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Expressed Milk - Fresh and Frozen

(7 Posts)
Karen99 Sat 13-Sep-03 19:19:44

Hi Girls, my DS is 12wks and we've just managed to get him to take a bottle at his 7/8pm feed early this week (yippee! maybe I'll get a few evenings back!). I've started to express my milk when my DH gives DS the bottle, so we've got a few oz for the following night. However, I've got several bags containing 1-2oz which I froze in the first few weeks after the birth when v. engorged. As DS is taking approx 4oz during these bottle feeds do you think I can defrost one of the 1oz bags and add 3oz oz of fresh expressed milk? How do you defrost a bag safely?

Also, once a bottle has been warmed, drunk, but not completed, how long can I leave the milk on the side and try again before worrying it might have gone off?, ie. DS drinks 2oz, doesn't want anymore, but then does say 20mins later - can I use the same bottle he didn't finish or should it be thrown away and a new one given?

Sorry if these seem such trivial questions, but I just want to see if your views are similar to mine.. you think you know what's safe, but this being my first baby you can't help but double-check!

pidge Mon 15-Sep-03 10:03:59

You can defrost those bags in a number of ways - either just stick them in the fridge overnight, or I used to leave them out in the kitchen for a few hours, then stick them in the fridge to finish off the defrosting. Or if you're in a rush you can stick the frozen bag into a little bowl of warmish water and it'll defrost in no time. I've also been known to leave the frozen bags out in the kitchen all night (e.g. last night, when I forgot about them!) and then sent them in to nursery and dd has always been fine!

It's fine to add the defrosted milk to the freshly expressed milk.

And in terms of how long you can keep it once you're warmed it up - I think the recommendation is an hour. So 20 minutes is DEFINITELY no problem. I think in reality the milk can sit around even longer than that and be absolutely fine, but I guess since your baby is still pretty tiny you'd want to err on the side of caution and not leave it out longer than an hour once you've heated it.

Enjoy your new-found freedom!

Karen99 Mon 15-Sep-03 14:05:04

Thanks pidge. Your advice was spot on to what I was thinking. I'm very glad of the reassurance.

Tissy Mon 15-Sep-03 14:49:59

I was told that breast milk stays fresh at room temperature for 8 hours, 24 hours in the fridge, and 3 months if frozen. I suppose if the milk has been warmed, then you'd have to knock a bit off the 8 hours, but 20 mins should be fine, I'd say.


ninja Wed 17-Sep-03 12:48:56

hi karen - just to say keep using that bottle - my dd had that skill and has lost it. a bit annoying when i wanted to go out a few weeks later!

Karen99 Wed 17-Sep-03 14:58:44

Hi Ninga, I haven't used one for four days now cos I kept getting really engorged when ds missed a feed (even though I expressed in another room when the bottle was being given by dh). I can't find a good setting on my electric pump which simulates the babies feed, ie. not constant for 10mins, but busy, then stops, then busy again... Any tips appreciated.

Otherwise we're going to try and keep giving them every 3-4 days. Hopefully that gap won't be too long!

Agreed Tissy about the timing. I think 20-40mins is the maximum I'll leave it on the side. ds usually takes it just off fridge-cold so it doesn't get really warm anyway. Hopefully he'll continue to take it all in one go..

Cheers girls.

throckenholt Wed 17-Sep-03 15:02:33

breast milk can stay fresh much longer than 8 hours (at least mine does - I think it varies for individuals). I prefer to keep it out of the fridge and give it to them (twins) at room temperature, rather than risk heating it up and then them not want it. I guess mine has been out for a maximum of 12 hours with no problems.

It is really worth getting them to take it at room temperature - saves messing about heating it up.

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