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Bottle-Feeding: Pre-preparing bottle feeds!

(61 Posts)
eb455 Tue 09-Feb-16 21:58:15


I'm currently 6 months pregnant and think I want to bottle feed, although I know this may change in the next couple of months and after birth! I'm researching into formula feeding and it states that you should make bottles as and when you need them, and use them immediately.

I wondered if it was safe to pour boiling water into a sterilised bottle, cool it down in the fridge, or pop it straight into an insulated bag with an ice pack that would be kept in the room for night feeds. I would then add the formula to the cooled water and then heat it in my 'Tommee Tippee' bottle warmer.
This is the same for when we're on the go, but the cooled bottles would be heated with a flask instead.

I wondered if this would be ok, as I'm not adding the powder until it is needed and by keeping the bottles cooled would mean little chance for germs multiplying quickly?

Obviously it would be fine to make up bottles the 'normal' way in the daytime, this would only be apparent for night time and feeds on the go. Also, if anyone knows, is 'Cow & Gate' really that different to 'Aptamil'?

Would love to know peoples opinions! x

Rosenwyn1985 Tue 09-Feb-16 22:20:51

Yup, that's fine. Do NOT let anyone tell you otherwise! It's pretty much how we do it. Have a bunch of bottles in the fridge with boiled water. when needed heat and add powder. We've got an old bottle warmer, but you can use a microwave (just be sure to shake). Out and about I take a 5oz prepared bottle of cooled water and a flask of hot. Top up bottle to 8oz with hot and add powder.

All studies done around breast milk fail to take into account extra factors such as parents diet and lifestyle. Formula milk, in this country, is safe. I've been given all this information by one of the country's leading neo natal consultants. I was lucky that due to complications I had to bottle feed and so before my first was born I had an appointment with him.

And as for brand, doesn't matter. They're all the same for vitamins, proteins etc but have different thicknesses or tastes. My first did well on aptamil but we're using cow and gate for number 2. It's thicker so good for colic babies. Hope this helps!

huhpuh Tue 09-Feb-16 22:35:09

I'm not sure that is ok - it's not the water you're trying to kill germs in, it's the milk powder. The makers can't guarantee the milk powder is sterile so you need to pour water that is at least 70 degrees onto it. If you add cooled / cold water to the powder then you may not kill the germs. Heating the bottle then in warm water may only get it to about 35 degrees. Look into a Tommee Tippee perfect prep machine as it makes safe bottles up in 2 mins, or consider making the bottles up with 70 degree water and then fast cooling those bottles and refrigerating until needed. Then heat the made-up bottle in warm water.

Ploppymoodypants Tue 09-Feb-16 22:40:41

Going to have to disagree I am afraid. I would never risk putting formula in water under 70 degrees. Lots do it and get away with it. But even if you wash your hands you then open the formula box/ turn off taps/ strait nose without raising etc etc. Your hands then immediately contaminate the formula and little measure in it. When that has been repeated 7 times a day, that is a lot of germs. Lots of my friends used cool water and their babies had odd tummy upsets, constipation etc etc. One even hospital stay for tummy upset, which was attributed to bottle made up incorrectly. Also other people may be less strict about hygiene than you might be and you will be constantly worrying about letting others make up feeds.
Buy a perfect prep machine and take away all the worry. I never used cooled water and my baby never had constipation or upset tummy or even sicky until weaning. (Luck as well I am sure). At the end of the day the cool water might be okay but why bother risking it?

If no perfect prep my colleague who is a nurse on a SCBU said its actually ether to make up a fresh bottle, cool it and keep in fridge and reheat when ready to use. Fridge must be under 5 degrees and bottles used within 24 hours. The NHS website actually advises this in a case of not having access to hot water when travelling. But as sisters against cool water. Remember even if the cooled boiled water is sterilise the formula isn't.

With regard to formula bands, they probably are all same, apart from organic. I didn't want routine antibiotics, growth hormones etc in my baby's milk, and there is also the animal welfare aspect on non organic dairy farming to consider. Bad enough in uk but much worse in EU where the farms are.

Sorry for the massive essay and if it sounds bossy. I am passionate about formula feeding. I couldn't breast feed and felt so guilty about it. It was compounded that there was NO support the formula feeding available and making up bottles in a minefield. I found it really helped to understand why the guideline were there so I could make informed choices.

Also check our website call 'fearless formula feeder'.

Good luck and enjoy your new baby

Ploppymoodypants Tue 09-Feb-16 22:40:54

Sorry for all typos on my phone

Ploppymoodypants Tue 09-Feb-16 22:43:28

Yep what hupuh said much more clearly and concisely than me with better spelling smile

Ilovenannyplum Tue 09-Feb-16 22:45:03

You need a perfect prep in your life.

When DS was tiny, after my family it would have been the next few thing I would of saved had my house gone up in flames. Best baby invention ever.

hufflebottom Tue 09-Feb-16 22:48:52

I had boiled water in a flask for night feeds and had the formula in pots. Made them when needed. Water was still hot enough for the formula and then milk only needed to be cooled down.

As for the formula I'm gonna use SMA again as used that with dd 6 years ago and my dm used it for me and my db. Doubt there's any difference in them.

Lj8893 Tue 09-Feb-16 22:54:14

NO!! Sorry, but I cannot stress it enough. The formula can contain nastys that need to be killed by the hot water, so putting the powder in cold water (even if it's previously been boiled) could potentially put your child at risk of illness.

