but formula powder is not absolutely bug free. I'm not a HCP and I BF but I've got to grips with this. Grrrr.

TalkativeJim Thu 25-Jul-13 09:06:50

Fairy, you should raise this with that midwife. It's dangerous advice.

KittieCat Thu 25-Jul-13 09:10:17

Yes, Jim that's important.

Maybe a MN campaign would help?!

thistlelicker Thu 25-Jul-13 09:11:39

Where I work in a central hospital we advise to,leave water for 30min to cool to 70 degrees as there has been babies who have died from the bacteria that's found in incorrectly made bottles of formula! If ure that concerned or unsure then buy ready made milk

tiktok Thu 25-Jul-13 09:59:12

It is extraordinary that this issue raises so many questions - why are HCPs still confusing mothers? The instructions on the pack are clear enough - the water has to be 70 deg C in order to make the formula safe.

We have had the guidance about 70 deg C for several years now.

AmIGoingMad Thu 25-Jul-13 11:08:37

I agree that its crazy that so many hcps are telling women that its fine to make up the feeds by just adding powder to cold pre boiled water! As so many have said, cold water won't kill the bacteria in the milk!

It's hard to find the safe pre prep recommendations on Nhs but the world health organisation previously linked to is great!

Figgygal Thu 25-Jul-13 14:04:57

Agreed i dont understand why there is so much confusion about making up bottles safely my Ante natal group were the same half of them were making bottles with cold pre boiled water if i tried to explain to them the risks it was like i had grown another head.

tiktok Thu 25-Jul-13 14:07:28

I wonder if there is some sort of folk memory about water not being safe? I mean going back 100-200 years when water borne disease was not uncommon in the 19th century stews where the urban poor lived?

InsanelyBrainDeprived Thu 25-Jul-13 14:14:18

I was told by my midwife and hv to never add formula to cold water.

Boil kettle with fresh water, leave to cool for 20mins. Make up bottle with formula and flash cool. Yes ideally use straight away but if cooled within 20 mins you can store at back of fridge for 12 hours. Discard after then. For out and about use a cool bag but use within 2 hours.

Did this with both of mine and so far they are fine

InsanelyBrainDeprived Thu 25-Jul-13 14:16:52

I also see lots of people making up formula with cold water. My friend did and still does this even though I pointed out the water needs to be above 70 to kill bacteria in the formula. She thinks warming it up is sufficient. That's what she was told

jomaynard Thu 25-Jul-13 14:24:52

When I had my first it was perfectly fine to make up bottles with cooled boiled water. (He's 17.)

The advice changed sometime after there was a problem with some cartoons of pre-mixed formula from a leading manufacturer.
So maybe Fairy's midwife needs retraining?

NoComet Thu 25-Jul-13 14:25:52

And if you don't make bottles up in advance baby will scream, mum will have a nervous break down and pour boiling water on her foot in the middle of the night.

Realistically the risk from milk made up at 70°C, cooled quickly, stored in the fridge for less than 24 hours and drunk immediately on warming is absolutely tiny.

Generations of babies have survived perfectly well on formula made up in a 101 'wrong ways' my own DD1 included.

The bug in formula is nasty, but illness from it is very rare.

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