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making up formula

(32 Posts)
JRmumma Tue 10-Sep-13 11:23:14

Does anyone abide by the instructions on the side of the carton? How can you possibly make your baby wait that long for a feed?!

I have a 4 week old and am half expressed breast and half formula feeding due to baby not being able to breast feed. Id never anticipated having to make up bottles and so never gave much thought to how it was supposed to be done.

I understand the rationale for using hot water to kill bacteria etc, but really, ive never heard of a baby getting ill through the misuse of formula so assume the risk is still pretty low. Ive been doing the water in advance and then just adding powder and slightly warming when i need the feed. Does anyone know if this is a better way than making up the feed with hot water (to kill bacteria) and then reheating again when needed?

delasi Tue 10-Sep-13 15:13:26

NomDeClavier Yy to all. The whole point is to try and kill the bacteria in the formula. Enterobacter sakazakii is serious, and there are recorded cases - in Europe and the US - of children being hospitalised or even, sadly, dying, as a result of inadequately prepared formula. Whilst statistically it might be less common, the safety of not preparing formula correctly is a game of odds and not a guarantee.

To make things easier, we got a good quality flask and filled it with freshly boiled water about 2-3x a day. This meant whenever we needed to make a bottle we had 70C+ water ready, we just mixed up the formula and cooled the bottle in a jug of cold water. Probably took us a couple of minutes so not too long and gave us peace of mind. Within the first week or two of ff'ing we got used to how often DS would feed and so would make it as we were approaching the next feed, so it would be ready as soon as he wanted it and would be only about 10mins 'old'.

It is sad and frustrating that formula companies do not print adequate guidance on formula tins (we use Hipp and I was shock at the 40-50C recommendation on the packaging). The government are also a bit useless at communicating this information - we had to switch to formula unexpectedly and literally spent over an hour (maybe at least two?) trying to find out what we should do.

rootypig Tue 10-Sep-13 15:30:11

Chlorine, nom! never heard that before. makes sense (presumably it evaporates?)

ffs why is it such a minefield angry You have taught me more in three posts than hours trawling the interwebs. Thank you smile

NomDeClavier Tue 10-Sep-13 15:39:23

smile rooty it's taken me nearly 10 years of being expected to be an expert on most things baby (even when I'm not), contacts from university who handily studied microbiology or who now work for Thames Water, a lot of independent research, a few hours in a kitchen with various kettles, baby bottles and thermos flasks and a themometer and lots of practice trying to distill down huge amounts of information into 'what you actually need to know' and 'the 5 minute version sleep deprived new parents can understand'.But it's worth it when 3 posts helps someone understand and even if you don't follow the guidelines you can at least make an informed decision because the information is what's lacking in official guidance, although they obviously need to keep it simple.

But yeah, chlorine in your tap water. You notice it when it's really obvious but otherwise you just don't think about how they keep it germ free in the pipes, do you?

rootypig Tue 10-Sep-13 15:54:57

Urgh chlorine. I am off to lecture DH and boil gallons of water. DD is 10mo but I daresay it's worth starting good practice at any time.

Nom thank you, you should have an infomercial grin

greenbananas Tue 10-Sep-13 19:16:14

Some good information here, especially from nom. But I'll say it again - ^ the bugs are in the formula powder^ , rather than in the water, so using previously boiled then cooled water is not going to help reduce the risk much.

Formula is not a sterile product. There are all sorts of nasties in it, which is one of the reasons formula fed babies get more tummy bugs. Using water over 70 degrees is absolutely crucial.

hardboiledpossum Tue 10-Sep-13 20:40:04

I always kept a jug if cooled boiled water. When baby needed bottle i boiled kettle, poured small amount of boiling water in bottle plus a bit of cooled water to bring down to 70, add formula, then add more cooled boiled water so milk perfect temp for drinking.

sandberry Tue 10-Sep-13 21:22:50

Second safest way is to make up feeds in a batch, rapidly cool and store in the back of the fridge. Can take in a cool bag for outings for up to four hours.

The new NHS leaflet is pretty good

Cronobacter Sakazakii infection is fairly rare but between 25% and 50% of babies who contract it die and many survivors are left with neurological impairment. Salmonella infection from contaminated formula is more common but less severe. It is definitely worth making up formula as advised.

And Hipp despite the 40 degrees recommendations on the old packaging which are still available also needs to be made up in water over 70 degrees. There was a national alert on this. Fortunately Hipp are changing their packaging and removing the pointless probiotics.

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