You can use a thermos flask (make sure it's a decent one that keeps the water at the right temp!) to decant your water from or if out and about the ready made bottles of formula are fab!

cranberryx Tue 09-Feb-16 22:57:27

If I pre-prepare a bottle I use boiled water and formula and put in the fridge, I try to use before 12-24 hours and heat up in the microwave with a through shake. However, I only so this if I am at someone else's house otherwise I use a perfect prep at home or ready milk when out.

As pp have said, the boiling water is to sterilise the formula.

hilbil21 Tue 09-Feb-16 22:59:43

Buy perfect prep xx

magpie17 Tue 09-Feb-16 23:16:05

But a perfect prep, it's worth every penny. But yes to what the others have said, the water needs to be over 70 degrees to sterilise the powder. I see so many people making bottles with cool boiled water and it bugs me that they obviously haven't been told that it's the powder you need to sterilise, not the water. You can either make a full bottle with boiled water (hot) and flash cool it, or I use a 'shot' of boiling water then add the powder, shake and then add the rest of cool boiled water (I make little sterilised bottles up of this every day if I'm going out). Typically if I'm making 7oz I'll do a shot of 2oz boiling water, add powder and then 5oz cold boiled water. It sounds a faff but takes about 30 seconds. This is pretty much what the perfect prep machine does. I always make each bottle as needed.

In the house I use a perfect prep machine because it's the best invention ever!

eb455 Tue 09-Feb-16 23:16:17

Thanks everyone, I didn't think about the milk powder not being sterile! I only thought about it this way because I bought the 'Tommee Tippee' essential starter kit which has the bottle warmer included, and bought the flask separately. So if the bottles are made up with boiling water on the powder then immediately cooled this will be better?

My only worry was carrying my itsy newborn down my steep terrace house stairs at 3am when I'm sleepy, but I will look into the perfect prep machine as this could be placed in my room too! I appreciate everyones views though - and understand that just because some peoples bambinos are fine with it there might be a chance mine and others will pick up something nasty!

magpie17 Tue 09-Feb-16 23:17:20

Also, ready made bottles are fab for out and about but are pricey and do give my DS a bit of an upset tummy.

magpie17 Tue 09-Feb-16 23:20:06

Put the perfect prep in your room! I know somebody who has two, one upstairs and one down. I'm very jealous.

They do make quite a loud beep though so might wake a partner!

Cathster Wed 10-Feb-16 03:53:51

Yes they do beep loudly so just bear that in mind. I love mine - hands down best baby investment!

When we are on the go I boil a kettle, fill a thermos with the water and then fill some containers with more boiled water and let those cool down to room temperature. Then when making up a bottle I put about 50ml hot water from the thermos, add the powder, and top up with the cooled water to make it the right temperature for baby. The only thing I don't like about that is I don't know how long it stays at 70c for in the thermos.

My friend has always made bottles with the cooled boiled water and added powder and her kids have been fine but I personally don't want to risk it.

ICJump Wed 10-Feb-16 04:11:18

Only mentioning because you said you may change your mind.

If you decide to breastfeed it's always at the right temperature, always available with no more wait then lifting a top and requires no additional cleaning. The 3am scenario is rather pick baby up feed fall back to sleep.
Even if breastfeeding you decide to express the milk can be served cold and pumps and bottles/cups only need washing in hot soapy water.

WombOfOnesOwn Wed 10-Feb-16 06:41:02

You know, it's interesting. I'd probably obey the standard advice about boiling water and adding to the milk powder if I formula fed, but...

When I researched this, I couldn't find a SINGLE instance of an infant being sickened by unboiled formula, even though we can see from this very thread that there are people who are doing it in "unsafe" ways. Is this something that actually happens, or just something we're told to be terrified of without any good reason?

ICJump Wed 10-Feb-16 06:49:25

There has been cases in Belgium and the US. I know if these because if court cases. The risk is small but the way to mitagate it so so simple hot water. The world health organisation has a great no nonsense publication in how to make bottles.

Shetland Wed 10-Feb-16 06:50:21

I was just coming on to say the same womb
Personally I used ready-made for out and about but pretty much everyone else I see just puts powder into a bottle of (presumably) cooled boiled water - if this was making babies I'll then there would be a lot of sick babies out there, surely a connection would have been made by now? still can't bring myself to do it though

At home I put mixed just booled water with cooled boiled water til it's 70 degrees, add powder, then cool rapidly and store in the back of the fridge til it's needed.

Shetland Wed 10-Feb-16 06:50:57


Mummyme87 Wed 10-Feb-16 08:34:42

I work with women and babies and have seen sick babies following poorly made up formula. It happens

Lj8893 Wed 10-Feb-16 08:35:57

I've personally seen babies with gastroenteritis which has been due to poor hygiene in bottle preparation. Babies who ff are 5 times more likely to get gastro issues than bf babies because of the risk of poor hygiene. (I'm not ff bashing, I ff fed mine!)

I think a lot of the reason is because the emphasis is on breastfeeding support and education by healthcare professionals, it means ff parents get forgotten about and things like bottle preparation get assumed and not taught properly.

mrsmugoo Wed 10-Feb-16 08:37:28

Formula powder has to go in the boiling water but you can flash cool the made up bottle and then re-heat.

To make bottle son the go you either need the pre-mixed stuff or carry a thermos.

You can do it the way you described but the formula powder is not sterile so you're un-doing all the benefit of sterilising the bottle and using boiled water!

BisherBasherBosher Wed 10-Feb-16 15:46:46

Great in theory ICJump, but in practice BF is not that simple. Not in my, or many of my friends experiences.

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